Pet Peeve - Pirated Software

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by Cucco, Aug 10, 2007.

  1. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Okay - I know I've harped on this before, but I'll do it again.

    Don't come here and talk about your software or anything else for that matter if you haven't actually bought your software! It's insulting to those of us who have and put serious money and time into recording for some schmo off the street to get a cracked copy of some program and a cheap chinese mic and call themselves a recording engineer.

    Here's clue #1 -

    If you state that you have Cool Edit Pro, I'm guessing that's a 90% chance that it's a cracked software title.

    "Why?" you ask...

    Simple -

    Cool Edit Pro is an old software title put out by Syntrillium Labs. About 4 or 5 years ago, Adobe bought out the rights to Cool Edit Pro and began calling it Adobe Audition.

    Here's the kicker -

    For 6 months after they bought Cool Edit Pro, they were offering any one with a LEGAL and LEGIT COPY a FREE upgrade to Adobe Audition V 1.0 (actually all the way up to 1.2 if I recall correctly).

    This tells me that, unless you were a VERY early adopter of Cool Edit Pro (Version 1, since there was just this and CEP 2 or CE2000), then you are using a hacked copy.

    Here's an idea - stop spending time on this forum, go mow a few yards or recycle some cans and buy a copy of Audition, Cubase, Cakewalk, or some other similar program. Then come back and talk to us.

    This is my absolute last warning - anyone who says they use Cool Edit had better clarify that this is a legal copy of Cool Edit and why they didn't upgrade or I'm going to toast some @$$.


  2. KroMag

    KroMag Active Member

    I totally agree with everything you say. Music should only be enjoyed by those of us with lots of disposable income.


    Postscript: really, though, I believe making any kind of money from the use of pirated software is scummy.

  3. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    I also agree, making money off of it is bad. But if you're not making money off of it there is a reason that companies won't come after you - they don't care. Otherwise I think pirated software IS a great idea.

    How much can you really learn from a 30 day trial of a program? Especially when you can't use it every day? Sure there are tons of people who take advantage of pirated software. But there are many others who use it as a learning tool, and make sure that they really want to get the program. Some programs, especially in the digital arts costs thousands of dollars. For someone that really likes it and wants to do it as a hobby, why should they have to pay that much money?
  4. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    What you're saying is the EXACT same thing as saying:

    "You can't really get to know how a microphone works in the 30 day return period from Guitar Center, so I take it home without them knowing and use it as much as I'd like and never return it. But, because I don't make money off of it, it's okay!"


    This is incorrect and it's illegal. It's theft and it's that simple. Just because there aren't moving parts to software doesn't mean that you can use it without paying for it. Someone still put time and effort into building, developing and marketing that software and for you to use it for free is against the law.

    I've already reported 6 people for using pirated software and I'll continue to report pirates. (In fact, I received a $2000 reward from one such report!)

    If you don't want to spend money, download one of the many free/open source programs. If you don't like it, then you have a starting point for choosing new software. Then, get the 30 day trial versions and see if the things you didn't like in the old software are fixed.

    I say "BULLSH!T" to those who say that they can't figure it out in the 30 day trial period. If you would just sit down and seriously WORK at understanding the software, you can get a pretty damn good grasp of the software in 30 days.

    Take a step back for just a second and realize exactly how illegal and immoral your statements are.

    Additionally, sure there are packages that are thousands of dollars. Hell, I own a few of them. But I bought them. The reason I bought them is because they do what I need them to do and no other software met my requirements. However, if I were just recording a band, Cubase SE would do exactly what I would need and it's free with many recording interfaces - as is Mackie Tracktion and other similar programs. Of course there's programs like Audacity which work quite well too.

    I know this was tongue in cheek, but the mentallity is alive and well in some people.

    If you can't afford the software, try the free stuff. If you can't get that to work for you, then quit trying and go back to your day job (not YOU specificaly, YOU generically)

    Continue on.
  5. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    I don't take to quoting myself very often, but I'll do it here.

    I didn't just buy this software because I'm rich and had disposable income to buy software. Despite the fact that I make a lot of money during my day job, I NEVER (let me make this VERY clear NEVER) spend my personal money from my personal accounts on recording gear. I'm also less than $5K in debt for everything and I mean EVERYTHING for my studio.

    How did I make enough money to buy $10,000 worth of software?

    I worked my ass off for it! I started out with a couple hundred dollars that I had saved up from some odd jobs and teaching music lessons. I bought a mini-disc recorder, a Mackie mixer (1202VLZ - still own it today - over 12 years old and in brand new condition!) and a couple AT mics. Then I made some recordings and made some money. I invested that money in...........more gear. At the time, I used the free audio recorder on my computer and it worked. I later purchased Cubase (a very old version) and used it for a LONG time. I still have the box and the original disc and it's still installed on one of my computers.

    Every time I make money, I invest some or all (depending upon how much and what time of the year it is) back into the business. I have an annual budget with which to work and I stick to it. I don't buy pot or alcohol with studio money. I don't pocket it and go to the mall or Best Buy. I buy expendables (gaffers tape, cable, CDs), I buy microphones/preamps, etc. and MOST importantly, I pay my staff.

    What makes me any more special than anybody else on this forum? Absolutely nothing! I earn my money and I spend it wisely. I don't take short cuts and steal! It's taken me a LONG time and a LOT of work to get where I am today.

    Currently, my studio takes in roughly $50K annually. I'd like to triple that in the next 10 years. Yes, 10 years is a long time, but thanks to a good budget and a fiscally smart (and smoking hot) wife, I'll be retiring in 10 years from my day job at the age of 41 and will only have my studio to sustain life and put my kid through college.

    All that being said, YES, I take it personally when I see people cutting corners and stealing and then justifying it by claiming they don't have the money to buy. If you don't have the money you have two options:

    1 - WORK! This is perhaps one of the best ways to get money!

    2 - Quit and live in Mom's basement. However, don't expect sympathy or a hand out from me or anyone else.

    I'm up at 1:20 Eastern time and will wake up again in 5 hours. Why?

    Well, I just got done recording an internationally known ensemble 700 miles away from my studio and I get to wake up 5 hours from now and go back to work!

    The only reason I'm awake right now is because I just walked back into my room a little while ago and saw this reply and I thought I'd reply while my virus checker is killing the virus my intern got on my laptop while surfing porn on it!
  6. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    Hear hear!
  7. KroMag

    KroMag Active Member

    It's probably a bad idea for me to continue posting on this subject, as I feel the pro/con debating (read: arguing [read: bickering]) on this topic is only slightly less inflammatory than the Mac/PC dialogue and is equally likely to change a person's mind on the subject.

    However, I am an idiot, so here I goes:

    It is obvious from much lurking in the past that many of the active posters on this site have nicely equipped studios and the wherewithal to use them effectively. This naturally tends to breed a sort of elitism, as one who's spent a lot of time and effort in any field would tend to view their achievement as a "payment of dues" so to speak, it consequently following that those who haven't paid said dues occupy a space somewhat further down the totem pole. Nothing wrong with a bit of meritocracy, IMHO.

    Personally, I fail to understand why some feel injured when others don't see things the same way as they do. Often, and I find it to be the case on the internet more so than in reality, the injured parties feel the need to either attack those responsible for the perceived injury. In some cases, they defend the institutions and authorities responsible for the establishment of the system which allows or creates this conflict of viewpoints. Again, just because I don't understand it doesn't make it wrong, but all too often we resort to illogical or presumptive (presuppository?) rationalizations to condemn others.

    Exempli gratia (and this is not an attack, just an attempt at civil discussion):

    This is a classic straw man fallacy. Stealing software packaged in a box from Guitar Center would be exactly the same as stealing the afore-mentioned microphone. Downloading software from the internet does not cause a physical loss of inventory. Please note I am not condoning software piracy.

    Referring to multi-media software:
    I think we'll all agree that Socrates had it a bit harder than the average potential software pirate (hemlock, anybody?) If you believe in the duty of personal obedience to civil law, the reason a person should pay for software regardless of price is because society as moral authority says it's the correct thing to do, regardless of whether you want to or not.

    I will refrain from inflicting my own opinion on you, other than what you can already infer. Also, I am a communist :wink:

  8. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    M M M must....n n not....r r re rep reply.....
  9. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    KroMag- You may not have noticed it lurking around here, but the theme of this forum is a discussion among people who create intellectual property. Why should you expect us not to be hostile to people who argue that (a) it's not really property, so I can take it or (b) I'm too poor/It's too expensive, so I can steal it or (c) I can get away with it, so I'm going to steal it?
  10. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    Maybe I shouldn't have said WHY should they have to pay that much money. They should. Rather, how could a working class person paying to support their family, paying car insurance, home expenses etc, JUSTIFY dropping thousands on something they would just like to do in their spare time. I'm sure they would not just go out and buy another car when they're in an economic situation. But yes, it is still WRONG.

    I agree with the statement about the people who have paid the costs will obviously be angry about this. The difference between you and the person who just wants to learn this as something on the side is that you are devoting your life to it. Nowadays, it's easier to download the full illegal version of something than it is to download a free trial! (Signing up, making an account, registering with the company)

    As far as it goes, I see stealing software on the bottom of a big list. You want to know why? Because who you're stealing from is not overly affected in the least buy what you do. People say it is the same thing, I do not at all. Any professional institution that needs their software pays for it. And since the companies know that 90% of the time only people that NEED it will actually BUY it, they jack up the price, aimed towards the professional institutions that will use it.

    Here's a simple list of theft and where I think software piracy stands.

    Bank robbery
    Home invasion
    Car theft
    Software piracy

    As you can see, in these cases, the person / persons affected by the theft is VERY substantial.

    I'm not saying software piracy is not stealing, but as far as things go, I'd say it is nowhere NEAR the same as stealing other things.
  11. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    Here here!! Or would that be hear, hear?

    I would like to add that neither side of this argument has merit. Stealing is edit pro or a mans life savings....there is no division of which is the more troublesome or worse of the two, because it is, after all, stealing and a simple annoyance to any given person in regard to that is what it is.

    Just woke up,

  12. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    Yeah I shouldn't have replied, lol. At least it's a civil debate. Cucco, after re-reading your last post I totally agree with you. People are lazy, but if you want something, work hard for it and you will get it.

    Well, at least we have established...
    It is wrong
    It is expensive
    It will keep happening anyways!
  13. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Well-Known Member

    People complain that they can't afford to purchase software so they use pirated software. If you can't afford to purchase it then WHY do you need it at all? People say they are doing this as a hobby or for relaxation and therefore can't afford to purchase it. It seems to me that no matter what you do for a hobby or for relaxation costs money from playing golf to riding a bicycle. Why is it any different when it comes to purchasing software you will use in the pursuit of your hobby or relaxation?

    I am a WaveLab user and until version 6 there were always people asking for help with the software and many of them said they did not have the manual to consult. Why was that? Since their was no on line manual to consult they were more than likely using pirated software. A couple of the posters actually said that they were using pirated software since "they could not afford to purchase it" Then they have the balls to come on to a forum of WL users who have paid for the program and ask for help. One guy in particular was incensed when people told him to purchase the software and he said "If I had to purchase the software I could not compete with others studios for business" I think he was missing, big time, the meaning of the word "competition".

    If something is important to you like your car, your home and the clothes you wear then you find a way to purchase them. If you can afford to purchase a computer and other things to do recordings why can't you afford to purchase the software you will use for the recording?

    If you would try and steal a piece of hardware from GC and got caught you would have to stand before a judge and there would be some penalty imposed for your actions from paying a fine to jail time. When people steal software they think that some how this is different.

    I have thousand's of dollars invested in the software we use. It is part of "doing business" and like most things you have to spend money to make money. Did I want to spend the money NO, could I have found other things to spend the money on YES, was I happy it cost what it did NO, did I buy it instead of pirating it YES, was there an alternative NO, did it help me make money YES, In the end was it worth the money YES.

    I think theft is basically the same if you are stealing hardware or software but somehow in our current society it is the common belief that by stealing software you are not doing any harm to anyone. The common misconception is that "They make millions on the software and no one is going to miss one person stealing one program". They fail to realize that it is not just one person but it is millions of people who use illegal software and that it really hurts software companies more than they know. I have a couple of friends who write software or sell software and they have families to support and need the same cars, homes and clothes When people steal their software their income drops or they get laid off and then they cannot afford to purchase the things that they need. Stealing software is NOT victim-less crime.

    Good topic and I hope it gets read by the people who need to read it.
  14. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    wow- I have to say as a person that often writes software for a living, the the line

    is not something I can agree with. If you give away candy, and everyone has it, do you still have a market to sell candy too?

    I personally have put a lot of time and effort into my products, software or hardware. I feel its only fair to except a return on my investment.

    I have to agree with the thoughts regarding never putting personal money into the studio. I can not say it has never happened in my case, but I can say that 90% of gear collection was bought with previous studio profits.

    The best advice I can give, is learn electronics. Buy dammaged gear and fix it! I have saved thousands this way.

    Anyway thats my 2 cents.
  15. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    EDIT -Opps sorry double post-
  16. KroMag

    KroMag Active Member

    Hi BobRogers, thanks for replying. The sarcasm wasn't really necessary, but it's all bueno. I do tend to lurk because a) I have a great deal to learn from the knowledgeable posters on this forum and b) I don't relish the idea of someone misconstruing my intent and jumping down my throat.

    To reply: What good does hostility do? Taking the moral high ground should be a reward in-and-of itself. It doesn't necessarily need to be turned into a tool with which to flog the--as Ben Franklin put it--"empty sacks" among us. I'm certainly not going to claim the authority to tell someone what to do do with their high ground, but does it solve any problems berating someone?

    In response to Space: I agree with what you've said, if I might add: the magnitude of theft is something to be considered.

    With respect,
  17. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    Speaking of this - Link555 - I have a bass amp head that I took apart and I wanted to switch the input jacks on it. The input for the guitar does not work correctly, and I wanted to switch it with the headphone one (both jacks are exactly the same)

    My friend and I went to solder the metal off of the bottom of the board so we could pull out the piece, but it would not melt. Is it a different type of solder?
  18. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    I sent you a PM offline sarNZ-
  19. Kent L T

    Kent L T Active Member

    I don't understand why someone would want to steal something when there are perfectly capable shareware programs available that a person could learn on.

    This is something that can't be justified or explained away theft is theft. You download cracked software your a thief plain and simple. Your guilt is convicting you now by having to justify your actions.

    I can't even say I agree with the argument about it not being as bad as other types of theft. It still sounds like it is trying to justify it in some manner. I tend to have a somewhat black and white view of these things so....
    If you don't have the money to buy it use some shareware untill you can buy it. Practice delayed gratification.
  20. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    That's the problem today - no delayed gratification. Today's youth want everything right now and don't want to wait or work for it.

    The twisted part is, they think it's owed to them and they deserve it.

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