Music is one of the countless arts that represent the world as it is and sometimes much better- what it should be. Aside from this cliche, the world of music is being torn between legal issues of piracy and what others claim to be the inherent natural rights of individuals who would want to listen to music- free access. The internet provides one of the most free access portals for those who would want to have the music of their choice, but the question remains- is it ethical to get something for free when it is legally established to have a tendering value?
In more simple terms- is it ethical to steal music online? Joseph, Francis, Angelo, Kairos, Karina and Angelina have been friends for almost a decade now. They met in their high school years, now they have decided to pursue different paths for their college education. Joseph entered college under a program of business administration; Kairos pursued a similar course under the program of economics. Karina and Angelina who both shared undying passion specialized in two major art subjects. Karina studied arts and letters; while Angelina enrolled in a program of music.
Angelo, the techno savvy of the group enrolled to be an information technology specialist someday. And lastly, Francis the most authoritative of them all enlisted in the police academy to become a member of the police force someday. All of them are happy in their pursued lives, but there are things that remain the same –their friendship and their enthusiasm to listen to music. It became a habit for them to meet up during weekends to catch up over dinner, share a couple of laughs and go back to their mishaps and fun times when they are still in high school.
In one of their dinner at Kairos’ place, they chose to play a concert video of Alicia Keys; but then something happened to Angelina… (against) Angelina: Kairos, this is a nice DVD where did you get it? I did not know that they have already released this one. (pro) Kairos: They already have that one in Danton’s record bar down the street, but it is pretty expensive. I did not bought it, Angelo got it, (joking) it is no secret…our friend has pretty cool tricks in front of a computer. (pro) Angelo: Hey man, stop bragging about it.
I might end up downloading whole day for these guys. It is pretty boring man, if it’s not free, I won’t bother at all. (pro) Kairos: Hey Angelina, are you ok? Do you feel something wrong? Or are you just too mesmerized with the glories of downloading? (against) Angelina: You’re unbelievable… (pro) Karina: Hey Kairos, I think you hit a wrong…very wrong button. (pro) Kairos: huh? (against) Angelina: You are unbelievable! You are to busy computing how much you can save you became a common thief. (pro) Kairos: Are you serious? What did I do?
(against) Angelina: You have practically stolen something and yet you act as if nothing happened. You and Angelo you both favor convenience without its obligations. (pro) Kairos: I did not steal anything; do not put that on me. Angelo is the one who downloaded. But still, I cannot see your point why you are overacting. (against) Angelina: Ok, I will indulge you and downloading accomplice in the implications of what you have done, shall I get started? Downloading is stealing because- (Angelo interrupts). (pro) Angelo: It’s free, get a computer and link it to the internet.
You will find there it’s free; you cannot steal something which is free. That’s the glory of it, free downloading it is FREE and logically it will be free even from your so- called obligations . (against) Angelina: That is not the point, the point is just like any other form of art Alicia Keys’ concert is the result of her hard work and even painstaking attempts to create something exemplary beautiful. You stole that from her by not buying the original copy of her concert and opting to download a mere duplicate of her work.
(pro) Kairos: Last time I checked recording companies, reap off a lot from the original copies, not the artist. The competition between record labels is too superficial for ordinary citizens, just like me and Angelo to purchase the original copy. Original copies are too expensive; it is like a monopoly of record labels, prices do not compete . And with what I learned, the recording industry without competition is no longer viable as a form of market. (against) Joseph: Excuse me, but I think the likes of you and Angelo are the reason for the increase in the prices of original copies.
Companies compensate for their losses from free downloads and other forms of piracies . Kairos, above everyone else in this room you should know that, your studying economics right? (pro) Kairos: Yes I am, what you are saying is profit making. I am standing on the notion of free. (against) Francis: Come one man, what you claim to be free as contested by Angelina is not free at all; I think, you are using the word in a wrong way. (against) Angelina: You cannot financially categorize the works of others for your benefit. It is true that the music industry is highly privatized.
And it has a very good reason to do so; music is private in the sense that it is the fruit of the musician and singer. The prices are high simply because music is an innovation in its simplicity . The creation of an innovation is one thing, but guarding and protecting it from the likes of you and Angelo is another thing. (pro) Karina: I don’t know for music which is highly commercialized, I think individuals who want to access into a form of art should be allowed to do so as long as it is permitted by the artist. I doubt that a real artist would deny such privilege.
(against) Angelina: Karina, you are an artist yourself or at least someone who is aspiring to be. How can you reach your dreams if your early first steps are being trampled by piracy such as that experienced by starting out musicians in free music downloading? (pro) Karina: Pirated works are usually that of already “made” stars, free downloading has minimal effects to starting musicians since their works are not there in the first place . Websites do not host unpopular music files. As a matter of fact, only 1% of websites have more than 50% of the general traffic in the internet .
In short, starting bands are usually and probably exempted. (pro)Angelo: What Karina told is true in both statistics and even in logic. Angelina, some starting bands even welcome the idea of being pirated simply because it is a good venue to be established in the music industry which is dominated by bigger music labels . (against) Angelina: No matter what statistics you would use, it is unethical because it is stealing in the first place and will forever be stealing. (against) Francis: It is true that it is stealing but only through a different way such as the internet .
That difference makes some individuals assume that they are doing nothing wrong, but actually they are. (pro)Kairos: Well, we can look at this issue through multi perspectives and that what makes it problematic. We can argue regarding this issue for a long time, but nonetheless we will never arrive at a common ground. (against) Angelina: So guys, since the topic can be debated indefinitely can we just leave the topic alone and continue to live according to our principles and promise to compromise in the presence of another contradicting principle?
(against) Angelo: Hey, what friends are for? All agreed to give up on the debate and just enjoy the rest of the night with stories that would allow them to catch up with each other. Their circle of friendship grew stronger after such a healthy debate; all of them without exemption learned to compromise. Impact Statement: The issue of free downloading music through the internet can be debated on different point of views and starting points. Due to this nature, up to date the debate whether music should be a free enterprise at some levels is still questionable.
Issues on it being ethical are not solely debatable in the light of being a free enterprise or a private intellectual property; it can also be debated on the perspectives of economics and profiteering. There are countries that allow free downloading of music such as China, so in terms of citizenship in relation to the issues on ethics behind free downloading of music the countries ruling are still the end of it all. No matter how long debates can be, it can only affect public opinion; nonetheless the law will still hold. After watching this group of friends argued on the topic.
It can be said that the main question is wrong and prejudicial. “Is it ethical to STEAL music online? ” should be replaced by “Is it ethical to DOWNLOAD music online? ” Bibliography 123HelpMe. com. “Copyright Laws, Napster and Personal Ethics. ” www. 123HelpMe. com. 30 April 2010 <http://www. 123helpme. com/view. asp? id=21092>. Albert, Pete. Music Piracy: Is downloading music ethical? 2010. 30 April 2010 <http://www. helium. com/debates/68480-music-piracy-is-downloading-music-ethical/side_by_side? page=42>. Arrington, Michael. “Stealing Music: Is It Wrong Or Isn’t It? ” 31 March 2009.
Techcrunch. com. 30 April 2010 <http://techcrunch. com/2009/03/31/stealing-music-is-it-wrong-or-isnt-it/>. Easley, Robert. “Ethical Issues in the Music Industry Response to Innovation and Piracy. ” Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 62, No. 2 (2005): 163-168. Johnson, Eric J. , et al. “On the Depth and Dynamics of Online Search Behavior. ” Management Science, Vol. 50, No. 3 (2004): 299-308. Storey, Michael. Music Piracy: Is downloading music ethical? 2010. 30 April 2010 <http://www. helium. com/debates/68480-music-piracy-is-downloading-music-ethical/side_by_side? page=42>.