Star Trek Most Pirated Movie Of 2009 – Paramount Not Happy | TrekMovie.com
jump to navigation

Star Trek Most Pirated Movie Of 2009 – Paramount Not Happy December 21, 2009

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: CBS/Paramount,Star Trek (2009 film) , trackback

JJ Abrams Star Trek did well at theaters and is selling strong on home video, but it appears that it is even more popular with online pirates. In fact, a new analysis shows it is the most popular BitTorrent download of the year. See below for details, and also info on how Paramount isn’t taking this lightly.

 

Pirates love Star Trek
When it comes to box office Star Trek is the #6 movie of 2009 domestically, and #10 globally (so far). But when it comes to pirates, Star Trek is at the top of the chart. According to torrentfreak the movie leads the 2009 pirated movies on BitTorrent with almost 11 million downloads. This beats the 2008 record set by The Dark Knight, which lead the 2008 films with 7 million. Here is the 2009 list.

  1. Star Trek
  2. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
  3. RocknRolla
  4. The Hangover
  5. Twilight
  6. District 9
  7. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
  8. State of Play
  9. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
  10. Knowing

Of course Star Trek fans are known to be tech-savvy. Back when Enterprise was cancelled, many fans noted that the show did much better with DVR viewers (and pirates) than it did with the general viewing public.

Paramount wants action – says piracy has gone from ‘geek to sleek’
This piracy has not gone without notice at Paramount. Last month the studio reported to the FCC that it had tracked more than five million IP addresses that downloaded one of six camcorded copies of the movie over the Summer (see chart).


CLICK TO SEE FULL ‘Star Trek Piracy Proliferation’ Chart

Paramount is particularly concerned about streaming video websites that host pirated video, which appear to be legitimate to casual Internet users who may confuse them for sties like Hulu. In their letter to the FCC Paramount stated:

Today, literally anyone with an internet connection can do it. Clunky websites are being replaced by legitimate looking and legitimate feeling pirate movie websites, a perception enhanced by the presence of premium advertisers and subscription fees processed by major financial institutions.

Paramount is lobbying the government to help the Hollywood studios stop online piracy. Specifically they asked :

[We] must have the legal and regulatory flexibility to use technological tools in partnership with Internet service providers to stem the tide of online copyright theft.

You can read the entire Paramount letter to the FCC here.

Paramount COO Frederick Huntsberry also gave a presentation about piracy which went over many of the points in the letter, again using Star Trek as the prime example. Ironically video of that speech was pirated.

 

 

Comments

1. allister gourlay - December 21, 2009

Oh dear!

2. The Six Million Dollar Man - December 21, 2009

I don’t believe in piracy, this could ultimately kill the film and music industry….Play fair, people, it’s THEFT!!!

3. B Ittorrent - December 21, 2009

Allthe media companies have been ripping people off for years.

They deserve everything they get!!!!

4. fldx - December 21, 2009

Rip off? I mean, do they obligate you to purchase their products? Will you die if you don’t have access to them?

NO. If you disagree with the price don’t buy it, it’s that simple.

5. S. John Ross - December 21, 2009

Even Lars Ulrich knows it’s wrong (you can just ask him).

6. The Six Million Dollar Man - December 21, 2009

@ # 3……Why do you think that media companies have been ripping people off for years?

Do also think that supermarkets rip people off when you buy your groceries from there?

Do you feel ripped off by Apple when you buy an iPod from them, and are Dell ripping people off because their laptops are just way too expensive?

Just because people can download films and music for free doesn’t make it right………

Your stance is way out of order, if everyone thought like YOU, as I’ve stated, there would be no film or music industry.

Parasite……..

7. Kruge - December 21, 2009

if you are going to steal by downloading, at least be man enough to admit you are stealing and not come up with some lame ‘they deserve it’ bs.

I think Starbucks charging 4 bucks for a cup of coffee is steep but I dont jump behind the counter and take it claiming that it is my right due to them being evil

8. WannaBeatle - December 21, 2009

In times of recession, bootlegging and pirate copies of this and that turn up often.

But, the public will find a bootleg mainly because of ticket prices have shot up way too high the past few years. I haven’t gone out nearly as much as I used to.

The studios claim all the bootlegging is to blame for the high prices. I tend not to believe that excuse completely. So, in MY opinion, I think the studios are harming themselves quite a bit by having ridiculous prices at the box office. I say this and I’ve been in the entertainment industry for twenty five years.

9. Hey Star Trek! - December 21, 2009

Yes! :) I for one am very comfortable with any spot where Star Trek trumps, trumPS, TRUMPS the Dark Knight :) Now, let’s get piracy laws intact so we can get that Dark Knight money with the sequel >:)

10. Anthony Pascale - December 21, 2009

Over the summer lots of people would send in ‘tips’ to TrekMovie pointing us to some of these streaming sites that had Star Trek (and other movies) on them. I can’t imagine people would think we would publicize theft, so I think lots of people really dont know that these sites are actually criminal enterprises. Some of the sites look legit, and have real advertising on them from legit companies (presumably using Google ads or another easy to sign up for service that doesn’t really do any due diligence)

11. Mindy - December 21, 2009

Well, that’s nice and all. But think about it, not necessarily that I agree with piracy, but the ‘celebrities’ make a crap ton of money. The only reason Lars Ulrich is pissed off is because he’s only making 2 million dollars instead of 3 million. So sad. He was just pissed, because unlike other recording artists, he actually owns the copyright to his songs. What do other Artists make money off of? Their concerts that they charge 70 dollars a pop.

All the actors got paid. The movie damn near hundreds of millions of dollars, and you think the industry is going to go away? That’s a load of crap!

Famous Actors earn several times what a normal person who has to buy all this stuff earns in one year. They drive bentleys and have no bills, and buy million dollar houses. We as consumers allow them to bleed off our lives.

If 11 million people pirated the movie, sure–shame on them. I paid for my blu-ray copy. But I still understand. It’s crazy how much Executives make off of us. And if we are too stupid and pay for it, it’s our fault. Yes, they are money grubbing greedy bastards. We know that the Star Trek movie was purely made for profit. After all, that’s what Hollywood is about. It’s a damn business.

So yes, I understand why people pirate. Paying eleven dollars for a film simply sucks. Especially if you want to buy several movies a year. But it’s not likely to change.

Government can try to regulate, but they’ll only fail. No matter what, piracy has always existed in some form or another for many years.

12. madtrekfan - December 21, 2009

I was more than happy to pay nearly £20 so I could see ST09 in glorious 1080/24p – what more to life could there be? Come on people, if you like it buy it, whether it’s Star Ttrek or the latest album from your favourite artist – we all have to earn a living somehow!

13. Alec - December 21, 2009

I seriously doubt that many Star Trek fans are participating in the illegal download of Trek products. Of course, there are bound to be a few. But Trek fans are very loyal to the franchise, which they very much want to succeed. Trekkies are also VERY generous with their money when it comes to Star Trek products. So I think that the people doing this downloading and illegally copying the film are not Trekkies. The cloud in the silver-lining, here, is that Star Trek is very popular! I want Paramount to stop the illegal activities of a few which risk spoiling it for the majority. I hope this stuff doesn’t cause them to go overboard, though, with the internet. I mean that there are a lot of harmless (and fun) fan videos on the internet, which, technically, perhaps, shouldn’t be there. But they’re nowhere near full episodes or films. I hope these will be spared. Paramount also should perhaps think about not alienating the mainstream audience by being too aggressive on these *naughty* people…

14. WowserUK - December 21, 2009

I’ve always felt that the ‘casual pirate’, who perhaps only downloads for their own use, probably does more for the publicity of a movie than anyone else. Word of mouth will bury a movie or will help it flourish. Everyone knows it’s wrong, and for the record I went to the cinema on the Thursday before the release date to see Star Trek. So they got my few quid, before I tried to download it :)
This is a real nasty grey area as personally I don’t think there is anything wrong with watching some bad copy of a movie. Making money out of it is, but watching it isn’t.
I also find it difficult to feel sympathetic towards the studios, who have had a considerable run over the last 80 years or so. What next? we’ll start supporting banker’s bonuses! :)

15. Alec - December 21, 2009

#13

Sorry, I got the proverb wrong! The silver-lining is of course that Star Trek is popular. The cloud is obviously the illegal downloading….

Oops.

16. true_brit - December 21, 2009

You know, what this doesn’t take into account is the number of people who pirated the movie AND went to the theatre to see it.

And bought the thing on DVD

I paid to see the movie 3 times, if I want to download it – it isn’t eating into the profits of paramount one jot. Hell, I’ve bought TNG twice, TOS three times, bought the movies at least 4 times. Paramount have made plenty of money from me down the years and I’m not complaining.

I’m sure there are a percentage of people that download this movie for downloadings sake and nothing else, but the VAST majority of people paid cash money to see this thing at least once.

Chill out, paramount.

17. Mindy - December 21, 2009

#16. You are totally right. I didn’t even think about that.

18. JHero - December 21, 2009

Being anti-”piracy” is to be selfish. If someone paid for a copy of the film, then why can’t they share it? This is why we got rid of the DRM, people.

19. Nx - December 21, 2009

#16. Agreed. I just finished downloading the 2nd disc of the bluray edition. I think it’s unfair that the DVD, which I bought, doesn’t come with all the extras, and I don’t have a bluray player, so I can’t watch the limited edition bluray which I also bought.

To top it off, it isn’t even illegal to download (as long as you don’t upload) in my country, because we pay a hefty tax on every data storage device that does go to greedy corporate execs. (we’ve been declared guilty unless proven otherwise, so we pay the fine in advance)

20. st-midway - December 21, 2009

#16 you are right. I also saw the movie 3 times in the theater and I bought the dvd recently. i also bought all the other 10 movies in the special edition and I got dvd box-sets of every season of star trek-voyager and star trek-enterprise.(and thats not including about 70 video casettes I bought about 10 years ago.) I think paramount couldn´t really complain if I were to download the movie. I have literally spend thousands of € on star trek products over the years^^

21. locutus_of_borg - December 21, 2009

People who download movies are idiots, no matter how good the quality nothing compares to the cinima! Especially for something that looks as great at Star Trek.

The Internet needs policing – anyone cuaght downloading should be banned from any service provider – that will scare people into stopping.

This would work well in more than one way as could create many jobs for people policing the internet!

22. JJ Savard - December 21, 2009

I personally live in Qatar, we only had Star Trek here for twenty days during which I saw the film twice, and while I was in a Hotel in another country I bought it on Pay Per View just to see it again, and I personally bought a real copy of Star Trek once it came on DvD, but had they wanted more money, leave it in the theaters longer than 3 weeks. If I had wanted to see it more, I would have HAD to download a copy, and I won’t say whether I did or didn’t, but regardless, I wanted the film to do well, and I aided it at every opportunity, I still plan to get the Blu-Ray when I see it for sale even if I have the DvD. (We have a terrible mailing system here, so no online ordering for me.)

23. Will_H - December 21, 2009

I think I downloaded like 3 copies of it, lol. And funny thing is I’m getting the BluRay for Christmas. For me it was a matter of being impatient. Not that I don’t pirate stuff, I do, but mainly music. For me its a matter of quality. You never get the same quality from pirates movies (where you can more easily with pirated music). But obviously I do agree with pirating to a point. I think its simply backlash from movie and music companies price gouging people for too long. And for the people that compare it to jacking a CD or something from a store, youre forgetting that those are a physical item. When you download something youre not removing something physical that had to be produced. My hope is that some day the movie companies and music industry will lower their prices to something reasonable. I still think $1 a song is way too much. If me pirating a movie or CD means that some rich SOB can’t buy a golden toilet for their mansion. I think they’ve already violated our privacy too much in the name of hunting down piracy. And I know we don’t have to buy the stuff, but I still don’t see a reason that everyone should have to pay too much. Look at these people, they’re not hurting too bad because of piracy, they’re greedy, and want to take every cent from people that they possibly can. Like I said earlier, if they charged reasonable prices for music and movies (where they’re still nowhere near) I doubt piracy would be a real problem.

24. shatner in the sky with diamonds - December 21, 2009

I only pirate things that I intend to buy asap.

25. shatner in the sky with diamonds - December 21, 2009

Although I have to say that I didn’t download the Trek movie and have never done that with any film. I did download the prequel comics while I waited for my physical copy to arrive in the mail. I must say that I’m not particularly penitent about it.

26. Roadblock - December 21, 2009

I was about to write a comment about why, yes, it IS selfish of Paramount to want you to pay for what they provide (and spent hundreds of millions of dolalrs to produce), and that this is a good thing, and that they should be proud of it; but then I realized where I was posting: the internet. This is a place where people believe that simply because somebody makes more money that they do, that they are entitled to the fruits of their labors — “from each according to their ability.” You can, therefore, you must do so for me.”

I don’t have to refute every idiot who opens their mouth. I just have to watch and wait for the inevitable to happen when we give in to what they’re saying.

27. devon - December 21, 2009

I too have bought TOS on VHS, 2 episode disc DVD’s, All 3 seasons boxed sets, all 3 seasons boxed sets remastered, and now all 3 seasons on BluRay, plus all seven seasons Next Gen boxed sets, THe complete series set of Next Gen, all seven seasons of DS9, all seven seasons of Voyager and all 4 seasons of Enterprise, Animated Trek, All Trek Collective Sets to date, the Movies, Special Edition Movies, Movies on BluRay… ….. literally everything Trek to date in all formats DVD and BluRay, not to mention saw Trek 2009 7 times in the theatre before buying it on DVD and again on BluRay after purchasing a BluRay player finally, and I did watch a bootleg version of the movie simply because the wait to DVD release was way too long for my liking just as the wait for the next movie will be too long! So Paramount can go kiss my ass, boo hoo and all that but they have milked us a million times over, abusing our loyalty to make a few extra dollars every time you turn around! They didn’t feel sorry for me when I purchased the High-Def Remastered season 1 and bought a very expensive High-Def DVD player to support Trek only to have these purchases become basically obsolete and ending up buying everything over again in the BluRay format, did they? And no doubt being industry insiders they probably knew the likely eventual outcome of releasing the Remastered seasons 1-3 on DVD and could have spared us the whole High-Def vs. BluRay dilemma in the 1st place, but went ahead seeing it simply as another cash cow!!! I’ve supported Paramount to the extreme and will continue to spend but in the meantime if there is a great time lag between the next film’s theatrical and DVD release dates I will once again through impatience watch a downloaded copy until I can buy a good copy!

28. devon - December 21, 2009

Basically…. I LOVE STAR TREK!!!! I HATE PARAMOUNT!!!!!!

29. Cashless Society - December 21, 2009

The FEDERATION IS A CASHLESS SOCIETY …ha Deal with it.

And I also hope for the day transporter technology can be used to actually download a car.

30. Will_H - December 21, 2009

I agree that people should try and support what they pirate (as weird as that sounds). I saw Trek in the theater twice and now own it so I have no guilt about downloading it in-between when it wasn’t available. But to me, especially with movies, the idea that somehow when people pirate things its saying that the company shouldnt make money off of what they produce…well thats just nuts. They do make money, a ton of it, more than most of us will make working five times harder in a lifetime. So its not that I think that people shouldn’t make money, its that I think they shouldn’t charge way too much. When we go to a theater we pay more and more and now have to sit through ads before it. And DVD’s, something that costs such a small fraction to produce (since the cost of making the film is recouped in the theater) are sold for about $20 new or $30 for the average new bluray. Sorry, but I can’t feel bad that some studio big shot can’t but their 10th penthouse apartment this year because of pirating. And I look at all of these new Star Trek DVD’s and blurays that are being released and its the same stuff most of us own already. The studio wants us to pay 10 times for something we’ve already bought. Something seems wrong with that to. I’m not challenging its legality, I know where its at there, but I don’t think just because something’s illegal it makes it completely wrong. Hell most of the stuff Hollywood does is perfectly legal and to me a lot of it is totally wrong.

31. David B - December 21, 2009

Paramount should do something like this.

Download the film legitimately from Paramount or Amazon for $3 and get $3 off when you buy the DVD, make it $4 for the Blu-Ray.

That way if people can’t wait for the DVD then they have a way to download it legitimately.

If they made the link available half way between the release date at the Cinema and the release date of the DVD this could work.

32. Blu-man08 - December 21, 2009

#18, Define sharing. I paid for my BD and I’m more than happy to invite my friends over for a screening or even to loan it out to my friends who have a blu-ray player but for whatever reason haven’t bought it. Maybe they want to see the film, but don’t care to add this particular disc to their library. In both cases, I’m sharing the disc I purchased, but doing so within the terms of the product license. Paramount has licensed all home video media ONLY for in-home use. They have not licensed their product to be distributed electronically, digitally, or by any other means. In fact, they’ve gone so far as to include language in the license stating that it is a prohibited to do so. What gives them the right to be so bold? They own it, that’s what. They own the film – we only own a licensed copy. You may not like it, but anything outside the terms of the license is an infringement of the owners’ rights and illegal, bottom line. Piracy is theft. Doesn’t matter if the studios have more than enough money or if you’ve seen the thing a thousand times in the theater. The studio doesn’t owe you anything. If you have a stolen copy of the film, you owe the studio some $$. This is not my opionion. This is fact. Deal with it.

33. Third Remata'Klan - December 21, 2009

I don’t go to the theater, precisely because ticket prices are so high. I have to really, really, REALLY want to see the movie to go. (The only films I’ve seen in the theater in the past five years are Star Trek, Terminator Salvation and The Dark Knight.)

But I don’t pirate. Basically, I usually wind up buying cheap DVDs, or renting. In a lot of cases, it means I have to wait a long time to see movies I want to see, but at least I do it legally.

And frankly, the studios don’t get nearly as much money from me as they do from an average theater goer.

34. P Technobabble - December 21, 2009

As long as the Internet is a (relatively) FREE information highway, people will find ways to take advantage of all its possibilities. However, if movie studios, music companies and other media producers keep bitching enough, the gov’t will begin attaching a fee to use the Internet — claiming that this fee is there to offset the piracy. Once that fee is attached, more fees, restrictions and regulations will follow. This is the American way, and we only have to browse through a bit of history to see that it tends to be the way things go for us.
I think Paramount is over-reacting, but they suffer from money obsession like every other money-needing/wanting organism on the planet. Someone above mentioned he had bought everything Star Trek available thanks to Paramount, and did not see the problem with downloading a copy of the Star Trek film. From Paramount’s POV, that’s one more copy that could have generated $$$.
However, I think it is important (for Paramount) to remember that it has been the fan’s opportunites to “play” in the Star Trek universe that has kept us all in love with Star Trek over the years. I truly believe that if we did not have productions such as “Star Trek: Phase II,” or “OGAM,” and all the other fan-productions, fan-fiction, etc., interest in Star Trek would have faded even more than it did.
Consider what bands like the Grateful Dead, and Radiohead accomplished by being fan-friendly. I know a few Dead-heads who were far more obsessed than any Trekkie, and would attend concerts with video cameras and audio equipment, or t-shirts, or other home-made retail items, and would be able to pretty much do whatever they wanted, without interference from the band. The band’s recordings continued to sell, their concerts continued to be sold out. The fan’s “participation” in the Grateful Dead is what made them die-hard fans (alright, I’m not getting into the other things, so shut up already!). The point is clear: allowing fans to make something their own (within reason, of course) is what helps keep the fan. None of the fan-made Star Trek makes any money. If the fans want to produce an hour-long tv show with their own money and their own passion, they can, as long as they don’t make any money. No problem there, apparently.
But it is fans like this (and the ones who have access to it) who kept Paramount’s cash cow going when many, many fans were beginning to give up on Star Trek, while Star Wars had gained an almost mythological status. Could it be because Lucas says “yes,” where Paramount says, “no?”

35. Starman - December 21, 2009

You know what’s sad? After Avatar was over, this guy said to his kid, “Did you like it? I’ll buy the DVD next week so you can watch it at home”.

I wanted to smack the crap out of that guy, or at least say something, but at 2am I decided against it. People don’t know or don’t care about piracy.

But look at it this way: can you blame people? Something is offered for free on the internet, and these ISPs have commercials that say “you can download X number of songs so fast”, so people don’t connect what they’re doing with being illegal. I know SO many people that think these download sites are legit.

Me? I bought 2 Blu-Ray copies of Star Trek: the Amazon one for the E, and the BB one for the insignias. I buy everything, and always have. I saw a someone give a friend a pirated movie for Christmas one year. I wanted to say something, but realized that these people just don’t know any better.

So what can be done about it? One thing could be to shorted the time between when a movie leaves the theater and when it comes out on video. This isn’t the old days when movies made three runs over a course of a few years before coming out on VHS for $100. Educating people may not matter when pirates feel they’re sticking it to the companies.

I try to see both sides of a situation like this, but in the end, there’s really no excuse for it. People should realize that when something’s given away for free, it’s more than likely pirated. The only pass I can give is to kids. They’re broke, they want to be entertained. We all made copies of each other’s albums growing up. Once I got a job, I started buying everything, including the albums I copied.

This is the digital age, and something needs to be done to fight this. I don’t think fining people ridiculous amounts of money is going to help. Maybe shutting down their internet, or slowing it down for a period of time? This is debatable.

36. Robert H. - December 21, 2009

That’s sick. Worth watching? More than ANY movie that has shown up this year. But if you pirate, do you even think it’s even worth watching?

37. Crewman Darnell - December 21, 2009

I paid to see this flick repeatedly and I haven’t downloaded it, nor do I engage in that, but jeeze… cry me a river, Paramount! I’ll whisper a tear-streaked prayer for you, your starving children …and Lars, at the foot of my bed tonight. I’m getting weepy just thinking about the outrage of it all. ;-(

38. Anthony H. - December 21, 2009

But now movie studios want to “enforce” laws against piracy. They want to be the police. Are you kidding me? Giving a private company legal abilities to track down and enforce piracy law is ridiculous. I do believe the RIAA and MPAA are asking for way too much, and it seems they may get the legality they want.

Scary…

39. paustin - December 21, 2009

success is success. If you are one of the biggest films of the year, logically (ahem) you will be one of the most pirated too!

40. Charles Trotter - December 21, 2009

This is what happens when a studio releases a DVD overseas three weeks before releasing it in the US. People, particularly Americans, are not a patient bunch; people overseas are bound to upload the DVD (which they did) and people who don’t have the DVD yet are bound to download it (which they did).

Of course, this article only mentions copies of the movie that were recorded in the theater, but I bet the DVD-quality versions of the movie have received many more illegal downloads. Those downloads probably would have been reduced has Paramount released the movie everywhere at the same time, rather than giving it to certain countries in late October, to other countries in early-to-mid November, and to the US in November 17th.

Not saying this is Paramount’s fault; piracy is wrong no matter how you slice it, and the movie would have been pirated either way. But I think the number of illegal downloads would have been less had Paramount made the DVD available everywhere at the same time.

41. Cashless Society - December 21, 2009

I wonder how many anti-piracy people use ad-blocking software on their browsers.

Or skip commercials on their DVR.

Theft is Theft , L ,O, fn’ L

42. AngryKitten - December 21, 2009

I think Paramount is being sort of stupid, here. The reason Star Trek was so pirated was because they KEPT PUTTING OFF THE DVD RELEASE. I know that my friends and I downloaded copies BECAUSE WE WANTED TO SEE THE MOVIE AGAIN. Now that it’s out on DVD, we’ve purchased the legal copies we wanted to have the whole time. But for several months, the only way to watch Star Trek was to pirate it. I don’t doubt that many of these other “pirates” also now own completely legal copies of the film. Sure, there are some people who are going to stick with their pirated copies and never buy the DVD, but I think there are plenty of people out there who hit BitTorrent because there was no way to find Trek at Best Buy. :\

43. Cap'n Calhoun - December 21, 2009

#5, Just buy the DVD like you know that you should. Don’t download this movie.

44. Leroy - December 21, 2009

I’ve seen bits of a bootleg copy of 2009 Star Trek. It wasn’t that good, top half of screen missing. It made me want to own the actual recording available in stores which I now have. Paramount has nothing to worry about. They’re making their money, I just don’t think the pirate business is as big as people make it out to be. The quality isn’t there, the special features aren’t there. Pirate business is a niche market. It’s just not that big.

45. Olley Olley Olley - December 21, 2009

6. The Six Million Dollar Man

stop being a Pius pr!c|<
you QQ about a corporation that has canceled TREK twice i!!
now get off your corporate cross, your making an ass of yourself by running to suck their co*k

there are lot worse crimes going on in this world, stick your energies into getting Bush impeached maybe?

46. A Real Journalist - December 21, 2009

Pascale you really need to learn to spell and grammar check your work. It’s disgraceful. Do you text your stories on your mobile? It really ”ain’t” that hard (I use ”ain’t” to bring it down to your level).

47. Olley Olley Olley - December 21, 2009

^^^^^

a real SPAS

48. James Heaney - December 21, 2009

Can’t speak for everyone, but I, for one, saw the movie five times in theaters (once in IMAX), bought the special edition two-disc DVD, and have generally supported the movie every way I can.

But I watched pirated copies of the deleted scenes when they came out, because I didn’t have a handy copy of all of them. Now I do.

Star Trek made a zillion bucks. Piracy feeds that; it doesn’t injure it unless Paramount is using a bad, anti-consumer business model. Paramount should calm the heck down. IMHO.

49. MC1 Doug - December 21, 2009

#42: “I think Paramount is being sort of stupid, here. The reason Star Trek was so pirated was because they KEPT PUTTING OFF THE DVD RELEASE. I know that my friends and I downloaded copies BECAUSE WE WANTED TO SEE THE MOVIE AGAIN. Now that it’s out on DVD, we’ve purchased the legal copies we wanted to have the whole time. But for several months, the only way to watch Star Trek was to pirate it.”

Yeesh… what a cry baby! The release time for ‘Star Trek’ was no more unusual than any other wait time for other films.

Get over it… quit being so me me me, it’s disheartening to hear that some TREK fans would stoop to stealing.

50. Cap'n Calhoun - December 21, 2009

#42 raises an interesting point. Regardless of how you feel about downloading movies, 11 million downloads does not equal 11 million lost sales.

51. VorpalK - December 21, 2009

It’s not stealing. Nothing was removed from Paramount’s servers or coffers.

No CRIMINAL act was performed, no matter what the Media companies want the perception to be.

It IS Copyright violation. A civil matter to be dealt with as such. The fact that actual damages of a downloaded copy are insignificant and the Media companies don’t feel they are a sufficient deterrent is irrelevant. They’re not losing the bucket loads of money they claim to be, because no purchase would have been made in the first place in many cases (and in others it’s a matter of “I’ll buy it when you make it available, but for now this is what is available to me”.

There is no need to apply additional law to this, or to criminalize it in any way.

There is ESPECIALLY no need to allow the media companies to exert undue control over the internet, where they can squelch legitimate, competing content.

52. Schiefy - December 21, 2009

Paramount has a legal right to pursue whatever course of action they deem necessary to prevent privacy–is that good business practice? That remains to be seen. If they (and other studios) alienate (potential) customers over prosecution or burdensome laws, then we all stand to lose in the long run.

As someone noted, if you even wait for on-demand video over cable/satellite, then you can record it for personal use–in the long run, how much different is that then downloading it via some Web site? I do think the laws need to be clarified so that “fair-use” means something again and the (intellectual) property owner is protected. I suspect that the ones who downloaded the movie either intend to never buy the product in any form and others as noted above were just impatient to watch it again before they went out and bought a superior product on DVD/Blu-ray. Either way, Paramount has made as much profit as they are likely to make with no harm to them unless someone takes their inferior copy and begins selling copies of it (wait, don’t they do that in some foreign countries already?).

I don’t know if video (or music) can be compared to books but Baen Books (http://www.baen.com) has long advocated the free distribution of its published titles as eBooks in the belief that people still prefer a superior copy (i.e., printed book in this case) and will buy it if they like the product. I would think that the movie industry could take a similar approach and make inferior copies available so people can decide whether they want to either view the film in the theaters and/or purchase a superior DVD/Blu-ray copy. Even if people don’t choose to purchase a superior copy, then their word of mouth recommendation (if the movie maker truly believes in the quality of their product) is inexpensive PR that might lead to additional sales.

All that said, I am not advocating anyone knowingly violate current laws but I am encouraging everyone (producer and consumer alike) to become part of an equitable solution. As our technology progresses and the lines become blurred between what is considered a copyright infringement and what is fair use, we need to learn to move ahead of the technology to find a win-win solution.

However, it is great that Trek is the #1 pirated download!! :)

53. oby - December 21, 2009

Paramount’s letter to the FCC is interesting in that they include no specific claim of financial loss.

The financial impact of “piracy” is tough to assess. The fact is if the content was not freely available, then many simply wouldn’t bother to watch it.

How much more revenue would Paramount have realized from ST 2009 if it had not been illegally posted online?

54. Capt Mike of the Terran Empire - December 21, 2009

Ok. Stealing is Stealing. No matter what it is called and no matter what the reason is. It is Stealing. Yes Star Trek made a huge amount of money and yes we all here have paid money to see the film. I for one do not condone Stealing. We as Trek fans should be setting the high Example of Not Stealing. Ok. Maybe im just lost in Reality. But anyone who Steals in my opnion is NOT!!! A TRUE STAR TREK FAN!!!!.

55. Steve Short - December 21, 2009

Is Toys R Us canceling their exclusive Diamond Select Star Trek series 4 Romulan figures? I just got a e-mail saying my order was cancelled. I ordered it when it first popped up on Toys R Us Online.

56. Cap'n Calhoun - December 21, 2009

I didn’t download the movie (and, in fact, never have downloaded a movie). I *do* have a cheap Cambodian-produced copy of the DVD.

That said, I saw the movie in theatres five times, three of them on the IMAX. I also purchased the official two-disc release through Amazon after getting my Cambodian copy. I’ve spent around $85 on watching this movie (*not* counting the bootleg, which I also paid for), so I don’t think I should feel particularly guilty about having a bootleg.

(Incidentally, in my understanding, Interpol has granted an exception to Cambodia on producing such things to support their economy, but IANAL.)

57. Weerd1 - December 21, 2009

Are there stats on how many people downloaded a camcorder copy to avoid long lines and $12 movie tickets, but then purchased the film legally the day it hit stores? Is there legal precedent for having a camcorder copy in your possession AFTER you have legally purchased the license through DVD or online download? These are questions I want to hear lawyers answer. Intellectual property should be protected, but the paradigm for information (which is what a film is) exchange has changed. Laws are outdated, and must be accommodated, with input from those who know how the system works, to the present and future of information technology.

58. Daniel - December 21, 2009

I live in Asia and all films are available here for about $3 within a week of it hitting theaters, Star Trek 2009 included. The quality is far less than perfect. These illegal copies are sold on the street and could easily be policed, but no one does anything about it. Makes me ill.

59. VulcanFanatic - December 21, 2009

Regardless how much money these stars or the movie studio make, downloading this movie without their permission is illegal. Its not up to me to decide if someone else has more stuff than they need, and then go and steal from them because “They have more than enough”. Its their property and i have no right to take it without paying for it or at least get it some legal way. I saw the movie 3 times in the theater back in May, paid for it each time, but i didnt feel that i had a right to download a pirated copy because of that. Sure, i would have loved to have seen it again, and November 17th was a long way from May, but i waited and looked forward to getting it. Anticipation of getting something you want is sometimes better than actually getting it. I was happy with the different options we had for getting the movie, and i bought them all. I have spent many thousands of dollars on Star Trek merchandise and movie tickets over the years, but i still dont think i have the right to download their property without permission. Its stealing. Movies do come out a lot faster now on DVD and Bluray than they used to, try to use a little patience. I doubt the studios will start selling downloads before the DVD and Bluray releases because that would eat into their profits, unless they charged the same thing for the downloads. Now my idea would be for the studios to allow downloads from their site earlier than the disc releases, charge the same amount asthey would for the disc, then send you disc after it releases for no extra charge. Seems to me that they would not lose any money like that and possibly would defeat the pirates too.

60. TomBot3000 - December 21, 2009

Saw ST09 for free twice in the theaters, no inclination to buy, download or see again. :-)

61. garen - December 21, 2009

theres a dsicussion going on over at Torrentfreak (follow the link).

and someone made a point that i understand….mostly agree with…and will echo here.

the vast majority of those who download movies…or otherwise aquire them for free…wouldnt be purchasing the official dvd to begin with.

so the tally says there are about 11 million illegally downloaded copies. I’m gonna say that 10 million or more of those people wouldnt have purchased the DVD. They just download and watch BECAUSE its easy and free. Not because they really want a copy of the movie. so paramount hasnt lost 11 million copies worth of income.

62. McLovin - December 21, 2009

Im not gonna lie, I pirated this movie too…but I also showed respect to them by seeing it in theaters 7 times and purchasing the blu ray.

63. AJ - December 21, 2009

I agree with Angry Kitten (message 42). I watched a pirated copy to keep me going until I could get BOTH the DVD and the BR disc, which I now own. I saw the film three times in the cinema. I own all episodes and films of Star Trek, some re-purchased in different formats and editions over the years.

I purchased the Academy Awards DVD of “Two Towers” years ago in Russia while it was still in cinemas, and then bought both the theatrical, and extended versions of the film, plus all the special edition books. Waiting for the Blu-Rays now.

It’s an issue that has led to the founding of successful political parties (Sweden, specifically, with a rep in the EU), and should not be held to black and white scrutiny.

It’s out there and it’s downloadable, it’s over. There are no disclaimers. If it’s illegal, remove the product from the Internet. Going after consumers is like blaming a 10-year-old for smoking, and not the shop who sold the cigarettes or the company who promotes them, which is done regularly.

An absurd analogy:

Paramount, like Philip Morris, should be held responsible for promoting the illegal use of its products. It should cease pre-release advertising/trailers, any interviews with directors/stars prior to, during, or following the release of a film. PP should also, like Philip Morris, be responsible for policing the illegal use of its products to the point that it can be sued for illegal downloads by the government. The consumer says “I saw the trailer. It was cool. I googled it and watched it online.” Was the consumer warned that what he did was illegal? No. he saw a poster and looked it up. The poster did not have a warning on it with regard to illegal downloading. Nor did the actual film when it was shown in the cinema.

In many respects, the studios have to pony up and stop it. Suing teenagers and housewives for hundreds of thousands of dollars only makes the studios look like morons. They have the financial resources to do so, and stand only to gain from it.

64. Azul - December 21, 2009

i am sorry i have to agree with #16. ive seen the movies so many times. but you know what, in my country before star Trek First Contact, i dont even know there is such as TOS, TNG, Voyager, DS9 and Enterprise. these TV episode did not show at our network tv station cause simply they’re arent popular. cause they have to show tv that have a popular demand. and Star Trek just not one of them. i only knew when these piracy came along. imagine how surprise i am star trek do a lot of tv episodes.

65. Daoud - December 21, 2009

Gadzooks! Someone just copied Sir Christopher Marlowe’s plays and tried to pass them off as being by some Shakenspear fellow!!

Hurry with thy torches, we are to go burn down their fake theater site, the Globe, as they call it!

66. Buzz Cagney - December 21, 2009

You could get the single disc Trek for less than £10 when it was released in the UK. Hardly a kings ransom and Paramount and its partners deserve every penny they can make back on the movie. Shame on the thieves.

67. Anthony Thompson - December 21, 2009

My bootlegged DVD was Russian. A bit tilted, but not too bad. Yes, I ALSO bought the 3-disk Blu-Ray special edition w/ metal Enterprise model as soon as it came out! So I’m a good ST fan and customer. : )

BTW, that model is very nice looking, but not 100% accurate (the saucer is too thin, probably for weight / balance reasons). Also, the 5000 limited edition is NOT numbered!

68. Jim - December 21, 2009

@23 and 48 and lots of others

Of course you’re right. Many of these “criminals” just wanted a copy of Star Trek before the disc came out. We know who we are — we went to see the film three (or more times); we downloaded the crap cropped camera copy with the Russian opening titles and the end chopped off (dammit!); we downloaded the DVD rip; and we bought the Blu-Ray the first day it was out. We added that to our collection of all the films and some of the TV box sets.

Of course some people simply downloaded Trek without seeing it. Their loss. But thanks to those people for making Trek the number one pirate of 2009!

Paramount will survive, in part thanks to the many dollars we Trek fans have spent over many years. I’ve had it with these studios and their tears of woe. These illegal downloads have helped keep the buzz going about Trek.

69. toasteroven - December 21, 2009

I went to see it 10 times in the theatre, once at IMAX, and bought BOTH the DVD and Blu-Ray (DVD for the kids).

And yes, I have a DVD rip of the film. For three reasons:

1. I paid to see it several times, so shaddap
2. You take too long to release this stuff
3. Your “digital copy” does not allow me to move it between devices in my home easily

Stop telling us what we want; we know what we want. Deliver the content the way we want it and I will gladly pay a reasonable price for it.

Star Trek also pulled in a lot of $$$, and is still on the DVD best seller charts. Why are you complaining Paramount? Do you think you could have made more? Greedy. If it is a good movie, and the extra content is good, people will go see it in the theatre, and buy it when it comes out.

If it’s good, we’ll buy it. A lot. Stop wishing for ticket sales if your product sucks.

You can kiss my shiny, metal butt Paramount.

70. doug_skywalker - December 21, 2009

@59

Well said. and as far as the download thing, charge a smaller fee and have the quality be not as good as the DVD/Blu-Ray.

I, too, paid to see the film 5 times in the theater over the course of the summer, each time loving the film more and more.

speaking as an artisan, i totally support anti-piracy laws. yes, i do agree that there are those that make way too much off movies and such, but you have to admit without the movie studios we wouldn’t have ‘Star Trek’. it does take money to create films and the revenue has to be made in order to keep the busniess running. honestly, do you know how much is LOST due to films that tank? that’s the nature of free enterprise and capitalism. someone is always going to have/make more money than you. is it right? it’s all a matter of opinion.

all i can say is this: Star Trek was awesome, I paid to see it and i don’t need to pirate.

The law is the law. There are never good reasons to pirate, only excuses.

71. doug_skywalker - December 21, 2009

and PS – CBS makes the money on ANYTHING TOS TV stuff. they own the intellectual rights. Paramount has the films. to those griping about the HD-DVDs, that was CBS’s gaffe.

72. GARY - December 21, 2009

Well i for one say… lets see the gross revenue of the NEXT star trek movie and we will see if shit piracy is all evil or maybe it’s like free radio…

73. EFFeX - December 21, 2009

You know, I’m really against piracy, but there is an alternative point-of-view. If you think about it, this illustrates the extreme interest in this film. Who would have guessed that the most wanted movie on the Internet in 2009 would be a Trek film. Pretty wild.

74. Ran - December 21, 2009

Downloading this movie will be a waste of bandwidth…

75. HotStove - December 21, 2009

Over the summer, I had a friend that had a crappy screen captured version of Star Trek XI, probably from a Russian/Slavic theater. Did I watch it? Yeah. Did I also see Trek XI in glorious IMAX once and in regular def 3 times? Hell, yeah! I also bought the 2-disc DVD for myself. Would I have seen it 4 times or more if not for the bootleg? Not a chance – I found myself asking that, and there is absolutely nothing that can compare to a clean viewing of a favorite film.

Maybe we are beyond the days of waiting 6 months after a film’s theatrical release for a DVD? That aforementioned bootleg I saw wouldn’t even be a factor if we could get our hot little hands sooner on a pristine copy of our favorite films. Some, and they would be few and far between, would be worth a premium. Most of the crap (yes, crap) I see on screen lately wouldn’t be worth a Netflix rental.

76. Captain Lonestar - December 21, 2009

STAR TREK 2-A THE WRATH OF PARAMOUNT!!

PIRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATES!

77. Vardonir - December 21, 2009

I live in a secluded area of the world (Phils.) where buying an original ANYTHING (DVD, Blu-Ray, VCD, CD, blah) makes you look a) like a social climber b) just plain rich or c) simply crazy. Or the unbelievale reason d) it’s not available on pirated.

I fall on the third category: I bought a pirated Telesync version of Trek XI when the film was out of the theaters but no DVD yet. Because my PC can’t handle it. When the DVD came out, I bought the Steeldisc edition. (I know my mom was ready to scold me, but it’s my money. I choose on how to spend it.) Why? The extras. But nobody really watches that, only the diehard fans. I could just download that, but my PC can’t handle it. (Nice excuse, huh? )

A friend of mine though, he said he watched a BR 6 GiB rip of Trek XI. Downloaded, of course. Well, he saved his money by not going to the theater because he said it was stupid. (plotholes! not Spock’s hair!)

# 68′s post makes a point: They take damn too long to have a release.
If they released it on May 9, not November 17, I’m not gonna be buying that Telesync copy I have.

78. Mantastic - December 21, 2009

I saw the movie three times in I-MAX and I got the super crazy $90 special edition Blu-Ray of the movie off of Amazon. Paramount made about $150 off of me for this movie.

I also downloaded a vidcam it off of Demonoid with no regrets whatsoever.

Piracy doesn’t mean shit when it comes to profits. If a movie is good (and/or popular), people will pay money to see it in a theater. The Dark Knight, Wolverine, and (sadly) New Moon have proven it. No doubt Avatar will make money hand over fist as well.

79. jamesmctrek - December 21, 2009

i seen the film 4 times in cinema, downloaded a copy before the blu ray came out so i could watch again then i bought the blu ray, i think me downloading the film never made any difference to the amount the movie made

80. denny cranium - December 21, 2009

16. I’m with you.

I was in line the Thursday before it came out to see it.
I ponied up the money for my ticket and popcorn and drink. (my friend who manages a cineplex says they are in the popcorn business, but thats another story.)
I paid again to see it in imax.

Yes, I downloaded the crappy russian version to watch on my computer.
Yes, I downloaded an advance copy of the DVD. (I did not sell it to anyone)
Yes, I bought the blu ray the day it came out with my little plastic Enterprise.
I have purchased the toys from the movie
The art book and the novel of the movie was purchased.
So Paramount made a few bucks from me and deservedly so.

So is downloading theft? Probably. But I do support movies I like by paying to see them and buying the blu ray.
By the way Paramount, I would have paid a HUGE premium to have been able to purchase an advance copy of the blu ray.

Have you ever gone to a movie paid for your tix and popcorn and came out of the theatre saying, “I could have pulled a better movie out of my ass!”
or “I came in with an &**hole but I left with a colostomy bag!”
the studio who made the movie doesnt give refunds for some of the drivel they put out if you don’t like it. If a theatre guaranteed I would enjoy a movie or give me a refund I would venture out to my cineplex more often.
Yes some people would abuse a refund policy but I believe in the decency of human beings to be noble and not ask for the refund if they enjoyed the movie. Maybe let me use my ticket stub to get a discount on the DVD when it comes out will stem piracy a little bit.

Are they going to able to stop it? I don’t think so.
You can’t purchase a movie and return it if you dont like it.
So its probably a choice whether to download or not.

If the studios made a dvd or blu ray such a great price by selling it for say 10 BUCKS instead of 30 and 40 I wouldn’t download it.

81. SChaos1701 - December 21, 2009

I saw the movie 3 times in the theatre. During the late summer, I just had to see it so I DLed a bootleg. Then a better quality bootleg. But I did actually buy the film when it came out on DVD. As I see it, no harm no foul.

82. Angry Musician - December 21, 2009

@ 23. Will_H

As a musician, I am offended. 1 buck is to much for a song? Are you friggin kidding me?

Sorry but I try to make a living out of it – BUT I CAN’T because royalties are way to low. And those who ever wrote a song know how much sweat and tears are goin into them.

Will: If you don’t want to pay DON’T BUY IT AND DON’T pirate it! If you want to have music, listen to the CD in the store and if you want it BUY IT. There are a lot of people who are working hard on that product and want to get paid! Or do you work for free at your job, dork?

83. Jorg Sacul - December 21, 2009

I downloaded the Beatles entire collection, and don’t feel a bit of remorse. Why? Because I’m too lazy to take the time to put all my Beatles CDs onto my computer. YES, I already own the entire collection on LP, and CD, too. The download of the collection was just a time saver. My computer’s desk speakers suck, relatively, and even at .mp3, they sound good enough through them. I can’t steal what I’ve already purchased… and now they’re out with another remastering. I’ll BUY those, also. Probably will actually take the time to put those on my computer in full lossless format (not for sharing, thank you for asking)as I buy them, and delete the downloaded duplicate albums as I replace them.

As for torrenting movies? nah. I’m too much of a fan of perfect clarity to do it. I can wait for Christmas when I open my Blu-Ray player and new Blu-Ray Trek09 package.

11 million downloads? Paramount, I think people liked your movie. Apparently you need to get it into their homes faster for this new generation. After all, the world ends in a couple years. No time to waste!

84. Michael - December 21, 2009

I must admit my friend dowloaded it…..to watch before it hit video, simply to watch in between it hitting home video.. Horrible quality. I paid to see the film2 times and won a free pair of tickets, so saw it 3 times total(1 being IMAX). I bought the Bluray when out.

85. Sean - December 21, 2009

I paid to see Star Trek in theaters. I will pay to own the DVD. What’s wrong with downloading a copy inbetween seeing it in theaters and buying it on DVD?

Even with movies that I don’t see in theaters OR buy on DVD, it’s not like the film industry is losing money from me. I was never going to spend money on it anyway. It’s either I download it or I never see it EVER.

86. Michael - December 21, 2009

Actually artists are making MORE than they EVER would with pay online sites that sell their songs, especially the older artists who long since had stopped getting sales royalties from buyer sof their music on lp/cd/tape.
So iTunes @ 1.00 per song, times how many hundreds, thousands of hits….YOU DO THE MATH! How many actually drop the $ to buy a physical entire album anyway? A few.
The internet has made artisits music FAR MORE accessible to buyers!

87. Locutus of Fort Saint John - December 21, 2009

I watched the movie in the theatre eight times. I watched the movie in a hotel. I bought the Blue Ray disc on the first day it was available. Do I feel guilty for downloading the movie in the period of time between when it was out of the theatres and when it was available for purchase? Not at all. They certainly didn’t lose any money from me in any way.

88. Mr Phil - December 21, 2009

There’s a lot of suggestion that because this film made a lot of money, somehow that justifies piracy.
Problem is, for every film that does make money, there’s are many which barely break even, or even lose money. Some are gambles by the studio, some are just bad, some get the wrong publicity or go up against stronger titles. The consequence though of people who watch pirated films is studios will not be able to afford to take risks on more edgy or original scripts.

Bottom line, piracy costs peoples jobs, (including mine), in the film industry. As much as anyone can try to justify by whatever means, there is no excuse for theft. Not everyone in the film industry is a fat cat corporate suit who is disconnected with their products, most people barely make a living and are in the business through passion and dedication to film-making, and have often spent years or decades in their profession only for their career to be undermined by people who simply shrug piracy off as not affecting anyone directly and considering themselves as being above the law!

I don’t believe anything anyone writes will make an impact on a persons decision to download a film – I’d just emplore anyone who does so to consider the possible consequences of doing so and try to understand why it might be “wrong”.

Rant over, deep breath…

89. ThePhaige - December 21, 2009

Pirates have been around forever and they always will be.

The industry should offer access to the media in lower quality format for cheap. For Trek I saw it many times in Imax and bought the BR disc..

In many cases I would pay a 3-5 spot for a compressed .avi and many people would and the content should be available all at the same time.

The pirates will always pirate and circumvent any measures. Its the laws
of balance. But the industry has to adapt to the changing culture and dynamics of how people want content. They need to factor in the losses
and try to maximize how to get the folks the content at a level the individual is comfortable with….stubborn old school principles dont apply….Evolve already.

90. tuvok1701e - December 21, 2009

I am aware that this comment may open a can of worms sorry
I will make an admission. I downloaded Star Trek 720P from a torrent. However. I have purchased two DVDs. The single disc and the one with the digital copy. I also purchsed three blu-rays. One for the special packaging. One for the living room and bedroom. Only reason I downloaded it was to have it in hi def on my pc. I dont have a blu ray im my computer yet. I don’t really feel too bad about it where I purchsed so many copies. I will say I do have a problem with the folks who do not support the industry or their favorite films. Like many I know people who do not go to movies or buy any movies because they get everything pirated. I myself do not understand it. Other than that one download I found, most pirated copies are of inferior quality. If there is a movie I really love like Star Trek, then I want to have something that is of the highest quality, and something more reliable than an avi file on my computer. I am a computer tech and files go corrupt and computers crash everyday. Blu-Rays and DVDs generally do not go bad unless you scratch the crap out of them. So that is my two cents on the whole thing take it as you may.

91. falcon - December 21, 2009

Violating copyright is against the law. Period. Doesn’t matter what you think about it. If you run a red light, you’ve violated the law. Just because you think you’re entitled to a copy of the movie when you want it doesn’t necessarily mean Paramount’s going to get all consumer-friendly and release it.

The biggest problem with free markets (and don’t get me wrong, I am a Libertarian, so I am fully in favor of them) is that they’re controlled by greedy people and fed by greedy people (equating want with need). That’s why they don’t work. If everyone took responsibility for their actions and voted with their wallets (and the producers of products and services weren’t so greedy), then maybe. But as long as greedy people (on both ends) make the markets go, this kind of thing is going to happen. Legislation is only going to make it worse. Remember Cash for Clunkers?

If I was Lars Ulrich, I’d be saying the same thing. If I produced something for sale, and it was copyrighted, and someone stole it, I’d be pissed, too. That is MY creation, and if I want to sell it instead of giving it away, I’m well within my rights. If you don’t want to pay for it, you don’t get to enjoy it. Don’t take something that belongs to me.

By the same token, if the movie studios were more forthcoming with digital downloads at a reasonable price, and (like one poster said) allowing you to discount the physical movie when it’s released, that would probably work. I’d pay $3 for a standard-definition copy of Trek that I could put on an SD card and play back anywhere (but only copy once – so’s I could get it on the SD card). And then take $3 off the price of the BD or DVD when it was released. That would work for me.

92. ThePhaige - December 21, 2009

89

I bet ya would have paid 3 bucks for that from the Paramount site had it been there …..I would have also…..

Look industry cant force morality…they need to offer it in a way folks want it…
The movie theaters are getting antiquated and expensive for families on tight budgets. I mean I have a better system here in my home then I can always enjoy more than the theater.

93. Trekluver - December 21, 2009

Pirated movies I can understand and I hope action is taken to protect Star Trek’s good name! But it is a problem for the music industry because as of right now it is legal to record Internet radio but illegal to get it on bittorent. I don’t use bittorent but that don’t make sense! I think the music industry needs to change strategy and set up site like iTunes for free legal music. Here’s the catch, BIG FAT ADDS! That way they still make money on CD’s and from these adds. It’s better than people getting it for free illegaly! But as for movies justice must be served.

94. TroubledTribble - December 21, 2009

I took my son to see ST09 in IMAX ($60.00), took the family (6 of us) to the regular theater ($120.00), then went a third time by myself. Plus I bought the 3 disc blu-ray, and also rented the regular video for my kids. I feel that Paramount has made their money. It’s just greed. All the executives see is that 11 million people downloaded the movie (pirated it). They think they didn’t get their cut. And I only make 42k a year. This was my one splurge of the year, because I love Star Trek!!

My question is” How many of those who downloaded a copy also went to the theaters to see it or bought legal copies of it?” I asked that this question be seriously considered by Paramount and others. People always want to color everything black or white, when in truth it is neither.

And one last thing to remember. Some people got hit very hard when the economy went bust, maybe a little charity in the form of free downloads to the poor is what is needed. Oh, I forgot, someone out there said it best already. It’s a business, and they need to scrape every penny they can get so they can all drive M-Benz and live in multi-million dollar houses.

95. Mr Phil - December 21, 2009

Re: 94: My question is” How many of those who downloaded a copy also went to the theaters to see it or bought legal copies of it?”
So…if you buy 4 boxes of soap powder, you are entitled to steal the 5th?

“It’s a business, and they need to scrape every penny they can get so they can all drive M-Benz and live in multi-million dollar houses.”
I would argue that like any business, whilst the executives may earn well, the majority of those who work in that business earn moderately. Pirating movies is unlikely to make a massive impact to the lives of those at the top, it will be the technicians that will be affected.

96. garen - December 21, 2009

#94 It cost’s $20 a person to see a movie?

97. Alec - December 21, 2009

Not to be too personal, because I respect everyone here: I’ll respond more to a train of thought than to a particular person. Here’s the relevant quote.

‘I can’t steal what I’ve already purchased’.

This is clearly False. Yes: with a capital ‘F’. For it to be true, we would reach the contradiction that what you’ve ‘stolen’ and what you’ve ‘already purchased’ are numerically identical: one-and-the-same. I.e., we’d have to redefine ‘stealing’ such that it takes the meaning of ‘acquiring legally! Since what you’ve ‘stolen’ and what you’ve ‘already purchased’ aren’t numerically identical, as must be the case, then you have indeed committed theft.

That the two things in question are qualitatively identical is irrelevant in the Law. Consider an analogy. If I buy a leather coat in a shop, and if I then take a qualitatively identical coat from the same shop the next day without paying for it, I have committed theft. The fact that I already own ‘this’ coat, i.e., a coat with the same properties such as size, colour, etc., is completely irrelevant – obviously. It’s no defence, whatsoever.

What’s more, going to the cinema ‘X’ number of times, buying the DVD, the Blu-ray, etc., is no defence: it doesn’t and cannot negate the fact that you’ve done something (legally) wrong. The Law doesn’t require you to go and see Star Trek in the cinema, to buy it on DVD, etc. But it does require you to not view it illegally. So you can’t use the former to justify the latter.

The only good to come out of this is that Star Trek is very popular. If Paramount wants it to remain popular, they need to think carefully about their strategy for dealing with the so-called ‘pirates’. I can’t understand why people cannot wait for the DVD to come out, so much so that they need to illegally download a copy. I find that the anticipation of something good can often rival and even exceed the good itself: its extrinsic properties can outweigh its intrinsic ones. I find myself siding with the Master of Logic, Mr Spock:

‘After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true.’

Amen. (Though, it seems quite logical to me?!) Live Long and Prosper, fellow Trekkies.

And pick-up Trek 11, if you wish, for less than ten of Her Majesty’s pounds…

98. Alfonso - December 21, 2009

I have t be honest, I really don’t see it as a big deal. If there is a movie I know I’ll like such as star trek, I’ll usually buy a tcket and the blu-ray if not both.

But for movies that I’m not too sure on I’ll just download them. Yeah it’s stealng blah blah blah but the studio doesn’t miss out on any money because if I didn’t download it I would just do without.

Not trying to justfy, just making the point that studios aren’t losing any money on me. And I don’t see it going away without a “war on drugs” type crackdown… it’s just too convenent.

99. S. John Ross - December 21, 2009

#95 and 97 (and others committing the same error): Any analogy between stealing a physical object, and violating copyright, is misguided, unless it includes the ability to wave a magic wand (legally purchased at Ollivander’s before it burned down) to make a perfect duplicate of the physical object without the owner actually losing it.

I am not defending piracy, just pointing out that it is a form of stealing that is not logically comparable to physical theft. It is more akin to other crimes, like trespassing, or violations of privacy. In other words, sneaking into a movie theater for a free show is a very different crime from robbing the teller at the front, or lifting a box of candy from the snack bar. Trying to equate them amounts to needless hyperbole.

100. AJ - December 21, 2009

If Paramount and other studios are worried, then they should shut down the means of conveyance.

If I find someone’s $100 bill lying on the street and I keep it, I have not stolen it. If I find “Star Trek” available for download and I do so for my own personal use, it is similar to borrowing a CD from a friend and recording it.

The real fact is the studios can always blame poor performance on piracy (Though Wolverine didn’t suffer). Also, Paramount’s distribution outside North America was so piss-poor that they should take it as a wake-up call for the next one.

101. BillT - December 21, 2009

Here’s my take on it. I’ve bought several movies in betamax, then VHS, then Super VHS, then Laser Disc, then DVD, and HD-DVD which I had to change to Blu-Ray. According to the studios I still don’t own the movie even though I’ve paid to see it in the theater and purchased it seven different times in various video formats. I’ve paid over $400 just for Star Trek the Motion Picture including all the formats and times I saw it in the theater. They’re making plenty of money but enough will never be enough.

102. BillT - December 21, 2009

And another thing…I’ve paid for all the movie channels on DirecTV for years. Most of the time the studios have pre-sold the broadcast rights to HBO or somebody. In a few months I can record Star Trek in HD and keep it on my DVR for as long as I want. Technically, since the rights were already sold to HBO and I’m paying my fee to HBO. Why should they be angry if I downloaded it two months earlier?

103. Starman - December 21, 2009

*facepalm*

People are still making an analogy to physical objects and digital copies? When will people STOP DOING THAT?

104. James Heaney - December 21, 2009

#97 Alec & #94 Mr Phil:

No offense, particularly to Alec, who was quite polite there, but comparing the copying of intellectual property to the theft of material goods is awfully dense.

The *theft* of material goods (soap, jackets, etc.) inflicts actual loss on the proper owner of the goods. This is why theft is regulated by the *states* as a *criminal* violation. The *copying* of a piece of intellectual property inflicts *no* actual loss on the intellectual property owner. If I make a copy of C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity and hand it to my friend Bob, I still have it, C.S. Lewis still has, and now Bob has it. No theft of any sort takes place.

Now, this can make it difficult for C.S. Lewis to be remunerated for his hard work in writing Mere Christianity, because, while Lewis’s cost of production accounts for all the time and effort he put into writing the book, and so he sets the price at $5/book, *my* cost of production is as high as the paper I print it on, and I can sell it for $1/book and still make the same profit. If I transmit the book digitally, I can sell it for free. And C.S. Lewis can’t compete with free.

So, even though copyright violation isn’t theft, we made it illegal. The reason the Constitution gives for this is “the promotion of science and the useful arts.” I fully agree that we need copyright law, but it is not a violation of any fundamental natural law but just a matter of prudence. Thus, it is regulated by the *federal* (theoretically less powerful) government and is treated as a *civil*, not criminal, violation.

Your moral arguments crumble further when we consider the actual example given here, of people who *pay full price for the product* (sometimes multiple times, as in my case) to Paramount and then get an copy from Bob the Pirate at *his* price (generally $3 in Cambodia; $0 online) for additional reasons — the long wait until DVD release, for example, or the need to circumvent Paramount’s (illegal) “digital copy” DRM measures (which illegaly reduces a purchased movie to a mere rental that lasts until you use up your limited allotment of copy codes — to my knowledge, it’s never been tested in court, which, to my knowledge, and IANAL, is why we still have this DRM craziness). The reason the copying of intellectual property is illegal *at all* is because competition from free riders may cause consumers to purchase from those free riders instead of Paramount, so that Paramount is unable to cover its costs of production. But if a consumer gives *all the money Paramount asks for* for the right to see the movie in theaters and then to see it an unlimited number of times on home DVD player, then *what exactly has Paramount lost*?! Nothing! And because Paramount loses nothing, theater workers like you, Mr. Phil lose… nothing! If your studios are trying to cut your pay on the grounds that those nasty pirates are creating 11 million lost sales, then they are lying in an attempt to get better pools for themselves. Pirating certainly creates a *few* lost sales, but, as this comment thread illustrates, the number is *far far* below studio estimates.

And, yes, it is illegal. But illegal does not necessarily mean immoral. In this case, we have a perverse intellectual property law that should be changed. Consumers who have seen the movie and paid for the DVD have the absolutely moral right — and ought to have the legal right — to download the movie from free riding competitors (in the modern lexicon, “pirates,” though, strangely, these pirates don’t seem to get any richer from their booty, and they have a lot less success with women) again and again to their heart’s content.

/endrant

105. S. John Ross - December 21, 2009

#103: “People are still making an analogy to physical objects and digital copies? When will people STOP DOING THAT?”

I suspect it’ll be generational … it’s like … well, did you see Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs? With dad there trying to work the computer? I think it’s like that.

106. Lore - December 21, 2009

Piracy is theft, end of story. I find it appalling that so many fans are willing to dismiss this as their right. So the format changes, did you deserve a free FM radio when AM radio became obsolete?

107. Anony Mous - December 21, 2009

I’m sorry but all I can say to Paramount is boo-hoo. Piracy and bootlegging has been a problem since day one. The harder you try to crack down, the harder the crackers/hackers work.Sure, I bought some of their products (which were in the $100 at the time) when I had the money, but I’m only 21, and with this economy, I do my best to purchase the stuff I want to see if it’s absolutely necessary. If all I’ve got is to cover the bare necessities (food + utilities), I can’t buy it. Maybe later, even though I’m impatient, I’m still going to download it anyway, and buy it when I’m a comfortable zone of a budget. So… just cry me a river Paramount.

108. Michael - December 21, 2009

If Paramount and every other studio REALLY want to END their films being pirated the day after they premiere, they need to pay theater owners to make ALL patrons surrender their iphones, etc and pat seach ALL attendees as they enter the theater to ensure NO one films the movie.

109. Slyguy52 - December 21, 2009

I have to agree with a lot of the people here who say that downloading it isn’t that bad of a thing. I think that if you pay to see it in the theaters and you intend on buying the dvd why cant you download it and view it at home before the dvd is released. I loved this movie and saw and paid for it 6 times in the theater. I personally didn’t download the movie but a friend shared his downloaded copy with me which I only watched once because the quality was so bad, and I purchased the blu-ray when it came out. There does come a point where you cant justify shelling out 8 bucks multiple times.

I dont condone the activity of piracy but I think that when studios and theaters start charging very steep prices especially during a rough economy the pirating is gonna increase simply because people cannot afford to pay but still want to see the movies. And I have to agree that theses studio execs and actors make way too money and are just trying to be more greedy and line their pockets even more by wanting to crack down on piracy. Its been around for so long and there is no way to stop it because people always find a way around it or come up with new ways to accomplish the goals. Its just like the original napster way back… they cracked down on it and shut it down and more programs came around and took its place.

110. MC_Trekkie - December 21, 2009

I have a friend who is out of work, and has three kids.

Price of night at the movies with family- ~60-75.00 smackers.

It’s a recession.

I have seen some ideas above about a download that makes the studios SOME money after the first run release. What about that for people that are struggling right now.

Piracy is wrong, yes- but AT this time- when the fattest man at the table complains that the skinny kid in the corner is stealing a bit of pie (after he’s eaten 9/10ths of it) I have a problem

Consider how much FREE publicity Anthony Pascale has been providing Abrams and company (for both movies) as well as CBS/D for the remastered old Trek.

What makes it work is that context placement ads on this site have made the relationship symbiotic and it helps both parties.

Also as so called Early adopters we Trekkies serve to spread the word through media of all sorts. (podcasts, blogs, tweets, etc)

Is anyone paying us for that? Not even a free T-Shirt?

Hulu and iTunes each have a model that works- I am also part of a pubic beta test of Epix HD (for near current movies) … (which I believe Paramount is a part of)

Time for the Studios to develop a third, fourth or fifth revenue stream that breaks from the standard distribution model.

In the words of the great Shatner- Paramount- Get a Life!

111. Losira - December 21, 2009

Oh you poor deprived wing nuts! The beleagererd exeecs you never want goverment interference when you all screw the pooch! But my my who do you fat cat whinerss go whininig to when your toes get stepped so you believe. Hope paramount did not cheat on their taxes if they want goverment services LOL

112. Michael - December 21, 2009

My IMAX theater charges 34.00 for 2 tickets. Add 20.00 for popcorn and drinks for 2. Tell me how much $ they’re losing on 2 cents or less for popcorn seeds and 3 cents for soda syrup and CO2? Can we say RIDICULOUS profit margin????????????? I knew you could! Studio’s and theaters LOSING $? Poppycock! Then factor in pennies to press a dvd/BD, add 50 cents for pkging(and then charge 24.99-34.99) produced in mexico or maylasia and can we say EVEN MORE INSANE profit margins??????

113. Beck - December 21, 2009

16. true_brit

I’m of the same mind, true_brit. Yes I’ve downloaded the film, but I’ve also paid to see it four times in theaters, paid to rent it, and have already bought the Blu-Ray even though I don’t have a Blu-Ray player yet (I know I’m getting one for Christmas, I’m just being prepared). Not to mention I bought TOS on DVD a while back. I don’t think my having a pirated copy matters one wit in this case, especially since I plan on deleting it as soon as I get my digital copy that comes with the Blu-Ray.

114. st-midway - December 21, 2009

I´d like to know what paramount says about all those comments on here. a lot of them are reasonable, I think

115. Terpor - December 21, 2009

Paramount should start putting Star Trek to youtube, oh they did. Put that content isnt available on my country because of the copyright restrictions.

116. Sheryl - December 21, 2009

1. Copyright infringement is NOT theft. Making a copy of something does not deprive the rightholder of that copy, and it does not necessarily deprive them of a sale.

2. Accepting that some people are going to seek illegitimate copies for private use (and not taking action against those people) has been shown to be beneficial in overall sales–from both the ‘try before buy’ angle and the word-of-mouth angle. Sure, there are some people who will pirate and not go on to purchase a copy, but there are ALWAYS a certain number of people who see a film without paying (borrowing from a friend, etc).

4. The fact that piracy rates are so high to begin with indicates that the studios are failing to cater to their customers’ needs and desires. Viewing a film at the theater is an inordinately unpleasant experience (can’t bring your own refreshments, can’t pause to go to the restroom, can’t change the volume, can’t repeat a part if you missed something, have to deal with other moviegoers, etc), and even if you do go, there’s no legal way to watch the movie between the time it leaves the theater and the time the DVD comes out! If the studios hadn’t dragged their feet so much on digital distribution, I don’t think piracy rates would be nearly as high as they are.

3. I agree that those who profit from piracy should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

I know that this is just my opinion, and that it differs from the law, but just because the law says X or the law says Y doesn’t make X or Y right and proper. If I want to watch the movie that I paid for on a portable device of my choosing, why is it wrong for me to download a copy with the correct encoding for that device? If I’ve bought my DVD, but don’t want to take it out of the box because I’m afraid I’ll scratch the disc, why is it wrong for me to download a copy?

117. Losira - December 21, 2009

Theses execs I’m sure broke their share of fed laws they want no goverment in their lives. But step on them they cry victim of. Broken fed law. Truely amazing. I hate to see trek being mixed in this. Let’s all listen to treks message. You can live run a business honestly no greed or hypocracy. A basic morality. From all. I don’t see place in trek for anything less trust me we all will live long and prosper

118. WowserUK - December 21, 2009

#16
I’m with you..
I’ve got everything Star Trek they’ve released.. bought and paid for..
but I feel ‘they’re’ gonna get us all for every little thing they can on the internet eventually :(
unless, maybe, we go all ‘Rage Against the Machine’ on them perhaps? :)

119. Angry But I'm Over It - December 21, 2009

1) I have no problem morally watching a pirated copy if one still ends up buying an official copy (as I have). I love the movie, I saw it quite a few times. I eventually got tired of going to the theatre, spending $9 each time, and was hoping to only wait 2 or 3 months instead of 6 to watch it again. 6 months wasn’t so bad in the end for a movie like Star Trek, but I admit I’ve been corrupted by the instant gratification that technology brings.

2) Paramount should take some comfort in knowing this piracy stat: Star Trek was/is a success and is popular in mainstream once again.

In August I was on an Amtrak train ride and the people next to me were watching Star Trek. It surprised me, but put a smile on my face. A week later, I happened to get a copy of it myself as a gift from a friend. I didn’t pay for it, I didn’t ask for it, I just received it because he knew I loved Star Trek. So I watched it – again, and again, and again. Then a couple of weeks ago I bought the movie both on 3-disc Blu-Ray and the single, standard def version when they were officially released. I’m sure there are plenty of people who got a crappy, pirated version and then bought the official when it came out. No tears shed.

Bottom line: Yeah it’s against the law, and i don’t promote it, but facts remain. Millions of people are constantly using and finding new ways to get music, movies, and games as quickly and cheaply as possible and while some money is being lost, much more is still being made. Did not Paramount just have its most successful year with films? With a screwed economy and botched government (at least in the U.S.) – we’ll be paying $15-$20 a ticket by the time Star Trek XII comes out, wait and see how fast that gets out in the circuit. If you blow the whistle on every single person, you’re going to ultimately do more harm than good. Not gonna lose any sleep knowing Hollywood lost out on a few million.

120. Lore - December 21, 2009

Wow, when you point out people’s wrong-doing, they turn on you like rabid dogs. I’ve even read some posts going after our host Anthony. It just shows you that Paramount has a point if this many “fans” are participating in piracy.

121. Daoud - December 21, 2009

This is like sitting around arguing about Edsels, Pontiacs, Hudsons, and Oldsmobiles. Burger Chef. Montgomery Ward. Service Merchandise. Circuit City. The Dumont Television Network. UPN (the toilet). Ishtar. Heaven’s Gate. etc.

Those went out of business or failed for a reason.

If the movie theaters were suffering, they’d close down. They don’t close down.

If the movie makers were suffering, they’d close down. I don’t see them going out of business.

The criminals that must be gone after are those who illegally filmed these in the theaters. That is the criminal act. When the CIA goes after them a la Jack Ryan… then let’s talk.

Oh, and if you scale ticket prices for inflation since 1973, the average has actually gone down. Simple economics.

122. toddk - December 21, 2009

Yes downloading is wrong, in most cases, but what about movies and TV shows that have never been on dvd? The mighty hercules, Rocket robinhood, Automan, In the heat of the night (a friend of mine tapes it off cable because there is no dvd of that series) SCTV?? I want to have every episode of the show, But shout factory can’t or won’t put out the missing first season and the final cinemax season of the show out on dvd. So all i’m left with is to transfer my vhs copies (that I’ve recorded off tv and cable) to dvd. and then I download what ever copies are available off the internet.

I would rather buy these shows from the retailers, but they are dragging their feet, just because a show dosent meet retail expectations, shouldnt mean that they shouldnt try.

shows that I would buy on dvd if available:

The six million dollar man
SCTV – The missing seasons
Batman -The 1960′s series
Automan
The mighty Hercules
Rocket robinhood (although through many silly delays is finally coming to dvd)

Movies:

Zeppelin- (I have this on beta tape from TV)
The dirty dozen-the next mission – (had it and lost it)
Twilights last gleaming (on beta from TV)

123. Harry Ballz - December 21, 2009

To anyone pirating a movie:

“Character is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking”

Shame on you!

124. Slyguy52 - December 21, 2009

I wonder which Rules of Acquisition apply here?

125. Commodore Kor'Tar - December 21, 2009

I am a fan and supporter of Star Trek , and I was able to controll myself and wait long enough to see it once in the theater , then wait till it came out on DVD . Now I have my DVD of the film and I can watch it whenever I like , and Paramount has my money and that money can go towards making more films in the future .

And the FBI won’t come banging down my door to arrest me for downloading pirated copies of their films because my copy is legitimate.

So go ahead and download your illegal copies , just remember the studios can and will trace your IP address , and eventually when they decide to prosecute , you’ll be in the klink .

Think about it .

126. Alec - December 21, 2009

124. Slyguy52 – December 21, 2009:

‘I wonder which Rules of Acquisition apply here?’

I’d say…

Rule 3: ‘Never spend more for an acquisition than you have to.’

Rule 203: ‘New customers are like razor-toothed gree-worms. They can be succulent, but sometimes they bite back’.

All hail the eternal greed of Grint, the first Nagus.

PS I don’t agree with everyone; but this has been interesting reading, nevertheless.

127. Alec - December 21, 2009

I mean, Gint. Ooops.

128. Akira8 - December 21, 2009

ISPs usually hand out IP addresses dynamically so the one your using could be different in a week. So many of those 5 million IP addresses will be used by another user by now. Does Paramount realize this?

129. Kind Arthur of Camelot - December 21, 2009

First of all: I am from a non-englisch-spealing country. So don´t blame me for incorrect grammar or spelling. ;)

The problem is that it is very difficult to figure out the perfect timeslot to realse a movie shortly after the theater realse on the internet without offending the theater owner. There is a reason why there is a several month gab between the theatrical and DVD/Blu-Ray Release.

Movies are made for a movie theater and the owners need that exclusive movies to generate a profit. It is a fact, that a theater owner does not earn much money in the first days/weeks of a movie release. They earn their money mostly from selling candy and drinks. And that is the problem: If a movie is available in the cinema and (legally) online at the same time, then the theater owners will probably don´t buy that movie in the first place. Because then most people will see it online instead of in the theater. The movies loose their exclusive attraktiveness and in a long shot it will result in the demise of a cultural phenomenon.

As a result of that we would slowly sign the death warrents for most of the classic movie theaters.

The piracy problem is here, because for years we have been used to get our content on the internet for free. You can´t make this undone. The movie industry just has to accept, that piracy is now part of their buisness. They should hunt and close down the movie sites where you can download the stuff. Get the guys who are creating the bootlegs but don´t prosecute and criminalize your potential customers. Sure you loose a bit of money from people who watch only downloads but that is buisness. Don´t open pandoras box, because then you will alienate a lot of your customers.

One thing is for sure: There are not enough lawyers out there to sue everyone who downloaded a movie. Nearly everybody does it and you cannot control it when you treat all your customers as potential criminals.

130. pureevilfnord - December 21, 2009

You can gripe and groan and take sides and moralize and debate all you want. The pragmatic center to this whole thing is this:
The majority of consumers have a certain amount of money that they budget for media. If you have $20 a week that you can spend, you can get a DVD or go to a movie, or RENT a movie. That person could download 100 CD’s and STILL spend their $20. That’s all you’re going to get from them, whether they download or not. People who download (everyone- you hypocrites!) spend as much and often MORE than people who don’t. I know, I’m one of them just like you. I saw Star Trek in the theater, I downloaded it AND I’m going to buy the DVD. That’s how the majority of people do it. 1 out of 10,000 watches a Soviet cam version of Star Trek all alone in a darkened room and THAT’S IT. The cam serves to span the time between theater and DVD. I spent my money on Avatar this week and next week will probably spend it again to see it on Imax, THEN download the crappy cam copy so I can review it on a podcast which PROMOTES THE MOVIE.
That being said, it’s still thievery, but let they without sin cast stones all they want, the people have spoken with their actions and the entertainment industry would be wise to adapt to a different way of getting money to adapt to a DIFFERENT WORLD. Bottom line.
Ask Friendster what happens when you try to control the way people use your product.
Don’t worry, poor entertainment industry, you will ALWAYS get our money. Just come on in to the 21st century.
Or…….kick everybody who downloads of the internet and PROSECUTE!
The internet carriers will go belly up because they’ll have 15 clients (all over 90) and 90% of the nation’s money will be paid to lawyers. Is that how you want it, America?

131. Aqua - December 21, 2009

I’ll come out and say that I pirated this movie every time it came out in a higher quality level. I saw it 13 times in theaters. When it became (legally) online I bought it on iTunes. When it was released in stores I also bought the blue-ray for myself and several dvds and christmas gifts.

I see absolutely nothing wrong in pirating something for your own reference that you have ALSO spent money on (like going to the theaters etc.) One big thing studios could do is release an official version online that can be burned to DVD once the theater runs have concluded, my iTunes version couldn’t which meant instead of enjoying it on my big TV I had to watch on on the small screen. In addition, Star Trek was pulled from most theaters in ate June but we had to wait until November to get a legal disc copy of our own.

I do have to say I am pirating movies more and more often due to the local theater rates being raised from $6 to $13.50 in the past eight years at the same time the trailers (and full out coke etc. ads) went from 15 minutes to 45 minutes! Has nothing to do with the movie but it’s absurd when you’re paying to see advertisements half as long as most movies. I now always pirate a cam to see whether or not it is worth paying to see in the theater. (and if it’s not worth paying for, it’s not worth the hard drive space either *delete*)

132. Aqua - December 21, 2009

If they want to come after me for doing this, let them. I’ve included my email address in the post, and I can show them the receipts for each purchase I made. I don’t know of a sane court that would take their side on this.

133. John Kirk - December 21, 2009

Grocery stores don’t rip you off when you buy groceries. It’s a business for a profit, just as Paramount is. But, people DO come in and rip off grocery stores by stealing DVD’s, Razor Blades, RX items, etc. It’s called shoplifting. Online piracy is video shoplifting. Think about it

134. Forrest - December 21, 2009

#34: “I think Paramount is over-reacting…”

Oh, I don’t know. This is a picture that ended up being approximately as successful as the first one — which was considered a failure, meriting a quarter-budget sequel produced by TV people in an attempt to get further use out of already-built models, sets and effects footage.

This film’s models are digital and require expensive rendering, some of the sets don’t even exist (“You want HOW much to use your brewery again?”), and the effects footage is a bit…specific, no?

So potentially lost disc sales are perhaps more significant than they might at first appear.

135. Question - December 21, 2009

Is that “unknown” source on the chart the screener that was kicking around? It looked like it was sourced from a VHS. Definitely not a cam and definitely not a DVD.

136. pureevilfnord - December 21, 2009

“Oh, I don’t know. This is a picture that ended up being approximately as successful as the first one — which was considered a failure, meriting a quarter-budget sequel produced by TV people in an attempt to get further use out of already-built models, sets and effects footage.”
The first movie made record breaking box office. It was considered an artistic flop, not a financial one. Your argument is inaccurate and illogical.

137. TroubledTribble - December 21, 2009

Mr. Phil you obviously work for the film industry and are obviously not a person high up in the industry. I work in a parts store selling auto parts.
Like you, I don’t make alot of money. And like you, I don’t make the decisions about what gets made and what doesn’t. And no, I don’t think that if I buy four boxes of soap I get the fifth free!!!
But like everyone has said, not everyone who downloads a copy of a movies does it just to get out of paying for a legal copy. We will support that which we love!!
Like I said before. Not everything is black and white, in fact, few things are. We didn’t download to cheat Paramount out of anything.
In an interview, Steven Spielberg said he saw people’s downloading of his stuff as a compliment. Most people are honest at heart, and will go out and buy a copy when it comes available. He gets it!
We’re not dishonest, just passionately consumed with this thing called “Star Trek”. I will always support my beloved past times, almost to the point of giving my own blood. I’m not trying to cheat anyone.

Mr. Phil, I applaud your defense of the industry and you lively hood. Job well done, Sir. Just don’t color me Black/White or is it White/Black?

138. Lyniseuk - December 21, 2009

I have to admit that I did download this movie, however it was only for my own private use until the DVD came out, which I bought. I also wen’t to the cinema to see the movie on the opening day. I’m like most people who casually download the odd movie, it’s a bit like tapeing off the radio or TV we have all done it at some point. I will say this though, I don’t buy or sell pirate DVDs or CDs, as I like to have the best quality picture and sound in order to enjoy a movie like this.

139. Losira - December 21, 2009

as I read the forum further something else came to mind. Has no one thought about 2nd hand copies. There are shops and dvd rental places including mail order rentals that one could buy the movie at a fraction of the price of new dvds. And in mint condition we are in a economic times this is a practical legal and economic” way to own trek and there is no shame in it either

140. Spoctor McKirk - December 21, 2009

I buy most of my movies used. Correct me if I’m wrong but the studios see no profit from these purchases (beyond each disc’s initial sale when new). Does that make ME a bad person?

141. Jim Nightshade - December 21, 2009

Yeh I bought admission to trek 09 7 times and took 1-4 people with me every time…I also bought 3 copies of the movie on dvd and blu ray and paid to dl it onto my psp too….why couldnt the digital copies I have work on my psp..not fair….

plus yeh I already bought all the movies up to nemesis on vhs I get no credit for that and have to rebuy em again for dvd

NOW I am rebuying them again for Blu ray….Paramount doesnt give any credits for any of the previous purchases so even tho I dont pirate I cant see how it would be hurting them too bad becuz those pirating it probably wouldnt bother to buy it outright anyway….

142. Alfonso - December 21, 2009

To #123,

That’s integrity, not character. So HA!!

143. SarahJM - December 21, 2009

Aw, why was my comment deleted?

144. SarahJM - December 21, 2009

weird! There it is! Nevermind.

145. LoyalTrekFan - December 21, 2009

Piracy is illegal, plain and simple. It must not be permitted and every moral individual should condemn it. Remember, literally hundreds of people work on a motion picture to make it a reality, not just wealthy actors and directors. Piracy does the same damage as someone stealing money from a bank; someone looses their money. To paraphrase Richard Daystrom from TOS’s “The Ultimate Computer,” theft is against “the laws of God and men.” Theft is universally condemned and anyone who defends it should be ashamed.

For those who want to know more about the penalties of piracy you can go here:
http://www.fbi.gov/ipr/
or simply read the FBI ANTI-PIRACY WARNING on your purchased DVDs/Blu-Rays. Further the website above clearly states why it is illegal. People and the economy are hurt by piracy. I applaud Paramount’s efforts to put an end to this crime.

146. Chris Fawkes - December 21, 2009

How are the dead beats and losers claiming the movie execs are greedy for making money from us. No doubt many of these whiners are drug users as well.

Those who download illegally are thieves. Socialist who think it should be free but want to make claim they have in some way paid for something they have not because they paid to see it at a cinema.

If you are going to be a thief don’t then try to justify it.

147. Harry Ballz - December 22, 2009

142:

I’m not going to change a key word from the original quote to suit your agenda.

So HA!

148. Losira - December 22, 2009

The FBI have their plates full mainly white color exec crime, drug cartels @ drug traffiing worst CHILD Porn. Far worst let them take care of these horrendi crimes! 1st. Prioratize please! And Paramount Lobbying we have too many fat cat lobbist taking resourest and time away from our needs as average citizens. So they are out a few bucks. Boo hoo! We have Gang problems too for crime concerns let’s use their man power to deal with these said crime issues first! Pirating is wrong but its not the end of the world. But its a pattern the bigwigs whine jump and expect the goverment to say how high! Wait your turn we have bigger @ badder crimes to worry about,

149. 4 8 15 16 23 42 - December 22, 2009

I haven’t downloaded the movie, and I generally don’t download movies because I like to pay when I like something, BUT…

I do occasionally download music on a peer-to-peer network when I am a casual consumer of it. Officially, that makes me a pirate, but I look at it as the consumer (in this case, me) taking back the right to judge a product completely before committing to it.

I’ll condemn “piracy” when the rich are taxed much more heavily than the middle class and poor.

150. CSM - December 22, 2009

#149 – The “Rich” are already taxed much more heavily than the middle class and no, I am not rich – (Though I aspire to be!)

As for pirating movies. I have never downloaded a movie or music, though I have watched a pirated download. So, Am I a crook? Technically, yes. I viewed the intellectual property of another without the expressed written permission of Major League Baseball.

My beef with the industry crying about this is that they are either stupid or intellectually dishonest. In my OPINION, most people who obtain a pirated copy of a movie were never going to buy in the first place, so Paramount did not “lose” anything. You can’t lose what you never had – or- They will obtain the pirated copy and then pay for a copy later, so once again they did not “lose” anything. Only a few obtain an illegal copy in leu of a legitimate one, in these cases the studio did lose revenue. But I think these cases are in the serious minority.

Bottom line: When a studio claims they have “lost” billions due to bootlegs, it should read “Thousands”.

151. Gen - December 22, 2009

What about those of us that bought the DVD AND downloaded it? I make music videos, doesn’t make me a pirate!

152. MC1 Doug - December 22, 2009

I find if fascinating reading folks’ tales as they tie themselves into neat little knots justifying their online piracy of films.

The fact of the matter is from top to bottom, from management down to the janitor, the actor to the writer, the set designer to prop master, the musician to composer, there is a huge financial stake in any movie for which these artisans and craftsmen work, especially when film production costs number in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Piracy doesn’t just affect the big salary names who we normally associate with a film, but the countless behind the scene people whose
very financial lives depend on theater-goers and DVD sales.

One person’s ability to steal a film online may not overtly hamper a film’s profitability, but it may indeed inhibit future productions (I am not just talking about Star Trek here).

The attitude that what does it hurt if “I” steal a movie doesn’t take into account that it is not just “I” but thousands. Sure, one illegal download may not cost Paramount (or Universal, Disney, Warner Bros., Sony, etc.) much, but thousands of illegal downloads can and do.

153. Jorg Sacul - December 22, 2009

I keep hearing the odd-grousing about having to see and wait for a movie in the theatre… I’m old-fashioned and a Luddite, I suppose, but I *look forward to* the theatrical experience. Most people do, I think. We’re social creatures. That’s why stadiums fill up with tens of thousands of people who can’t even make out sports players from their distant seats– it’s all about the human interaction experience.

Don’t get me wrong, I love watching a movie in the privacy of my own home, too.

But first run, on a grand screen, google-stereo, JuJubees stuck to my feet. $6 for a half-gallon of Coke Zero… THAT’s a movie!

No, this wasn’t on topic, but I digress to make a point.

154. Adrian Patrick - December 22, 2009

If you have a pirated copy and have also bought the DVD then there isn’t a problem. You have bought the licence to watch it in the home. If you downloaded it prior to its DVD release then you watched it on a ‘buy now pay later’ basis which I see no problem with either.

If they want to stem the tide of people downloading it PRIOR to it’s DVD release they will need to be quicker at releasing the thing that’s all.

#16 is right to state that us Trek fans have made the franchise what it is – and have bought each series several times in different formats already.

Chill out Paramount.

155. James Heaney - December 22, 2009

#152: And *I’ve* been fascinated watching industry-defenders cut through reasonable discussion like a warm, narrow-minded knife through butter. “Piracy is theft! Period!” you repeat and repeat, and you simply ignore it as the claim (absurd to anyone who thinks about it for longer than five minutes) is rebutted and rebutted.

Since no one on this thread (with one or two minor exceptions) are defending the practice of piracy that in any way causes financial injury to *anyone* who worked on the movies involved, your point about those poor Paramount janitors is both redundant and distracting.

This goes for #152 and everyone who has argued on behalf the industry (Lore, et. al.): please respond to carefully reasoned argument with something other than a louder reiteration of your “piracy is theft!” truism. Otherwise, this is like arguing against Biblical literalists, except with Paramount’s corporate policy standing in place of the inspired word of God.

Thank you!

156. shatner in the sky with diamonds - December 22, 2009

Illicitly downloading a movie that one could otherwise acquire through legitimate means isn’t right, but I don’t think ‘pirating’ is always bad. I’ve resorted to downloading torrents for media that I literally could not purchase anywhere (very old comic books, shows that few people care about, et cetera). This is a grey area in my opinion.

Another grey area is downloading materials that one has purchased. I’ve purchased TOS more than once (Amazon, iTunes, DVD) over the years and would not consider it pirating to download a torrent so I could watch the shows on a diff computer under some imaginable circumstance.

Really, the only aspect of this that I feel a little uneasy about is that I’m indirectly condoning those who put the shows out on the internet in this way. Although, something else to consider is that the torrent peer-to-peer thing makes every downloader a distributor at the same time. So really, if the means of acquisition is a peer-to-peer download, perhaps the fact that one has purchased the media does not do away with the moral dilemma of participating in others’ pirating endeavors. Hmm..

157. Forrest - December 22, 2009

#136: “The first movie made record breaking box office. It was considered an artistic flop, not a financial one. Your argument is inaccurate and illogical.”

You’ve neglected to consider return-on-budget.

158. Hawaiowa - December 22, 2009

Interesting that Paramount claims to have *5 million* IP addresses of those who dl’d pirated copies of the movie via torrent. That in itself is pretty scary! Obviously the FCC or some hired guns are monitoring the internet very closely. I wouldn’t be surprised if 1/2 to 2/3 of the regulars on this site are on that list. Enjoy your privacy and have a nice 1984!

Traditionally, Trek has been the ‘testbed’ subject for Par to claim piracy/copyright infringement and take proactive measures to deal with it. This goes all the way back to the 1970s and the hobbyist fanfics/magazines/arts&crafts that were mailed cease and desist letters. Par wanted to shutdown Usenet chans as far back as the mid-80s because they were posting up pics from the series and the movies and script spoilers to TNG eps. With the infusion of AOL consumers in the mid-90s, the ‘official site’ Startrek.com was started up by Par in response to all the web fansites that have screencaps/licensed media. In their opinion, if you have a screencap of Spock taken from a TOS episode on your site, you are ‘stealing’ Par’s intellectual property rights.

My concern is that Par and other media giants, plus the FCC, have the clout to force a ‘metered’ internet (pay as you use bandwidth) upon service providers to eliminate pirating. Why else would someone use 4gig of a service provider’s bandwidth? Beyond this is the ‘regulation and security’ measures noted by several previous posters. AOL was a failed attempt to commercialize the ‘net, but a more devious means to make everyone pay more and access less is just around the corner. The tech to do so is already in place.

A recent example of such clout being employed was the 2008 decision by the big 4 internet providers (Time Warner, ATT, et al) to shutoff all access to *every* Usenet group because 21 newsgroups were found to have illegal child porn by the NY State Attorney. I’m not condoning child porn in any sense or meaning, but I am deeply concerned about how major providers ‘used’ these findings of the NY State Attorney. Instead of blocking access to those 21 groups, or perhaps all porn-related newsgroups…they opted to drop Usenet services entirely! Surreptitiously, this court case may have given them the ‘excuse’ to drop Usenet due to the high amount of pirated media posted in the *alt.binaries* domain newsgroups. The legal status of Usenet postings is less prosecutable than P2P distros. Their given excuse was that the porn was illegal, and that Usenet wasn’t worth keeping around because only a few cable/DSL subscribers used it. As a result, I now have to pay an extra charge to a provider just to have access to Usenet so I can participate in discussion groups that I have been posting to/reading for over 20 years.

Ha ha, isn’t it quite funny and cool that ‘Trek’ was the top pirated movie of 2009, and that Par is whining about it? Excuse me, but there is a deeper subtext to this as well…and it isn’t strictly concerning whether it’s ‘right’ to pirate copyrighted media and then distro it via the Internet…or if it’s ‘right’ to charge $15 at the box office, and $20 for a DVD that costs $2 to manufacture when the studio has already made back what it invested and then some.

For example, the money invested in creating/marketing the Avatar movie could put *every* homeless person in the United States under a roof for 3 years (either by new jobs or direct social services) and there would be money leftover to offset some of the school furloughs the tanked economy forced many cities and states gov’ts to undertake.

Just a thought…

159. ed - December 22, 2009

Big deal. I downloaded it before it came out for the home and I just bought the Blu Ray version last week. These arguments with raw numbers are disingenuous because they never mention how many of these downloads are by people who then purchase the movie when it comes out.

160. Harry Ballz - December 22, 2009

#158 “the money invested in creating/marketing the Avatar movie could put every homeless person in the United States under a roof for 3 years”

Based on that logic, why not wipe out the entire entertainment industry and take the funds to feed the rest of the world while we all die of boredom?

Nah, I don’t think so!

161. Captain Otter - December 22, 2009

I’m somewhat sympathetic to music piracy because the labels screw over the performers and song writers with alarming regularity. Support artists by going to shows and buying t-shirts and the like, but don’t think that your $15 for that CD will help your favorite bad. (You should still buy it so you don’t break the law.)

Films and television are a whole other ball of wax. The unions have made sure that the studios share revenue.

So when someone pirates a movie, they are stealing from the creative people who made it.

That’s just plain wrong any way you slice it.

162. jas_montreal - December 22, 2009

RocknRolla ? lol

The movie barely made 25 million bucks at the box office. Now its the 3rd most pirated movie of the year ? What the hell !

163. Captain Otter - December 22, 2009

favorite band, not favorite bad

164. That guy... - December 22, 2009

Yes, because Heaven knows they didn’t make HUNDREDS of MILLIONS of dollars in box office receipts alone. Perhaps if they didn’t pay themselves MILLIONS to sit on their collective tushies and ruin dozens of movies a year with bad choices instead of letting creative people be creative and make better films. Wow…the money that could be made then.

165. BillT - December 22, 2009

I say they should go after the person who originally uploaded the copy, not the downloaders. Somebody copied a Blu-Ray of Star Trek and put it out there for the world to spread around. That is dude that’s causing the trouble. All the sites that host these movies ask you to agree to terms. Everyone of them says not to upload something you don’t have the copyright on. These same sites will ban you if you don’t upload the same amount as you download. All of these sites no that every file that is available on their site is illegal. Since it is done through file sharing they don’t actually have the file. They seem to be protected because they the person who uploaded it promised he owned the copyright. We are bombarded with commercials whipping us into a frenzy to see the movie and then we are practically entrapped into downloading it. If you saw a $100 bill blowing down the street you’d pick it up and put it in your pocket if there was nobody around looking for it. If you go to a site that says Star Trek for free in 1080p it’s kind of hard to resist. We’re the fans, the ones that pay the movie company’s salaries. They should go after the dudes with the camcorders and the dudes that are copying the DVDs and Blu-Rays and uploading them, not the fans. I doubt that any of us would go out an by a Blu-Ray, make a copy and upload it to the internet. None of us would take a camcorder into a theater, convert the file to another format and upload it to the internet. The want to treat us believe that downloader is no different than the guy who copied it and uploaded it to the internet. I disagree.

166. 4 8 15 16 23 42 - December 22, 2009

@161 — Are you kidding? The studios are among the worst robber-barons in history! Just read about “Hollywood accounting”…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hollywood_accounting

167. ryanhuyton - December 22, 2009

There seems to be a great deal many fans on this thread who feel “entitled’ do download free “pirated” movies. Let me drop you all a hint: you have NO RIGHT whatsoever to BUY downloaded movies at ANY price. And you certainly have NO RIGHT to “justify” your reasons for stealing and profiting off of other peoples work. I used to buy illegal movies but soon realized it was wrong because I was aiding and financially supporting a CRIMINAL. Just because you have a problem with how much studios charge for movies doesn’t give you any right to BREAK THE LAW. Also, PARAMOUNT AND OTHER STUDIOS aren’t forcing you to buy their products. These are “luxury” items, not neccessities like food, shelter and clothing. Sure, DVD movies and box sets can be expensive, but you can wait for a price drop or buy during a sale. And besides, $30 for a Blu-Ray copy of “Star Trek” is worth the price in my (and many others’) opinion. In fact, you get better value than you do by seeing it at the theatre. $30 for an “infinite” number of viewings plus nearly 4 hours of bonus features versus $12.50 for one viewing and no special features.
In other words, you can also wait for the DVD/Blu Ray to arrive if you find the ticket price too expensive. Paramount and other studios have the right to charge whatever the market will bear. It is called capitalism folks. The reason why dvds and Blu Ray movies and shows are priced the way they are because of demand. They’ve done their homework by judging the amount of profit as well as the affordability to the average consumer. And most people who work in the t.v and film industry aren’t rich at all. They need dvds and Blu Rays to sell as well as the films to be profitable at the theatre. Piracy does cut into studios’ profits. It doesn’t matter how much. No one has the right to make a profit off of other people’s work, NO MATTER how much the artist or artists make. The studios don’t care if you share their movies with your friends just as long as you aren’t profiting off it.

168. ryanhuyton - December 22, 2009

In the first paragraph I meant “illegally” downloaded movies from “illegal” websites of course.

169. Quatlo - December 22, 2009

Wonder how much Para will claim as biz expenses for creating the fancy bootleg flow chart? ;-/

170. BillT - December 23, 2009

To #167 who said – “The studios don’t care if you share their movies with your friends just as long as you aren’t profiting off it.” and “Let me drop you all a hint: you have NO RIGHT whatsoever to BUY downloaded movies at ANY price.”

You must be talking about people making bootleg DVDs and selling them. The Paramount article is about the downloading of camcorded copies of the movie not the purchase or sale of bootleg dvds. A person who obtains an early release of a dvd or who goes into a theater and camcords a film and uploads it to the internet is not profiting from it. Nobody paid anyone for these downloaded copies. Virtually everyone here said they also bought the DVD.

171. Schiefy - December 23, 2009

There is no gray area when it comes to piracy–it is illegal under the current laws to copy and distribute “intellectual property” in the manner described here.

What piracy does highlight is the need to reform and change the current laws so that all of the reasons we all are criminals anytime we violate the copyright laws knowingly or ignorantly are minimized to legitimate cases of theft that cause the financial losses Paramount and others claim.

As some have noted what is the difference when you “loan” someone a copy of your dvd (or book or cd, etc.) or purchase a “used” copy or record the program on your dvr versus downloading a copy? The cam versions are of such poor quality I do not see why anyone would consider that desirable over and above a legit copy (nor why any studio would feel threatened by it–in fact, it is simply free PR for them). Now, someone producing these copies and charging for them (i.e., profiting from them) is more clearly “theft” and a violation of the main intent of these laws–but this is in between the sale of a legit copy new and a later resale of a used copy later.

So, while Paramount may not choose to prosecute those 11 million who downloaded illegal copies, we should work at reforming the copyright laws and methods of distribution to reflect modern technology. Then, the studios and others can go after those who are actually “stealing” these properties to make a profit with no renumeration back to the original owners. As rightly pointed out here, while it might be illegal to download these copies, Trek fans do so largely for the love of Trek and in the end benefit CBS/Paramount by furthering the sales and promotion of Trek to their bottom line profit.

Baen Books (http://www.baen.com) still provides one of the best models for giving away a form of your product free in order to increase sales of your profitable form rather than worrying about all those evil people who are illegally copying your product!

172. CSM - December 23, 2009

For all the evil profit – corporate bashers out there……..If you think a company earns too much profit – then you are the fool if you don’t own their stock. – Where so you think the profit goes???? To the owners (Shareholders) SO if you think Paramount earns too much profit, then buy their stock and you too can earn…”Too much profit”!

173. Will_H - December 23, 2009

Its funny how much black and white thinkers are on here. The whole “if its illegal than its 100% wrong” mentality is something I find flawed when it comes to the real world. If you look at history sometimes groups of people have had to do illegal things and we don’t seems to always disagree with them. Here in the US, back before we were the US, some of our people thought it was wrong that we were getting taxed without representation, so they did some illegal stuff in response. How many Americans here think they should have just followed the law? And in the 60′s, a lot of black people in the US broke the law because those laws were unjust and so started the civil rights movement. Now I doubt too many think that shouldnt of happened (racists aside of course). Point is, just because something is legal does not make it right and just because its illegal doesnt make it wrong. There’s simply too much more to life than that.

174. Scotty Mac - December 23, 2009

I bought it on Blu-ray, the best $30 I ever spent.

175. Loccy - December 23, 2009

This is a long thread and I haven’t read all of it, so apologies if this has already been discussed. #171 touches on some of this, but here goes. (And note I am talking about movies here – in contrast, there are some encouraging noises going on in the music industry e.g. the gradual decline of DRM).

The reality is, the old models for charging for movie content are obsolete and are actually incompatible with internet-based means of distribution. Consider, in pre-internet days you could charge for each instance of a creative work, because each instance was encapsulated in a physical object, i.e. a DVD/CD/tape, whatever. Digital copies and internet distribution are game changers, however, and unfortunately the content providers don’t seem to understand that. Instead they prefer to cripple content with DRM in a desperate attempt to emulate the characteristics of physical media, rather than embrace the new paradigm.

I can’t remember who did the research but a year or so ago I read something where the author calculated that if they added an additional surcharge onto every internet subscription fee, let everyone download whatever they liked, and then apportioned these additional fees across the different content producers, the content producers would make MORE money than they currently do via their antique charging models.

If that’s too radical, I say let a film run in the cinema for a month or so, and then release DVD and HD downloads of the film on the internet for (say) a £3.50 download. I reckon that would reduce piracy by about 80% if not more, and you’d get more people at £3.50 a month after cinema release than you currently do for £14 on DVD six months later.

Another factor people forget – piracy is not just a question of people freeloading – it’s actually one of the most convenient ways to source films. It is far easier for to download a DVD rip of a film from Usenet than it is to get off your backside and go to HMV and buy it, or even buy it online from Amazon (where I’d have to wait for it to be delivered). Current legal download methods e.g. iTunes involve DRM crippling of content, or impose undesirable non-portable media formats, and are thus inconvenient for other reasons, not to mention being vastly overpriced. But I would willingly pay to have this convenience legally – i.e. the £3.50 price point per film I mentioned earlier, or ideally the flat fee “all you can eat” approach, with media supplied in a portable non-DRMed format.

The problem is that most of the content producers are too greedy, and too set in their ways. There are also too many intermediate middle-man concerns between the consumer and the media producer, and too many vested interests out there. Consider – distributors, the rental market, high street shops – changing the paradigm would adversely impact them, so obviously they will fight tooth and nail against changing the model.

Oh, and I just want to pick up on one comment I noticed:

“Paramount and other studios have the right to charge whatever the market will bear. It is called capitalism folks.”

Yes, they have the right to charge whatever they like. But having exercised that right they shouldn’t whinge if their pricing choice encourages consumers to choose alternative, most cost effective, better value approaches to sourcing their content. And I’d suggest that if piracy is such an issue, then this is an indication that the market ISN’T bearing their pricing model.

tl;dr – movie studios are too greedy and/or are Luddites. They have only themselves to blame for piracy via the internet, as a result of their unwillingness to embrace new technology properly and change their paradigms to fit accordingly.

176. Harry Ballz - December 23, 2009

Make all the excuses you want…the simple truth is that a technology came on the scene that allowed people to steal a movie for free and a lot of people gave in to the temptation. There is no “moral high ground” for anyone guilty of this. For once take responsibility for your unethical actions!

177. JJ Savard - December 24, 2009

@176 Unethical?! If it’s not illeagal (as it isn’t in some countries) and if I were to pay for something after the only way to obtain it is download, how is that unethical? I wouldn’t have done anything wrong, I would have supported it more than anything. THIS IS NOT BLACK AND WHITE! It bothers me to see people claim it is, it isn’t, times have changed.

178. Harry Ballz - December 24, 2009

If you pay Paramount to download it, fine, if you pay anyone who is trying to stop Paramount from getting the money (and keeping it for themself), that’s aiding and abetting a thief!

179. ryanhuyton - December 24, 2009

#170 Where do you think the downloads come from? They come from camcorders and other portable devices. And yes, unfortuneately, copies of films are often stolen by people who work at studios and then are put up online for people to download. And I have visited sites where this is happening, and the sites often though not always charge money for it. The idea of piracy is to profit off of someone else’s work by selling bootleg copies at submarket value. People buy them because they are too cheap and/or impatient to wait for the dvd/Blu Ray release. People upload “camcorded” movies to their computer to burn on to dvds which they sell to customers. I know this because I USED TO BUY PIRATED DVDS. The fact that you seem to think illegal downloads are different from the sale of illegal dvds makes no sense at all. It’s all a part of the same problem. Just because someone puts up an illegal copy of a movie, doesn’t mean that money isn’t being lost. The idea of someone downloading an illegal copy of a movie then buying the film on release is not true at all. I knew someone who downloaded/bought illegal films because he figured the amount of money saved by doing so made more sense then by waiting for the release date.

Just because studios have been slow to embrace new technology doesn’t mean you have the right to violate someone else’s rights of ownership. Alot of people here are trying to paint this as an area with many grey areas when in fact it could not be any clearer. Some feel what is illegal is not neccessarily amoral or wrong. Totally wrong. If you downloaded “Star Trek” illegally, admit to it, don’t be a hypocrite and try to justify your reasons for doing so.

And lastly, studios and the folks who make movies do have the right to claim control over their works. Morally and legally. The fact that studios make billions is irrelevent. The same goes for the music industry. Most people who work in these industries are normal everyday folks who struggle day in and day out to provide for their families. Piracy and illegal downloading has proven to cost a large number of jobs. The number of rich fat cat executives are few and far between. But even if they make what you feel is too much money, so what? So do athletes and actors, but I don’t begrudge them for making as much money as they can while doing it legally.

180. ryanhuyton - December 24, 2009

And I wonder how many of those on this thread who made illegal downloads of this movie would ever admit it to Bob Orci if he was posting? Not a lot I would suspect, which speaks loudly. I’m trying not to be morally superior in any way, I just don’t like people trying to justify something that is clearly ILLEGAL whether one agrees with the law or not.
I have to admit I had thoughts of downloading an illegal copy a few months ago, but I didn’t. I waited for the Blu Ray to come out and bought it the first day it came out. I bought the gift set with the pins. It was worth the wait. Which brings me to my final point. Clearly the idea of gift sets is to encourage people to buy the dvd/Blu Ray as opposed to stealing it off the internet. Which is more proof that illegal downloading has a negative effect on profits.

181. BillT - December 25, 2009

To #170 – I was only addressing the comment that was made that “Let me drop you all a hint: you have NO RIGHT whatsoever to BUY downloaded movies at ANY price” and that “studios don’t care if you share their movies with your friends just as long as you aren’t profiting off it.”

I pay $145 per month to DirecTV for all the movies channels. I can record any of those movies for free with my HD-DVR and keep them as long as I want. There are many movies that come out at movie theaters that look good but I don’t want to pay $30 to take my wife to see. Those movies will be on one HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, The Movie Channel or Starz in 3-6 months. If I were to download one of those movies early I would not be costing the studio a penny. If anything I would be lessening my enjoyment of my $145 a month satellite TV subscription. When the studios make these claims of the money piracy costs them they’re assuming that each download costs them money.

What does this statement you made mean? “The idea of someone downloading an illegal copy of a movie then buying the film on release is not true at all. I knew someone who downloaded/bought illegal films because he figured the amount of money saved by doing so made more sense then by waiting for the release date” You know one person who did that so all the people who said they later purchased the DVD are lying?

182. Harry Ballz - December 25, 2009

Look, if you pay to get the movie from a legitimate source, you’re fine. If you pay to get it from an illegitimate source, you’re stealing!

Everybody got that??

183. ryanhuyton - December 25, 2009

#181 Did you even read my correction to my first post? #168? I wasn’t talking about DirecTV or any other legitimate satellite or cable companies.
And yes while it may be true that lot of people who download illegal copies do buy the dvd when it comes out, what does it matter? You clearly don’t understand why studios are upset over illegal downloads. Perhaps I was wrong to assume all people who download illegally end up not buying the dvd/Blu Ray, but it doesn’t really matter does it? What is illegal is still illegal. And as I stated before, there is money involved in illegal downloads. People put up illegal copies of movies for others to download FOR PROFIT. At least when it comes to good quality dvds. I know. I seen websites that advertised illegal copies of movies that were still in theatres. And they weren’t free.

184. BillT - December 26, 2009

To #183. I’ve never seen these pay sites you’re talking about. There are bittorrent sites all over the place that are free with dvd and blu-ray copies. I can understand why they would be upset and I agree it’s illegal. I was just saying they have no way of esimating their losses from downloads for several reasons.
The assume every person who downloaded would have purchased the movie were it not available for download or already pay to see it in the theater.
They assume that every person who downloaded a copy didn’t later purchase it.
They assume that were it not available online the downloader wouldn’t have simply waited the few months for the movie to be shown on satellite or cable and record it on their DVR.

I have no doubt they lose some money from piracy. I just think they should be arresting the original uploader who copied the DVD or camcorded the movie. Without them there would be no downloading period.

185. Max - December 26, 2009

OK, I’ll admit it…I’ve D/L’d a few movies……watched a few NFL games……Ripped some CD’s…….Know why???

Cuz of this great frickin country now, I’m NOW, an unemployed Assembly Lineman of 19 years…w/ a family of 5 who can barely get beans for a decent dinner…..we have no more luxurys such as cable, phone, or dining out anymore….used to…but not anymore, we figured the one thing we could try and afford is small no-frills low-spped I-net package for my kids to learn from actual News media, and not that fluff piece, script-read talking head crap on Network TV
I refuse to be a part of the Welfare system, and I’m doing all that I can for my Wife and 3 kids…….Fak Corporate greed scumbag CEO’s for us taking a wee bit of change out of their already fat-lined pockets.
I still love this Country, but I passionately Hate what the political fat cats and the Fed, and the Bankers have done to this place…..

So theres my reason for trying to get a couple hours of entertainment into my family’s otherwise bleak life
So PISS OFF u Corporate shmucks….

~M.G

186. D.F. - January 7, 2010

IF I AM NOT GOING TO PAY FOR A MOVIE/SONG, ECT THEN IT DOESN’T MATTER IF I DOWNLOAD IT BECAUSE YOUR NOT LOSING MONEY EITHER WAY. IT’S NOT AS THOUGH I WOULD HAVE BOUGHT IT IF I DIDN’T DOWNLOAD IT… so technically your not losing any money…
Besides it’s a copy. How can you call it THEFT.. Theft is taking something that doesn’t belong to you, thus the owner no longer has it.
One could argue that (atleast for older movies/ TV shows/ songs that they grew up with) are not properties of companies, but has become associated with who they are, thus giving them just as much of a claim on the property as the companies and studios that made them.
Shows such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Are you Afraid of the Dark, and Power Rangers, defined who I was as a child. I deserve to own these shows and pass them down to my children. They are a part of my culture. More than just a wad of money to add to a companies bank account.

for your information, I did downlowd Star Trek from a torrent site… But I did it after I watched it in Theaters because I wanted to see it again, and by that time it wasn’t in theaters anymore or on DVD yet…

But My CAPS statement stands true.

When a corporation takes this kind of stand it only serves to alienate the people who call themselves “fans.” Good luck, you just made a whole lot of enemies Paramount.

187. D.F. - January 7, 2010

Also, even if you could stop every torrent site, do you think you would really stop pirating.. People have been doing this since VCR’s came out. Any companies have had their panties in a bunch ever since….. It’s not going to go away..

ADAPT OR DIE.

I can just as easily rent a DVD for 1.50 from my video store and make a ripped copy of it in no time to keep forever.

Your lucky I like to have DVD’s with cases, which is the reason why I don’t download a lot of stuff. Mainly stuff from my childhood that I can’t find..

My goal is to have my child grow up in an enviroment similar to the way I did of the late 1980′s early 1990′s… I am trying to get all my old shows and even commercials downloaded. I am collecting 90′s toys and games and one day will rap them as gifts for my future children.. I’m not letting them grow up with the stupid stuff that is on TV now (or in the future.) Darkwing duck, and Talespin for my children!!!!! Pirating is the only way to get alot of these shows.

BTW, am I the only one who thinks DVD prices are to high. I’m willing to pay no more than $5 dollars for a movie, unless it is a classic… I usually just go to pawn stores and by them for abour 2-4 dollars a piece. People who pay $15- $20 a DVD are insane.

188. D.F. - January 7, 2010

Sorry for the third post, but I just thought of one more thing.

I have hundreds of VHS tapes that are now obsolete….. I should legally be able to get free dvd versions of these movies or atleast download them off the internet for free…… Why pay for the same movie again???? There should have been a step-up program when dvds/blu-rays came out where you could turn in your old VHS tape to a store in exchange for the dvd at a much lower price (say a couple of bucks.)

Seeing at that didn’t happen, I don’t want to here any complaints from comanies when I download “Aladdin”, the original Star Trek Movies, or any other movies that I own on VHS and want on a digital format….

189. D.F. - January 7, 2010

I see the word illegal over and over in these comments… Let’s make it clear.. Everyone knows (depending on what country your in) that downloading the movie is illegal.. However, that alone does not make it morally wrong. People are getting the law mixed up with their senses of right and wrong.

At one time it was illegal for a woman named Rosa Parks refuse to give her seat up for a white person….Just because it was illegal, was she still in the wrong…

Laws are changed all the time…. Just because something is illegal now doesn’t mean that you still don’t have the right to do it. If you truely believe that your stealing which some of you do, then don’t do it…. However, I’ve already explained why I don’t see it as stealing. If a company is not losing money from me owning a copy of a movie (since I wouldn’t buy the movie anyways), then why are they complaining. Why do they care if I watch something that I wouldn’t normaly pay for… If anything it only make me want to start paying for stuff in the future..

Say I downloaded Star Trek and never heard of it before. After watching it, I started getting into it. So I download all the other movies and tv shows without paying for them… Well, since I love the show now, I then then go to a store and buy Star Trek figurines or collectables…. Next I pass the love of Star Trek onto my future children who grow up loving the show and buy star trek items and toys…

THERE YOU GO.. MY PIRATING JUST EARNED THE OWNERS OF STAR TREK MONEY THAT THEY WOULD NOT HAVE ORIGINALLY MADE.. case closed.

190. D.F. - January 7, 2010

Going through the messages still, I see some people saying that there those people who are talking about how wrong it is to pirate something..

You need to look at it from my POV…

First I want to state that this isn’t about Star Trek or watching bootleg movies of movies that are in Theaters. But of movies already out of theaters.

When I download movies, I don’t see it as stealing something…. I look at it the same way I do as when I turn on the television. When a good movie is on TV I will watch it. However, sometimes nothing is good on… So instead download a movie (fairly quickly) and watch it instead… It’s no different than turning on a TV…. Either way, it’s just something to pass the time. One could argue that TV isn’t free. However, if your like me and live at home with your parents, you don’t pay the tv bill. So it’s really all the same to me. Watching free tv is no different to me than downloading and watching a movie for free. If I want to download a 5 year old movie that I haven’t seen in a long time, why not… Have my pc hooked up to my TV so it’s essentially the same thing as TV for me.

And before anyone says something about commercials in TV, who really watches commercials these days… I like commercials. Its’ the perfect time to go the bathroom or get a snack….

191. Bobby - June 24, 2010

Maybe if the the movie theater’s didn’t charge $20 for 2 people to see a movie and $10 for popcorn and $4.50 for a soda, then maybe I wouldn’t have to pirate movies. Don’t even get me started on the commercials they show before the movie, or the $30 comemorative trinket they sell. And what’s up with the candy. A pack of gummy worms costs over $3. WTF!!!!!

192. Stop Dog Barking - April 9, 2011

I don’t normally comment on blogs.. But nice post! I just bookmarked your site

193. fishing shirt - April 9, 2011

I was examining some of your articles on this site and I believe this website is really informative ! Continue posting .

194. bob FAJ - August 14, 2011

I find that a little surprising. I have yet to see that movie and don’t know anyone who has seen the new Star Trek.

TrekMovie.com is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.