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Debate: Prohibition of downloading music and films

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This House believes that downloading music and films from the Internet should be prohibited

Contents

Background and Context of Debate:

Feasibility: Is the ban on downloading feasible?

Pro

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Con

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Crime: Is downloading a crime?

Pro

  • Downloading equals stealing intellectual property. Downloading is in essence a crime, just like shoplifting; the only difference being that you steal pieces of metal and plastic from a shop together with the song or the film, whereas you download just the "software" from the Internet. However, it is the "software" - the song or film itself that matters the most. It is the intellectual property which, just like any other property, should be protected by law.

Con

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Economics: What are the economic implications of the ban on downloading?

Pro

  • Downloading equals lost tax revenue. When people download music and films for free, they (obviously) do not pay taxes. Therefore, the government incurs a loss due to Internet piracy.
  • Downloading harms artists. Internet piracy equals lost revenues for musicians (as well as their managers...) who in turn struggle to earn a decent living.
  • Downloading disincentives creativity and innovation. If songs and films are not protected by copyright laws, the artists are less willing to pursue an artistic career, which in turn means less diversity in film and music industry.
  • Downloading impedes economic growth. Downloading (as outlined above) implies less innovation and entrepreneurship, which in effect impedes economic growth. In fact, "the U.S. economy as a whole may grow more slowly because of reduced innovation and loss of trade revenue". ["Observation on Efforts to Quantify the economic Effects of Counterfeit and Pirated Goods", by Government Accountability Office, 2010]

Con

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Morality: Would the ban on downloading uphold our moral pillars?

Pro

  • The prohibition sends the right message. Crime should not pay, and after crime comes punishment. Two basic pillars or or legislation. If we turn a blind eye towards Internet piracy, we are in effect undermining our set of values, which clearly is immoral.

Con

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See also

External links and resources:

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