Kids should know:
THE PROBLEM OF PIRACY
Kids are growing up in the digital age, where everything that they could dream of owning -- movies, CDs, computer games, even papers and other assignments for school - can be had with just the click of a mouse. And without proper intervention and education, they might not see a single thing wrong with downloading or copying the latest and greatest software.
It's up to parents and educators to teach children how piracy hurts developers and how pirating can lead to serious financial repercussions, even jail time. To combat piracy the SIIA has put together information and helpful links so that the next generation will think before they copy that floppy (or CD, or DVD, or Blu-Ray...).
Start with this fun and educational video starring anti-piracy hero MC Double Def DP of 1992's "Don't Copy That Floppy" fame.
Theft is an unfortunate problem that confronts everyone in some form, whether burglary, robbery, counterfeiting, shoplifting, embezzlement or others. Creators and innovators that rely on copyright to protect their software, books, articles, games, music and other works are no different. Copyright is a form of property and copyright infringement or piracy is theft. While computers and the Internet have provided many new efficiencies and positive changes, they have given rise to new risks and possibilities for copyright theft, particularly for those that create and distribute software and content. Because digital technology makes it so easy to make copies quickly and perfectly -- and distribute them instantaneously and (most people falsely think) anonymously to large numbers of people -- it can be more tempting than ever to violate the copyright laws.
It takes just a few simple clicks of a mouse to copy and redistribute software and digital content. The act is so easy and such a seamless part of using the Internet (and certainly not always illegal) that anyone who has ever used e-mail or the Internet has undoubtedly done it. We all forward e-mails, we print out web pages and we download files from the Internet. The result is flawless copies of the original, equally flawless copies of the copies, and so on. It is this copying and distribution capability that makes software and digital content so easy to work with - and so difficult to protect from theft.
While most people generally are law-abiding by nature, the copying of copyrighted works has become so widespread that people who would never consider stealing a book or magazine from a store may not hesitate to use their computers to commit a similar violation -- breaking the copyright laws. In some cases, the violation may even be inadvertent. The law, however, does not excuse inadvertent or uninformed copyright infringement, and imposes significant consequences. The penalties are particularly severe for those who "wilfully" infringe, meaning that they knew, or reasonably should have known, that they were violating the law.
Anyone who uses, copies, distributes, or displays (in whole or in part) someone else's copyrighted work without authorization may be violating the owner's copyright rights. Such violations can result in a lawsuit and money damages, and in some cases, criminal prosecution with jail time.
People often engage in piracy because they think they will never get caught. Most of them are right. But many are not. The question each person needs to ask themselves is - Do I want to play Russian roulette with my life?
These consequences can be avoided if people would take the time to get informed and make better decisions regarding the downloading and purchasing of copyrighted software, content, games, movies and music.