November 15, 2012

A Word about Poverty and Media

Posted in personal finances, Perspective, Writing at 5:27 pm by otherdeb

I am poor.  I make no bones about it.  I will ask people to help if they want me to go out to dinner with them.  I will shop sales.  I will cut coupons.  I will use thrift shops.  I will do almost anything to save money, because I have very little of it.

However, something came to my attention recently, through two separate sources, that I want to address.

On Facebook, I ran across the following meme/photo to share (and I did):

Taken from Broken Toyland’s Facebook page

Of course, being a writer myself, I clicked and shared this.  But I then read a blog post from a professional writer I know.  This writer has a new book coming out next year.  One of said writer’s fans asked said writer for a pre-publication copy, on the grounds that he (or she) couldn’t wait until the book came out.  While said writer was trying to decide how to answer said fan, a third party noted in comment that he (or she) would be happy to provide said fan with a copy for $XX.XX.  Needless to say, the writer was appalled.  This writer makes a living from writing, and what the third person was offering the fan was clearly a pirated copy of the book.

Now, as I said before, I will do almost anything to save money.  But, what I will not do is buy pirated work.

Unless you have already bought the work, and just want a copy for your Kindle or iPod, or whatever,  or – in music – are downloading something that a group put out for the public,, what a pirated work amounts to is theft.

By buying a pirated work, you are depriving the creator of that work of the royalties due them for your purchase.  It’s that simple.

If you want to read something and cannot afford it, go to your library (most libraries even do e-loans of many of their books).  If you download music, you are best to do it from a site where the artist will get his or her royalty.

And, if you have waited two years for the sequel for something to come out, you can wait another month or two for it to come out, rather than buying a pirated version.  After all, it is not a matter of life and death to get hold of it early; just impatience — of which there is far too much these days.

Oh, and yes, if someone DOES send me a preview of a song or a book, I make sure to buy the real thing when it does come to market.  Remember, I make my living by writing, too, and I would hate to find my work pirated.



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