Pirated? Music

I am going to go on a long trip this summer, and I wanted to have some music for long airplane flights train and car rides. I really don’t want to buy music, and my sister proposed an idea. I go to the library, checkout all the music that I want, transfer it from the DVDs to my phone. Would that count as pirated music?

I had the same crisis, and somebody explained it to me this way. Since it is the library’s music, meant to be loaned out and free to the public, it’s perfectly fine to rip songs from their CDs.

The problem arises when you try to claim it as your own, and/or re-sell it, or do something with it that only the **true **owner of it can do. So, as long as it’s for your own private use, and you don’t plan on re-selling it for a profit or saying you wrote the songs and whatnot, you’re fine. (I even talked to a guy who works at our State House, and he agreed with this. :thumbsup: )

Doesn’t this seem a bit odd, though?

I mean, for starters, there’s a world of difference between one CD being loaned at a time … and one CD being turned into 1,472 CDs that could potentially all be listened to at the same time.

The fact that someone rents or borrows something does not imply they have a right to make copies of that item to their heart’s content.

The problem is that this is one of those things that might technically be illegal, but which people just don’t care about since they think they could never get caught.

As Catholics, we shouldn’t have that perspective, and we shouldn’t try to take advantage of loopholes. (Not that Hawkmaid or anyone else in this thread has insinuated we should.)

If you can’t afford it, OP, then don’t listen to it. :thumbsup:

The CDs at my library are made do they cannot be copied.

I am inferring from that, that it is illegal and stealing to copy cd’s from the library.

I see what you mean. I wasn’t thinking of multiple CD copies, simply because that’s not what I do with the music I download. I just keep it on my computer for my own use. Not that that makes it more okay, I just wanted to mention it. :slight_smile:

Nope, primarily because I don’t have the patience to do that. :wink: To me, it’s like how people used to record songs from the radio onto cassette tapes. It’s there for the public. If I ever run across a CD that has such warnings (I haven’t yet, but now I’ll start reading the labels!) or can’t be copied, I won’t try to go around such preventative measures. :slight_smile:

This is not ok and it is stealing intellectual property. You shouldn’t check out a book and photocopy it without permission. You shouldn’t quote someone else’s work without citing them.

Stealing intellectual property is the same as stealing real property. You might as well go to Wal-mart and slip the CD in your pants without paying.

Make no mistake this is a sin.

This is a completely erroneous statement. Taking physical property that belongs to a company and was bought and paid for as store inventory is legally defined as “theft.”

Making a copy of something that has already been bought and paid for and has been legally loaned out is not “theft.” One may say that it is unethical to copy something in such a way but there is a gulf of difference in copying something from a library’s CD and shoplifting the same CD from Wal Mart.

Also, just because something can be said to be unethical doesn’t mean that it is also immoral.

In my opinion, there is nothing ethically or morally wrong with what the OP has proposed. When I was younger, people used to make cassette copies of albums that were owned by their friends and no-one back then was suggesting that it was “theft” to do such a thing. Also, when I was little I used to stick my tape recorder in front of the t.v. and record the theme songs to my favorite shows. No-one then ever suggested that what I was doing was “theft.” My opinion is that this doesn’t rise to the level of seriousness.

There is no legal term of “stealing.” In law, the term is “theft.” “Theft” is defined as taking something that belongs to another or preventing their use of it.

Please explain how making a copy of something that has already been bought is “theft,” and just what, exactly, is being taken to constitute a “theft.”

You are going on a long trip; are you paying for airplane tickets and gas, or are you just planning to take them? I have been playing live music and recording music for nearly 40 years now, so I have a dog in this fight (fortunately I’ve never had to depend on it for my livelihood, but some people do).

I think it’s safe to say that we all have things we really don’t want to buy or pay for, but can you honestly say it’s right for you to expect people to write, record, produce, manufacture and distribute recordings for nothing? There is a line between borrowing it from the library to listen to and making a personal copy.

I don’t think that anyone expects you or anyone else to “write, record, produce, manufacture and distribute records” at all.

If you, however, decide to “write, record, produce, manufacture and distribute records” that become hits that are played on the radio or whatever the preferred listening device of today happens to be, don’t be surprised if in a technologically sophisticated age that someone is able to listen to it without having to cough up some cash. You want it to be a hit. You want people to listen to it. But you also want to control how they do it.

Its the same as a comic at a club that charges an admission fee. If he tells a funny joke that people respond to, how does he control a person’s ability to re-tell the joke? Does he have a right to demand that no-one repeats what they have heard? Is there a moral obligation on the part of an audience member to be bound by such an unreasonable demand?

Umm…wow…you do not seem to get it.

Radio stations pay for music that they play.

Those who hear it on the radio should enjoy it, but if you record it and copy it then you are violating the copyright laws.

As for your comedy club example:

If you want to replay or re sing the songs you hear on the albums…have at it. No problem there.

If you want to record it, it would be like going into the comedy club, video taping the performance and then selling the performance to others.

Or at the very least, distributing it free to yourself and others so that no one buys the video that the comic made and thus you cheat him of money he is entitled to for his own work.

If you wrote a book, would you like it much if you sold a few copies to libraries and then everyone else…millions of people lets say, went to those libraries and photocopied the book to avoid paying you for it?

Would that be fair to you?
Would that be moral?

Why is it different for you to record music from a CD.

Sorry my friend it is theft of another’s intellectual property. It is defrauding an individual of compensation he is rightly entitled to. It is taking something and does nothing but feed your entitlement at the expense of another.

Buck up and buy some songs on iTunes…

You are taking the intellectual property of an individual. In copyright laws, the property is the product that was uniquely created by an individual. That individual is entitled to see to its use and to be compensated for it.

This is why your parish pays for a license to use certain songs in the liturgy or to print them in the hymnals of programs.

The library buys a license for the product to distribute it to people to enjoy much like a radio station.

You are taking that product without authorization and in violation of copyright laws when you copy it.

You read those warnings at the beginning of movies right? You know, the FBI warning that says it is unlawful to make copies of the program. Those warnings apply to movies rented from the library just as much as anything else.

Music is no different…they just do not have the warning read to you before the first track…but it is usually written somewhere on the jacket of the CD.

The only erroneous statements, are yours I am afraid. You may not like it, but violating copyright laws is in fact stealing.

Op, this article should more than answer your question…

Yes, you are stealing the music doing this.

I don’t believe this is quite fair. As Catholics we believe there are degrees of sin… Degrees of disorder. Some acts are more disordered than others. I agree that pirating music, whether from Library CDs or online, is wrong and sinful… But it is NOT as grave nor the moral equivalent of stealing a physical product from a store:

  1. The law distinguishes between these acts- shop lifting is a very different legal animal from copyright infringement
  2. In the case of shoplifting, you are depriving a business of physical property that they cannot replace. They invested capital into creating that physical object. That cannot be recovered. In the case of piracy, you simply make a copy for yourself- the copyright owner doesn’t lose a copy… It’s a more abstract loss: the loss of potential profits.
    Both scenarios are wrong but they are NOT moral equivalences. We are not fundamentalist protestants. We believe in gradation.

Our expectations don’t enter into it. The fact is, if someone has made a recording that you find meaningful or that you enjoy, you should compensate them for it. I think people have justified not paying for music to some degree by citing the bloated, corrupt beast of the music industry, but there are plenty of musicians, perhaps even the majority, who have nothing to do with that withering institution. One of my bands played a show a couple of years ago, and afterwards a woman came up and said how much she enjoyed it and asked if there was anyway to “get” our music. I indicated the CDs on the table right in front of us, which we were offering for $10 each. She hemmed and hawed a little and drifted off. She could have “gotten” our music from the table in front of her, but apparently that wasn’t what she meant.
I’m beginning to think that stealing recorded music is another symptom of the disease that is raging through our country: the sense of entitlement.

So if you took out a book and hand wrote a copy for your own house? Morally bad?

The loss wouldn’t be as abstract if it were coming out of your pocket.
If people want something, they should pay for it or make it themselves. Prior to the invention of recorded music, people did make their own. I support that 100%.

It was partially the wording of the OP that drew my attention. OP says they are taking a trip which obviously involves some expense but didn’t want to buy music, i.e. they (or a benefactor) are willing to pay for expenses because traveling requires them to do so. Music is, in this case, a luxury item. Perhaps it’s because I’m not a kid, but I just don’t see how one morally justifies doing what the OP is describing. There was considerable expense, artistic (depending, of course, on the recording itself) and material, involved in the making of the recording. The whole product was created for people to purchase if they enjoy the recording, thereby compensating the people involved in creating, producing and manufacturing it. Scripture says in Luke chapter 10 and 1 Timothy that the laborer deserves his wages.

Excellent question.

A curious statement considering that you have misconstrued everything I said.

  1. Artists do not get anything from radio airplay.

  2. Historically, copyright has always been about copying something and selling it for monetary gain. Whose business is it of anyone if my jambox has a tape recorder on it that allows me to record songs off of the airwaves that I listen to in the privacy of my own home?

I did not say anything about recording the performance. My example was telling a joke that someone else wrote. Should a person not be allowed to tell someone else’s joke?

People read books, newspapers, magazines, check out CDs and DVDs from libraries all the time, consume them without paying a cent for it and then return it to the library. Is that fair to the people who produced these products? Is it moral that they aren’t being paid on an individual basis?

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