Original article in The Atlantic by STEVE BLANK - Steve Blank is a retired Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur-turned-educator and the author of The Four Steps to the Epiphany. He blogs at www.steveblank.com.
This is an excerpt of Blank's thought's on piracy - read the original article for the full argument:
"THE BIG LIE OF PIRACY
One of the claims that studios make is that they need legislation to stop piracy. The fact is piracy is rampant in all forms of commerce. Video games and software have been targets since their inception. Grocery and retail stores euphemistically call it shrinkage. Credit card companies call it fraud. But none use regulation as often as the movie studios to solve a business problem. And none are so willing to do collateral damage to other innovative industries (VCRs, DVRs, cloud storage and now the Internet itself.)
The studios don't even pretend that this legislation benefits consumers. It's all about protecting short-term profit.
When lawyers, MBAs and financial managers run your industry and your lobbyists are ex-Senators, understanding technology and innovation is not one of your core capabilities.
The SOPA bill (and DNS blocking) is what happens when someone with the title of anti-piracy or copyright lawyer has greater clout than your head of new technology. SOPA gives corporations unprecedented power to censor almost any site on the Internet. It's as if someone shoplifts in your store, SOPA allows the government to shut down your store.
History has shown that time and market forces provide equilibrium in balancing interests, whether the new technology is a video recorder, a personal computer, an MP3 player or now the Net. It's prudent for courts and congress to exercise caution before restructuring liability theories for the purpose of addressing specific market abuses, despite their apparent present magnitude.
What the music and movie industry should be doing in Washington is promoting legislation to adapt copyright law to new technology -- and then leading the transition to the new platforms...."