Piracy Destroyed Linux; Android bought it back!
How many times we have heard that piracy was bad for tech companies. Music Industry treats song pirates no less than the thieves or pickpockets. The companies have us believe that if not for piracy they would have earned billions or trillions of dollars that are being lost by them.
The governments are of course in full support of such lobbyist and we often hear new laws and bills passing around in various countries that try to curb the pirates and piracy.
What is my opinion on the matter? I believe that half of this is hogwash.
I do not mean to say that piracy is good or non-existent. Piracy is very much rampant and is in my opinion mostly has a negative impact.
It deters the creator of the content to create something again and in a society already crippled by loss of quality due to consumerism, nothing could be more devastating.
Honestly though, if there was a utopian world where the piracy would not exist these companies that are crying right now might have been crying even more.
Here is the biggest example….that of Windows…
In the era of PCs (desktops specifically) the cost of the operating system would have been prohibitive in a country like ours and hence more people would have used Linux. Windows would have been practically extinct because many people of that era would have been adept at using Linux instead getting used to Windows.
Now, this phenomenon would not have shown itself in the developed countries but in a country like ours this would have been a soul of the tech revolution.
Look at the success of Android. Quick upgrades, free OS and customizability are considered the reasons for the success of Android. These are not new add-ons but something that inherently comes with Linux. And for those who do not know – Android is Linux!!!
This revolution would have happened a long time back if not for piracy of Windows on every computer.
Similarly, many bands give away their songs for free (mostly for fame or recognition). Now, some of them are really good but will fade away as the people are busy pirating off Justine Bieber or Metallica.
With the coming of mobile OS at least developers who create apps can earn money by ads and with streaming services getting popular even the indie musicians might get their due recognition.
Also, in our country, the piracy for Mobile OS is far less than what is for desktop OS. Some (paid) mobile apps are pirated but with many having good alternatives this need is largely reduced (perhaps for some games).
Besides, the price of the apps is far less than the price of the softwares that were sold for desktops. Hence people do not mind paying the odd Rs. 50 to get a good app.
I sometimes think though; what if the wishes of these music and software companies would have come true.
Boy, they might have actually regretted it.