Das deplatzierte Moral-Argument in der Filesharing-Debatte

Das Argument, unautorisiertes Filesharing sei unmoralisch, fand ich immer ein wenig eigenartig. Das Problem damit ist, dass es um eine wirtschaftliche Thematik geht. Wer die Diskussion von der wirtschaftlichen Seite zur moralischen ziehen will, versucht damit auch, Tatsachen zu schaffen, die in der Regel entweder nicht stimmen oder zumindest diskutabel sind.

Kyle Bylin hat auf Music Think Tank einen lesenswerten Essay zum Thema Moral und Filesharing veröffentlicht, der die Debatte in den USA gut zusammenfasst. Ein paar Auszüge:

“You’re talking about a non-violent activity largely in the privacy of your own home, or bedroom or dorm room, in search of great music that turns you on—that is inherently a joyful, if potentially addictive, activity,” music critic Greg Kot told me in an interview. “It’s also completely organic: The Internet, above all, is a tool for sending and receiving files. That music files would be part of that culture is only natural.” In the Copyright Wars, legal scholar William Patry has argued that the only reason the subject of morality comes up, in terms of the file sharing debates is that people use it “as as a way to cover up the inability to justify expansion of rights on economic grounds.”

Mike Masnick über die Verteilungsfrage:

“Indeed,” Mike Masnick of TechDirt adds to the discourse. “Since copyright is intended as an economic right, the argument over copyright needs to focus on the economic issues…a properly calibrated system is one where there’s the greatest overall economic good and everyone has the greatest opportunity to benefit…” At that point, he rightfully asks, “[Where’s] the morality question at all?” There is not one. Those who claim morality in an economics discussion on copyright use it as a crutch because they cannot support their position.

“First,” [Mike Masnick] says, “is the idea that it means creators of content can’t make any money.” When, in fact, he argues, “nothing can be further from the truth.” Then, he argues that the second point revolves around the idea “that there’s a right to make money.”

Andrew Dubber vom Blog New Music Strategies hat die Antwort auf das oft durchscheinende Argument, man habe ein Anrecht auf Bezahlung, vor einiger Zeit gegeben:

Making music is not (usually) a job of work. It is a creative act. You don’t have the RIGHT to make money from your music. You only have the opportunity.

If you make music speculatively – that is, you create it in the hopes of making money from it, then you are a music entrepreneur. As such, entrepreneurship rules apply.

You may invest a good deal of energy, effort and expense in your creative ideas. You may make a lot of money. You will probably make none. But nobody OWES you money just because you put the work in.

Und Dubber über die Situationen von Musikern vor dem Internet und heute:

The odds are stacked against you. History is littered with musicians who are disillusioned, embittered and broke. This was true before the internet just as it’s true now. The internet is neither your saviour, nor your enemy.

Let me make that bit clear: prior to the internet, most people spent NO money on music. If they bought a record in a year, it was a gift for a nephew (and it was usually rubbish). Some people spent a lot of money on music, because it was tied up with cultural things like identity that they were really invested in.

Back when you needed a record label to just be heard, it was a lottery. [..]

But the simple fact is that you don’t become a successful entrepreneur by making things that people will not pay for, insisting that they should, and then complaining that their morals are to blame. They may not share your morals, but that’s not even the point.

It’s not their job to understand your needs. It’s your job to understand theirs.

Das folgende Argument von Dubber trifft es besonders gut:

Even if it was true that all the people you wish to target with your art are immoral thieves who you would never invite into your home – why would you insist on trying to change their behaviour as part of your business strategy?

Bylins Fazit:

You tell the right crowd that file sharing is a moral argument and they are going to think you are an idiot. Not only that, but responses to file sharing like this, they do not seek any imaginative nor creative insights. They do not help people understand the issues better. All they do is make other artists and employees in the cultural industries feel better—about themselves. Instead, of taking what could be a great opportunity to clarify the issues that surround this social behavior and helping the general public comprehend reality.

(Hervorhebungen in den Zitaten von mir)

Kyle Bylins Essay On File-Sharing: Are You Smarter Than A 12th Grader? auf Music Think Tank ist ein guter Einstieg in die Debatte in den USA, die jener in Deutschland, wie so oft, weit voraus ist.

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About Marcel Weiß

Marcel Weiß, Jahrgang 1979, ist Gründer und Betreiber von neunetz.com.
Er ist Diplom-Kaufmann, lebt in Berlin und ist seit 2007 als Analyst der Internetwirtschaft aktiv. Er arbeitet als (Senior) Strategy Analyst bei Exciting Commerce, schreibt für verschiedene Publikationen, unterrichtet als Gastdozent an der Popakademie Mannheim und hält Vorträge zu Themen der digitalen Wirtschaft. Mehr zum Autor.
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