This is slightly off-topic of what I’ve been posting for the last few weeks but I believe that it is important to share this with you guys. Just the other day I was having a conversation with some online buddies about software piracy. Many of them are proud pirates (not that it’s something to be proud of) and they have never paid for software, not ever. Even their operating systems are pirated installs.

Now myself on the other hand have no problem with paying for software, I prefer to avoid all piracy and here’s why: (List compiled by Brittany Tarvin)

  1. The majority of software is made by small software shops, usually less than a dozen people. They specialize in creating software and do not have billions in other revenue streams to fall back on.
  2. Software is not easy to create – especially not software that people consider easy to use and attractive. It’s a whole heck of a lot of work, in fact.
  3. Good software takes somewhere between months and years to create. It’s not something you just whip up in a night like they show you in the movies.
  4. Software is created by hard working people… like you. Do you get paid for your work?
  5. People who make software have more to do once your purchase has been made. We are here for you when you run into issues by providing a support team to answer questions, walk through troubleshooting steps, fix bugs, etc.
  6. Software teams are constantly working on improving and updating the software to keep up with changing technologies. It’s a continuos process.
  7. Not all software developers seek outside investment to fund their projects. In fact, most of us do not. This is not suited for everyone and has many strings attached which often shape the end result.
  8. It costs money to put out a software product. We have to spend years creating it, paying people’s salaries, renting office space, purchasing computers, etc. If we want you to actually find out about our product, we often need to spend money to advertise it well.
  9. Software is an art and a science. It takes talented people skilled in computer science, engineering, and design and more to create a quality software product.
  10. Not all of us want to show you obnoxious advertising in order to make money, rather than just selling our actual work. Some of us hate obnoxious advertisements. Advertisements are not suitable for all software projects.
  11. You pay for your clothes, gadgets, your movie tickets, your lunch, your plane ticket, etc. So why not your software?
  12. Without software, your fancy laptop or iPad would be… well… pretty darn useless.
  13. We do our best to price software affordably. Just like a sandwich shop owner figures out how much to charge for a sandwich based on the price that adequately covers the cost of ingredients, running the store, and paying their employees. Most of us price our software as reasonably as possible.

I’m not a software developer but I am a web  and graphic designer which at the end of the day is pretty much the same concept. Creating a web site is like creating software for the web so I completely agree with Brittany’s statements. Some clients expect to pay mere pennies for complicated database driven websites and then even if you cut them a good deal they still complain that its not enough or that we should provide more when in actual fact they have no clue how much work and money is involved in such a project. It’s wrong and selfish to expect everything for free and its wrong and selfish to download illegally pirated software – I have no respect for those who do.

The same applies to the clothing industry and pretty much anything else that the creator spend countless time perfecting – just to have it illegally copied, replicated or distributed by some selfish prick who think that it should all be free just because he or she cannot afford to pay for it. If you cannot afford to pay for a certain software product why not settle for an open source (group effort) alternative instead of stealing it?

If you’re still one of those people who downloads pirated software from torrent sites I urge you to reconsider what you are doing and to think of how it impacts those hard working individuals who created the software. Think of how much money and how many hours went into creating the software. Think of the resources (offices, computers, senior staff, etc) used to create the software. Pirating the software would be no different than walking into any store, grabbing anything of high value off the shelf and walking out while expecting no one to do anything about it and not caring about what you just did. NOW PLEASE STOP BEING A FUCKING THIEF!

Many thanks to Brittany Tarvin for sharing “13 Reasons Why Software is Not Free” 🙂

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