Dutch Authors Association “Fights” Piracy By Making False Analogies to Theft (video)

Remember that silly anti-piracy video from the UK (or perhaps the parody video made by The IT Crowd)?

Dutch authors are getting into the act. De Telegraaf reports that that the Dutch author group Auteursbond has released a video where well-known Dutch authors go around stealing people's property.

Writers Arthur Japin, Alma Mathijsen, Jessica Durlacher, Francine Oomen and Ernest van der Kwast casually steal from passers-by - grabbing an ice cream, newspaper, wine, sandwich, and even a dog.

The funny thing about this video is that it isn't making an analogy to piracy, which was legal in the Netherlands until 2014.

Piracy does not deprive anyone of their property; this is why it is akin to copying, not theft. If you really wanted to make a video about pirating physical objects, you'd need to duplicate the object, not steal it.

The problem with that video, however, is that it would show how piracy has little impact on users. Few people in the video would object to the copying; in fact, many would probably be thrilled and ask you to make extra copies of, for example, their meal or the bottle of wine.

According to a poll conducted by TROS Radar in 2016, around a third of Dutch readers (38%) read ebooks regularly, and nearly half that group (48%) had acquired ebooks by copying an ebook possessed by an acquaintance.

It is difficult to say whether this has had an impact on ebook sales, however.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

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