All of this talk about deciding what is right or wrong… but what is the penalty? For a majority of us, since childhood, deciding what is right or wrong has been based on weighing punishment. Is hitting your sibling during a fight worth the beating you’ll get later? Or is stealing candy worth having to work for the clerk to pay back the cash? These pathetic examples then increase in magnitude to is fighting or stealing worth potential jail time or a lawsuit? Such a thought process based on personal consequences can frame our actions.
So how does society respond if the act in itself is difficult to establish as right or wrong making any punishment even more challenging to define? As mentioned earlier by Yi-An, not only is the system of assigning fair use and intellectual property ambiguous, so is the punishment to not following such a system. Personally, I think this is the main reason “illegal” actions involving a computer are so abundant. For example, if you burn a cd for a friend, who in the music cooperation is even going to find out the action took place much less assign a punishment?
Are any of you all aware of individuals that have been caught and punished for illegal downloads or file sharing? Even if you do know someone, has that made you stop your own illegal actions on the computer? I’m probably just clueless of what punishments are out there for such actions, but it sure does seem as if industries are making a lot of noise about laws being broken in the technological age and at the same time are not doing much to stop it.