Freeloading: how our insatiable appetite for free content starves creativity

Chris Ruen

Freeloading: how our insatiable appetite for free content starves creativity
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Freeloading: how our insatiable appetite for free content starves creativity

Chris Ruen

INTERNET PIRACY: a battle that pits indies against corporations, free spirits against the money-grubbing Scrooge McDucks of the world. Right?

Sort of. Sometimes. Maybe not.

Internet piracy goes by many names ? copyright infringement, file sharing, peer-to-peer lending ? but in this lively narrative nonfiction account, author Chris Ruen argues that the practice of using unlicensed digital content should be called what it is: freeloading.

In this comprehensive investigation, Ruen examines the near pervasive problem of internet piracy, and the moral and monetary dilemmas to which it gives rise. The phenomenon, which today affects almost everyone who taps a keyboard, is creating unlikely alliances ? between artists and corporations, and between consumers and technology geeks in the hacker tradition ? and it is changing how society views and values artistic production.

Ruen, himself a former freeloader, came to understand how illegal downloads can threaten the artistic community after he spent time with successful Brooklyn bands who had yet to make a real profit from their music. Through original research and extensive interviews with musicians and artists, Freeloading dissects this battle. This provocative account is also a reminder of the truism that for every action there are consequences ? a call to embrace practical, sensible solutions that protect artists and consumers alike.

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