I have heard lots of arguments that defend piracy. Some people are convinced that there’s nothing wrong in software piracy. While I don’t agree with claims that suggest that one pirated copy would equal one sale lost, I think it’s developer’s right to decide how his work is used.
Anyway, here are some arguments I’ve heard to support piracy.
The “don’t make crap games” statement
Some people argue that “because developers make such a crappy games there’s piracy”. I agree that developers should focus on improving their games and improve the player’s experience about the game, but I still disagree that this should be the reason for copying games illegally. Developers – especially indies – need all the money they can to make better games, and if software piracy harms their sales they might be out of business before they get chance to finish those better games. It’s a tough business, even when it might not look like it for all players.
The “I just wanted to test the game to see how it looks like” claim
Many games developed today offer demo and trial versions where you can test the game for 30 days or 60 minutes or so. Since casual games are typically found from different portals, one could download the same game from different portals and play it for hours to see what the game looks and feels like.
Many games come with a money back guarantee. Some people say they were disappointed after buying the game and that’s the reason why they use pirate copies. I recommend checking the guarantee terms: some sites offer you to test their game for a month or even months, and if you don’t like the game – you get your money back. If there’s a money back guarantee, why not buy the game first, and ask your money back if you aren’t satisfied with the purchase.
The very common “I don’t have money to buy games” explanation…
…from people who owns a $1000 computer, spend $50 on clothes per month, drink beer using $50 per month, go to movies using $50 per month, talk in cellphones for $50 per month, spend $50 on gas per month… and has seven hundred other things where he spends his money. Yet – he says he cannot afford to buy computer games. Maybe one should take a look at where he spends money, and suddenly he might find money for buying games legally?
One claim is: “if the games would be half priced, I would buy them”. I must point out that many games are already half-priced. Casual games cost around $20. They are just as fun as some $50 games. If you check a local bargain bin, you can find couple of years old games for $10 or $20 – games that originally were $50 or so. There are half-priced games if you just look for them.
And if you really think you would buy a casual game for $10 but not for $20, then consider buying the game together with your friend. If one game for $20 is too much, then get a friend of yours (or 3-4 friends) and let everybody put $10 (or $5 or whatever) and buy the game together. Technically this is illegal, but if the another option is that you were going to get it for free (by ways of piracy), then I think this is much better option. I’ve done this to buy some games (not all, but some) when I was a kid: we gathered about 3 guys together and suddenly $50 game cost us only about $15-20 (the one who got the game package would pay more). I think for kids this is an okay option if you really cannot afford to buy (and also nice way to get games for those in countries with lower income). When I got older, I spent those full priced $20 or $50 for games and continue doing so.
Now you have no more reasons to continue using pirated copies, right?