So I am out-and-about this week, but something has been plaguing me…
Last week, I discussed some issues surrounding piracy as it relates to adult content, the interwebs, and what I like to call “YouTubePorn” sites. I mentioned and elaborated on some of the issues raised by Scott Fayner in his awesome article “Down the Tubes,” which appeared recently in MIT’s Technology Review.
In a nutshell, piracy and the consumption of YouTubePorn content amounts to stealing from adult production companies, while watching the amateur stuff simply amounts to you giving your money to whomever is running the site (rather than the talent you “enjoy”). Because the vast majority of the adult production industry is made up of small businesses, consuming pirated professional porn more closely resembles stealing from one’s middle class neighbor than it does pilfering a Porno Lars Ulrich.
I was pretty pleased with how the piece came out (S even commented that my aforementioned work was “a much better story on the actual costs… of piracy and file sharing than many of the major publications [have written] thus far.” – yes!!), but I was at a bit of a loss as to how to “illustrate” it. Because we all know that anything and everything nowadays has to include pictures. In the end, I populated the article with several more friendly tubes – tire tubes, a test tube, and even a Fallopian tube. Cleverest ever!
…and boy howdy did some of you call me out on that!! No, not in an anti-Fallopian tube kind of way – in a “pot calling the kettle black” kind of way. Here are some of the points that were raised and my responses.
1. Unless I own the rights to and/or have permissions to reprint photos (of, for example, various tubes), aren’t I also engaging in YouTubePorn site-like behavior?
Succinctly: no. But really, yes and no…
Yes, some of the images I have used on PVV are certainly “pirated.” All of the “stock shot”-type images and the pictures of Marky Mark (different post) were brought to me by the magic of Google. I did not get permission, nor did I pay, to use them. In this respect, I too am a YouTubePorn site.
I make absolutely no money doing this. Let me say that again: PVV is in no way monetized. I have no unseen sponsors, no advertisers, and I do no charge you all to read my work. I have a day job that pays my bills, yet I somehow manage to crank out these glorious articles in my infinite free time. I did not and I shall never make a dime off of that Fallopian tube picture. Thus, in this respect, I am nothing like a YouTubePorn site.
The majority of the images I use either belong to me (as in my camera took them) or were “given” to me by the person(s) contained therein and/or invested entities. In other words, Joanna Angel has given me pictures to use, as has Cal Vista (they own those Alice images), and on and on. In instances wherein permission is muddied (ie I used an image from another news source), I have been very diligent about linking back to that source… but I most certainly have also missed some.
So I am now fully ambivalent. In some instances, I’m totally technically an image pirate… but at the same time, I’m not.
2. Why do you get mad when you see your work has been “pirated”?
This has now happened two times – I have found one of my articles on a site with no attribution to myself as author. In both instances, the pirating sites were loaded with ads. This implies that someone is making money off of my content without my permission, which -again- is not what happens here at PVV.
This brings us back to the issue of money – Is pirating “more wrong” when money is being made off the booty (*snicker*)? Well, in my opinion, yes. At least, I think yes. I have yet to find any of my unattributed work on a “non-profit”-looking site. Although I can’t imagine myself being as pissed off about that scenario were it to occur, I really don’t know.
…which raises another issue that was presented to me.
3. Regardless of money or attribution, some people would not like the way their images were being used.
This threw me for a loop for a second – “not like the way their images were being used”?? Ohhh… because this is a “Porn Site.”
Back when I first started PVVOnline/Porn Valley Vantage over on blogspot, Google slapped a little “adult content” barrier over it… because just talking about porn in a critical, thoughtful, and (I would argue) pretty damn entertaining way is enough to offend! Seriously? So it seems.
And all I really had to say to that was… “Hello, Word Press!!” (this has just dawned on me – PVVOnline actually costs me money, which is the opposite of making it)
But I think the point was that maybe the person who owns the Fallopian tube picture wouldn’t like their work being featured on a “Porn Site.” OK, but guess what? – one of my articles has been reposted on an anti-abortion site, and another is up on some lawyer ad site. I like neither of those things, but that’s what I get for putting my work out there.
This confusing series of issues has really been preoccupying me. What to do? I don’t want to be a pirate (although I wouldn’t mind speaking like one for a while), but I also know that an article of solid text only is far less appealing than one sprinkled with cute pictures… What do you think?
…and for your further anti-piracy pornedification and viewing enjoyment, here’s an anti-piracy PSA sponsored by the Free Speech Coalition (FSC)!!
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Questions? Comments? Email me!!
You may quote anything herein with the following attribution: “Reprinted from Porn Valley Vantage/PVVOnline, copyright © Chauntelle Anne Tibbals, PhD (www.PVVOnline.com).”