illegally downloading music

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LeannaZ
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illegally downloading music

Post by LeannaZ » Wed Sep 19, 2012 1:45 pm

I am hoping to get some advice or peace of mind from fellow Christians. I have, in the past, downloaded music from sites like You Tube or sites that share files. Most of the songs are hard to find, obsolete, or unavailable for purchase. I'm torn as to what I should do about it. I have tried deleting songs, but they just come back every time I reboot my computer. I feel guilt that I have downloaded songs without paying for them, but what should I do now? Vow to never do it again and ask forgiveness? On the other hand, I used to tape record songs off the radio in the 70's and 80's. I believe it was legal back then, but isn't it basically the same thing? Ugh, what is a Christian to do?

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jarrod
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Re: illegally downloading music

Post by jarrod » Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:12 pm

I used to do that _a lot_. I was younger, on the Internet, and all the music was available... However, I have come to the conclusion now that it is wrong for _me_. I think I can see the struggle in my conscience when I ask questions like this. If you weren't struggling with finding the line between wrong and right, it probably would be far from your mind.

I think that tug in your conscience may mean to just stop doing it. I can testify that I no longer download illegally and don't do without music. I use services like Pandora, Spotify, and even purchase 0.99$ songs from iTunes. It is available for legal use at a relatively reasonable rate (depending on your circumstances). I do, like you, enjoy all of the music! I love a nice ambience of praise music playing in the background (if it's not TNP radio ;).

Just my thoughts, Jrod

thrombomodulin
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Re: illegally downloading music

Post by thrombomodulin » Wed Sep 19, 2012 7:12 pm

The idea behind copyright is, of course, that of information can be considered property. There is someone by the name of Stephan Kinsella that makes some quite interesting arguments against the idea that information (e.g. a song) can legitimately be considered property. As I recall, he points out that if one assumes information is property that inevitably logical contradictions arise. Has anyone heard of his ideas before? I'd be interested whatever anyone else thinks of what he has to say on this topic. If he is right, then it is not unethical at all to copy information (e.g. a song) in and of itself. It could only be considered for us in our particular time and place in history because we happen to live in country where Caesar has decreed "thou shall not copy music and videos".

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jarrod
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Re: illegally downloading music

Post by jarrod » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:47 pm

That is something interesting to think about. I would like to hear other's thoughts on the logical contradiction theory.

I also think about trying to find the line of what is "right or wrong" burdensome and worrisome. Why battle in the conscience for the line between what is legal and what isn't when it comes to music. There are so many great options out there -- some free also! Plus, I think it puts more of our heavy yolk on Him. That's just me.

Jarrod
thrombomodulin wrote:The idea behind copyright is, of course, that of information can be considered property. There is someone by the name of Stephan Kinsella that makes some quite interesting arguments against the idea that information (e.g. a song) can legitimately be considered property. As I recall, he points out that if one assumes information is property that inevitably logical contradictions arise. Has anyone heard of his ideas before? I'd be interested whatever anyone else thinks of what he has to say on this topic. If he is right, then it is not unethical at all to copy information (e.g. a song) in and of itself. It could only be considered for us in our particular time and place in history because we happen to live in country where Caesar has decreed "thou shall not copy music and videos".

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RICHinCHRIST
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Re: illegally downloading music

Post by RICHinCHRIST » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:12 pm

Being a Christian musician myself, I'm personally against the idea of selling Christian music. I don't think copyrights should exist at all on music that is supposed to glorify God and His kingdom. Musicians have freely received their gifts from God, and they should give out their music freely, in my opinion. If there were no copyrights, and we weren't selling the worship of God, then we wouldn't have this problem. Keith Green followed this principle and was immensely blessed by free-will offerings (much like Steve Gregg's ministry).

The Contemporary Christian music industry has become corrupted by the world's value system. Did you know that churches are required to sign leases to licensing companies and report to them which songs they sing in a given year? The royalties are then paid to the musicians based upon how many times their songs are sung throughout America! It's mind-blowing to me. The Father's House of Worship has become a marketplace.

However, if we're purchasing music which is spiritually neutral (that is, not written or performed in Jesus' name), I think we shouldn't copy their music because the intellectual property law is the law of the land. But in the kingdom of God, I don't see anything wrong with burning a Christian CD just like I don't see anything wrong borrowing a book from a Christian and reading it without paying the publisher for it. The Body of Christ should bless its members freely. Everyone must follow their own conscience though.

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jarrod
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Re: illegally downloading music

Post by jarrod » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:13 am

Rich, I'm glad you feel that way. I have some of the songs from the GCS school that were included in the recordings ;)

I really agree with this. I think that mindset is of the Kingdom. We have freely been given, so we should definitely give. The Lord blesses us in so many ways, so why hold back -- especially from the body/church whom we are to be edifying. I have always appreciated The Narrow Path ministries for freely giving, and people like yourself that freely give their 'artistry,' who really exemplify kingdom living. It encourages me to do the same.

I agree that we are typically, not kingdom driven, but money, economy driven, or after whatever our worldly pursuit. The outcome is definitely different depending on your primary pursuits. Being money driven (the love of which is the root of all evil) can lead to so many anxieties and worries. The contrast with kingdom living is being focused on God and He will add those things to us when He has a purpose for us. Be content in all things. Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness. He will add all of the material things as a good Father and King and we don't have to _worry_.

Just my thoughts, Jarrod
RICHinCHRIST wrote:The Contemporary Christian music industry has become corrupted by the world's value system. Did you know that churches are required to sign leases to licensing companies and report to them which songs they sing in a given year? The royalties are then paid to the musicians based upon how many times their songs are sung throughout America! It's mind-blowing to me. The Father's House of Worship has become a marketplace.

LeannaZ
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Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 7:26 pm

Re: illegally downloading music

Post by LeannaZ » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:32 am

I appreciate all of your thoughts. I definately will not be downloading anything anymore unless it is clearly to be had by all. I gladly pay for my music, but I guess I just didn't give it a second thought in the past.

I guess the thing that really gets my goat is that much of the music I have on my ipod is repeat purchases. I first bought the cassette in the 80's, and when cassette players went out of style in the 90's, I bought the CD. Are we seriously expected to pay for the same music a second or third time? Sounds unfair, but I guess that's just the world we live in.


Anyway, thanks for all the replies:)

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