TAKE FIVE is a place of ambivalence, setting the conflicting aims of raising hard-hitting issues in hopes of inciting heated debates, and at the same time providing an opportunity to chill out at the end of a grueling day playing one of our hilarious games. A bittersweet combination served along with sizzling grilled chicken and steaming tea, just to make the substantial topics easier to swallow.
In the past month our discussions have revolved around crimes, but not ordinary ones – acts that are unlawful from the perspective of jurisdiction, but far not so clear-cut when it comes to common sense.
Juvenile Crime – April 10th
Imagine the unfortunate case of a 10-year-old who finds a loaded pistol at home, and, having watched a few action movies instead of bedtime reading, he sets off to school armed just to show off. Things, however, go off the rail when he encounters his most hated teacher of all down the corridor, and, for some reason, he decides to put an end to the matter by simply pulling the trigger.
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Among the flood of questions there are a few to highlight. What happens to the child? He has commited a premeditated crime, but was he fully aware of the consequences? Should he be admitted to a correctional institution or put behind bars? Is a reformatory enough to “fix” his mind? How can we be sure he would not pull the triger again once released?
We concluded that under no circumstances should children be imprisoned. The only feasible way is higher quality correctional facilities, and what’s even more important, children’s seamless reintegration into society should be ensured in the first place.
Copyright Matters – April 24th
“You wouldn’t steal a car. You wouldn’t steal a handbag…” You may remember the short anti-piracy ad before movies on DVDs. Those forty seconds convey the explicit message that stealing a car is no different at all from downloading a movie from the net. This is a logical nonsense in itself. When a car gets stolen, it is no longer there. When a movie is downloaded, however, the source file remains intact – we make a copy.
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That’s where the problem of copyrights begin, as it is rather difficult to decide whether an author actually suffers a financial loss in case his work goes viral on the net without its users paying for it. Think of aspiring musicians who use Internet as a diving board into success! Besides discussing personal aspects in groups of two, and clarifying the current related laws in Hungary, we focused more on the above-mentioned approach.
I myself made attempts to challenge every point that supports piracy, but to no avail. It appears that all of the relevant industries somehow benefit from illegal downloads. Many people download a game only to try it out before finally purchasing it. Similarly, if someone falls in love with a song or performer, chances are that he will end up at a concert. Cinemas don’t seem to have run out of viewers either.
“Don’t make people pay for music, says Amanda Palmer: Let them.”
When we were arranging for the Copyright Matters discussion, Nóra posted a TED Talk which I promised her to watch. I must admit that this presentation has been one of my most cathartic TED experiences. Once you watch it, you will understand why. (English and Hungarian subtitles are available.)
Special thanks go to Zoli for helping us as a professional to put together the questions and provide background information for the copyright topic.