Afdah movies, like Watch32 (http://www.watch32.la/), is a website that enables you to stream movies for free, without a registration process. The website has an excellent selection of movies, many of which are current and popular. Some of the advantages of using Afdah are that the website itself is relatively simple to operate, giving you the option to browse all movies, organized by popularity by default. However, the category sections enable browsing by year and genre, while a search box enables the user to hunt for a specific title or actor. Each page supplies a summary of the movie from IMDB, which is helpful for the user to understand the theme before watching the whole movie. While many streaming websites only display a link to a video, this improves the user's experience as they do not have to waste time trialing movies which will not appeal to them in the end. It also provides them a solution for understanding the plot without having to visit a third-party site. Equally, there are controls to select the quality of the video, to enable faster streaming by switching to a lower quality version, while still providing high quality streaming for those with the bandwidth and download speeds to access this service. Each movie streams reviews by previous watchers from an RSS feed directly from Facebook, which enables the user to decipher the quality of the content and the general view of the plot, while complemented by a rating system for an easy glance on the quality of the content of the movie.
However, the website enables pop-ups which can be extremely annoying, especially since many of them cannot be closed, leading to the necessity to close the browser in Task Manager. This is annoying, especially if you are half way through watching a movie. Equally, it opens your computer up to viruses and spyware if you do not have an effective security system in place on your hardware. Moreover, some of the movies are still low quality, making the shoddy to watch.
The purpose of Adfah movies is clear. It provides a service for people to watch movies without having to pay. Not only do users not have to pay for a DVD, there is no registration process and no means of sign up, which means no monthly fees, and less trace of personal details. This is seen a bonus as streaming movie content is illegal, as a form of piracy. The website also serves as a forum to demonstrate the plots behind the movies and the public opinion of each title.
However, piracy is very much illegal, and online streaming sites such as Wretch 32 and Afdah can lead to trouble for the individual users. Piracy is the act of breaking copyright laws, which are in place for several reasons. This includes ripping material from YouTube, sharing copies online or via CD or DVD, networks that enable file-sharing and sending messages including music through instant messaging services and email.
While it might make life easier and cheaper to download and stream movies for free, it can affect several sectors of the entertainment and technology industry. From gaming to movies, from music to software, users pirate intellectual material, affecting the economic balance, which is why piracy and copyright law exist.
While pirating material online may seem victimless, as it is conducted remotely and by a lowly individual, it is still stealing. Many people justify their actions but excusing their behavior with defenses such as whether one download can affect a multimillionaire actor, or how the loss of the cost of one movie can hardly topple an extremely wealthy and established production company. However, on the very base levels, without any consideration for the consequences that have been generated by mass piracy, the law has always stated not to steal.
Embedded in the moral fiber of society, stealing something that does not belong to you means to take something of somebody else's without their permission. This is exactly what piracy is. When you stream a movie or TV show or you download an album, you are stealing intellectual property, while also stealing time from others. Many people went into the making and distribution of that end product, so by not paying for it, you limit the profits of those individuals, essentially stealing money to which they are entitled for the work that they have accomplished.
Piracy is illegal to ensure that people get the credit they deserve for the work they have carried out. While pirating a huge movie like Wolf of Wall Street would make it difficult to steal credit for the work, smaller companies are far more affected by users ripping off their work and claiming it as their own or utilizing it in a different scenario, whereby they claim the credit. For example, someone may download a section from a song produced by another artist and use it on a YouTube video that leads to so many hits that the user gets paid, while the original piece of music goes unheard. Piracy prevents people from the utilization of work without permission, to ensure that the creator retains the credit for their intellectual property.
As mentioned above, pirating material is a form of stealing. This stealing, while it appears to be from a distance harming nobody, actually affects the financial gains of those involved in the process. While it might appear that box office profits are still quite high, there are many people involved in the chain, and the financial backlash often hits smaller companies harder. When a small production company might only produce a tiny part of the movie, when profits are reduced, their share is affected proportionately, usually eating into the amount considerably. Piracy is illegal to ensure that those who work on a project are paid fairly for that project.
While streaming directly removes profit from the hands of the producers and distributors, the overall issue of piracy leads to a slump in economic value. While movies on DVD used to be worth far more than they are today, it is very cheap to buy a movie online or sign up too many legitimate streaming systems. The reason it is so cheap is to encourage people to buy instead of pirate, by keeping it affordable, as well as reflecting the current value of those products. On account of a large amount of free downloading and streaming, these products drop in market value, which creates larger profit losses for the industry.
Equally, with content being distributed at such a rapid rate by being shared and mirrored by torrenting sites while appearing as streaming links on others, this limits exclusivity. Exclusivity helps to hold the value of a product. While in previous years a Harry Potter DVD have sold out, this is unlikely to happen now, decreasing the overall value of the product.
If you worked for the entertainment industry, yet every time you produced some work, you received little to no financial gain or personal credit, you would seek employment and fulfillment elsewhere. This is one of the reasons that piracy laws are in place. If there was no gain from producing entertainment, companies and individuals would cease production. By preventing the copying of material, it means that people have a legal contract which entitles them to the financial rewards of their work, which cannot be undermined.
With piracy at an all-time high, authorities which are aimed at catching culprits are finding that they have limited means to do so. This means focusing their efforts on large-scale pirate productions and high-profile cases. This means many Americans slip under the radar. According to a recent study by MusicWatch, 57 million Americans are downloading and streaming content illegally each year. This is 37% of the population, demonstrating a huge problem for an industry.
Financially, this can cause major profit losses. Technically, if everyone who streamed or download material for free were to buy that material, sales would be 37% higher. People would argue that piracy is damaging the movie industry and can be shown through the statistics, where for example, Wolf of Wall Street which was predicted to gross over $50 million, only grossed $17 million. This is tied to the fact that there were 30 million illegal downloads of Wolf of Wall Street in the year of 2014. The drop in profits also hit small companies very hard. The Wall Street Journal cited that some small and medium enterprises that specialized in production have found their profits to have halved over the last couple of years.
Moreover, in terms of intellectual value, downloading and streaming illegally skews the results of certain movies. For example, the same year that Wolf of Wall Street was released, Transformers was the highest grossing film of all year. While parents are likely to take their children to the cinema to see 'Transformers', viewers in their 20s and 30s are more likely to download 'Wolf of Wall Street' for free online. With this in mind and the fact that Transformers only got an 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes compared to 77% for 'Wolf of Wall Street', it can be seen that movie statistics become skewed when people do not purchase the material. With this in mind, producers, actors, and other stakeholders lose the intellectual value and the chance at awards, as well as losing financial equity.
It is important to note that while data demonstrates that piracy is extremely damaging to the movie industry, which has apparently suffered great losses in relation to this, it is also vital to recognize that despite this, the overall value of the movie industry is growing. It ios now worth the most it has ever been worth, with 2015 revenues reaching $11.6 billion, which was 9% more than the previous year. Equally, cinema ticket sales show an increase in 2015 of more than five percent, which while small, does not show that fewer people are utilizing the services of the entertainment industry. This calls into question the overall damage that piracy does.
It has been argued that the growth comes from the cultural buzz created by free streaming and downloading sites. While many watch the material for free, they further recommend it to their community via word of mouth or social media, which starts a snowball effect which creates a buzz. This may lead to more people purchasing the product and watching it in the cinema than would usually have occurred.
In summary, piracy is illegal as it is stealing. Whether you consider it the theft of financial profits or the value of intellectual material, by streaming or downloading movies online through websites like Wretch 32, you are taking material without the express permission of any of the stakeholder involved in the making, producing, and distributing.
The issue is that while piracy is illegal, it is now so widespread that it is difficult to enforce, especially upon low-level individuals. While watchdogs tend to target large pirate material production groups, this method is ineffective in preventing the spread of pirated material online and barely scratches the surface of individual users.
However, that while Hollywood and its affiliated 'big players' complain about the effect of piracy on their bank balances, in fact, it appears that the movie industry is still on the up and up. This shows that piracy tends to affect the smaller components of movie production and distribution who take a less sizeable cut of the profit; in some cases, reducing profits to half.
The whole topic calls into question the moral debate around piracy and how to handle it. Perhaps the move toward legitimate and affordable streaming systems is the way forward, however, the systems which enable piracy are so widespread that prevention has become almost impossible. One way that this has been targeted by Netflix is to produce original content which is harder to pirate, but even still, the most technical online producers are able to take this content. In conclusion, while piracy is both immoral and illegal, the question of enforceability opens the debate on the future of the entertainment business as a whole.