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When people pirate content, including porn, it's free promotion, according to top Porn CEO Berth Milton.  (Source: HTML Gear)

Milton is revamping his company's sales offerings to retail more products pushed by pirated adult videos.  (Source: GigaOM)
Move stands in sharp contrast to statements of recent gaming and music chiefs

When it comes to piracy, Berth Milton -- CEO of the Private Media Group, one of the largest adult entertainment companies and the first one that’s publicly traded on NASDAQ -- isn't quite as anal as some of his colleagues in the gaming, music, and film industries.  He says that the entertainment business is looking at unauthorized downloads in entirely the wrong way.

In a market saturated with stiff competition, Milton says that there's nothing dirty or nasty about illegal downloads; they often lead to legal purchases when users experience and enjoy the product.  He states, "We will be extremely happy the more people are pirating our content and the more they look at it."

He said that media copyright watchdogs' attempts at stopping piracy are doomed.  He comments, "I think it’s a lost battle.  I look at my own kids, because that’s the best way to know where the market is going. It doesn’t matter if I tell them that it is illegal to download. As soon as they close the door to their room, they download.  They are not afraid of someone who’s tracking their IP-address. They just don’t care.  It’s a new world and we have to accept it."

Under Milton's leadership the company is looking to penetrate new markets geared towards turning piracy into profits.  His company is increasingly retailing luxurious vacations with an adult theme, sex toys, and other sex tools to help viewers relive in real life the escapades they see in their pirated videos.

Milton's approach stands contrary to that of the much of the entertainment industry that looks to whip the unruly internet user base into submission.  U.S. Vice President Joe Biden recently compared piracy to breaking into the fine jewelery story Tiffany's.  And the music copyright watchdogs are pushing hard to implement prison time for those who share music.  One film maker recently said that he hopes that even the 
children of pirates end up in jail.

Piracy isn't the only topic to get the industry all hot and bothered, though.  Recently copyright groups have fought to outlaw making backup copies for personal use and used products, which one game studio chief remarked was as bad as piracy.

Ultimately, Milton appears to be right, though.  The pirates perpetually seem to come out on top, releasing new tools and growing in numbers.  As one University of Utah law professor puts it, nearly everyone in the nation today engages in copyright infringement on a daily basis, if you consider the law's strictest interpretation.  

Milton's logic seems simple -- customers will pirate, but are still more than willing to blow a load of cash for appealing products.  And he may well be right; a recent study showed pirates are biggest legitimate purchasers of music, on average.

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Sharing is not Piracy
By EricMartello on 8/20/2010 4:31:43 AM , Rating: 2
There seems to be some confusion about what actually constitutes piracy. Piracy is profiting from the resale of goods which were stolen. Think about it. Pirates of the seas used to board merchant ships or any ship that looked like it had something of value, stole whatever they wanted, and either sold it or traded it to further finance their antics.

There are real pirates out there, but most of them are in Asia, selling bootlegged games, videos and other media for a few bucks a pop. THAT is piracy. Downloading a video is not piracy, it's sharing...and sharing is caring.

I think the entertainment industry has enjoyed, for far too long, a relative immunity to quality issues. You cannot "unsee" a movie and get your money back. If you buy a bluray and watch it, you can't return it if you didn't like it...and most movie theaters will not refund the $10-$20 you paid if you found the movie did not live up to its hype.

People DO buy box sets of TV shows they like, they buy discs for the movies they like...but they may still download it first. There is no problem with that. I've seen a lot of movies I never would otherwise have seen if it weren't for torrent sites and newsgroups dispersing this stuff.

For the most part I agree with this Porn guy. He speaks the truth. People sharing media is nothing new...the internet just changed the way we do it. The handful of REAL pirates who sell bootlegged media on ebay, in china or whatever represent a miniscule portion of all even though they're doing something illegal, their actions are hardly detrimental on the scale these companies would have you believe.

The recent changes to the DMCA were definitely a step in the right direction, and I don't think that the big corporate sentiment of jailing someone for sharing media is going to gain much traction. Not only is it unconstitutional, these companies have no hard evidence to support any of their claimed "losses".

"When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." -- Sony BMG attorney Jennifer Pariser

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