Ars technica has a pretty good rebuttal to the recent piece in the London Times that offered the (seeming) common line of crap that you hear when old industries talk about peer to peer networks. You know what the line is in its general format: “Without the guarantee of making money through our tried, tired and tested revenue streams, authors will stop writing, culture with wither away AND IT’S ALL YOUR FAULT!” (There is often a “Think of the children!” added in there for good measure.)
Now, why isn’t it likely that authors are going to flee writing like bookworms from a server farm?
(1) It’s a pain in the ass to scan a book, cover to cover. Don’t believe me? Scan a decent book and then post it for all of us at The Student Bay. I bet you give up before you get halfway through your task. And I bet that you can’t scan in Communicative Action (ISBN-10 0807015075) in a searchable PDF format! (Let’s see if this whole reverse psychology stuff really works…)