We spoke to an internet downloader to get his opinions on the piracy issue. He's a Barcelona native and in his early 40s.
“I mainly download American television series and the odd film. In one week, I might download six episodes from several different series. In terms of music, I download quite a bit less; if I hear about something, I’ll listen to it first and if I like it, I’ll download it. The internet gives you access to everything, but that doesn’t mean that you keep everything you download. I try things out, but if I couldn’t download them, it doesn’t mean that I would buy them.
“People here don’t download the Spanish version of shows or films, or Spanish music because you can get it here. They’re interested in original version and foreign stuff. They want immediate access and that’s what the internet gives you. People who are informed go out and look for what they want straight away. It’s absurd to shut down Spanish websites [as proposed by the Sinde Law]. If they do, people will just go to American sites and look for things with Spanish subtitles.”
SERIES: “With the series, they get here about two or three years after they are first shown in the States—should we have to wait? For example, TV3 are showing now the first season of Fringe, but in the US, they’re already on the third series. If the tv companies want people to watch their series, they should get them sooner.”
FILMS: “In terms of cinema, it’s true that I used to go to the cinema more. But it’s also true that it’s not just the internet that’s causing more films to be downloaded, it’s also all the ‘home cinema’ equipment that people can buy nowadays. With films, it also takes longer for quality versions of films to get on to the internet than the television series. But there are films that are available on DVD in the States before they are even released in the cinemas here. If they want people not to download films here, they should do a single worldwide premiere of films.”
MUSIC: “Previously, we had to listen to the music that the record companies wanted us to listen to. Now, it’s what the people want. Thanks to sites like YouTube, groups can promote themselves. There are also more groups doing more concerts. If you don’t know a group, you can discover them on the internet and you might download their music. Maybe that’s stealing, but if you really like them, you’ll pay to go to their concert.”