Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software?

For computer based music makers. Discussions about plug-ins and stand alone computer synth gear.

How do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software?

Poll ended at Thu Mar 20, 2014 5:56 am

It hurts the software developers and deprives them of hard earned cash. so, NO. I purchase it legitimately.
17
61%
FREE SOFTWARE!?!?! I'm IN!
1
4%
I don't like pirating things, but I do because I simply don't realistically have the money to purchase software.
1
4%
I do like pirating software, as it is wayyy overpriced and putting a price on self-expression is morally wrong.
0
No votes
I don't use software period, I'M OLD SKOOL!
1
4%
I use freeware.
0
No votes
I do like pirating software because it gives me a chance to fully evaluate it before deciding whether or not to purchase it
8
29%
 
Total votes : 28

Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Solderman » Thu May 01, 2014 6:17 pm

skunk3 wrote:1. ...There is no profit lost at all aside from a potential sale, but if the person downloading it had no intention ever of buying it to begin with, there's no loss at all...
...I understand that for developers and others expecting to make money from these products, it would be TOTALLY different and quite possibly infuriating, but they should recognize the fact that they peddle in wares (warez, lol) that are EXTREMELY easy to obtain.


These two statements conflict. Unless the software is downloaded and later deleted without installation, distribution or use, there IS profit lost, and you confirmed as such by mentioning the developers. Software sales is not of the data but the license to use it, and that license is how the developer makes a profit. You purchase the privilege to use it without penalty. How that is enforced is what you're counting on being neglected.

skunk3 wrote:2. Stealing, to me, implies that one person is taking something directly from another in a sneaky, underhanded manner. When one downloads pirated software, they aren't hacking servers to get to it or walking out of a store with a box under their coat. They're merely clicking to download something that is freely shared by someone else.


Again, considering you're buying a license for use, you are taking something in an underhanded, sneaky manner if you use it, even once, outside the constraints of the user license agreement. Same goes for the person sharing the data, if the ULA specifies how the data is to be distributed.


I'm as guilty as most for using commercial software without license, and I can rationalize all I want why, but you can't justify semantics of theft simply by saying software cannot be treated the same as tangible merchandise. Being a software developer myself, I'm of the opinion that any software that works without failure and does exactly what you want deserves whatever they are asking for it, at least until something else comes along that can do exactly the same or better for lower cost. If the developer/vendor has moved on to a newer product, or if a number of clearly superior competing products have since been released and are in greater demand, and the developer/vendor still wants the same amount of money to use the older one, I tend to question their motives, but otherwise the ethics seem clear to me.

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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby skunk3 » Thu May 01, 2014 10:37 pm

Solderman wrote:
skunk3 wrote:1. ...There is no profit lost at all aside from a potential sale, but if the person downloading it had no intention ever of buying it to begin with, there's no loss at all...
...I understand that for developers and others expecting to make money from these products, it would be TOTALLY different and quite possibly infuriating, but they should recognize the fact that they peddle in wares (warez, lol) that are EXTREMELY easy to obtain.


These two statements conflict. Unless the software is downloaded and later deleted without installation, distribution or use, there IS profit lost, and you confirmed as such by mentioning the developers. Software sales is not of the data but the license to use it, and that license is how the developer makes a profit. You purchase the privilege to use it without penalty. How that is enforced is what you're counting on being neglected.

skunk3 wrote:2. Stealing, to me, implies that one person is taking something directly from another in a sneaky, underhanded manner. When one downloads pirated software, they aren't hacking servers to get to it or walking out of a store with a box under their coat. They're merely clicking to download something that is freely shared by someone else.


Again, considering you're buying a license for use, you are taking something in an underhanded, sneaky manner if you use it, even once, outside the constraints of the user license agreement. Same goes for the person sharing the data, if the ULA specifies how the data is to be distributed.


I'm as guilty as most for using commercial software without license, and I can rationalize all I want why, but you can't justify semantics of theft simply by saying software cannot be treated the same as tangible merchandise. Being a software developer myself, I'm of the opinion that any software that works without failure and does exactly what you want deserves whatever they are asking for it, at least until something else comes along that can do exactly the same or better for lower cost. If the developer/vendor has moved on to a newer product, or if a number of clearly superior competing products have since been released and are in greater demand, and the developer/vendor still wants the same amount of money to use the older one, I tend to question their motives, but otherwise the ethics seem clear to me.


There is no profit lost if the person obtaining and using the software never intended to purchase it to begin with, either because they didn't have the money to, or had only the barest of interest in it. Devs would be pissed upon hearing about anyone using bootlegs of their software, which is natural. However, I believe (perhaps wrongly) that most of the people who obtain certain bits of software download loads of stuff that they'd *never* purchase if not given the option to obtain bootlegs. This is why I said that there is no profit lost aside from potential sales. If it were not possible to obtain pirated software, sales ostensibly would be up a bit, but not nearly to the point that actually reflects the true user base. Whether or not the value of software lies in the data itself or the license to use it is pragmatically irrelevant here.

Terms of use are a joke, let's be honest. Who actually reads that crap? Maybe when signing up for a credit card or taking out a loan, but certainly not when it comes to installing and using a bit of software. What is or is not "underhanded" or "sneaky" can be debated to death, but rather than focusing on semantics and equivocation, let's just focus on the spirit of the matter. I guess that what I was getting at before is that a more traditional definition of theft implies some sort of daring -- a real sense of risk and a clear sense of potential consequences. That is almost entirely absent when it comes to pirating. Software can NOT be treated the same as tangible merchandise because it is not the same. I understand that from a certain (and IMO - outdated) perspective, it can be argued that it is in fact the same, but I wholeheartedly disagree, especially given the fact that any bit of software can be replicated virtually to infinity. Devs are more than welcome to ask whatever they want for something, and people are more than welcome to pay the asking price, but like I've said numerous times already -- expecting someone to pay for something when they can probably get it for free with virtually no risk whatsoever is just plain silly. Idealistic, even... The moral exemplars and bleeding hearts amongst us will do the 'right thing' and pay, but those of us with looser morals would pirate. This whole situation is like breweries expecting people to pay for beer when anyone could magically summon an identical keg of beer any time they want; a keg that does not come out of the brewer's reserves.
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Solderman » Fri May 02, 2014 12:01 am

skunk3 wrote:There is no profit lost if the person obtaining and using the software never intended to purchase it to begin with, either because they didn't have the money to, or had only the barest of interest in it.

skunk3 wrote:...most of the people who obtain certain bits of software download loads of stuff that they'd *never* purchase if not given the option to obtain bootlegs. This is why I said that there is no profit lost aside from potential sales.

It costs too much so fuck 'em, right? You deserve the best too and they must already be rich from all those professionals(suckers) shelling out for the mere prestige. Could all be true, but how do you know? What about the little guy who actually has real skills to independently make a quality product, can distribute privately and get paid with Paypal, and therefore doesn't need to charge much? These people are appearing with some frequency now and putting out good stuff, but if he starts getting ripped off right and left and has to drop out of the market, how can you ever expect there to consistently be affordable, quality software available?
If you use a non-demo version within a capacity beyond trying it out without ever paying, the developer lost profit, period. What consequences result from that for them vary.
That's why try before you buy demos are more prevalent now than, say the Radium days when you couldn't wait to log on with your DSL modem to the audio app channels of mIRC while everything was distributed legally solely as retail boxed. Now you just end up stealing it so you can get the uncrippled version out of convenience, or bypass the less professional products and only snag the top-of-the-line ones when the other would do fine, and you end up looking like a selfish, greedy asshole.

What can a freeloader demand from the author if the release is broken or incomplete? Not a goddamn thing. He gets to wait for Air or R2R to go back and rebuild from the developer's updates and hope it fixes his buggy software and doesn't also have a trojan attached. Meanwhile the paying customer downloaded his fix a month ago and finished his projects.

Now when the developer releases version 2 with the same rehashed engine with a few tweaks they should have offered for free, and some new search features and prettier graphics, and top it off with presets or expansion libraries that don't work in the previous version but don't really add anything new or interesting, and they want to charge some exorbitant upgrade fee for it so they can continue riding the money train, then yeah, by all means tell them to fuck off.

skunk3 wrote:If it were not possible to obtain pirated software, sales ostensibly would be up a bit, but not nearly to the point that actually reflects the true user base.

Doesn't take a MBA degree to figure that one out. Traditional supply and demand rules are not relevant here, but user base of paying customers reflects quality of existing and future products in most cases, early-adopters notwithstanding. Anyway, if the majority of the user base did not pay, how again is this not affecting profits?

skunk3 wrote:Whether or not the value of software lies in the data itself or the license to use it is pragmatically irrelevant here.

Says you, not the guy who has to live off weeks of work you just decided to take and use without compensating his efforts. You gotta draw the line somewhere if you're selling something that only takes up hard-drive space. Do you know how fucking hard it is to even get software to just work like you expect it to?
I'd say getting paid for his work is fairly pragmatic, wouldn't you? All the freeware developers are, if not generous, at the least are the idealists. I like to think it's their "training day" for the big future projects....that you aren't gonna pay for either. Either that or they are hobbyists typically releasing slow, buggy software, or if they have a brain bigger than Marvin the paranoid android, give us their gift to the world and move on to cure cancer or perfect solar energy or some shit.

I agree the idiom "everything is worth what the buyer will pay" also isn't strictly relevant here. But in this case, it seems to be either pay what they ask or don't pay at all. If you show them it's quality by paying, while stealing it when it's not, you are still changing the game, albeit collecting alot of junk software at the same time. If you only steal the good stuff, and it's clear their prices are not marked up just for world-class professionals, then you're not helping at all, and progress is far slower, if not stagnant, in the PC and Mac music-making world.

skunk3 wrote:Terms of use are a joke, let's be honest. Who actually reads that crap?

Read the part that says, "if you use this then pay for it". Skip the lawyer yada yada.

skunk3 wrote:let's just focus on the spirit of the matter

Not what I meant by intangibility, but nice try.

skunk3 wrote:expecting someone to pay for something when they can probably get it for free with virtually no risk whatsoever is just plain silly

No risk to you, sure. Certainly tempting and doesn't necessarily indicate a lack of moral restraint.
You just don't have to give a shit.
All I'm sayin' is if you want quality product to continue to be offered, someone's gotta pay so the developers will continue to make those products, and in some cases, add new features to them free of charge.
If not, new and interesting and better software will never be as prevalent. They'll ultimately go make product less easy to steal(read not PC or Mac) and you'll end up with lots more mediocre, easy to develop recycled crap, and only the leecher's attitude to blame for the extinction of the affordable DAW.

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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby ninja6485 » Fri May 02, 2014 5:55 am

+1 to CSTBL's post. And I don't know... Native Instruments are one of the most successful software companies to date, yet also the most pirated. In light of this I ask: did they get where they are in spite of being so widely pirated, or did it play a role? I think it played a role, and I think they've made some very wise moves to capitalize on their elicit underground popularity.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby CS_TBL » Fri May 02, 2014 9:37 am

Well, that's a point; you can create a large user base by providing free software (or kinda 'allowing' warez), upon which you can sell the next product later on. It's another example of today's economy. Those who fight warez often argue with the point of view from yesterday's economy.
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby meatballfulton » Fri May 02, 2014 12:41 pm

Theft is always easy to justify when there is no possibility of any consequences even if you get caught.

skunk3 is right about the idea of lost profits. Some profits are lost but there is no way that every pirated copy would turn into a purchased copy. The number of real sales would be only a small fraction.

This is a psychological issue: once a consumer thinks that something should be free, it loses all value. As skunk3 noted, he pirated lots of software but eventually got rid of all of it anyway. Who throws away something they paid $$$$$$ for? Noone I know.

So if it has no value at all even $1 is too much. This is what has content providers running scared. If after the boomers are pushing up daisies all the millenials refuse to pay for movies, software, music, etc. it'll be an interesting world indeed.

I grew up in an era where I had to pay for stuff...even if I borrowed my friend's LPs to tape them I needed to pay for tape and spent 45 minutes taping. So it was never free in terms of money or time. Today it is.

skunk3 wrote:I've never made a lot of money and what money that I did have was going to go towards tangible things, like hardware or basic household items, living expenses, etc.


Right, you can't pirate a computer or an internet connection so you must pay for that. Then you use them to pirate software, music, movies, etc. There is a strong incentive for computer mfrs and internet providers to make sure there is lots of free content out there...it makes them money and lots of it.

Anyway, there are so many alternatives to cracks. Need a free DAW? I can point you to a bunch of them (including Reaper....you can run the "demo" forever). Want the full blown pro DAWs? Buy or crack, you choose.

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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Infrasound » Mon May 05, 2014 2:24 am

What a lot of people fail to understand is that by not paying for software, music, movies, books, and anything else that can be digitised, they are in fact contributing to a world with far less availability of quality products. Your Justin Bieber and American Idol will survive, as they are lowest common denominator music from which advertisers can milk enough profit, therefore justifying money put into promotional budgets. As for something less commercial - for instance, the chances of a band like Ultravox, or the Misfits surviving in today's world are far less.

Movies employ a lot of people. Playing in a band used to (potentially) employ a lot of people. A company like Native Instruments employs a decent amount of people. If nobody pays, where do the salaries come from to pay those working for a company? Even for a software developer working for themselves, they still need to eat. There's a prevalent attitude that 'it's freely available and no one gets hurt if I download it'. In my opinion, the opposite is true. That's why it's important to counter the attitude that piracy is harmless. A lot of companies benefit from placing advertising on warez sites(looking at you Google) - in fact, any warez site plastered in advertising, you can bet that there's a flow of cash happening, and possibly the only person/people not gaining any benefit are the software developers/artist.

It's important that people are aware of the real costs of piracy. David Lowery of Camper Van Beethoven has a great website that does some public shaming of huge corporations benefitting from piracy; http://thetrichordist.com/

If you think that individually your own downloading is of little consequence, perhaps you're right, perhaps not. What should be examined is the fact that there's not just one of you (downloading that is), there are millions, and the net effect is not minor.

If you don't want to pay for software, that is your choice. Currently it's an easy thing to do, and the consequences for the individual are minimal, if anything at all. Justifying it with bullshit arguments helps no one, and obfuscates the real cost of piracy. Quite simply, downloading what should be paid for, whether it software, a movie, music, or a book or newspaper will reduce the amount of quality independently produced work out there, reducing choice. Does anyone think a smaller independent market for quality products is a good thing?
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby CS_TBL » Mon May 05, 2014 2:12 pm

Every business has its threats. Just to compare things; if people buy a plastic bottle o' water once, and then keep refilling from their own tap, do you feel that's theft of the bottled water manufacturer's income?

Is tea an unfair competition to Coca Cola? Are second hand modern cars unfair to new cars?

There's always something, in case of software it's piracy. With which I don't mean to say that it's legal, but it's a risk you need to calculate with, being a company.

There is piracy, it's not going away, not matter how hard you try.
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Thunderkyss » Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:05 am

moodorf wrote:Just curious....my honest answer would be all of the above at certain points over the past ten years.

EDIT: uuuupdated!




I've used pirated software in the past, because I didn't care to spend the craploads of cash just to determine whether it was something I could use or not. This was way back before just about everyone had a cheap version or a demo version.

This was back when you had to tweak & tweak your PC to get it to work right to begin with.

Nowadays, I just don't see the point. There's so much capable stuff out there for free or low cost, or the scaled back versions give you a lot of the functionality. Like Live 9... I think Live 9 is a great compositional tool, but I don't need the full version. Live Intro came with my Push controller & provides everything I need from the creative standpoint. I'm not going to upgrade to Live 9 standard or suite, because it doesn't offer me anything over Live Intro that I need. (Maschine is my primary songwriting tool though. I use Push & Intro from time to time as an alternative)

For me when it comes to production, Logic Pro is my main DAW.... it costs $199 I don't see the point of pirating it.

It's Mac only & the only reason I own a Mac.

I primarily create on my laptop, which is an old Windows 7 dual core duo machine. It's got ProTools, Sonar, Magix MusicStudio/Maker, and all kinds of other stuff on it. I used to be a Cakewalk fanboi, but because of pirated software, I came to appreciate Logic (Yeah, I'm talking about way back then) & since buying my first Mac, I stopped using pirated stuff on my Windows machines.

& since I stopped using Pirated software, my windows machines have been running much better, much more stable... & I'm talking about back in the Windows XP days. I've still got a system running Vista & it's pretty stable.

My point is, I don't trust pirated software anymore. If those guys are competent enough to crack this stuff, what other routines are they writing into these cracked versions? what else are they doing to your machine that you don't know about? There are so many processes running on a modern OS nowadays, whether it's OS X, Windows based, or Linux, that someone knowing what they're doing can be all up in your system & you won't know it. You installed the cracked copy, so everything looks legit... he can be using normal windows/Mac OS/Linux routines to his nefarious activities & as long as he doesn't get greedy, will never be reported as a "virus"

Or maybe I'm just paranoid.
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby ninja6485 » Thu Jul 03, 2014 7:04 pm

I think the companies themselves have more of a reason to do what you're paranoid about. A company can do market research and get you to agree to letting them via the license agreement that you signed but didn't read. What does my outdated laptop have to offer a hacker? I would immagine they're more interested in higher profile hacks that will maybe lead to them accesing more important files or info that would otherwise cost money.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby silikon » Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:00 pm

Thunderkyss wrote:I don't trust pirated software anymore.


Nor should you have ever. It's not so much the cracked software (even though I disagree strongly with pirating as stated previously), but inviting a cracked copy of what-have-you is also inviting all sorts of nefarious behavior.

I wouldn't be so keen to say that any cracked application is going to have malware, but the chance of this happening grows exponentially because those safety mechanisms built into the code are now gone; not only that but now you're getting the software from an untrusted/unknown source -- so they might have "the best intentions" (when it comes to passing on clean, cracked software), but who's to say someone previous to them didn't?

Sure, you can check for these things, and to some extents anti-malware can save you from doing something stupid, but that is most certainly not foolproof.

ninja6485 wrote:What does my outdated laptop have to offer a hacker?


A nice comfortable hiding spot; a nice random bouncing point from which to loft an attack; yet another machine surreptitiously used in a DDoS attack. Yes, they may be interested in higher profile compromises, but sometimes to get there, you have to use a few unwitting systems to cover one's tracks.

That's only a couple examples, from which there are numerous.

ninja6485 wrote:I think the companies themselves have more of a reason to do what you're paranoid about.


This is also quite true; I'm sure some remember the Sony debacle of years past -- the one about installing a fucking rootkit on your machine?

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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Thefumigator » Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:24 am

silikon wrote:
Thunderkyss wrote:I don't trust pirated software anymore.


Nor should you have ever. It's not so much the cracked software (even though I disagree strongly with pirating as stated previously), but inviting a cracked copy of what-have-you is also inviting all sorts of nefarious behavior.


I used tons of soft synth demos and freeware in the past (superwave is by far my fav), and many samples coming on futuremusic magazine (good old days) the only one I had pirated at the time was FL studio which came with lots of plugins itself, specially sytrus, the one I used the most. But then I quit doing music, so it wouldn't have made any sense spending hundred of bucks on software you weren't going to use anymore, specially when the mid salary was about 500$ monthly in my country at the time, and nobody here really would care in buying the software you got.

That's why I like the arturia aproach of hybrid synth (correct me if the original idea came from arturia or else), and I got the minilab, and I'm planning getting an original license for FL studio, because it deserves every penny. Its the only DAW my brain can connect to. And, well, I'm into music again, but I can't quit my job, music for me is just a hobbie and I believe it will always be.

not long ago I begun working as a software developer and with a strong effort on my part I've got original windows license. Thankfully microsoft gives visual studio express for free so I could learn everything I needed with it (while actually java and PHP have been free for much longer time)

Bottom line, I try everything that is freeware and I see what happens. My advice is, if you plan to do serious stuff, or work in professional environment, it doesn't matter which country you live in, just get the original license of the software you believe deserves it and ditch everything you ain't going to use. That's it. Sounds fair to me and I feel good paying for the license.
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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby briandc » Mon Aug 04, 2014 7:23 am

Quite honestly, there is so much talent that has produced freeware, I don't see the advantages of purchasing non-free software! In fact, some of the freeware (ie. Synth1, Crystal, Tyrell6) are considered to be better than warez!

In the end, I think that the important thing for a musician, is to feel inspired. My (hundreds of) freeware softsynths are waayyy more than sufficient to inspire me every day! :)


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Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby Ashe37 » Mon Aug 04, 2014 7:26 am

Note that one of the synths you cite as freeware, was a paid commission by a music mag, from an established developer... not some random kid slaving over a copy of Synthmaker.
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Band: Eridani V

Re: Poll: how do you feel about pirated/cracked DAW software

Postby mute » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:03 pm

+/- 80% of what I use is mine, freeware, donationware, or amazingly cheap deals by developers i've come to know since the late 90's (or things ive gotten free for beta testing or contributing in some other way). I rarely buy something that isn't created by someone i don't know at least passingly. The remaining % would be hardware.

Pirated DAWs have never interested me for many reasons, but mainly because I've been apart of the development scene behind buzz modular/tracker and its extensible plugins since day 1. I basically have a custom tailored piece of software at my disposal and it is as familiar to me as breathing. I do own a legit copy of Ableton (for live reasons) and an old copy of Audition (which I use alot), but outside of that and a few mastering plugins by voxengo and izotope I own very little in the way of fully commercial audio software.

Over the years I had "trialed" alot of stuff, if you get my drift, but 4-5 years ago I came the conclusion it wasn't necessary and there was very little out there I couldn't meet sonically with something I could already do modularly or even something I already had, something else free, cheaper, by a friend, etc. Reduction has also been an important thing over the years as I've audited through what I need so out of that necessity many things I might have even paid for in the past have been pushed to wayside (along with loads of free stuff).
mute
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