Piracy in Malaysia

There was a proposal recently to make CDs, VCDs and DVDs controlled items. For those who don’t know, this means that the Government will control the prices of the above items. This is happening in Malaysia of course. Hey, I’m a Malaysian, so I think that givens me a right to rant and rave about her. ;p

Previously, the controlled items included only essentials like foodstuff. Ceiling prices were fixed so that consumer would not be fleeced, particularly during festival times. The method has worked well so far. They now want to apply it to the recording industry, in a move to tackle the menace of pirates.

Anyone who has been to Malaysia in the past few years would know about the ‘scourge’ of piracy. They used to be limited to items such as watches, branded clothe, etc., but now, piracy of CDs and VCDs are big business. When it first started, movies were being shown about three months later, if ever, in the cinema from the US release date.

Thanks to piracy, we now get to watch them almost simultaneously, if not before the US audience. Hehehe… I call that sweet revenge. However, the industry made a huge noise, saying that they were losing a lot of money. Hmm… How shall I put it delicately… Bullshit?

Most of us don’t bother to buy VCDs to watch the good movies. In fact, we would all trek to the cinema and buy tickets to watch the show. It was rather rare for us to buy VCDs of popular movies, unless the movie was good enough to warrant repeated viewing. Most of the movies are the exact expressions of Hollywood, no substance, just air. Good marketing though.

The Malaysian recording industry say that if the Government were to control the prices, it would affect the livelihood of the artists who depend on royalties to survive. To them I have only one thing to say.

Have you guys ever considered that you should give more royalties to the artists and spend less time in your cushy seats? I’m trying to say that the recording industry (i.e. the CEOs of the companies and the Board of Directors) should not take more than maybe, 5% of the total cost of producing one CD. It would make the whole thing cheaper and ensure that the artist gets his/her rightful pay. Make up for the loss of profit with volume.

Like most of my friends, mention the words “Malay Music