Scottish Martial Arts wrote on Aug 12, 2018, 14:33:
Wraith wrote on Aug 12, 2018, 13:14:No, I understand your argument just fine.
Apparently it is to you, because you completely failed to grasp the point.
No, I'm afraid you really, really don't.
But given your response to my remarks, and your confusion of "Moral Hazard" with "Negative Externality" in a previous post, I do question how much you understand what you read.
Ho, ho. "Negative externality". Someone's read an economics textbook and now wants to play. You're talking nonsense.
There's multiple aspects to the moral hazard of allowing used games to participate in the marketplace including parasitical siphoning of resources by middlemen who don't actually provide any benefit. Your proposition is, frankly, absurd. The organised used games market produces exactly the same economic benefit to producers that piracy does. None. In fact, in both moral and economic turns there is absolutely no difference between buying a used game and simply pirating it.
Good I'm glad we're in agreement and I thank you for recapitulating what I just said.
Non sequitur. That's not recapitulation. Might wanna look that one up Sparky.
An author does not stand on a street corner selling photocopied manuscripts of his own book. He sells the publication rights to his work to a publisher, and collects a royalty based upon copies sold. The publisher in turn contracts a printer to actually physically print the books, and a distributor to get them to store shelves. A store in turn actually merchandises and sells the book to an end consumer. At each step along the way, people who are not the author make money on the production, distribution, and sale of an experience they had no hand in creating. This bears repeating: only the author created the experience contained within the book (with maybe an assist from an editor at the publisher) but many, many other people make money off of the sale of that experience.
This is where your somewhat pedestrian attempt at an argument goes off the rails. There are two main problems here.
A) You think book publication is a valid analogy. I've already explained why it's not, yet you persist in trying to conflate book publishing with game publishing.
B) At no stage did I argue that no other parties were involved in publishing a work, however in each case, those parties produce a net economic benefit to the author. Used game re-sellers do the opposite. They produce a negative economic benefit at the expense of the developer as "used" copies complete in the marketplace against real copies. They're a parasitical organism, pure and simple. If you have problems understanding why that's a bad thing, you may want to ask someone more forward thinking to explain it to you.
Additionally, in the United States at least, copyright law has evolved such that the aforementioned chain of companies and individuals are only entitled to the proceeds of the first sale of the media which contains the copyrighted experience.
Look, at this point, you're just embarrassing yourself. Copyright law has NOT evolved. The first sale doctrine is at least 150 years old and is clearly inadequate to the issues of dealing with large scale publishing of goods with an asymmetric development/reproduction cost.
In other words, our hypothetical author can and should enforce his copyright and the requirement that he be paid what he is contractually due, up until the point that a copy of his book is sold to a customer. Thereafter, the customer can lend that copy of the book to friends and family, donate it to a library, or sell it on the used book market, and copyright law (in the US) makes clear that the author cannot claim any money that results from that secondary sale.
Once again, the book analogy is invalid and I've already explained why.
Without enforcing that restriction, creators don't get paid.
Yes, they do. They get paid whatever they are contractually obligated to be paid when they negotiated their publication agreement.
Look, I realise you're not exactly playing with a full deck, but you might want to learn something about the subject you're discussing before you make a fool of yourself. Development teams get royalty credits on the basis of units sold. Not only that but the royalty RATE is dependent upon units sold. Used game sales plunder both of those returns and siphon off the proceeds to valueless entities who provide no benefit to anyone.
Typically, more well known and popular creators can command higher leverage, and therefore higher advances, royalties, etc., when negotiating such contracts. Very, very few creators earn 100% of the proceeds of their creation, and yet the developed world has been able to provide a livelihood for successful creators since the advent of the printing press.
Aside from stating the bleeding obvious, you're not actually supporting your argument and your own vaguely hand-waving counter-argument is replete with fallacies.
The fact that creators continue to exist does not mean no creators have been disadvantaged or sent broke by the used games market. Nor does the economics of book publishing constitute a valid analogy for the economics of game publishing.
You are confusing other parties having a claim on the proceeds of a sale (whether first sale or on the secondary used market) with the author or creator not being paid at all. The former is the reality, the latter is your fantasy. It would be nice from a creator's perspective if he were the only one to realize the proceeds of a sale, but it is neither necessary for him to make a living, nor how it works in practice.
You're confusing the economics of game development with the economics of book publishing, so you're really not in a position to make claims about my understanding.
But, creators do get paid. In the case of the copy of the Bethesda game in the OP, the secondary seller bought a new copy of the game at retail for the full retail price. Whatever royalty the developers are contractually obligated to receive for that sale, they will receive (unless their publisher tries to cheat them of royalty payments, but that's another issue entirely). By doctrine of first sale, the owner of that copy of the game can then legally sell the game on the secondary market.
Your argument is that creators get paid because the doctrine of first sale lets the game be sold a second time. Have you every tried to construct an actual argument? Try it, it'll be a novel experience for you.
Conceivably, a purchase on the secondary market could be considered a lost sale for the developer, but a secondary sale is only comparable to a first sale if they were to cost the same price. But games, and other media, on the secondary market always go for less than a sealed, new copy purchased at retail. That means the buyer in the secondary sale WAS NOT WILLING TO PAY FULL PRICE, and therefore cannot be considered a lost sale to the developer, at least not until time has passed and the game has been marked down at retail.
It means the buyer took advantage of the opportunity to not pay full price because the used games market gave them an option. That's the moral hazard you incoherent dipshit.
The regime which you are advocating, in which developers/creators can veto secondary sales of their work does not exist (at least in the US).
It does if you sell digital. Which is why digital storefronts are so damn popular. And it's no coincidence that GameSteal's stock price has plummeted in response to the ascendancy of digital storefronts.
Nor are creators cheated of what they are legally due by secondary sales:
Of course they are. You're just stuck in a rather limited "games are just books" mindset and lack the perception to understand the difference between the two.
secondary sales can only occur after the first sale has occurred, and creators are only entitled to the proceeds of the first sale.
As I've pointed out earlier, the cannibalization of DVD sales by used copies did receive some legislative attention.
Now, you can argue that creators deserve a bigger share of the proceeds of their sales, and I would probably agree with you. But it is absurd to argue that creators are the only ones that deserve any share: a lot of work that isn't creation goes into selling a created experience to a buyer, and that work has to be compensated too.
Christ, will you let go of this straw man? You're arguing against something I didn't say, so give it a rest. The problem is not that other parties are involved, it's that parasites are involved which provide no economic benefit to anyone but themselves.
And it is further absurd to argue that creators cannot make a living without receiving 100% of the proceeds of their sales, because the system you rail against is the one we've had for centuries, and yet a great many creators have made a living under it.
Non sequitur. The fact that the system has existed for centuries and that some have profited from it does nothing to undermine my argument.
You don't do this very often, do you.