Escapist Friction: Wait to Pirate Comics Until After I Buy an iPad, Please
Screen captures, man. Aren’t they just the dickens? According to an article by Comic Book Resources’ JK Parkin, Apple’s iPad makes the rascally practice of capturing images easy and it could possibly help streamline digital piracy for those with the inclination to do so.
It’s good information for readers and publishers to have, but the tech isn’t inherently new. iPhone users have been able to take screen shots on their phones with a 2-button combo since 2008 and anyone with a full keyboard’s had access to the “print screen” button on a PC or Mac for decades. CBR’s article does point out, however, that the iPad’s many comic book distribution systems deliver plenty of attractive comic scans that users can potentially save screen-by-screen for whatever purposes they choose (including sharing via e-mail). It may not be new, but it does seem like the fastest, easiest and most secure way to obtain quality comic scans that I’ve heard of in a long time.I love screen captures, I use them daily for this very blog and if I buy an iPad down the road, I’ll want the capability for blogging purposes – especially to capture comic book page samples. It’s possible that most folks (especially those shelling out $500+ for an entertainment device) will respect the capability and not full-on “pirate” out of either laziness, respect for the law, apathy or a combination of the three. The more likely scenario that will play out is that Apple will play ball with paranoid publishers and disable screen captures within certain apps.
Should we start a countdown? Who knows? From my selfish standpoint as a blogger, though, I’m counting on an algorithm of apathy to keep the pirapocalypse at bay long enough for me to write off my eventual iPad purchase as a business expense.