Legal Alternatives to File Sharing
Why pay thousands of dollars dealing with a copyright lawsuit when there are many legitimate ways to access copyrighted material?
UC San Diego looks continuously for services that provide legal and affordable alternatives for viewing, listening to, and purchasing copyrighted material. An extensive list of legal alternatives can be found at Educause's website.
Legal alternatives for music:
- Amazon has very competitive prices for music, and even has anime.
- Finetune streams tracks from your favorite artists, and lets you create and share playlists.
- iTunes Store has free songs and TV shows to download every Tuesday.
- Grooveshark is a music-streaming website that allows you create your own playlists.
- Pandora Radio is the personalized internet radio service that helps you find new music based on your old and current favorites.
Legal alternatives for TV shows and movies:
- Amazon and Netflix provides a Video on Demand service.
- Crackle and Jaman provide streaming TV shows and movies online for free as well.
- iTunes Store has a movie rental and purchasing store, a service similar to Amazon.
- Hulu has free TV shows and movies as well, with limited commercials.
- TV network stations such as ABC, NBC and Fox usualy host the latest episodes of most broadcasted shows.
- RedBox Instant by Verizon offers a selection of movies to reserve at the kiosk, rent or buy on demand, and stream for an $8/month subscription.
A few free, legal alternatives to commonly used software:
Other legal alternatives include:
- Use ACMS Virtual Computing Labs for access to popular applications like Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, ArcGIS, and Stata.
- Getting material from the public domain, using sites such as Internet Archive. Government documents, text, and images over 75 years old are in the public domain and are free to use.
- Using "royalty-free" collections of work, such as CD collections of photographs or clip art.
- Getting permission or a license for use from the owner of the work before using copyrighted material.
- Use work you have created yourself!
Read about copyright education initiatives.