Copyright pirates, they’re certainly no Boy Scouts
And if they were … well, I guess they wouldn’t be able to get this new activity badge, would they? The MSNBC story notes:
Boy Scouts in the Los Angeles area will now be able to earn a merit patch for learning about the evils of downloading pirated movies and music. . . .
The movie industry has developed the curriculum. “Working with the Boy Scouts of Los Angeles, we have a real opportunity to educate a new generation about how movies are made, why they are valuable, and hopefully change attitudes about intellectual property theft,” Dan Glickman, chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America, said in a statement Friday. Scouts will be instructed in the basics of copyright law and learn how to identify five types of copyrighted works and three ways copyrighted materials may be stolen.
An interesting way to try to rein in the Young and the Lawless, no? There are obvious issues here — in particular, whether the Boy Scouts should be turning over instruction on a somewhat controversial issue to an advocacy group. On the other hand, if executed well, this could be a good idea. Given the widespread use of file sharing programs, and misunderstandings about law, I suspect that many Scout-age youth could use a sobering reminder that they can’t just copy anything and everything.