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Arr! We're All Pirates Now

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The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is pissed about the "hundreds of billions" of dollars swallowed by piracy and counterfeiting and it has taken the outrage to our fair City of Angels ("...and Demons," as the press release says).

The Chamber has released results of a Gallup survey, coinciding with this week's Counterfeiting and Piracy Awareness shenanigans claiming that one-quarter of all Angelenos are admitted pirates.

But we're certain that percentage is far greater. In fact, we'll go out on a limb and say that at least 25% of all music and movie industry execs, software developers, and government employees are equal participants in today's knock-off frenzied, file-sharing-addicted and wink-and-nod license-abusing society.

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Now a conglomerate of software manufacturers have started an anti-piracy campaign and 1-888 hotline in which we can snitch on our friends and colleagues for a shot at $1 million. This Business Software Alliance, with charter members including Apple, Microsoft, Cisco, Intel, IBM, and HP, is loaded with reward money thanks not to these huge corporations, but as a result of some massive settlements.

We don't advocate stealing and abusing products and services. But we also don't advocate snitching. And we certainly don't like it when the feds come to town to try and overshadow our mad, media-driven productivity by claiming we're as corrupt as the hand that feeds.

Find out if you're a pirate AND watch Computer Stew prank-call 1-888-NO-PIRACY after the jump.

Self-portrait of Will Pate used with CC license via flickr.