Back in the heady, tumultuous early days of internet piracy, Napster, Limewire, myTunes, and the like were all the rage. If you're like me (which, if you've been reading LH for a long time, you very likely are), you have strong memories of growing a media library from 3 or 4 of your own ripped CDs into months worth of music simply because that kid down your hall at school had a hard drive brimming with the latest and greatest music pulled from whatever nefarious sources he used. It was a balancing act between staying unnoticed by the IT department and having the biggest goddamn hard drive with the least amount of free space possible.
iTunes bent the music industry in a new direction. Netflix has added a thick layer of dust on DVD collections. Steam made "No CD crack exe" searches a thing of the past. Subscription music and video services start to make more sense when online digital media libraries grow to respectable levels. The (cable TV) cord has been cut, but the (cable internet) cord grows stronger and stronger.
5-years-ago-me would have gladly chopped off a toe for access to Koush's Allcast app that allows local media to play from a phone to my Chromecast. Viewing habits, however, have changed. Cable cutters with Netflix/Hulu Plus/Amazon Prime subscriptions and with several seasons of shows purchased(!) on Google Play Movies or iTunes would probably like Allcast's functionality, but would be curious as to how often it would be used. I think the difference is that people like us are paying for media now, but I may be wrong. (I don't count using a friend's HBO login because there is no HBO Go only service. Make it freaking happen HBO! You have brought this on yourself!)
All of this is a big change from my inscrutable college days. Back then, paying for media meant a spindle of blank DVD-R's and Netflix 3-disk/month subscription. Not having a $60/mo cable TV bill for the past few years, I have given myself license to buy a season or two of current TV shows I want to watch every so often. The list of off-cable, paid TV, movies, sports, music available is ever growing and the list of morally questionable demi-lies I currently use to justify my actions is ever shrinking.
Do you still torrent? Why or why not?