Caught Cracking

There’s a long thread on Gearslutz about a video interview that came with a recent issue of Future Music magazine. Apparently the interviewee John Dahlback gladly showed off his computer screen to the FM cameras. The only problem is he was using cracked software and people were able to take screenshots from the DVD like the one you see above. He tried to smooth things over by releasing the statement below. If artists or business people can’t make a living doing what they are doing they will stop producing art and products. No one’s moral compass is always on straight but let’s try to do the right thing. Plug-ins are inexpensive and take a decent amount of effort to get into your hands. I don’t use cracks and either should you.

“Hey guys. Fun topic! Anyway, just wanted to let everyone know that I DO have the license for LennarDigital Sylenth obviously. But just like everyone else (I suppose), I want to try vst plugins out before I buy them, in case it’s ****. And when it comes to Sylenth, I bought the license straight after. Reason why I didn’t uninstall the previous version for the registered one is because I don’t know if my saved presets would stay or be deleted as well. Anyway, good discussion. I can’t speak for Avicii, but everything I use has a license. To be a producer and expect people to pay for my music and NOT pay for my gear would obviously be ****ed up. Anyway, hope everyone liked the video. The track in the video will never be released due to lack of quality in my opinion. Just wanted to show people my working technique.” – John Dahlback

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Oliver Chesler

"Hello my name is Oliver and I'm going to tell you a story." I have been recording music since 1989 under the name The Horrorist. I have released over 60 singles and 4 full length albums. To hear my music please go to:

34 thoughts on “Caught Cracking”

  1. It would have been more respectful if he had just owned up to what he did instead of making excuses and side-stepping the issue. I agree that if you’re making a living producing original music with the help of developers who create the technology you may need, they should be compensated fairly for it. I see your point bro – R

  2. plugins are not inexpensive. Some are. Few are. To suggest otherwise insults everyone that cant afford whats needed to work inside of the box.

  3. Loads of people buy licences and run the cracked versions anyway, because they are simply more reliable. I’m looking at you, PACE snake-oil. Developers are obviously fooled into thinking that paying an absolutely extortionate % of their revenue for so-called “protection” helps protect their revenue, and “protection” parasites like PACE feed on that misconception. It may be true that in short-term product-lifecycles, some pecuniary advantage is obtained through use of this rubbish, but that isn’t everything to do with the actual costs of having these millstones around your neck.

  4. Lets face it, 90% of the producers out there no matter what genre they are in, use some sort of cracked software to get to the point in life of where they would like to be. because the software’s these days are so extremely over priced, that your average person with a regular job can not pay the amount demanded by the company who manufactures the software product.

    Prime example: AVID with their pro tools.
    they demanded from loyal customers 800 to 1200 dollars for an upgrade that was suppose to be free, upgrading from v9.0 to 9.04 or something to that effect.
    an uprising of angry spilled on to AVID’s facebook page and all other pages AVID runs including their home forum section of the DUC on their site.
    Software manufactures think that the average consumer has millions of dollars stuffed up their butt. sorry to be the burden of bad new, but they dont.
    And with that lays the greed of manufactures.
    and people respond with cracking the software they need to succeed in life.

    Everyone on this planet is trying to make something of themselves no matter what part of the business you are in.
    But if you over price produces on people/consumers, they will retaliate
    and crack your software in return.

    But here is the other side of that coin.
    If you do make it, in becoming what you want to become in life and you reached your goal of what you are trying to achieve,
    It is then your responsibility to go and buy the products that
    got you to that point in life and buy it legally.

    The problem is, when you get there (goal point in life) you are suppose to take the money you earned and invest it back into the gear that got you there in the first place.

    The software manufactures did this to themselves, and they are the only ones to blame.
    when they realize that they need to rethink on how much to sell their product to the average consumer who has an average job with average pay.
    then maybe things will get better and we could see some realistic decent prices on their products that people would have no problems purchasing and enjoying.

    thats my 2 cents on this matter.

  5. Sonic Academy is using also cracked software in the tutorials the site sells.
    Once i’ve spotted an explorer windows with tons of cracks.

  6. That happened before to some I think DnB guy on a previous tutorial video, not sure which mag it was with though – then there was that guy who go the wrath of the Randall by OPENLY saying he had cracked AD plugins :( –

    I (completely honestly) don’t have any cracked audio software at all, I mean obviously companies like Waves take the piss price wise but there are plenty of decent priced plugins available – Jereon Breebaart/Toneboosters being one of my favourites, and indeed Audio Damage, and the power which can be gotten by buying Nebula for 80 euro is great.

    One thing I will say is that sometimes the restrictions on plugins make you feel resentful towards the creators – I recently switched off Hyper Threading on my i7 (making it from ‘8’ cores to 4) and Native Instruments Service Centre saw this as a ‘new computer’ and made me redo the activation (again) I wouldnt mind if this if it worked straight away after this but I wasnt able to restore the Battery VST which I had in a project completely back to its previous settings, I had to go ‘back in time’ to an earlier save – export the Battery setup to the Ableton library on the left as a ‘rack’ and then drag it back in to the latest version of the project – annoying to say the least. I hate when I’m going through a track and I hear that bleepy sound which means NI want you to activate again (they put FM8 to a default bleep preset untill it’s reactivated.

    anywayz :p

    1. I can understand Chris getting pissed off. If someone comes into my house to steal something I will try and hurt them. I’ve been frustrated recently with new Antares purchase and iLok. Everything just stopped working and phone support is very limited. I notice there is an iLok 2 now… I’m confused as to what’s happening. I’m still not going to search warez sites for a crack though. I don’t see why plug-in developers don’t seed warez sites with fake plug-ins that delete your hard drive when installed.

    2. Yacht was the band. Who can’t afford a bunch of $40 AD plug-ins?

      I know a bunch of sample developers who have given up because of theft like this. :(

  7. lol .. you warez slut .. heheee
    i bet the DAW also dongled by the famous syncroshit by AiR .. so .. everybody knew .. AiR and H2O are the king and queen .. remember this slogan .. TRY BEFORE CRY oops i mean BUY .. and also

    its in the AiR ..

  8. yeh no I can utterly understand Chris gettin annoyed – AD plugins are IMO very well priced for the quality they are – I use many of them.

    Yeah iLoks can be a pain alright – I have 2 (one for Record and one for KORG Digital Collection)…

  9. yeah Im not going to be all pious about it – but it does depress me when someone sends me a link to an audio warez site (which all seem to be in a kinda blog format these days) and I see for example very small companies like Toneboosters’ software cracked within like a week of release :(

    1. It’s also a little unfair when people work hard to make some money to buy something and others just take it free. Although I think if you purchase a plug-in your more likely to really learn all it’s features and in the end use it more.

  10. Bit hardcore, That Dahlback is using ANY crack software, It is complete BULLSHIT, his excuse in its entirety…..a professional (I fall into the category) someione who makes a full time income from producing or Djing, should take pride in what he does……He should really hang his head in SHAME…….If your living is from producing, and HE is making a rather very TASTY living…then hes a complete TOSSER!.if I was Lennart , I would be suing the bastard to the fullest, as I personally know his income is above 200,000 euros a yeardirectly from his music & Djing……..and you dont buy your own sofwtare!!!..I for one will never, ever entertain any of his music in my sets, lists, or club play EVER again.

    Heres the irony of the ” Crack – Free – & Steal” generation of producers……you use stolen software, then you rant all over the place to your friends etc, about a Russian/Romanian (place anywhere here really) Music Blogs giving your music away for free, & you complain!!…..How really two faced & Ironinc is that!??. If you use any cracked stuff, & you finally start to make money….then the CODE OF HONOUR that the scene is built from, you should comply, & Buy!….no questions, if buts or dedicated your cash to buying T-Shirts & Beer….spend it on your software, as then your are far more likely to use it to its fullest. Take some pride in what you do Dahlback!

    1. Sweet, so since all my music is released for free i should have no qualms with taking cracked vsts. Thanks for the insight!

  11. I used cracked software when I was a teenager … that was how I got into making music. But at that time mid nineties I didn’t know of free alternatives.
    Now I don’t crack and limit myself to a few plugins and native ableton effects.

  12. i will admit that most of the software i use is pirated.
    but i only make music for me. never release it. nobody but me has ever even had a listen too it. its crap. its just for me to pass the time.

    if i was playing shows, selling mp3s or making any kind of money off of what i do, i would buy the software.

    i think most people are like me.

    when i see someone who makes money stealing software i just think they are ghetto as fuck.

  13. This is a weird thread. Before I read people comments I thought the majority would DEFEND Dahlback. Because that’s what álmost A L W A Y S happens if there’s an article about music-piracy. Downloading anything pirated from web: music, films (and now even books) seems to be alright according to some people. There’s always a rant about how the “horrible music business” or “horrible film industry” have themselves to blame for making such “expensive” products that the consumer is forced to download it illegally. You even have the pirate activists who says that we live in a digital age where copyright laws ought to be obliterated. BUT LO AND BEHOLD: this does not seem to apply to software! I have noticed this in other discussions and this thread is a fine example: all kinds of illegal downloading seems to be ok – EXCEPT software downloading. This is hypocrisy at it’s height. Let’s sort things out. A CD/digital download is NOT expensive. A ticket to the movies is NOT expensive. Most people using software cracks are NOT making any money out of it. Buying a program such as Cubase and some nice plug-ins such as Arturia’s will dig deeeeeeeep holes in your pockets. So in the end it’s really the opposite: if there’s anything that is overpriced – it is software. Many programs are really out of reach for people to buy, it’s just too expensive. THIS is the big irony today: again and again you hear how people defend music or movie piracy, but almost never software piracy. THAT IS FUCKED UP! If piracy is wrong, if piracy is stealing – then it is the same no matter what you download! Software is NOT “more” illegal to download!!!

  14. Livin Life off Crack With Producer Morals :P

    woo crazy read! agreed! when you start making sales and getting mad pay for your tunes it would be nice that all your software is legit. after using tones of share-ware, HD Crashes and now getting tracks to retailers- I feel the try before you buy stage is over for me. IT SUCKS!!! I love the sylenth 1, Massive, Moog and all those great plug ins from Waves Ozone ETC and countless others that are so easy to get thru search engines just looking for the Official synth site( usually #2 search result is for the cracked version)! Having producer morals now :(
    my new work station only has factory plugins from the daw and two soft synths I sold my body to get :P its like learning all over. If you learn to play the game cheating and challenge yourself to do legit its not so easy after the bad habits you learn. Kick in the pants I tell ya. as for John, guess its between Him and Lenard D now :P. You would think that they would send him free versions since big name and all. You guys ever think to your self hey if these plugins where like half the price we “could afford” and actually want to buy them. 2cents..Happy Mixing People!
    if you know of any support groups for ex share-ware users I need help…lol

  15. They really need to lower software prices. The pricing scheme on iOS apps has ruined me. If I can get a high quality music app for 5 dollars, I expect a high quality VST to be priced about the same. I now can’t imagine paying more than 15-20 bucks for ANY piece of music software outside of a DAW. And I’m amused by the holier-than-thou attitudes here towards software piracy. Apparently, using cracked software is something everybody does but few will admit to doing. There’s really no shame in using cracked software. Do it or don’t do it, whatever. The damage is done and irreversible . . . anyone making music software now (outside of iOS) is well aware that it’s going to be cracked to hell. But that has been a good thing since it has made companies like NI shift their focus towards hardware and I believe that a good piece of hardware is more beneficial to music than a thousand VSTs.

  16. Oliver, the funny thing about music downloads is that I know your music only because I found it on a download site back in the days (same goes for John Dahlback). You should not underestimate the ‘promotion effect’ shared music, because in general only the good stuff is uploaded and shared. And a lot of people buy the stuff they ‘discover’ on Emule or Rapidshare.

  17. Notanativespeaker> I don’t buy that jazz at all, yeah people discover new stuff, but if they are stealing it they will generally carry on stealing it, nobody I know buys it later, they just steal everything, that includes people I know who easily earn enough to spend a few hundred a month on music and movies.. they just dont give a crap john dahlback..he has no excuse, he earns enough to not need to bother try before buy, he can just buy. hes just a greedy thief.

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