Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Robbery or other serious acts of violence committed at sea.
  • noun The hijacking of an airplane.
  • noun Copyright or patent infringement.
  • noun The illegal interception or use of radio or television signals.
  • noun An instance of piracy.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In geology, that process whereby, because of a higher natural gradient, and therefore more efficient eroding power, one stream cuts back a divide and taps off the head-waters or a tributary of another stream. The captured stream usually turns a sharp angle into its new course and leaves a wind-gap where it formerly flowed. Also called stream-piracy.
  • noun Robbery upon the sea; robbery by pirates; the practice of robbing on the high seas.
  • noun Literary theft; any unauthorized appropriation of the mental or artistic conceptions or productions of another; specifically, an infringement of the law of copyright.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act or crime of a pirate.
  • noun (Common Law) Robbery on the high seas; the taking of property from others on the open sea by open violence; without lawful authority, and with intent to steal; -- a crime answering to robbery on land.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun nautical Robbery at sea, a violation of international law; taking a ship away from the control of those who are legally entitled to it.
  • noun A similar violation of international law, such as hijacking of an aircraft.
  • noun The unauthorized duplication of goods protected by intellectual property law (e.g. copying software unlawfully).
  • noun The operation of an unlicensed radio or television station.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun hijacking on the high seas or in similar contexts; taking a ship or plane away from the control of those who are legally entitled to it
  • noun the act of plagiarizing; taking someone's words or ideas as if they were your own

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Medieval Latin pīrātia, from Late Greek peirāteia, from Greek peirātēs, pirate; see pirate.]

Examples

  • Johnnie Carson, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, points out the upsurge in piracy is just one of the ripple effects of what's happening on land.

    Maritime Bureau Blames Somali Pirates for Almost Half of Worldwide Attacks

  • I claim that the term piracy was co-opted in recent years by business interests to include those making unauthorized copies of music/movies for their private purposes - where there was no profit or reselling involved.

    Pirating the 2009 Oscars - Waxy.org

  • Yet a similar confusion of thought is involved in this indiscriminate application of the term piracy, unless we emphasize the fact that in this connexion it must be divested of its ordinary moral connotation.

    England under the Tudors

  • I claim that the term piracy was co-opted by business interests to include those making unauthorized copies of music for their private listening purposes - where there was no profit or reselling involved.

    Original Signal - Transmitting Digg

  • Trivia note: Until relatively recently, in historical terms, the term piracy (in the intellectual property sense) wasn't applied to what consumers did.

    Dwell On It

  • Trivia note: Until relatively recently, in historical terms, the term piracy (in the intellectual property sense) wasn't applied to what consumers did.

    World of SL

  • One of the Internet group tried to ask her whether the term piracy was appropriate, but she insisted that it was because people's livelihoods were at stake.

    Techdirt

  • One of the Internet group tried to ask her whether the term piracy was appropriate, but she insisted that it was because people's livelihoods were at stake.

    TechnologyOwl.com

  • One of the Internet group tried to ask her whether the term piracy was appropriate, but she insisted that it was because people's livelihoods were at stake.

    Techdirt

  • One of the Internet group tried to ask her whether the term piracy was appropriate, but she insisted that it was because people's livelihoods were at stake.

    Techdirt

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