hmm, smith wasn't something done poorly on the first ISOs? i remember you saying if "this" was done poorly it would make the GD-rom have to read more often. maybe it was the addition of dummy files that corrected it? i wish i could remember exactly what it is that im talking about.
To an extent its a myth but it does contain some truth. Burned Dreamcast games do not damage your GDR-drive but as stated above it can wear out the motor and lead to damaging / breaking your Dreamcast.
The problem though is that its going to happen anyway. Dreamcast has moving parts like any new console, so sooner of later it will break down after extended use. Burned games may speed that up. Mine is 9 years old and from the last time I played Shenmue II (Data intensive game) I did notice quite a few "DATA READ ERROR" while I was playing. So while it is a myth to stop piracy it does contain a bit a truth.
"Gaps do not get filled by ignoring them"
"Well, see these men follow no man but me......and I follow no man at all."