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'Major filesharers and large-scale uploaders'

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The UK record industry is suing 28 people in an attempt to stop them sharing music files over the internet.

The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) says the legal action is aimed at “major filesharers” and “large-scale uploaders”. More cases are expected to follow. The BPI will seek damages and injunctions to stop people uploading tracks onto file-sharing networks.

Peter Jamieson, chairman of the BPI, said: “We have been warning for months that unauthorized file-sharing is illegal. These are not people casually downloading the odd track. They are uploading music on a massive scale, effectively stealing the livelihoods of thousands of artists and the people who invest in them.”

The BPI has run a hearts and minds campaign for some time. In March it gave a final warning that if things did not improve it would consider legal action. Since then it has sent 350,000 instant messages to uploaders warning them of possible legal action.

The cases form part of action being taken against 459 file sharers in six European countries by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. Legal action will be a mixture of criminal and civil cases. ®

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