Articles about Illegal Downloading

Russia mulls pirate penalties

Russia is considering implementing fines for illegal downloading of copyrighted content. Local media, citing sources familiar with an early-stage proposalå, say it could mimic German laws where illegal downloaders can be fined under cease-and-desist orders capped at ‎around €100 for simple infringement. Fines would complement …
Team Register, 05 Oct 2016
The Bundestag in Berlin. Pic: Hernán Piñera

Germans set to make schnitzel out of controversial Wi-Fi law

Germany could soon roll back a law that holds Wi-Fi network owners liable for crimes that individual users commit online. Der Spiegel reports that, after months of negotiations, lawmakers in Germany have agreed to roll back rules that would hold the owner of a Wi-Fi network liable for crimes that occur on it, including …
Shaun Nichols, 12 May 2016
BBC logo 2012

Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC

BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC that markets its products around the world, has told Australia's government that heavy users of “IP obfuscation tools” are so suspicious that internet service providers (ISPs) should consider them as likely content pirates. The organisation states that case in a submission (PDF) to …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Sep 2014

MPAA, RIAA: Kids need to learn 3 Rs – reading, writing and NO RIPPING

A collection of copyright enforcement groups including the Motion Picture Ass. of America and the music label body RIAA want to use school time to teach youngsters about the perils of internet piracy. First unveiled in September, the plan calls for elementary schoolchildren (up to grade 6, or 12 years old) to be given lessons …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Nov 2013
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New Zealand court hands out second peppercorn downloading penalty

New Zealand’s Copyright Tribunal has handed down its second decision under that country’s controversial “SkyNet” anti-downloading legislation. Once again, the tribunal has imposed a fine considerably less than that sought by the country’s music industry lobby, RIANZ (the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand). Asked to …
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Coming soon to a theme park near you: Shocking ANTI-PIRACY NAG ADS

While the world's economic powerhouse China uses the muscle of the state to strengthen its intellectual property industries, Britain is apologetic and embarrassed about its own. This was plainly evident in a dog and pony show this morning starring Business Secretary Vince Cable. The event was staged by officials at the much- …
Andrew Orlowski, 17 Dec 2012

ACCC weighs in on IT pricing

IT vendors, already under attack for stonewalling the Australian government’s IT pricing inquiry, have received a blunt warning from the ACCC: don’t lie about why your products are expensive in Australia. Speaking to the Australian Financial Review, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair Rod Sims says the …
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Japan enacts two-year jail terms for illegal downloading

Downloading pirated material in Japan can now earn you two years in prison and a fine of two million yen ($25,600) for each purloined file, with uploaders facing 10 years in the Big House and a fine five times as large. The laws – some of the toughest ever enacted against illegal downloaders – were passed in June after strong …
Iain Thomson, 01 Oct 2012

News Ltd's Australian chief demands copyright overhaul

The head of News Ltd's Australian outpost has urged for an overhaul of copyright laws to take on the “copyright kleptomaniacs” and “digital suckers” that are robbing the Australian economy of AUD$1.37 billion annually in pirated film and TV content. Addressing the film industry at the Movie Convention, News Ltd CEO Kim …
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Beck's open-source challenge to freetards: play it yourself!

Fans of the artist Beck must wait until December for his new album - and if they want to hear it, they can play it themselves. As you may have heard, Beck has said he'll issue his next album Song Reader as sheet music, rather than as a performed and produced sound recording. "The songs here are as unfailingly exciting as you’d …
Andrew Orlowski, 17 Aug 2012
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'Call Corporate Of Apple and tell them to stop there persuit!!'

Quotw This was the week when the Oracle v Google trial over the Chocolate Factory's use of Java in the Android OS rumbled on, and the jury didn't help matters much. The jury started deliberations last week, but were stuck by the weekend, though Judge William Alsup encouraged them to keep trying: If there is hope for reaching a …
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US Judge says IP addresses don't identify pirates

A US judge has labelled an attempt to sue internet subscribers whose accounts were used to download four pornographic films “abusive litigation” and also criticised legal arguments that an IP address is a valid way to identify an individual online. The comments were made by Gary R Brown, United States Magistrate Judge, in a …
Simon Sharwood, 08 May 2012
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Belgian telcos ordered to blockade Pirate Bay

The Belgian Anti-Piracy Federation (BAF) has urged all Belgian ISPs to block freetard site The Pirate Bay after a higher Antwerp court ordered Belgian cable company Telenet and telco Belgacom to make the site inaccessible to their subscribers. The banning order comes after an Antwerp Commercial Court last year believed such a …
Jan Libbenga, 05 Oct 2011
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BitTorrent CEO sees danger in AFACT vs iiNet

Australia will set an unwelcome precedent if it capitulates to the movie industry in its legal fight with iiNet, warns BitTorrent CEO Eric Klinker. Last month the Australian High Court allowed the Australian Federation against Copyright Theft (AFACT) to appeal the decision of the Full Federal Court handed down in February this …
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TelstraClear slams new kiwi download laws

The chief executive of TelstraClear, Allan Freeth, has lashed out against the pending introduction of new file sharing laws in New Zealand, which come into effect September 1. In a public release, Freeth states that the legislation is “flawed and needs to change.” When the Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Amendment Act 2011 …
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AFACT vs iiNet round 3

AFACT, the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft, has re-booted its war with ISP iiNet after getting clearance to appeal its case to the High Court. The Hollywood studio-backed AFACT had its case against ISP iiNet struck down twice by the Federal Court, the most recent loss in February. "Thirty-four film and television …
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New NZ copyright law means ISPs could cash in

New Zealand ISPs could have a tidy new revenue stream courtesy of their illegal downloading customers as new copyright laws take effect in September. New Zealand Commerce Minister Simon Power yesterday announced that a NZ$25 fee will be charged by ISPs to rights-holders, such as movie studios, for processing each allegation of …
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Game developer says piracy is not theft

The creator of Minecraft believes piracy can't be considered theft and that smart games developers should view people who pirate games as potential customers. “If you steal a car, the original is lost. If you copy a game, there are simply more of them in the world,” said Markus Persson during the closing session of the Game …
Caleb Cox, 04 Mar 2011
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Reactions to iiNet's copyright win

It may have taken A$6.5 million, but iiNet has secured a landmark court decision defending its position against a consortium of movie studios and AFACT, that is should not be held responsible for the illegal downloading of filmed content by its users. The Australian Internet industry has widely welcomed the Federal Court …
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Ofcom to review Digital Economy Act site-blocking measures

Communications watchdog Ofcom is to review sections of the Digital Economy Act to see if they are workable. The government said this morning that culture secretary Jeremy Hunt had asked Ofcom to consider whether the Act, which was expected to come into force this month, could work on the issue of reserve powers to enable …
Kelly Fiveash, 01 Feb 2011

Hollywood claims Aussie ISP promoted BitTorrent use

In February, the Australia Federal Court ruled that iiNet, the country's third biggest ISP, was not liable for copyright infringements committed by customers. The plaintiff, the Australian Federation against Copyright Theft (AFACT), which represents the film industry, vowed to appeal and the two sides were arguing the toss in …
Drew Cullen, 02 Aug 2010
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Hentai malware publishes web history of marks online

A Trojan circulating in Japan seeks to extort money from shame-faced fans of hentai-themed games. Those who download illegal copies of ”over 18″ hentai-themed games from file sharing networks are liable to wind up with a nasty surprise, Trend Micro warns. Some bogus files posing as games from Abel software attempt to trick …
John Leyden, 16 Apr 2010
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Record labels seek DMCA-style UK takedowns

Exclusive Record label trade association the BPI wants sweeping changes to UK online copyright practice in 11th hour amendments to the Digital Britain bill. The amendments would grant copyright holders injunctions against websites and service providers similar to the US DMCA act - but with no 'safe harbour' provision to verify whether …
Andrew Orlowski, 12 Jan 2010
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Spain seeks fast track for pirate site shutdowns

Spain has proposed a new anti-piracy law that would let intellectual property police play a speedier game of whack-a-mole with websites serving illegal downloads of music and films. The measure allows a judge to act on a complaint filed by the newly formed intellectual property commission at Spain's ministry of culture by …
Austin Modine, 09 Jan 2010
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France floats Google music-and-movie tax

France should tax Google and other online US giants to subsidize local music and movie industries, a report commissioned by the country's culture ministry has recommended. A new proposal to tax internet advertising revenue was among the recommendations offered by the government-appointed panel. Money raised would finance the …
Austin Modine, 07 Jan 2010
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It's official: Blogging is a dangerous business

2009 was a bad year for freedom of speech across the world, with journalists and bloggers getting the worst of it. According to a report (pdf) released last week by internationally respected organisation Reporters sans Frontieres (RSF), journalists bore the brunt of the crackdown – but there was also a sharp rise in action …
Jane Fae , 07 Jan 2010
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Filesharing laws to hit websites and newsgroups too

The government is planning to award itself powers to change copyright law almost at will, in expectation that new anti-peer-to-peer laws will drive infringement to other services such as Rapidshare and newsgroups. The measure, which is the most severe contained in the Digital Economy Bill published today, will be interpreted …
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Japanese mobile operators shout 'Avast' at piracy

The Japanese are considering forcing packet inspection on mobile networks in order to identify, and disconnect, copyright infringing pirates. The plan requires all network operators to monitor downloads for copyrighted material. If dodginess is discovered a warning would be issued to the user, and if they persisted then their …
Bill Ray, 07 Sep 2009
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UK Music secret data: 'Young people will pay for downloads'

A music trade body has kept secret the results of asking 1,800 young people how much they would pay for a limitless download service. UK Music chief executive Feargal Sharkey told OUT-LAW Radio the information was commercially sensitive. UK Music carried out a survey of 1,800 British people between the ages of 14 and 24 and …
OUT-LAW.COM, 28 Aug 2009
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Boston student fined thousands for Napstering

A Boston University student has been found guilty of breaking copyright laws by downloading and uploading songs using Napster and Kazaa. Joel Tenenbaum admitted downloading 30 songs and must pay Universal Music, Warner Music and Sony $22,500 (£13,438) per song. He could have faced up to $150,000 per track, and seems to view …
John Oates, 03 Aug 2009
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Publisher defends Google Books 'sell out'

World Copyright Summit Richard Sarnoff, the man who signed off on the historic authors settlement with Google, took to the stage to defend the deal today. If it survives antitrust scrutiny, the Settlement between Google and US authors promises to give Google a monopoly on out-of-print books in digital form. Isn't the accumulation of knowledge in one …
Andrew Orlowski, 09 Jun 2009
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Shifty study proclaims Brits a nation of freetards

An estimated seven million Brits are involved in illegal downloads of music, movies, software or games. This digital piracy is resulting in "huge economic losses" and confusion about copyright law, according to a study by UK government advisers published on Friday. The 85-page study, commissioned by the Strategic Advisory …
John Leyden, 29 May 2009
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US lawmakers put Canada, Spain on piracy 'watch list'

A group of US lawmakers plan to "closely monitor" five countries where they claim copyright piracy has reached "alarming levels." The Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus, made up of over 70 members of US Congress, singled out China, Russia, Canada, Spain, and Mexico on Wednesday for its "2009 International Piracy …
Austin Modine, 21 May 2009
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French pass 'three strikes' file-sharing law

In a decision that is likely to alarm file-sharers worldwide, an almost empty French National Assembly has finally voted through its "three strikes law" designed to clamp down on file-sharing and illegal downloads. This was despite the guerilla warfare waged against these proposals over the last few months by a handful of …
Jane Fae , 03 Apr 2009
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EU gets real in fight against counterfeiters

The European Commission's Counterfeiting and Piracy Observatory was launched today to find better ways to fight fake goods and illegal downloads. The group will be made up of one delegate from each member country working with private sector representatives. The Observatory will work in four main ways: 1. Obtain better …
John Oates, 02 Apr 2009
hands waving dollar bills in the air

EU launches pirate talking shop

This week sees the second European Union conference on piracy and counterfeit goods. Internal market and services commissioner Charlie McCreevy, members of the European Parliament, and industry representatives are attending the European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy with the aim of improving cross-border cooperation …
John Oates, 31 Mar 2009
fingers pointing at man

Robbie Williams, Billy Bragg et al say downloads aren't illegal

A lobby group consisting of well-known UK musicians has argued that individuals should not be prosecuted for downloading illegal music from the interwebs. The Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) was stitched together last autumn and is made up of 140 or so of Blighty’s rock and pop stars including Blur drummer Dave Rowntree, …
Kelly Fiveash, 12 Mar 2009
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Big labels or Google - who is the songwriters' worst enemy?

Interview Tired of being ignored by industry lobby groups, artists are now getting feisty about creators' digital rights. In the UK, the Featured Artists Coalition wants to take digital rights away from the nerds. In the US last year, Arts and Labs launched to counter big record labels and anti-copyright technology companies. A&L has …
Chris Castle, 05 Feb 2009
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Chilean anti-piracy law drafted on pirated software

Chilean lawyer Guillermo Frêne is having a bit of a bad hair day after it was revealed that draft legislation aimed at cutting the internet connections of illegal downloading ne'er-do-wells was presented in .doc format written on pirated software. The full outrage was exposed here, which shows that the firm of attorneys …
Lester Haines, 30 Dec 2008
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The Music Wars from 30,000 feet: Meet Chris Castle

Interview Ebullient lawyer Chris Castle has a unique perspective on the Music Wars. A former Sony and A&M executive who "switched sides" to Silicon Valley, then found himself defending the original Napster, which he called one of the greatest inventions of the 20th Century. His clients range from technology companies to major recording …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Nov 2008
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eMusic rattles ISPs over legal downloads

The boss of Apple’s iTunes nearest rival eMusic has warned that recent deals struck between the music industry and UK internet providers could threaten the existence of legal sites. eMusic CEO David Pakman told the Financial Times that ISPs could lure customers away from well-known digital music sites by offering their own …
Kelly Fiveash, 03 Sep 2008

Oracle ratchets SAP 'grand-theft' allegations

Oracle has turned up the heat in its already torrid legal attack on SAP, accusing high-ranking executives throughout the German company of knowingly approving a program that illegally downloaded five terabytes worth of Oracle software and support materials. The allegations, which expand on accusations Oracle first aired 16 …
Dan Goodin, 29 Jul 2008
Pirates ahoy!

Street-savvy Microsoft tries to pop the pimply face of piracy

Microsoft has tagged schoolkids as the UK's worst culprits for illegally downloading files from the net. The company, in its latest swoop on software piracy, today put out the results of a new study - dubbed Real Thing - which was based on a survey of just 270 children and 1,200 adults aged 16 and above. It found that 54 per …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Jul 2008
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France gets closer to 'three strikes' downloader web ban

The globalisation of internet law continues apace, as French legislators press ahead next week with the "loi Hadopi". The purpose of this proposed law is twofold: to clamp down on internet piracy, and to shift the responsibility for this clampdown firmly on to the shoulders of ISPs. Any similarities between this proposal, and …
Jane Fae , 12 Jun 2008
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Virgin Media and BPI join forces to attack illegal filesharing

Virgin Media will launch a campaign against illegal downloading next week, when it’ll begin firing off warning letters to subscribers the BPI believes are sharing copyright music files. The move is being billed by the cable firm as an “education campaign”. At this stage there will be no “three strikes” process; customers who …
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El Reg offers cut-and-paste comments service

It's come to our attention that a certain kind of story will invariably provoke a Pavlovian response in certain Reg commentators who, in lieu of salivating at the sound of a bell, will suffer an immediate figurative jerking of the knee. This involuntary spasm in turn provokes an uncontrollable venting of the spleen, the …
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Euro MPs want criminal penalties for downloaders

The European Parliament has asked EU member states to press ahead with a plan to criminalise copyright infringement. The Parliament wants a proposal it agreed last year to be approved by ministers from each member state. The proposed EU directive would create new rules on copyright protection, and would require each EU country …
OUT-LAW.COM, 22 Feb 2008
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Microsoft swoops into schools to teach P2P morality

Teenage intellectual property (IP) law swotters are less likely to illegally download music and film files from the internet than their clueless counterparts, Microsoft claimed yesterday. Redmond is now looking to bring the rest of the kids up to speed by pushing its own IP curriculum in schools. The software giant reckoned …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Feb 2008
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The Doors open online

The remaining members of The Doors have decided to break on through to the digital side as the band made its back catalogue available online on Monday. All six albums recorded by the Los Angeles group, led by the late Jim Morrison, are being made available for download for the first time. The release marks the fortieth …
Emmet Ryan, 27 Mar 2007
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Gowers: crack down on pirates

Gordon Brown delivered his last pre-budget report this afternoon, and launched the findings of the Gowers Review of Intellectual Property. Former Financial Times editor Andrew Gowers recommended to the Treasury that penalties for illegal downloading should match those for physical piracy. [That's flogging dodgy disks at car …