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Go to Prison for File Sharing?

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posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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originally posted by: mysterioustranger
Ok. But...please read the FBI warning on every movie, dvd, C.D. etc. Explain what it means to you.

Standing outside FBI jurisdiction it means nothing to me.

Now, 17 U.S. Code § 506 Says:

(a) Criminal Infringement.—
(1) In general.— Any person who willfully infringes a copyright shall be punished as provided under section 2319 of title 18, if the infringement was committed—
(A) for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain;
(B) by the reproduction or distribution, including by electronic means, during any 180–day period, of 1 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $1,000; or
(C) by the distribution of a work being prepared for commercial distribution, by making it available on a computer network accessible to members of the public, if such person knew or should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution.

(2) Evidence.— For purposes of this subsection, evidence of reproduction or distribution of a copyrighted work, by itself, shall not be sufficient to establish willful infringement of a copyright.


So even if copyright holders like to think things are black and white, they are not.




posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 03:40 PM
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The fallacy in the industry's logic is that illegally downloaded music or a movie means lost sales. I'm sure it does in some cases, but the reality is that for many people, if I can't get it for free, I'm not buying it because the movie or song is not worth the purchase to me.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 03:46 PM
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originally posted by: mysterioustranger
a reply to: AlaskanDad

No ones going to jail for file sharing. The jails are so full...they are cutting sentences...so no.



That's not what the article said... and if the jails are so full, they would stop the drug war. Besides, there are commercial prisons where prisoners work on assembly lines for pennies on the dollar making product for corporate profit.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 03:53 PM
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When it comes to the entertainment industry there should be no involvement from police in matters of copyright infringement. Hollywood should be protecting Hollywood, not law enforcement. These are civil matters and if the industry has a problem with someone they have the right to contact their lawyers and sue.
Someone mentioned the drug trade ? That's VERY different because if you asked most people if they were happy to have their taxes put toward removing drug dealers from the streets most would be quite happy to, but who wants their hard earned spent on Hollywoods legal defenses ? THAT would be the true crime !!!



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 03:56 PM
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a reply to: daskakik

I think that this is a reasonable definition of copyright theft - copying something and then selling it. As for the O.P., I read the article more in-depth and there are other concerns besides file-sharing... for example, if someone uses a popular song as the background for their YouTube video, this could easily be considered copyright infringement.

In some cases, people who stream on places like Twitch TV turn off their sound because they are listening to popular music as they play games - and they don't want that music to show up in their stream, less they get in trouble for copyright violation. Now something like that could land someone in prison if laws like this are passed. It is out-of-proportion, to say the least.
edit on 20pmFri, 20 Feb 2015 15:57:21 -0600kbpmkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)

edit on 20pmFri, 20 Feb 2015 15:58:38 -0600kbpmkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:00 PM
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Stealing is stealing and thieves are thieves. There is no true difference between stealing intellectual property or say shoplifting a DVD. The punishment should be the same.

For those who steal to sell, it should be just like the penalty for fencing or selling stolen property on top of the theft.

Just because some people like to justify stealing by saying it's different does not make it different. It's stealing something of value.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:02 PM
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originally posted by: Blaine91555
Stealing is stealing and thieves are thieves. There is no true difference between stealing intellectual property or say shoplifting a DVD. The punishment should be the same.

Oversimplification at its best, even the law on the books disagrees.



edit on 20-2-2015 by daskakik because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:10 PM
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a reply to: daskakik

It's my opinion.

In my 59+ years on this planet it's not gone unnoticed that dishonest people who do dishonest things cannot be trusted. The law should provide a punishment to discourage it.

IMO the law should mirror the punishment for stealing a tangible item of similar value.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:15 PM
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originally posted by: Blaine91555
In my 59+ years on this planet it's not gone unnoticed that dishonest people who do dishonest things cannot be trusted. The law should provide a punishment to discourage it.

So, don't trust them, what does that have to do with the law saying that it isn't a crime until certain criteria are met?



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:22 PM
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$40 for a music CD in Australia, when they stop ripping people off, they will start paying a fair price for goods. File Sharers aren't the culprits taking money from artists, it's the greedy bastards that get involved after recording and before sales that rip the artists off and the public that pays the extortionists......I mean "price"



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:28 PM
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I understand that studios spend millions of dollars to make a movie, or record labels spend money to create an album, and thus they want to sell them to make a profit. However, imprisoning individuals who download these materials is preposterous, considering the nature of the crime. It makes much more sense to go after the criminal organizations involved in pirating materials, as well as those who make a hefty profit from such practices. But the average citizen who downloads movies or music does not deserve to go to jail, and the punishment definitely does not fit the crime.

It is no secret that there is a massive conspiracy in the United States to fill prisons by any means necessary, and that there are powerful and wealthy individuals with a hand in what has become a business. The privatization of prisons should be outlawed plain and simple. They are essentially playing with human lives for profit and it is just plain wrong, and is probably illegal on multiple levels. But when there is a system in place that allows this to occur, what can one do? There are so many people who are wrongly imprisoned because of a prosecutor or judge who is paid under the table to put people in prison. There was that whole scandal involving a judge not too long ago, who was sentencing juveniles to lengthy detention terms for no reason but to make money for himself, and I'm sure this happens all the time. It is just too ingrained at this point for it to be stopped quickly.

I disagree that the drug war is winding down, and this is partly because of the prison quotas and the profiting from taking the lives away from citizens, whether they are guilty or innocent, and regardless of whether the punishment fits the crime. I mean how is it that a murderer can do less time than a non-violent criminal? It astounds me. And judges have way too much power, considering their personal opinions are allowed to influence their decisions, and the terms that various criminals are sentenced to vary widely. There needs to be a system to stop this type of thing.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:40 PM
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a reply to: Blaine91555



Stealing is stealing and thieves are thieves.


It's an unpopular view and one I agree with despite downloading plenty of torrents.

The crux of the matter, imao, remains undefined as various sides seek to exaggerate their positions.

Media companies sell digital albums at close to the same prices as hard copies with the artists receiving the same royalties...or similar. Hard copies require manufacturing into CDs with packaging costs, transportation and storage bundles on top. Whereas they used to need warehouses and manufactories (business taxes, tenancy contracts, rents or ownership etc), it's become mostly digital and they haven't reduced the prices to reflect lower overheads.

In contrast, some 'pirates' see it all as fair game and ignore the fact that financial reward is as much an incentive as creative expression. The Rolling Stones, Foo Fighters and other *big* artists wouldn't be producing music at the expense of earning a living. It might be okay for some, but success and money is the measure for most people setting out to create great music, books and movies.

We're sort of caught between those who see high prices as an entitlement and those who see free entertainment as entitlement.

The middle ground could be creative artists and media corps receiving fair pay.

Jail, prison and criminal records should be held off until some measure of reasonable fairness is agreed upon.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:45 PM
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a reply to: daskakik

I was giving my opinion on what the law should be and that it should be based on the value of the stolen property or the amount of money involved if it's about selling it for commercial gain?

Simple yes, but reasonable I think. My point with the other is I see no reason to coddle those who steal.

The "criteria" is, if you steal by downloading a movie that sells for $30 in the store, you get the same punishment as if you shop-lifted the BlueRay, which would likely be a slap on the back of the hand. You pirate and sell thousands of dollars worth of copies, you do prison time.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:51 PM
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originally posted by: Blaine91555
I was giving my opinion on what the law should be and that it should be based on the value of the stolen property or the amount of money involved if it's about selling it for commercial gain?

That's the problem with this whole issue, what is theft?

Yes, you think filesharing is theft and I'm not gonna change your mind, so let's not try and just go by the rule of law.


The "criteria" is, if you steal by downloading a movie that sells for $30 in the store, you get the same punishment as if you shop-lifted the BlueRay

The criteria I was talking about was what is already on the books, not your opinion.

edit on 20-2-2015 by daskakik because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 04:54 PM
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originally posted by: Swills
a reply to: AlaskanDad

As a kid in the 80's I used to record music off the radio all the time or from a friends cassette/CD. Did the music industry care then? Would they care now? Did I break any laws hitting record?

Now if I copy a file from the internet I'm a criminal. Lol, this world....


Yes, they cared then and still do. Attempts were made to try and ban dual-deck tape recorders with radio recording functionality, just in the same way they tried to ban video recorders. They managed to push through legislation so that sales of blank tape and video cassettes were taxed a surcharge to pay for nominal lost artist fees and royalties. They tried extending that fee to USB memory sticks and hard disk drives and all other recordable media. Even now, a business like a hairdressers can go bankrupt because they didn't pay their public broadcasters license that allowed them to play the radio or CD's to the public while working.

In the past, the real criminals were rogue market traders selling bootleg video and cassette tapes made using expensive commercial video duplication equipment hidden in old warehouses, and they would be subject to constant never-ending raids. Nobody complained back then because only criminals gangs had enough money to rent space, equipment and distribute the bootleg copies.

A decade ago, the RIAA were going after every single IP address that was running a PTP (point-to-point) file sharing server that was uploading and downloading music, games and movies. Invariably they kept picking on pensioners or single mothers who had an open wi-fi router or PC used by grandchildren and had no idea what they had done wrong. With the internet, the whole bootlegging process using commercial tape-decks has been replaced with file-sharing software running on home PC's.

A compromise position was reached where copying for personal use was permitted, but not for commercial gain. So they would go after the distributors and not the downloaders. So it looks like they are trying to go back to chasing the downloaders.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 05:21 PM
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a reply to: daskakik

I actually know a person who lives, pays his bills and support his kids off royalties from old albums. To think there are no victims is just justifying illegal activity and theft. It is most certainly theft.

If it has no value, why would anyone steal it. They steal because it does have value. Enough value they are willing to take a chance of getting caught.

I'm answering to the OP that yes you should go to prison for File Sharing (stealing intellectual property) in some cases.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 05:34 PM
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originally posted by: Blaine91555
I actually know a person who lives, pays his bills and support his kids off royalties from old albums. To think there are no victims is just justifying illegal activity and theft. It is most certainly theft.

Like I said, no point in going into the personal interpretations of filesharing=theft.


If it has no value, why would anyone steal it. They steal because it does have value. Enough value they are willing to take a chance of getting caught.

If that satisfies your need for logic, then have at it.


edit on 20-2-2015 by daskakik because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 05:47 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

I'd agree that this needs to be defined better. Until it is though they are left with what they have on the books.

I don't see as a valid part of the argument that studio's make too much or pay the artists too little. That's something for the industry and the artists / unions to hash out and has nothing really to do with the theft. I've never seen that argument as having any merit when people use it. The fact a company is rich makes no difference in my mind as to whether it's theft or not.

Entertainment is about the purest form of capitalism. If those in the industry were as progressive as they pretend the major artists would insist that they be paid less and more go to others, like the studio musicians or whoever. But, that is another topic.

As with most laws I think the judges need the leeway to decide what punishment fits. The punishment for each case could be better decided by a judge, rather than having set in stone laws with fixed sentencing.

If a kid gets out of control downloading music and it run's into the thousands of dollars or even more, that does need to be a different thing than someone pirating to sell. I think though that when they define laws to thoroughly it ties the courts hands too much.



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 05:48 PM
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Myself, 15 years ago I was expecting the software companies to lead the jail for copyrights infringement lobbying, so I switched to Linux.

It would seem now it may be time to embrace indy bands, and read more used paperback books rather than watching movies.
edit on 20-2-2015 by AlaskanDad because: maybe to may be



posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 05:52 PM
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originally posted by: AlaskanDad
Myself, 15 years ago I was expecting the software companies to lead the jail for copyrights infringement lobbying, so I switched to Linux.

It would seem now it may be time to embrace indy bands, and read more used paperback books rather than watching movies.

I think that that is what this streaming trend is about. If I download a movie I might not even watch it and if I do it's almost never more than once. May as well watch it streamed and avoid the theft label slapped on your IP address.



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