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Danish Anti-Piracy Organization Bills P2P Users 682

Posted by michael
from the junk-mail dept.
faaaz writes "The danish anti-piracy organisation Antipiratgruppen has billed approximately 150 p2p users an amount of up to $14,000 each for sharing copyrighted material. The organisation says 'Pay up, or we'll sue!'" There's also a Reuters article.
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Danish Anti-Piracy Organization Bills P2P Users

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  • Ex-wife (Score:5, Funny)

    by johnraphone (624518) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:53PM (#4763035) Homepage
    Sounds alot like my ex-wife.
  • by targo (409974) <<moc.liamtoh> <ta> <t_ograt>> on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:54PM (#4763049) Homepage
    I mean, going after those who actually possess and distribute something that they have not legally purchased? Sounds legitimate to me.
    • Yea but who are these guys?
      is it M$ thats chraging the pirates?
      is it adobe, or macromedia, or whatever company who's software is being distributed?
      no.
      its just some company who's supposedly against piracy, who is gonna make a profit off of piracy.
      will adobe or M$ or anyone else see that money?
      i highly doubt it.
      all they are doing is basically going around and saying pay us, or pay us and some lawyer to protect your ass.

      definately not what we've been asking for
      • No it isn't (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Jumperalex (185007) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:26PM (#4763361)
        The only problem is that they are NOT doing that. As it even states in the article (RTFA?) there appears to be no proof that the songs on those computers are illegal (ie they own the actual CD. They also make a mention that there doesn't appear to be proof that the files displayed on the screen are actually songs. That is of course a very "lawyer" thing to say but it DOES matter in at least US courts; but it isn't like it would have been too hard to at least check a few of the songs and try to get the judge to believe that if 20 out of 200 songs are real than the other 180 are real.

        But the important thing here is that they do NOT have any proof that those people are in possesion of the songs illegally. To my knowledge there is no law against posting your songs up on a network. [wait for the whole point] They could of course make a case that you are putting them up there with the express intent of facilitating piracy (ie Napster) but that isn't what the people are being charged ($$$) for since it would be a criminal charge not something they could send you a bill for.

        The individuals could of course say that it was simply the easiest way for them to make their own, legally obtained music available to themselves when not at home.

        No this is not what Slashdot has wanted all along. What we have wanted all along is for them to bust people who are DOWNLOADING / possesiing songs they don't have the licence to; versus the simple act of posting a legal song. Of course the "posters" who do so for profit should be shut down because no matter if they own a real licence to the music they do not have the right to distribute. That is the discriminator: you have no way to deny inent to distribute if you are engaging in the business of selling the data. Remember the rules of logic and debate in the court room are very specific compared to a conversation in a bar or a chat room. Afterall how do you think OJ got off??? :)

        Back to the point ... what I said above would include NOT busting me for downloading Metallica, Ride The Lightening because I do own that CD but it is scratched beyond repair. I legally own the CD and I have every legal right to have the song. The only gray area is who is allowed to provide me with the replacement data. It would be understandable for the publisher to want to charge me for the costs invovled with providing me the data again but certainly NOT to charge me for another licence. The key would be once I were to become in possesion of that data again, unless they observed me getting it they would have no way to tell if I got it from my own CD or someone elses, and it wouldn't matter if they did observe because they would have to prove I denied them revenue which I did not since I am in possesion of a legal licence. So far I know of no case law or legislation that would actually make me quilty of anything if I were to get a copy of that data from another legally licenced data source (aka friends CD).

        To put it simply ... we want our FAIR USE RIGHTS facilitated (not expanded) by technology not abridged by it.

        That is what Slashdot has wanted ... or at least my interpretation of the VAST myriad of opinions that should NOT all be lumped together as, "Isn't that what SLASHDOT has wanted."

        • Re:No it isn't (Score:5, Informative)

          by Rick the Red (307103) <Rick.The.Red@nospAM.gmail.com> on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:41PM (#4763478) Journal
          No this is not what Slashdot has wanted all along. What we have wanted all along is for them to bust people who are DOWNLOADING / possesiing songs they don't have the licence to; versus the simple act of posting a legal song.
          Did you RTFA? They are going after the people who downloaded the files, not those who served them. The servers could be in a country with no copyright laws (and thus legal); they don't care about the servers, they're going after the downloaders. Hell, for all we know these clowns ran the servers (would that be entrapment?)

          Of course, as others have pointed out: 1) These guys are not the copyright holders and thus have no standing to demand payment, and 2) They have no proof that these are illegal copies. But what do they care? If I wasn't encumbered with ethics, I might try this scam myself. Then again, if I wasn't encumbered with ethics I'd be spamming you all with ads to my porn sites.

    • How do THEY know that the person hasn't legally purchased the CD? Do they register all CD purchases over there?

      I don't like the idea of any anti-piracy group assuming that I'm guilty prior to a fair hearing by billing me.

      • How do THEY know that the person hasn't legally purchased the CD?

        They don't, and it does not matter. The person does not own the copyright so he cannot legally distribute the material.

        By the way, I guess both articles got some basic facts wrong. I don't think they are going to be sued for downloading but for offering copyrighted works. IMHO, this is what the **AA should have been doing all along instead of trying to block new technology.

        And to answer all those comments that the anti piracy group cannot know what the files contain and should not have the right to set the fines themselves: You are right!

        Just consider this fine as a generous offer. If you think it is unfair, then let the police investigae exactly what you have shared, and a court decide what you should pay.

        It will be interesting to see where all this will end up...
    • Yes, I hope every single Danish citizen participates liberally in P2P file sharing networks. It'd be fun to watch the country dissolve into a police state in which normal human behavior is supressed so that a stupid obsolete law can be enforced by the state. It's wonderful to watch, really.

      Every time you remember a word you've read, you've violated copyright you know. We must extract those patterns from your brain cells after you've finished that book. Can't have you walking around with an illegal copy in your head.

    • by twitter (104583) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @08:05PM (#4764084) Homepage Journal
      It's true that I wanted normal copyright laws enforced rather than the creation of newer more restrictive laws. This represents neither. According to the Register Article, this FreeBooter group is charging people for having downloaded the files reather than uploading them. Mark the difference. Publishing is what violates copyright, owning it does not. Just where the line between sharing and publishing is is another matter. Is this where our new laws is taking us?

      Let's take a trip down memory lane. Me making a copy of a CD for a friend technically violates the copyright, but only the dumbest and most opperesive states would bother to enforce it. What monetary damage was done by my "perfect" seleveless, artless copy for my friend? Generally zero as my friend would never have bought the thing in the first place but has an inferior copy which might lead him to buy the "real" thing. We could walk further down that road to tapes where courts upheld your right to do just that. We could go even further back before acid paper and comercial pulp printing and find much weaker copyright laws. We could go back even further and find that for the majority of human history writers expected no finicial reward for their efforts and considered it an honor when others would publish their work.

      What I see comming is some awful invasive world where others think they have a right to search my personal effects at will. They have screen shots of the victim's computers? They must have been windoze users [min.net], but the precident is disturbing. Suppose my ISP is pressured to not allow connection from "insecure" platforms that do not allow such spying? Well, screw that. I don't go places where people treat me like a criminal. I'm not intersted in RIAA music, I never ran Napster, nor have I ever fooled around with newer music sharing junk. I want to share my own work, not that of others. These jackasses seek to prevent others from publishing their own music. If they get away with it, soon other forms of publishing will be prevented. We are on the road to Tycho.

  • Considering that P2P programs like KazAA and others allow people to share huge amounts of copyrighted material, I'm surprised that they are only charging around $14,000 each. The amount of lost sales caused by each user improving the "quality" of files on P2P networks alone and encouraging others to pirate must be phenominal.

    If I were these guys, I'd consider myself getting away with a slap on the wrist.

  • Whoa... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by c0dedude (587568) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:54PM (#4763054)
    If this organization isn't government sponsored, this sounds a lot like blackmail. I mean, pay or we'll sue? Who'll they have to go to? The big record companies, so pay up or we'll turn you over. And what guarantees does anyone have they won't turn around and sue anyway?
    • Re:Whoa... (Score:2, Funny)

      by MSZ (26307)
      And what guarantees does anyone have they won't turn around and sue anyway?

      The "word of honor"? Ah I forgot, these are probably lawyers... can't expect that to work.
  • by edashofy (265252) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:54PM (#4763055)
    Okay, so assuming this extorti...I mean apparently-legal action goes through, who gets the money? Is this anti-piracy group going to go out and distribute the monies to the appropriate copyright holders? Who decided what price to set for the various downloaded artifacts? Certainly there's a significant markup here.

    Assuming a CD has, on average, 15 songs, and you can get a CD for $12 at Best Buy, $2.67--that's a 250% markup on each song.

    And, who is going to ensure that paying these folks will prevent future prosecution by the copyright holders? Do I get to keep the songs and movies that I downloaded if I pay up?
  • Well.. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dj28 (212815) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:54PM (#4763057)
    This is exactly what the majority of slashdotters have been screaming for. Go after the abusers rather than the technology. It'll be interesting to see what the comments on this thread will be like. Let this hypocrisy begin... now.
    • it's not hypocrisy (Score:2, Interesting)

      by kilonad (157396)
      It's not hypocrisy in this case. If the Danish RIAA were going after the users themselves, that's fine. But what's going on here would be like the BSA (business software alliance, not boy scouts) going after some pirates, saying "pay up or we'll sue" but never really saying what they'll do with that money, and charging the pirates $500 for each copy of windows downloaded and $1500 for each copy of ms office.

      That having been said, I do enjoy watching slashdotters squirm in their pants when accused of hipocrisy. ;)

    • Re:Well.. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jugalator (259273) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:11PM (#4763235) Journal
      Yeah, we've all been screaming for random organizations being able to force ISP's to do what only the police use to have the power to - make them publicize their customer information. Yes, "force", since this is never done willingly by the ISP's since it gives them very bad PR when the average user find out that they tend to give away their customer info like that.

      My problem is that I don't see how they suddenly got this power without having the police involved.

      Also, as The Register mentions, this can surely backfire:

      "Also, the labels, movie studios and video game makers have increasingly distributed bogus files on P2P networks that resemble the genuine article, down to file size and title, to frustrate would-be downloaders."

      From the antipiracy bureaus, I hope for their own sake that they brought CRC checksums of each file with them and that they can connect those to the actual transfer of the p2p user.
    • Certainly, go after the abusers. But don't expect to tread on law and common sense while you're at it!

      4 of my friends and I getting together and doing this in the USA would get us all thrown in jail for fraud. Why? Because I don't have any affiliation with the owners of the material that is being infringed. Sure, I could go out and gather information on everyone who is downloading or offering for download copyrighted information, but to actually use that information requires the support of the coypright holder. Basically, I can't sue you for infringing Eminem's copyright, only Eminem's label can bring that suit because they are the copyright holder.

      So, when these "university students" gathered all this infringement data, the first thing they should have done is contact the copyright holders to see what the copyright holders wanted done about it... Another alternative would have been contacting the proper authorities to have them bring criminal charges if any are warranted. Threatening the infringers before taking either of those actions is not "policing copyright". It's something else entirely called "extortion". Basically these guys are saying "We've got the goods on you, pay up or we'll tell." Last I checked, extortion carried a worse criminal penalty than copyright infringement.

      This isn't to say money couldn't be made by policing copyright. This very group could have done something much closer to legal by contacting copyright holders worried about infringement and getting them to bankroll just such an evidence gathering service. The data they've already gathered could even have ethically been offered free as a sample...
    • This is exactly what the majority of slashdotters have been screaming for. Go after the abusers rather than the technology. It'll be interesting to see what the comments on this thread will be like. Let this hypocrisy begin... now.

      Let the correction of misguided statements like this begin ... now

      Show me the proof. Show me something beyond filenames and IP addresses, which is what both articles appear to be implying is the main source of evidence for billing these people. Filenames alone don't cut it. If I'm missing something else here in these articles, by all means, someone correct me, but I have not seen any definitive statements that anyone looked at the actual digital content.

      I am not naive enough to think that NOBODY was pirating copyrighted material. But before you go convicting someone without a trial (which is what this organization is essentially doing by simply billling them). Screenshots of filenames on people's drives constitutes proof? Bullshit.

      Here, how about this? I'll create a directory on my drive. Let's call it "/home/stwrtpj/al_qaeda_plans". Now let's copy some files in there from other directories, but lets give these files name like, oh, I don't know "plot_to_kill_george_w", "destroy_america", "smite_the_infidels", aaaaand "plans_to_blow_up_hoover_dam". Now let's take a screenshot of Gnome's file manager proudly displaying those filenames. So does this mean I'm a terrorist? Does this give anyone the right to pursue civil or criminal charges against me? No. "plot_to_kill_george_w" could contain a freaking grocery list for all you know.

      So, no, Slashdotters are not going to be hypocrites for the most part. I for one am not. Show me the proof of what they are allegedly doing and I'll be the first to agree that some restitution is in order. Until then, all you have are filenames and supposition.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:54PM (#4763061)
    When I watch Buchanan and Press, and see Press describe mp3 as no bigger a crime than not stopping at a stop sign, I realize it's finally beginning to hit the public at how much power RIAA is getting. People are getting sick of it, and if RIAA doesn't watch it, they'll find a lot of young people taking office and changing laws.
  • Lol ... (Score:2, Flamebait)

    by SuperDuG (134989)
    Okay ummm I would just respond simply to this bill

    BRING IT

    Where's my services rendered, where's my product delivered, and where's the sales agreement which was signed that justifies you billing me?

    They've got a term for this in America, we here like to call it extortion.

    • Re:Lol ... (Score:3, Informative)

      by Loki_1929 (550940)
      Settlments in lieu of lawsuits are quite common and perfectly legal in the US, and most other countries I'd suspect.

  • by mattypants (169026) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:56PM (#4763081)
    Before any of you americans start quoting your constitution, please remember that this is Denmark and the law is different there. Why not wait and see what happens first, eh?
  • Idea... (Score:2, Troll)

    by Loki_1929 (550940)
    Maybe it would be a good idea for them to sell the content they've downloaded on eBay [ebay.com] to raise funds for paying the bills or hiring a lawyer... Yeah, I'm sure that'd solve all their problems.

  • This is dangerous (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GreyWolf3000 (468618) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:57PM (#4763088) Journal
    This may set a precedent for allowing big companies to define something as "stealing" and then send a bill. Consider a bill coming from mail.com for blocking their pop-up ads, or from the Cable TV company for not watching commercials (they DO know when you change channels and for how long).

    How 'bout I send a bill to Kazaa for 'stealing' information about me that is used to provide ads that bother the shit about me? Oh wait, I can't threaten them with legal action like they can.

    • by dj28 (212815) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:07PM (#4763191)
      What? That's how the legal system works. You don't have to pay the bill. You have a choice of either paying the bill for the music you are accused of pirating, or you can take it to court and make them prove that you pirated it. This is no different than a company or individual accusing you of vandalizing property, and then sending you a bill for the damages with a letter attached saying, "Pay up, or we'll sue."
  • Body of article (Score:2, Informative)

    by magiluke (629097)
    By Bernhard Warner, Reuters, 11/26/02

    LONDON -- In a unique crackdown on illegal file-sharing, a Danish anti-piracy group mailed invoices to alleged pirates demanding compensation for downloading copyrighted materials off the Internet, an attorney for the group said on Tuesday.

    The Danish Anti Piracy Group (APG) identified 150 alleged pirates asking them to pay a combined $133,600, said Morten Lindegaard, an attorney for the group. The biggest offenders face a bill of $13,360.

    "We are demanding full payment for the use of these copyrighted materials," Lindegaard said. The APG has worked with the Danish branch of music trade body International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, to crack down on online piracy. The decision to seek compensation for downloads opens up a controversial new front in copyright holders' ongoing campaign to curb consumer piracy on the Internet, a phenomenon blamed for a decline in CD sales and upswing in the free trade of video games, computer software and video games.

    The tactic is drawing protests from some technical and legal experts who insist that without the violators' computer it's impossible to prove the existence of copyright violations. Others question the size of the bills.

    "In this case, we're talking about compensation for the damage the Anti Piracy Group claims its members have suffered. It's the courts that decide the amount of compensation to be paid due to copyright infringement, not the victim." said Martin von Haller Groenbaek, a Danish attorney specialising in IT law.

    KAZAA, EDONKEY USERS TARGETED

    In each case, the Danish users were accused of downloading copyrighted materials from file-sharing networks Kazaa and eDonkey, two popular so-called peer-to-peer (P2P) networks in Denmark, Lindegaard said.

    Lindegaard, 29, and his helpers -- four Danish university students -- developed a software program that monitored Danish file swappers on the two P2P networks, honing down to the users' Internet Protocol, or IP, address to confirm they were logged on from Denmark.

    The program also traced the files shared and the time at which they were downloaded. After reviewing the evidence, a judge ordered the users' Internet service providers to pass on the violators' billing addresses.

    In each case, the alleged pirate first learned they were being investigated when they received a bill in the post, which began arriving late last week.

    A spokesman for the Danish Consumer Council said they received roughly 50 complaints from the fined individuals. After an initial investigation, the council determined the APG complied with local data protection laws, the spokesman added.

    STUDENTS, PROFESSIONALS FINGERED

    Lindegaard said the accused range from high school students to professionals. They downloaded materials ranging from Eminem songs to the latest Star Wars film to the video game, "Grand Theft Auto."

    "The top 10 computer games, music and movies -- it's all there," said Lindegaard.

    The alleged pirates were billed based on the amount of files they shared. For a single music file, they were charged $2.67; $26.70 for a movie and approximately $50 for a video game, Lindegaard said. But technical experts threw into question the fairness of the bill, pointing to the fact that copyrighted material from time to time is distributed for free across the Internet in a legitimate manner.

    For example, major record labels allow users to download select songs from new album releases off the Web. The tracks typically expire after a period, but in some cases the deactivated track may still appear on a users' hard drive.

    Also, the labels, movie studios and video game makers have increasingly distributed bogus files on P2P networks that resemble the genuine article, down to file size and title, to frustrate would-be downloaders.

    "How do you know each of these copyrighted materials is illegal? That's the big issue here," said Urs Gattiker, a professor of technology and innovation management at Aalborg University in Denmark.

  • by MSZ (26307)
    ...not the artists. Why should they get any? Like in Napster case...

    Also it's interesting as the people in The Register note, that proving, even with the lower standard of civil action, that particular user had real movies or who exactly set up p2p on particular computer might be a little problematic.

    Looks like a scare tactics to me.
  • by blenderfish (156901) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:57PM (#4763096)
    ...now we know what Step 2 is.

    Step 3: Profit!
  • by Rev.LoveJoy (136856) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:57PM (#4763097) Homepage Journal
    That these users do not already own the material on the up and up?

    The article says that they are billing by file name. This method has its own, shall we say, limitations. I would imagine it would be embarrasing to take the p2p users to court only to have them show up with recitps for the material the rightly own.

    Cheers,
    -- RLJ

    • Sure, I may have purchased some CD lately (say, Bob Dylan's latest), but the act of purchasing it does not give me the right to share the MP3s I rip from it with the world via a P2P program.

      Sure, there's the people who will respond with "Well, I can make a copy for a friend or my spouse can't I?" I suppose, but that sort of copying isn't near of the scale of distribution that offering your MP3s on Kazaa gives you.
  • The article on theregister says they have to pay for "illegally downloading copyright material". The article on slashdot says "for sharing copyrighted material". The article on reuters says also for downloading material.

    So what?! Why put funny things in the slashdot article?!
  • Who's copyrights? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by pknoll (215959)
    I'm assuming Antipiratgruppen are the copyright holders, or acting on their legal behalf. Right?

    Otherwise their actions are about as threatening as the BSA's. Right?

  • $16 per CD and about $60 per full length movie How much for each p0rn JPG?
  • 1) the evidence used are screen shots (can be faked)
    2) the file names could be misleading (i.e., the file's contents not illegal)
    3) which family member used the computer?

    Basically, they are saying pay us $60 bucks. Otherwise, they will take you to court.

    However, if they take you to court, you might win!

    This is like me sending random letters asking to be PayPal'd or expect to see me in court! If people comply... well then thanks!

    Which by the way would be like holding people up for ransom?

    Maybe this story [slashdot.org] affected the Danishes, eh?

  • Can they go after me for merely having this stuff availbe on my computer, or do they have to go after the people who have downloaded it? If im plying my car stereo and someone comes by and makes a tape of it, its not my fault, is it?
  • by Cipster (623378) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:58PM (#4763113)
    Unless they had actual physical proof that the file in question was the copyrighted material I cannot see how they could sue them. Screenshots are a joke (give me 30 min and Photoshop and I could make a credible screenie of Kazaa with anything I would want on it). Also all they have is a file name on the screen. Just because it's labeled Adobe Photoshop it is not necessarily that (the amount of mislabeled stuff on p2p is pretty signinficant).
  • So, if someone pays the bills, he can then legally digitally own everything he got billed for! With no EULAs in sight, presumably.

  • what if..... (Score:5, Informative)

    by ejaw5 (570071) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @05:59PM (#4763117)
    In the instructions made to install Kazaa (Full)without adware (cydoor, et al), one of the things to do was to delete the ~/KaZaa/db folder and replace that with a dummy file by opening notepad and saving a blank file as "db" (no extention). As a result of this, all downloaded files in (~/Kazaa/My Shared Files) would appear to have "failed" in Kazaa, and the downloaded files would remain in their *.dat files. It would also NOT include them in your list of files shared. You'd then have to rename the files with extentsions before exiting Kazaa or else you'd lose them.

    So...if you want to download on P2P you could probably take these measures and be okay
    • Re:what if..... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by pcardoso (132954)
      It's all ok, but there's a flaw..

      Download the files from where? Assuming most people did this, there would be nowhere to download the files from, as noone would be sharing their files.
    • Re:what if..... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by suwain_2 (260792) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @09:44PM (#4764629) Journal
      What would be more intersting, IMHO, would be if the files were 'encrypted' -- it just has to be some absurdly simple encryption. However, to install the encoder/decoder, you have to agree to a list of terms that include agreeing to not pursue (or threaten to pursue) legal action against anyone seen on the network, or attempting to obtain any information about them without their permission.

      In theory, you can then have the RIAA arrested for violating the DMCA, or at least try to get your case thrown out. (The "evidence" that you had the MP3 is inadmissible if they obtain it illegally, is it not?)

      And if they convince the judge that my idea is total crap, haven't they just set a precedent weakening the DMCA? Might as well fight fire with fire. :)

  • Tough situation (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mao che minh (611166) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:03PM (#4763161) Journal

    The names of the files can be rather incriminating, since it isn't likely that a file named "U2-Sunday Bloody Sunday.mp3" is anything but that song, by that artist. Coupled with the fact that these users probably have hundreds of similarly named files, it won't be easy to dissuade a jury of your peers that you were not illegally obtaining copy righted music. Yet, with this being the only evidence that they have to go by, a defending lawyer might be able to prove that there is reasonable doubt - especially if the files are no longer present on the culprits system at the time of a law enforcemnet raid (if that ever happens over there).

    The most obvious answer is to stop pirating. A person can come up with all of the self serving rationalizations that they want, like "I wasn't going to ever pay for it anways" or "the industry charges too much", but in the end, you obtained material that is explicitly protected and must be obtained through a legitimate sale in an illegal manner. Pay up.

  • Ridiculous.. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by xchino (591175) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:04PM (#4763175)
    This is completely ridiculous. If any of the victims of this fold and just pay, shame on them. IINAL, esp not a danish one, so I don't know how the court systems work over there, but I have a feeling this same case in America would be thrown out of court. Unless they can explicitly prove they were sharing data with users who did not already have a license to the data (which should be protected under Fair Use). And unless they have subpoeniad the receivers of said data, they have no case at all. However if I had been one of the victims of this suit, I think it would have caused me severe emotional distress, and slandered my good name. At least that's what my counter suit
    would claim.
  • Blank mp3s (Score:5, Funny)

    by Zemran (3101) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:06PM (#4763185) Homepage Journal
    I think this is the most brilliant piece of marketting yet. First they jam up P2P with blank mp3s to put people off using P2P and then they send those people a bill for accepting the blank mp3. $10 for a loop of nothing?

    Do they have a copyright on the blank loop? If not I think I should hurry up and copyright it :)
  • Good on them! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Noose For A Neck (610324) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:07PM (#4763190)
    I'm glad to see that somebody out there is going to punish the P2P abusers. Pirates are giving P2P a bad name.

    For example, I'm in a small, unsigned punk band. We distribute our music over P2P because it is a lot cheaper than getting webspace to host stuff and paying for bandwidth. But right now, we have to compete with all these ultra-shitty, ultra-popular bands like Metallica and Jon Bon Jovi for the eyes and ears of P2P users. On top of that, it gives us a bad name. People look at me funny when I say we distribute our music on KaZaA, like I'm some kind of criminal.

    When we clean out the abusers and criminals from P2P and let the real people, the small-time, unsigned artists, get exposure, then we will have won. And I won't shed a single tear for these people who are fucking it up for the rest of us.

    • Re:Good on them! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by pdboddy (620164) <`pdboddy' `at' `gmail.com'> on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:43PM (#4763503) Homepage Journal
      I hate to burst your bubble a bit...

      I understand your sentiment about people mucking up P2P with big name bands and such. I know it's hard to be a small, unsigned artist.

      But if you think the recording and movie industries will allow P2P to stay free, and unhindered, you have another think coming, hard and fast.

      Even if the P2P networks were totally clean, and only had legal files to be downloaded, I doubt the recording and movie industries would allow them to live free. Do you think they want people to be able to find you and listen to you without their help? Numerous big names (Tom Petty being one) have tried to distribute their latest singles via P2P, only to have their ideas squashed by their labels. If the big names can get bitchslapped, do you think the little ones won't?

      RIAA and MPAA are going to slowly hunt down and kill the P2P networks, and replace them with their own, craptacular, pay P2P networks

      End result? Your band's still out in the cold.
    • Re:Good on them! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Spy Hunter (317220) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @07:13PM (#4763766) Journal
      You think anybody would be ON Kazaa, etc if it wasn't for "ultra-shitty, ultra-popular bands like Metallica and Jon Bon Jovi"? Think again. Nobody would be on Kazaa if all it had was "small, unsigned punk bands". And with good reason - most of them are nothing special (which is why they are small and unsigned). Nothing personal against your band in particular, you might be great. But the fact is that there are oppportunities for good bands, and bands with nothing new to offer will stay small and unsigned.
    • by corby (56462) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @07:16PM (#4763791)
      ...Jon Bon Jovi for the eyes and ears of P2P users. On top of that, it gives us a bad name.

      I hear you, dude. It's almost like Bon Jovi's been shot in the heart, and you're to blame.
  • do they get to keep their downloads or is this like a fine that one pays to a court?
  • by afidel (530433)
    Keep copyright law where it should be, a civil matter. Why the heck the goverment thinks copyright protection should be worthy of arrest let alone jail time is beyond me. In most cases copyright infringement is just that infringment on someones rights as sole distributer, not theft, as there is no loss of goods to the victim. This strikes me as being the appropriate response to the matter.
  • by Drestin (82768) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:08PM (#4763214)
    Ahh... the hipocracy begins to spue. I thought that P2P had legitimate purposes and that all the legitimate users would love it if the nasty abusers doing illegals things were punished and removed so that nothing would soil the pure clean image of P@P for ... um... legit uses, if we can think of some.

    BUT, putting that aside. Some points:

    Too all those "They can't make me pay cause I didn't sign anything" or "Go ahead, sue me for not paying the bill.": You guys missed the point. This bill is an option. They are being nice to you. They are saying; OK, look, you're busted and, deep inside, you know you are busted. We are giving you a chance to avoid court and make this go away as if you were legit. Just pay this bill and you won't go to court. Oh, don't agree? Want to deny it? Won't pay? Fine. We'll take you to court. Oh... NOT for not paying this bill. You are right, you didn't sign or receive a service for THIS bill. Nope, we're taking you to court for the copyrighted material you have stole and are redistributing.

    Too all the photoshop wannabe's with this: we could fake those screenshots. Do you honestly (stupidly) think that all they have are some dot-matrix printouts of some screen dumps? Think people. They probably had notarized witnesses present while capturing the data, or cops or the equivilent - for one. And they probably DID download the files from your computer and categloged them neatly with the IP your ISP DHCPed to you along with the records from the ISP where you dialed up from or which IP they gave to what MAC address on who's cable modem or what IP went to what DSL caller.

    People - listen. This is not a troll or flamebait. Remember something
    If you are not doing anything illegal - you have nothing to worry about!

    Obviously legal users of P2P networks aren't concerned, they are happy. All those bandwidth hogs trading illegal stuff are being forced off. This is a GOOD thing remember? You have said you actually want this right? How could you possibly complain?

    Before replying, think: only the thieves have anything to worry about - and you aren't a theif are you?

    • by blincoln (592401) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:23PM (#4763337) Homepage Journal
      If you are not doing anything illegal - you have nothing to worry about!

      Yeah, because legal systems the world over are infallible and cost defendants nothing to participate in. Especially where large multinational corporations and their pseudo-police are concerned.
      • Yeah, because legal systems the world over are infallible and cost defendants nothing to participate in.

        They made a mistake and handed you a "bill" that doesn't show your system but someone elses? Well, then - don't pay it. And if they try to sue you, you prove that it wasn't your system they are saying it is and you sue them for wrongful prosecution and get your attorney fees back and more.

        Again - common sense. They probably spotted a LOT more people distributing illegal files than they handed out. a ***LLLOOOTTT*** more - but they picked the creme of the crop. Probably picking those guys with fixed IPs who had thousands of songs that they actually downloaded dozens from on more than one occasion with a room full of witnesses to swear to it.

        They aren't chasing Joe Junior with an 8-mile soundtrack song - they are after teh guys with 1000s of *obvious* bootlegs that they can be 99+% certain of. They don't want this to backfire either so they are only going to pursue those they know they'll "win."

        Now - if you KNOW that they are handing you a screen shot of your own system - are you going to actually fight this? Could you be that stupid? They hope a few do, I'm sure, so they can make examples of them.

        I can imagine someone who says, "Screw this, I ain't paying" and who really is doing something illegal. They sue him and then tell him, ya know where we gave you the chance to get outta this at under $3 a song? Guess what - it's $250,000 PER Each violiation and lesse, in the 3 months we monitored you we saw at least 10,000 downloads so... you got a few billion laying around?

        I feel that at some point one of these music organizations is going to find some sucker with a penguin on his T-shirt and 30,000 MP3s on a P2P who, even through he knows he is caught red handed, will fight it in the forum of the EFF and Slashdot etc. And THAT will be the guy that the big time lawyers will say, ok, lets his him with the big one. Slam this guy and sue him for more than he's worth x 1000 and lets see how many others suddenly decide to fight.

        Think of it - you are a burgler. You go and steal something. The police show up at your door and whip out a video tape showing you actually doing it with your face smiling into the camera as clear as day. They tell you: "either you pay for what you stole and we completely forget all about you, or we throw your ass in jail without any plea bargin" - tell me which burgler isn't going to whip out his wallet and pay on the spot. He'll even ask them to take paypal!

    • I agree with you for the most part but the bit in bold.

      A lot of innocent people are in prison right now. A lot of the people on death row right now did not commit the crime for which they will die. (This is a fact not my opinion- DNA evidence has proven this to be the case again and again.)

      I'm all for punishing people who violate the law but we must always watch the watchmen- for they are human and prone to fall.

      .
  • Hurrah! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mythosaz (572040) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:21PM (#4763313)
    Let me be one of the first hundred people or so to say, "GOOD!" For far too long every post where anyone dares say anything that even remotely links P2P and piracy is instantly modded down and disagreed with under the guise of freedom.

    Well, it's not about freedom. It's mostly about stealing music and movies.

    People stole stuff, or at a minimum, engaged in the redistribution of it. Those people should pay.

    Break the law, get in trouble. Oh, and don't explain why it shouldn't be against the law, and how it's better for record companies for us to share music. That's a rationalisation of the sickest kind. It's still illegal, and if the people who do it could spent one tenth the time they spend stealing things actually trying to change the law and they'd get it changed.

    Nah, I'll keep stealing stuff until someone busts me.
  • Here's a question (Score:3, Interesting)

    by liquidsin (398151) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:21PM (#4763322) Homepage
    IANADL (D is for Danish) but I thought theft was a criminal matter, not civil (especially in the ammount of $14,000). And if you just pay the bill, do you get to keep everything? If not, then it's not really a bill...more like a fine. Seems like they're trying to get the best of both worlds here...they want your money for things you allegedly owe them money for, but they don't want you to keep what you've now paid for. And what if someone disputes the validitiy of the screen caps?

  • by kmactane (18359) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:35PM (#4763435) Homepage

    I seem to recall that the FSF [fsf.org] can only sue a GPL violator if the violation is on a program that the FSF has the copyright on [fsf.org]. The general rule, then , would seem to be that only a copyright holder can sue for copyright violations.

    So, who the hell is this anti-piracy group? And what gives them the right to sue on behalf of George Lucas, Eminem, and Rockstar Games?

    If the Anti Pirat Gruppen had used their (admittedly quite reasonable-sounding) tools simply to report the violations back to Lucas/Eminem/Rockstar et al., and then let them sue, I'd have little problem with this.

    As it is, though, I can't help but wonder what Anti Pirat Gruppen is planning to do with the money. This sounds sort of like if I saw a burglar breaking into my neighbor's window, and I said, "Hey, buddy... tell you what, how about you climb back out that window now, and pay me $100, and I won't call the cops on you."

    I wonder if Lucas and the others have heard about this... and what they're planning to do to Anti Pirat Gruppen as a result.

    • Exactly.. I'm 99% sure the artists won't get a dime from these bills. They mention Star Wars Ep 2 as one of the movies shared, but I don't think the APG will pay Mr Lucas anything personally. They're essentially living off the value of copyrighted material, and there should really be some law prohibiting this.

      I would surely understand this case better if the copyright holder sued.
  • by Alex Belits (437) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:41PM (#4763481) Homepage
    If they are civil, how an organization that is not in any way related to the original copyright infringement can seek any damages? Their lawsuit would be pointless, they have to go to original copyright holders and ask them to sue -- something that is very unlikely to succeed being a horrendous waste of money.

    If criminal, "anti-pirates" have obtained an information about alleged crime, and withholding it from authorities and demanding payment from alleged perpetrators to continue witholding it. Sounds like they have already commited a crime of extortion.

    I am not sure if Danish law works the same way, however those things are usually pretty similar everywhere.
  • by jratcliffe (208809) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:42PM (#4763491)
    A lot of folks seem to be hung up on the "how do they know that "Half-Life.zip" is actually Half-Life, the game. Fact is, it doesn't matter. Under US law (yes, I know, it's Denmark, so YMMV, but I'm pretty sure the same holds), if you buy a kilo of powdered sugar from an undercover cop, you've just committed a drug crime, so long as there's reasonable evidence to indicate that you _believed_ that you were buying cocaine. By the same token, you'd have a hard time making the argument that you like to download files entitled real_slim_shady.mp3 because you like the name, but had no intention of actually getting an Eminem song.
  • by Aliks (530618) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:42PM (#4763493)
    a) I listen to a friends legitimate CD at his house

    b) I borrow the friends CD and play it on my player at my house

    c) My friend takes a backup copy of his CD and lends it to me to listen to

    d) A stranger gives me a CD which is a backup copy of a CD he bought

    e) I download a CD from Kazaa, no money is paid

    Which of these is illegal?
    Which is a copyright infringement?

    I just want to know the score
    • In Hillary's world....

      a) I listen to a friends legitimate CD at his house

      Unathorized public exhibition/performance, stricly prohibited

      b) I borrow the friends CD and play it on my player at my house

      Unauthorized distribution, stricly prohibited

      c) My friend takes a backup copy of his CD and lends it to me to listen to

      Unauthorized reproduction, unathorized distribution, strictly prohibited

      d) A stranger gives me a CD which is a backup copy of a CD he bought

      Unauthorized reproduction, unathorized distribution, strictly prohibited

      e) I download a CD from Kazaa, no money is paid

      Unauthorized reproduction, unathorized distribution, unauthorized public performance, trafficing in circumvention device, strictly prohibited

  • Hypocrisy! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Joe Tie. (567096) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:46PM (#4763527)
    I would just like to quickly point out what should be obvious. There is no slashdot party line.

    Some people here don't like microsoft, others do. Some will be heading on out to lord of the rings, others will be sitting at home boycotting the movie industry. And yes some people download mp3s of copyrighted material, others don't. That some posters here feel one way on a subject does not make me a hypocrite for acting in ways contrary to their feelings.
  • Pay for nothing? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anenga (529854) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:47PM (#4763538)
    The users are charged about $16 per CD and about $60 per full length movie. If they pay now - and delete the illegal content from their hard drives - then the amount is cut in half and they avoid going to court. Those who don't pay up are to be sued.

    Hmmmm...

    Okay, they pay $60 for the movie and $16 for the CD (which are waaay overpriced anyways). Then they have to delete it? But didn't they just pay for it? Shouldn't they be allowed to keep the file? Are they going to give them the shrinkwrapped copy of it?
  • This is slightly different, but still the same idea. DirecTV is sending letters to people who bought items from busted dealers. The letters ask for $3500 or they will be sued. They have no proof other than sales records. Some of the equipment is perfectly legal (standard ISO7816 smartcard programmers), but people are now being forced to pay up now, or pay a lawyer to defend them in a civil trial. Sounds like a lose lose situation for the people that actually weren't using the equipment to program DSS cards. Either way, there seems to be some huge technicalities that need to worked through. I just wonder if anybody has the money/knowledge/determination to step up and fight these tactics in court.
  • by nurb432 (527695) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @06:54PM (#4763604) Homepage Journal
    Just showing a file name is not proof, didn't we already go thru that sometime ago in a similar situation here in the US...

    I remember something to the effect a file called 'harry potter' was actually a book report, but the poor kid's parents lost their ISP account.

    If it can be proven its copyrighted and that there is NO doubt that the user downloaded it ( 'judge, I must have been hacked, I don't even know what this kaaa thing is'.. ) THEN some restitution can be asked. until then its just a witch hunt with really bad ramifications..

    It also sets a bad precedent where mere unverified suspicion over rules due process and 'beyond a reasonable doubt'.. Sort of like we
    do now with suspected terrorists here ... We 'think' you 'might' be a terrorist.. so behind bars you go!

  • look, i honestly think intellectual property and copyright laws as we know it are in serious trouble, so hear me out before you dismiss me as a troll or flamebait.

    the RIAA, the MPAA, DMCA, etc. guard a world that existed before the internet. they are attempting to reverse history. but they can't possibly win. pandora's box is already open.

    we are not in gutenberg's time anymore, we live in a world where information like music and books and movies is as transmuteable as water. in a way, information wants to be free. entropy naturally leads to the release and spread of information. trying to contain information is a losing game like trying to fight gravity is a losing game.

    music is about nothing specifically, and is enjoyed for it's own sake. this should be free. you can steal atoms. but you can not "steal" data. you can steal a car. but you can not steal a song, or a book, or a movie. think this doesn't make sense? kazaa, etc. are NEVER GOING TO GO AWAY.

    it is a technological war of one-upmanship. an arms race. everything the companies do, short of sending armed guards home with every cd, will be circumvented and broken by pirates.

    think intellectual property and copyright law is pretty damn important and should be a pillar of modern society? meet the internet! disseminating information effortlessly and freely with no chance of shutting it down IS WHAT IT WAS DESIGNED TO DO. close their servers, block their ports, do whatever you want. someone, somewhere, will circumvent.

    i mean what is the purpose of the internet after all? so the problem is we have a tool which makes transmitting data as effortless as water and as unstoppable as the tides. but we have laws and hardcoded mindsets that think about copyright and ip as if we were living in gutenberg's time. that ended with the internet.

    every major discovery is not necessarily a bloodless event. just ask the aztecs or incans. so we did not think the internet through. as if anyone could foresee all consequences. the problem is that, since there is no way to enforce the idea of "stealing" data, as opposed to stealing atoms like a car, what are we supposed to do about it? fight it like sticking our fingers into a dam forever? or redefine our understanding of what property is when it comes to anything that can be digitized?

    if it it is digital, it is product made for the mind, enjoyed for the mind. it is not a material product. it is, therefore, much in a way like we call our minds free, that it is important for our minds to be free. perhaps we should extend this content of free minds to digital content, since it is more an extension of individual's minds then the extension of media company's pocket books.

    maybe we should all just rethink our laws to take into account the internet, because our laws are fundamentally unenforceable on the internet.

    if this sounds like giving up, well, things change in the world. there is plenty of things that should never be given up on, no matter how hopeless things seem, like fighting drug abuse. but what is this fight about other than big company's pocket books? it's just a new understanding of the way things work in the world, that is all. i don't think it will be bloodless, but it is clear that there is no way to fight music piracy/ software piracy/ movie piracy/ ip piracy, etc.

    and maybe it is a better world to encourage these activities instead of discourage them, for the individual's sake. even if it drives giant media companies into the ground, it is perhaps a new paradigm that is for the betterment of all on an personal level, rather than a corporate level. to think about digital content as just free, as in speech, as in beer, as in tap water from the spigot in your bathroom.
  • Killing the internet (Score:5, Interesting)

    by theolein (316044) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @07:09PM (#4763735) Journal
    I don't download stuff from Kazaa, Gnutella or even Limwire because I don't have them installed on my computer for one, and don't have the time to do this. But I must say that when I read things like some big organisation suiing the hell out of some teen or twenty year old (for whom $14000 is a hell of a lot of money) then I realise why I dislike the internet more and more. I remember working in an internet agency in the napster days where my coworkers downloaded about 200 Gigs of CD's in a couple of months and nobody really cared. Those were young guys who didn't really have the money to spend on dozens of originals, and they were fun, nice people and we had a good time listening to good music while coding websites for our soon-to-be-bankrupt agency. The net was fun and interesting. There were thousands of interesting sites and nobody was all too worried.

    With the crash of the internet boom and the lack of cash, it seems as if all the ugliest bunch of greedy scum has crawled out of the woodwork to try and resttrict peoples lives and freedom so that they can rape them for as much money as possible. Christ it's like big brother in 1984. They watch everything you do, strip you of all your privacy and then have the fucking balls to pretend to be righteous about it as well.

    Perhaps some time we'll have the last laugh...
  • by SigveK (545403) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @07:15PM (#4763785)
    In short, they are representing most of the record labels, virtually all danish musicians and performers, music distributors, games and movie makers and distributors. Translated from antipiratgruppen.dk: The music industry is represented in the group by
    • IFPI [ifpi.org] - The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry
    • NCB [www.ncb.dk] - Nordic Copyright Bureau
      Quote from the site:
      The transfer of rights to NCB is organised in the following way: rights owners in the Nordic countries and the Baltic States transfer all their rights to the national performing rights society. This society administers the performing rights and transfers the mechanical rights to NCB. Thus, NCB represents virtually all copyrighted music in the Nordic and Baltic areas in connection with recording and the manufacture and distribution of copies of recordings.
    • DMF danish site [www.dmf.dk] - Danish Musician Union. some english info [www.mxp.dk]
    • DAF [artisten.dk] - Danish Artist Union
    In addition, the members of APG is
    • MUF [www.muf.dk] Danish site - Multimedia Union, which represents makers and distributors of computer and console games
    • FDV - Union of Danish Video distributors, which by large is local branches of the major movie companies or their danish representative

      So this is basically a group representing many, if not all copyright holders for the material in question

  • by TomMajor (580331) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @07:55PM (#4764036)
    This is one of the people presued by the APG. He calls himself Siffan and he runs a danish website. Unfortunately his website: http://www.siffan.dk/ is mainly in danish.
    He has written his version of events that happen when the APG came with the courtorder.

    In short, it goes something like this: The APG came with a courtorder to see if he had an eDonkey-server up and running on his computer. They tell him he has the right to a lawyer and the presens of the police. He tells them that there is not running an edonkey server, but ther was some time ago...

    The AGP has an "IT-man" with them... he is allowed to look at the computer to see if there is a server running (according to the courtorder) He agrees with Siffan, but then he browess through his harddrive and finds illegal software and mp3 files... Siffan was not comfertable with this,and points out that most of the mp3s are legal copies of his own cds. but agrees that he has illegal stuff on his computer and desides to be cooperative. Now AGP wants to take his computer with them. Siffan now says he wants a laywer, he is not able to get one a the pressent time, but the APG will not delay the case to the next day. So it ends with the APG straling off with his computer and some cd's.

    The next day a lawyer representing the APG calls him and ask him to give up his right to have the case tested in a civil court or he will sue him within 14 days.

    That is about it. It's late and I'm tired... But I hope you find this intresting.
  • It'll never work (Score:5, Interesting)

    by grundie (220908) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @08:00PM (#4764063)
    What I see happening here is a classic example of scare one and the rest will follow. I don't know much about Danish law, but I will assume it is roughly similar to other European countries. If all they have to go on is screen grabs of files names, then the don't have a leg to stand on, like the expert said without access to the alleged offenders computer they are largely unable to prove the case.

    Also consdider where the files came from. If they have screen grabbed an image of what is in someones share list, all that proves is they have a file called 'such and such' on that users HD. If the user downloaded a file from another user and APG had some way to monitor that, then that probably breaches all sorts of privacy and computer misuse laws. But, if the user had downloaded the files from computers belonging to AntiPiratGruppen then you are getting in to the realms of entrapment, plus you must ask if AntiPiratGruppen wasn't breaching copyright itself. All this is speculation, but it leads me on to an important point.

    It is certain some of these 150 so called 'Pirates' will pay up. They might not pay the full amount, they may negotiate a lower price and it will be because they are scared of what AntiPiratGruppen may or may not do to them. Once one person pays up APG will shout that fact from the roof tops and it will no doubt have the effect of scaring others in complying with the wishes of RIAA/BSA/FACT etc and leave P2P well enough alone. Effectively they will be using bully boy tactics to succeed. Regardless of your view on the legality and morals of P2P, you must admit this is a not a good thing as it sets a dangerous precident if it works.

  • Screenshots? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @08:08PM (#4764099) Homepage Journal

    Any defense lawyer worth his weight in golfballs would demand proof that the screenshot was not doctored with a graphics editting program.

  • clear cut case... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MORTAR_COMBAT! (589963) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @09:13PM (#4764478)
    ... of extortion.

    A company cannot send you a "bill" for a contract you never signed, stating "pay up or else". This is not an electric company talking about getting reimbursement for an unpaid bill. This is a company with which these people have no agreement sending them threats which amount to, "give us money or else".

    A straightforward company would simply inform the police if they believe these people to have committed criminal acts and the culprits would be arrested, or simply serve them a summons in the case of a civil dispute.
  • by Coward Anonymous (110649) on Tuesday November 26, 2002 @09:50PM (#4764657)
    From reading through some of the posts it appears the RIAA is already winning the war. No one appears to find the implied illegality of copying a file in your possession an incongruous proposition anymore.
    This is the core of the issue, not "pirates" or "artists" or other fictions. The problem with the RIAA and its discordant crusade is the fact that it runs against a widely accepted social norm - I have the right to copy my files. This is where the RIAA is weakest and is the only avenue for its defeat. If this idea is forgotten, the RIAA wins. Everyone else loses.

  • Fair Use in Denmark (Score:4, Informative)

    by Simon Kongshoj (581494) <skongshoj@RABBIT ... minus herbivore> on Wednesday November 27, 2002 @03:22AM (#4765742) Homepage

    Well, speaking as a guy who actually lives in Denmark.....

    Since Summer 2001, various forms of digital copying have been legal in Denmark. Before that, Danish law on this area bore obvious marks of being written by people who had no idea what the whole thing was all about (prohibiting all forms of digital copying without prior permission -- bye bye Internet :) ). The laws are confusing, though. According to Forbrugerrådet (the "Consumer's Council" -- I'm not sure if you Americans have a similar organization), Danish citizens are allowed to:

    • Perform a digital copy a legally obtained work, eg. a legally purchased CD, book, tape, whatever.
    • Copy a work, where the artist or copyright holder has permitted copying.
    • Copy a legal CD borrowed from a friend.
    • Play a legally copied CD in a social setting such as a party.
    • Copy to your personal computer with intent for "electronic execution within the home" (ie. home listening, but no P2P warezing)
    • Listen to your copy at home, in your car, in your summer house, on your boat, on your discman, etc.

    We are not allowed to:

    • Copy a copy of a CD
    • Copy works fetched from the network that have been placed there without the artist or copyright holder's express permision.
    • Copy a CD and play it at someone else's party (this I find a little strange -- but oh well)
    • Listen to a copied CD on your place of work's music system.
    • Give away a copied CD.
    • Lend, swap or sell a copied CD.
    • Send a digitally copied work using e-mail.
    • .

    (from Forbrugerrådet's web page [forbrugerraadet.dk])

    I hope this helps shed a little light on the situation.

  • by kjeldsen (410097) on Wednesday November 27, 2002 @03:35AM (#4765773)
    A Danish Law from April 2001 actually makes this possible.

    It gives the copyright holders the right to collect evidence and present this to a judge. The judge then issues a warrant based on the evidence (yes no 3rd party is involved). The warrant can be for a house search or in this case to get information from a isp based on the ip's they collected. The law has been used to raid netparties as well.

    The problem is that all this happens outside the criminal courts, they run all the cases as civil law suites.

    I hope they stepped over the line, and that our silly goverment that doesn't know a power button from the reset button, changes this absurd law.

    Look a pig that flies (sponsered by S O N Y)

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