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Movies Piracy The Courts United Kingdom Entertainment Your Rights Online

UK Court: MPAA Not Entitled To Profits From Piracy 159

Posted by samzenpus
from the not-so-fast dept.
jfruh writes "The MPAA and other entertainment industry groups have been locked for years in a legal struggle against Newzbin2, a Usenet-indexing site. Since Newzbin2 profited from making it easier for users to find pirated movies online, the MPAA contends they can sue to take those profits on behalf of members who produced that content in the first place. But a British court has rejected that argument."
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UK Court: MPAA Not Entitled To Profits From Piracy

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  • Er... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 07, 2013 @12:47AM (#42817549)

    Wouldn't collecting the profits from pirate copies translates into making those copies legit?

  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Thursday February 07, 2013 @12:48AM (#42817559) Homepage

    Since Newzbin2 profited from making it easier for users to find pirated movies online, the MPAA contends they can sue to take those profits on behalf of members who produced that content in the first place.

    This is a bit like saying that asphalt manufacturers profit from making it easier for getaway drivers to whisk bank robbers away from the scene of the crime.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 07, 2013 @01:20AM (#42817707)

    No, asphalt manufacturers make it easier for police to respond and arrive at the scene. Ergo, asphalt manufacturers discourage crime.

  • Re:My point exactly! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by julesh (229690) on Thursday February 07, 2013 @01:43AM (#42817785)

    I've been comparing so-called piracy to historic real estate squatting, rather than comparing it to stealing or thievery as has become the propaganda of Big Content. When a court compares it to real estate trespass, it's recognizing the same disingenuous manipulation of Big Content's propaganda.

    Exactly. Now we just need a law saying that if we infringe on copyright for 10 years without the owner doing anything to intervene, the copyright becomes ours... not only does it make the comparison to tresspassing/squatting even more accurate and obvious, it's also a useful solution to the orphan works problem.

  • by XiaoMing (1574363) on Thursday February 07, 2013 @01:52AM (#42817821)

    From TFA:

    [High court judge] Newey ruled that a copyright infringer cannot be compared to a thief who steals a bag of coins, as submitted by the studios' lawyer. "A copyright infringer is more akin to a trespasser" than to a coin thief, Newey said.

    Originally, I thought the judge lost his marbles. Of course it's more akin to stealing something rather than just trespass, they are part of stealing/redistributing a product!

    But then I realized how the media conglomerates played the whole DRM thing as effectively leasing you (and only you) the rights to listen to the music you purchased (and only in the media format they presented it!). That sure sounds a bit like charging an admission's fee to experience some wonderful scenery to me (a scenery experience that you obviously can't share with anyone else!). In that respect, it really does seem like NZB(2) did was criminally trespass over this entity of music or what-have-you that we are allowed to take part in (but not take a part of).

    Seems like the MPAA screwed their own pooch on this one. I hope this sets a precedence (even if Bri'ish) and people can start owning their music again.

  • by udin (30514) on Thursday February 07, 2013 @02:00AM (#42817843)
    You may not be allowed to profit from your own criminal behavior, but the 'criminal' is the person making the copy of the copyrighted material (once upon a time this was a tort, i.e. a wrong against someone that one could be sued for, not a crime against the state or general public; that's what these guys are always trying to do: turn torts into crimes so they can sic the government on you), not the specialized search engine or directory of links. The Usenet-indexers are profiting in the same way that Truman Capote profited when he wrote a book about a notorious murder.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 07, 2013 @02:26AM (#42817923)

    yep - right and left of the driver

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 07, 2013 @04:11AM (#42818345)

    No, asphalt manufacturers make it easier for police to respond and arrive at the scene. Ergo, asphalt manufacturers discourage crime.

    And newzbin2 makes it easier for the MPAA to find out about pirated content. So they discourage piracy.

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