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It's Illegal to Pirate Films in Iran, Unless You're the Government ( 35

An anonymous reader shares a report: While legal "pirating" exists in Iran, six administrators of the Iranian pirate movie site TinyMoviez have been arrested by Iranian authorities. This was a website the Iranian national broadcaster had used to download and nationally air movies in the past. The exact date of the arrests are unknown, but Tehran's Prosecutor General announced the arrests on September 26, 2017. The website is still online, but users haven't been able to download content from it since September 19, 2017. Now TinyMoviez administrators are finding themselves on the wrong side of Iran's odd and often pirating friendly copyright laws. Iran's copyright law is a quagmire when it comes to understanding what rights exists for creators of an original piece of work, and what rights exist for those wanting to re-distribute original works, such as movies. Meanwhile, Article 8 gives the government broad powers to reproduce work that is not its own. This means that the government is exempt from Article 23, which criminalizes the theft of another's work.
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It's Illegal to Pirate Films in Iran, Unless You're the Government

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  • A classic case of: Quod licet Iovi, non licet bovi [].

    • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

      More like cat on a hot tin roof. On one paw, you get to harm the US economy by making it's content freely available, on the other paw, you are spreading evil content, on the other paw, you get to piss ohf the American government and they can't do much about it but on the other paw you are spreading US culture. Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch, which paw do you burn and which paw to cool.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It's Illegal to (VERB) in (PLACE), Unless You're the Government

  • This means that the government is exempt from Article 23, which criminalizes the theft of another's work.

    In civilized countries, it is called "taxes".

  • Library exception (Score:5, Informative)

    by tepples ( 727027 ) <> on Tuesday October 10, 2017 @04:45PM (#55345279) Homepage Journal

    The featured article claims that Article 8 of Iran's copyright law mentions an exception for public libraries and educational institutions.

    Public libraries, documentation centers, scientific institutions and educational establishments, which are noncommercial, may reproduce protected works by a photographic or similar process, in the numbers necessary, for the purposes of their activities, according to a decree to be issued by the Board of Ministers.

    I don't see how it's fundamentally different from sections 108 [] and 110 [] of the U.S. copyright statute, which likewise grant exceptions for library and classroom use respectively.

    • Indeed; and my country enumerates the non-infringement in a copyrighted work's use by police and court proceedings, other government institutions, journalists, political speakers, classrooms, prayers, libraries under pretty broad rules, etc. etc... I would think that such exceptions must be pretty widespread.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    If you're licensed by the government to do so. And it isn't really pirating
    for Iranians since Iran is not a signatory to the WIPO treaty and not bound by international copyright conventions.

    BTW, here is a PDF of Iran's copyright law from the WIPO website []

    Reading it you'll find that it is hardly a quagmire of confusing and conflicting clauses for authors, and that motherboard's representation of Article 8 is disingenuous, " Article 8 gives the government

    • by mutantSushi ( 950662 ) on Tuesday October 10, 2017 @06:23PM (#55345855)
      That shows the moronic premise of the article. If the government doesn't make it a crime, it isn't a crime. "IP rights" are nowhere considered "natural law", they are specific government policy with aim for certain economic outcome.That Iran happens to differ from US law is unsurprising, MANY countries differ from US re: IP law (e.g. software patents). Hard to take article seriously when 99% of it is misguided and superfluous. But "OMG IRAN" plays well in Zionist States of America, so...
  • I can't believe Steve Martin thought he'd get away with this.

  • This government can do whatever it wants, whenever it wants, for as long as it wants, because....if you don't like it, it can take it up with the people who have weapons that can take out your house. an intelligence that can blackmail your pets, and murder squad so good at killing you don't even know you're dead till a few hours after the trigger has been pulled. It's kind of like the story: Someone gets a loan from a bank for a tank. They by the tank. A friend asks what are you going to do when the bank c
  • Iran is not a signatory to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works or the WIPO Copyright Treaty, or a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), so it is not bound by international copyright laws. Why? The United States has vetoed Iran's ascension to the WTO 22 times, and Iran will not play by the rules if they don't get to join the club.

  • by sconeu ( 64226 ) on Tuesday October 10, 2017 @05:58PM (#55345715) Homepage Journal

    Is the OP sure that the arrests were for piracy, and not for putting up something that might be considered either pro-Western or un-Islamic?

  • ... US citizens might like to read this: []

    In the USA, the state can confiscate cash (or pretty well anything else) without even accusing you of a crime.

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