3 Count: Piracy Penalties

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1: Japan Introduces Piracy Penalties for Illegal Downloads

First off today, the BBC reports that people who download infringing content in Japan could face up to two years in prison or fines of up to two million yen ($25,700) as a new change in the law takes effect. Downloading infringing content had been illegal since 2010 but there were no penalties until now. The move comes after a lobbying campaign by the country’s music industry but many critics say that the matter should have remained a civil one rather than be made a criminal one. Uploading infringing material is already a criminal offense and carries up to a 10 year prison sentence or a 10 million yen ($137,500) fine.

2: Pirate Bay Founder Remains Locked Up Without Charges

Next up today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that Gottfrid Svartholm, one of the four founders of The Pirate Bay convicted of criminal copyright infringement last year, has at least two more weeks to wait in detention before he faces charges on an unrelated matter. Svartholm, unlikes his three colleagues, left the country before his appeal and missed both the appeal and the date his sentence was supposed to start because of what he described as poor health that kept him from leaving Cambodia. However, Cambodian authorities arrested him earlier this month, creating suspicion he was being sent back to Sweden to serve his time in The Pirate Bay case. However, upon his arrival, Svartholm learned that he was a suspect in a hacking case that involved a breach of a company that works for local tax authorities. To date, Svartholm has not been formally charged in that matter and prosecutors received a two week extension to file such charges, holding him in custody, where he is denied visitors and media access for fear that he may either destroy evidence or commit further crimes.

3: Trent Reznor Abandons D.I.Y. And Returns To A Major Label

Finally today, Hisham Dahud at Hypebot writes that Trent Reznor, the former frontman of Nine Inch Nails that famously broke away from his label, Interscope Records, in 2007, has signed with Columbia Records to help promote the upcoming album for his new group, How to Destroy Angels. Reznor said that the decision was made for many reasons, including the chance to work with his “old friend” Mark Williams and, more importantly, his groups “experimenting and trying new things to see what best serves our needs.” Reznor also alluded to “shortcomings” with independent releasing. Since his split with Interscope, Reznor has released all of his albums independently, including the soundtrack for the movie “The Social Network.”


That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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