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Internet Piracy

Quick View into Internet Piracy Laws

Quick View into Internet Piracy Laws

With the ever increasing popularity of the internet comes widespread copyright violations and internet piracy. Peer-to-peer sharing programs allow internet users to obtain media files illegally, including music, movies, computer games, and computer software.
Internet piracy laws were established to prohibit the illegal acquisition and distribution of these media files. Piracy laws seek to combat copyright violations, which are adversely affecting media industries, including the music and movie production industries. These piracy laws target both individuals and corporations who engage in illegal media downloading. For instance, many peer-to-peer sharing companies, including Napster and Pirate Bay, have been involved in lawsuits regarding copyright violations. In addition, many individual consumers have been targeted by lawsuits for violating internet piracy laws.

Quick Internet Piracy Overview

Quick Internet Piracy Overview


Internet piracy is considered the most important
issue facing the enforcement of copyright laws today. Media companies,
particularly those which specialize in films and music, have been strongly affected
by the ease in digital downloading which the Internet allows even for users
relatively lacking in technical expertise.

A common
such means for digital downloading exists in the form of peer-to-peer services,
though more sophisticated users may attempt to directly hack into other
computers. Operators of services allowing downloading may also be liable for
prosecution. In the United States, such actions have been prohibited since the
1976 No Electronic Theft Act.

P2P Sharing

involves illegally
download copyrighted files, such as motion pictures, music recordings and other works.
This has caught the attention of the Motion Picture Association of America and
the Recording Industry Association of America, who have placed lawsuits
 in the laps of many BitTorrent
websites which support the piracy of copyrighted work. BitTorrent, Inc., the
founders of BitTorrent protocol, has established a firm copyright infringement
to help combat the pirating of copyrighted
works of authorship.

All You Need to Know About The Internet Piracy Background

All You Need to Know About The Internet Piracy Background

Though anti-piracy laws have long existed with regard to the unauthorized use or reproduction of copyrighted works, this issue has been newly raised and increased in seriousness by the proliferation of digitally driven methods for storing and transmitting information. Internet piracy has been received by the various fields associated with arts and entertainment as one of the most serious issues they face in the digital era and has been met with punitive measures both from industry groups and Government overseers. The music and television and film industries are particularly impacted by this practice.
Many of the laws relating to personal reproduction of digital media relates to the imperative of preventing instances of internet piracy. Though criminal organizations are sometimes involved in internet piracy, particularly in cases which involve “leaks” of media works before they can be made legally available by the copyright owners, private individuals not interested in financial gain are also likely to commit acts of internet piracy.
Historically, United States copyright-related piracy laws criminalized illegal reproduction for the purpose of financial gain. The 1976 No Electronic Theft Act, passed by Congress to address the early development of digital technology, removed the latter stipulation to allow piracy laws to cover the unauthorized private or non-commercial copying of items, on the grounds that while such acts did not bring monetary compensation to the culprit, they did negatively affect the copyright owner’s ability to derive due financial compensation to be provided through ownership.
Piracy laws refer to the basic act of misappropriation, as variously defined, of another individual’s intellectual property, but this act may be accomplished through different techniques of varying sophistication. The capability for internet piracy of copyrighted works was pioneered by the Napster peer-to-peer service, which allowed users to exchange files with each other without incurring any financial loss.
Legal action brought by the Recording Industry Association of America and some of its record label members against the founders of Napster eventually forced the shutdown of the service, but numerous other popular services for internet piracy grew up in the time afterward. The decentralized model of the peer-to-peer service, by which the operator “merely” provides the capability for exchange of files without vocally endorsing any such actions, has made such services difficult targets for internet piracy laws.
After discovering that the peer-to-peer sharing services which came after Napster were more difficult to completely shut down, the RIAA shifted to a new policy of selectively targeting individual violators of piracy laws detected using these services. This tactic, which has received much criticism and backlash, has been regarded as an unnecessarily and ineffectively heavy-handed method of enforcement.
Sources for internet piracy that may be more easily dealt with are individual websites illegally offering file downloads themselves, by which measures the operators are more directly liable and can be more swiftly located by the enforcers of piracy laws. A more sophisticated and less common means for circumventing internet piracy laws is to directly “hack” into another computer’s files.

Be Careful: Internet Piracy Dangers

Be Careful: Internet Piracy Dangers

The practice of internet
“piracy,” a term used to refer to copyright infringement
 committed against digital files
containing other people’s intellectual property, can expose an online user to
unnecessary and avoidable dangers from illegal and malicious online programs
and users. The ability to install harmful programs on or perform harmful
actions against a computer can be increased by targeting computer users who, in
committing acts of copyright infringement, set themselves apart from the recourse
to legal protection. 

A common means to implement such an action is through a
kind of computer program known as malware
, in such a case hidden in the file supposedly affecting
copyright infringement, which may be variously intended to cause harm to the user,
interference with the computer’s functions, or marring of the computer’s

Programs designated as malware
are referred to as “computer contaminants” under the legal codes of
several American states. Common varieties in which malware may be found can
include such programs as “Trojan horses,” “adware,”
,” “rootkits,” and
“worms,” as well as viruses.

The different ways of understanding forms of
malware stem from the varying means by which they infect computers. After
infecting a program in one computer, a virus will wait for that computer’s user
to connect to another, thereby allowing the virus its means of transmission.
Another approach is represented by malware falling into the worm category,
which can send themselves across networks and into different computers without
having to depend on the involvement of the user.

horses trick the user into transmitting malware by disguising themselves as
something seemingly harmless. A supplemental, supportive kind of malware is
presented by the rootkit, which allows harmful programs to exist on and work
against an infected computer without being detected by the targeted user or

Targeting online users practicing copyright
infringement or other online activities may proceed from several different
causes. The most common motivation ascribed to the authors of malware is
essentially unmotivated maliciousness, which can run the gamut from a kind of
practical joke to a desire to do severe harm to another person’s computer
hardware or software.

With the
development of online entertainment and commercial activities, financial
motives have also been found to lie behind the creation and dissemination of
intrusive computer programs. Some of these are not normally understood as
malware in that they are not intended to harm the level of performance of their
target or adversely impact the user in other serious ways, but are held to be
more generally undesirable and irritating. This kind of program, sometimes
called “grayware,” may install pop-up ads in an internet browser or
main window, or they may covertly track a user’s habits as a consumer.

The authors
of malware may also have financial motives. For example, some malicious
programs are engineered to gain access to a computer user’s financial
information by recording keyboard actions and thereby capturing passwords. The
program will then return this information in some way to its author. Copyright
infringement can thus raise computer safety issues which incur, rather than
avoid, costs for users.

Make Sure You Know The Internet Piracy Defenses

Make Sure You Know The Internet Piracy Defenses

piracy is the practice of violating intellectual property rights by downloading
a file containing material copyrighted by someone else. The laws governing
Internet piracy are intended to secure the rights of creators, such as the
right to secure financial compensation through the process of making works
publicly available and acknowledge that there are certain forms of copying
which may not be allowed for or encouraged by creators which are nonetheless permissible
and not damaging to the creator’s rights.

A copyright infringement defense may be mounted in a
court of law that refers to the prior such case, which is referred to as the
“fair use” doctrine and is allowed for under American law on Internet
piracy and other forms of intellectual property right violations. Failing a
successful copyright infringement defense, intellectual property right
violators may be liable for both criminal and civil penalties.

A civil suit over an act of
Internet piracy can open up the responsible party to compensating the copyright
owner for the damages to her or his ability to derive material benefit from the
content. United States statutes name damages of $30,000 and increased penalties
of $150,000 for cases in which the action was “willful.” Due to the
relatively brief amount of time for which most software has existed, even
intellectual property which is not being used commonly is likely to still be
subject to law, and the copyright infringement defense of
“abandonware” is, therefore, unlikely to hold water.

Internet piracy commonly occurs through a third party website or
service provider of some kind, which allows for the relative ease of two other
users in posting and then downloading digital files. A copyright infringement
defense may be necessary to mount not only for the two individuals directly
involved in the copyright violation, but also for the service provider who
facilitates the action. 

A basic form and preemptive form of copyright
infringement defense can be found by complying with a provision of the Digital
Millennium Copyright Act
 referred to as the “Safe Harbor” clause, which
establishes a means for service providers to enjoy safety from liability for
their users’ actions. Service providers who do not comply with its provisions
may be served with criminal or civil suits under a charge of vicarious
liability or contributory infringement.

circumstance of someone accused of Internet piracy not having been aware of
existing laws is not an admissible form of copyright infringement defense in
court when the defendant is accused of having personally committed the act of
internet piracy, but may be allowed when the defendant’s part was only

In addition to direct acts of Internet piracy,
copyright law also covers the means through which such actions are aided and
accomplished. The wide-ranging set of laws put in place by the Digital
Millennium Copyright Act cover actions aimed at “circumvention” of
the technical means through which copyright holders seek to block instances of
Internet piracy and various violations.