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Thursday, 20 November 2003


The first convictions under the Australian criminal internet piracy legislation have taken place according to Peter Tran and Charles Ng were each given 18 month suspended prison sentences and, together with Tommy Le, received community service orders for their parts in running a Napster-style MP3 site. The judge, NSW Deputy Chief Magistrate Graeme Henson, said that the trio's activity didn't only deprive copyright holders and artists, but also "drills down deeply within the economy" and can "work a significant disadvantage to society". Michael Speck, of Music Industry Piracy Investigations, has claimed that the sentences are too short, comparing the group's acts to theft, and has argued that they should be treated as if they had stolen the quantity of CDs shared on their network from an actual shop.

The IPKat is not entirely happy with the analogy drawn between copyright and the theft of tangible property. For one thing, it is uncertain that those who used the downloading network would actually have bought the physical CDs, so a direct diversion of sales has not necessarily taken place. Those who assume that tangible property principles such as theft apply to intangible intellectual property must prove their point and demonstrate that they are suitable, despite the differences between physical and intellectual property.

So you want pirate music? Click here, here and here you naughty person

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