Australian Police: Cracking Down On Piracy... Except When The Police Are The Pirates

from the double-standards-much? dept

Just days after Australian police participated in a headline generating raid to stop music piracy, an audit of police computers not only found DVD piracy is rife throughout many police department computers, but the police have decided not to prosecute because the activity was so widespread. Apparently, the fact that unauthorized file sharing is also widespread throughout the wider population doesn't stop the police... but when it's their own doing the sharing, it gets forgiven.


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  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 11:44am

    Typical

    Really typical. The people who make and enforce the laws often consider themselves above those same laws. Like they say, "Laws are for poor people".

     

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  2.  
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    Michael, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 11:49am

    This is a surprise?

    I think it was my dad that use to tell me, "do as I say, Not as I do." Could that apply here..???

     

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  3.  
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    asdf, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 11:57am

    no different than all the cops that speed, but pull people over.

     

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  4.  
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    eleete, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:02pm

    PD

    Now called the Piracy Department ?

     

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  5.  
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    Pete Valle, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:10pm

    Re:

    "no different than all the cops that speed, but pull people over."

    Yeah, I once was stopped my a bike cop because I was exiting a mall through an entrance, he made me u-Turn and head back. As I did that, he proceeded to calmly exit the mall through said entrance. Lovely.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:10pm

    Re:

    That IS different actually. Depending where you live.

    For example, in WA state it varies greatly. City Cops tend to be power tripping dicks (at least in my town, never gotten pulled over Vancouver, 15 min south). The State Police however are some real cool cats.

    I've gotten pulled over for speeding several times by the state police. On different interstate highways. The only times I've gotten pulled over for speeding, I was doing well over 15+.

    Every time they knock it down to me doing 5 over. The last time I had forgotten to renew my vehicle registration and tabs PLUS I didn't have my current car insurance card in the car.

    The tabs and registration ALONE were 800 dollar plus fines. I was just told to renew them and be on my way.


    Cops are like people. If the majority of people speed through a certain road, or "pirate" music/movies, so will the same percentage of cops. This doesn't surprise me.

    It looks REALLY bad. It IS really bad. The police are SUPPOSED to enforce the laws equally in most countries. Don't know if that is the case in Australia, but yea.

    If its just "too widespread" to be a real problem to deal with in your department, stop wasting money doing it out in the rest of the world.

     

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  7.  
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    Haywood, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:10pm

    More widespread than that

    I'll lay dollars to doughnuts all the enforcement agencies, all the xxAAs etc have some bootleg software, music, video or something on their networks.

     

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  8.  
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    eleete, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:13pm

    Re: More widespread than that

    Dollars to doghnuts, lol, D'oh !!

     

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  9.  
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    eleete, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:14pm

    Re: Re: More widespread than that

    Ooops, Doughnuts

     

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  10.  
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    Scote, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:15pm

    "by asdf on Apr 8th, 2008 @ 11:57am
    no different than all the cops that speed, but pull people over."

    Very different, depending on context. Police need to speed to catch up to speeders. Police do not need to pirate videos for their own personal enjoyment in order to catch pirates.

     

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  11.  
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    Matt, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:19pm

    Re: Re:

    Too widespread?

    Any self respecting IT guy in that department would quit before being fired.

    Part of my job as an IT Infrastructure Support Analyst is to make sure the computers are properly locked down so that the users cant download things from P2P or other files without an Admin password. Im not saying that they cant download anything, but to install files, etc they need a member of the IT staff to do it for them.

    We routinely and randomly check computers for illegal content and PUNISH employees caught violating the terms of computer use on our system. They need to know that when they are on work time, the computers should be used for WORK purposes only. Use your home computers to download illegal movies/music cops, then the RIAA can sue you instead of us...

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:21pm

    Cops everywhere seem to have a penchant for hypocricy. And why not? Who's going to catch them?

     

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  13.  
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    niftyswell, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:22pm

    Re:

    most states have laws that prohibit speeding that applies to everyone- especially law enforcement. Remember, by law they have less authority than the average citizen who only needs a reasonable suspicion of a crime to take action whereas a law officer needs probably cause. Unless they are pursuing someone who is speeding they dont need to cruise around over the speed limit to catch speeders because logic would indicate they would have to go even faster than the speeders they hope to find. After all, it is supposed to be a safety issue, not an excuse to impose a fine while endangering the public.

     

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  14.  
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    Architeuthis, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:24pm

    Re: Re:

    "Cops are like people" - probably one of the funniest unintentional comments!

     

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  15.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:28pm

    Re:

    I'll bet he's referring to cops like the one I pass every day after work. He likes going 50 in a 35 while talking on a cell phone (illegal in PA). Or maybe that cop that was two inches from my bumper for about 2 miles the other day (I don't speed but I was going the speed limit).

     

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  16.  
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    asdf, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:38pm

    Re: Re:

    exactly

     

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  17.  
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    Aussie in Canada, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:39pm

    It is the same everywhere

    Those with power will use to their own end. It's the Australian way to try and get something for nothing and get away with as much as you can, within reason of course.

     

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  18.  
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    Phil McCraken, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:44pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "They need to know that when they are on work time, the computers should be used for WORK purposes only."

    Like posting to tech blog forums in the middle of the day...

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 12:51pm

    Re: Re: Re: More widespread than that

    dollars to dognuts was funnier

     

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  20.  
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    TheDock22, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:07pm

    Re:

    Cops everywhere seem to have a penchant for hypocricy. And why not? Who's going to catch them?

    And I'm sure you are a shining example of honesty and virtue.

    People on this forum really need to take a moment and think about what life would be like without police officers. What if you were being chased by some maniac with a gun and had no one to call? Or what if a loved one was shot and you had no one to find out who did it? Quit being morons and saying all cops are bad guys because like ANY profession there are always a few bad apples (I have known quit a few sys admins that are full of themselves and abuse the power THEY have).

    As for the piracy, that is bad but chances are they are not "ignoring" the problem. IT might not have found a good solution for stopping them. Just because officers are doing it doesn't mean IT should be free and clear from blame. After all, they let it happen. People will always get away with what they can.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:14pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    According to TFA, there was not any P2P use or music piracy. This was about cops ripping *their own* DVDs onto their work computers. Now, they probably shoudn't have been watching movies on work time, but the most serious accusations were "potential copyright violation" and movies that "potentially had been burnt to blank DVDs". Again, it's not good use of company time and property, but it's hardly a crime wave.

     

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  22.  
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    sonofdot, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:25pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Thankfully, we don't work where you work. If you want drones, then by all means, hire drones. What's the turnover rate there, about 75%?

     

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  23.  
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    dlm133, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    hahaha - great point...what a hypocrite!!

     

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  24.  
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    sonofdot, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re:

    That's it, blame those who built the infrastructure for the crime. What's next, we should blame muggings on purse manufacturers? Maybe we should jail construction companies that build streets, because so many crimes are committed on the street? You're a complete bozo, a cop or both.

    BTW, nobody said all cops are bad guys. However, you painted everyone ("People will always get away with what they can.") as bad, which would include cops. Is this the voice of personal experience? Or just shameless use of the glittering generality propaganda technique?

     

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  25.  
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    eric102271, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 1:40pm

    Re:

    I believe he is talking about the cops that speed when "NOT" trying to catch up to speeders. The cops where I live do it all the time. They speed for no reason other than to get home or to lunch as fast as they can.

     

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  26.  
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    Eric Fredericksen, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 2:19pm

    status system not legal system

    In society one must understand that it's social status that determines guilt or innocence. The higher your social status the more likely you are of being exponged of wrong doings. And in the event that you have a few $million lying around that won't hurt either. Just don't ever think that there is an unbiased legal system in any country.

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 2:23pm

    i lol'd

     

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  28.  
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    David Ruschinek, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 2:28pm

    The RAID and DVD content storage are not the same!

    Mike usually I look at your posts with respect, but here I have to differ. The Raid was on a Music Store selling (profiting) from illegally copied CDs and DVDs. The Police Department were not selling the DVD Content they were "swapping" it. There is a big difference in a court where the purchaser might have been throughly misled (obtaining monitary advantage by deception). In second case the police were willing particpants to obtain the DVD content, it might be unethical but harder far a prosecution to reach a conviction in court.

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    TheDock22, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 2:47pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    That's it, blame those who built the infrastructure for the crime. What's next, we should blame muggings on purse manufacturers? Maybe we should jail construction companies that build streets, because so many crimes are committed on the street?

    It is there job to not just build the infrastructure but provide security, policies, and regulations on that infrastructure. Your other analogies are completely wrong in terms of the infrastructure. In a corporation, IT is responsible for the systems, ensuring they don't break down, and proper use of those systems. Especially in regards to public safety, there are strict federal rules to follow to ensure security of private information. Which obviously you know nothing about or even thought about.

    BTW, nobody said all cops are bad guys.

    Re-read posts 1, 2, 3, 12...

    However, you painted everyone ("People will always get away with what they can.") as bad, which would include cops.

    I never said they were bad, I simply stated human nature. Is a child being "bad" when sneaking cookies from the kitchen until Mom or Dad says to stop? No, it's curiosity and human nature.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    Sean, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 3:25pm

    Re: The RAID and DVD content storage are not the same!

    "Police Department were not selling the DVD Content they were "swapping" it."

    Selling: to transfer goods to or render services for another in exchange for money; dispose of to a purchaser for a price(dictionary.com) —Synonyms: exchange, vend. See trade.

    barter: The exchange of goods or services for other goods or services, rather than for money.(dictionary.com)

    The two are mostly the same, so by "swapping" copied DVDs they received payment for the movie in the form of another movie. It would be the same as saying I will sell you this disk for $5 and I would like to buy that movie for $5. The two exchange disks and money both bought a movie and still have the same amount of money in their pocket at the end of the day.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    sonofdot, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 3:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You are completely clueless. Go put your tin-foil hat back on, the radiation is getting to you.

     

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  32.  
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    CVPunk, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 3:50pm

    ummm....no

    "People on this forum really need to take a moment and think about what life would be like without police officers. What if you were being chased by some maniac with a gun and had no one to call? Or what if a loved one was shot and you had no one to find out who did it? Quit being morons and saying all cops are bad guys because like ANY profession there are always a few bad apples (I have known quit a few sys admins that are full of themselves and abuse the power THEY have)."

    There is a big difference between catching real criminals (ie: murderers, rapists, etc.) and busting someone for j-walking or going 5-10 miles over the speed limit. Maybe it is you who needs to take a moment and think before you post.

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:30pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Part of my job as an IT Infrastructure Support Analyst is to make sure the computers are properly locked down so that the users cant download things from P2P or other files without an Admin password.

    You obviously don't work with cops. They're used to telling civilians what to do, not the other way around and that kind of stuff doesn't work with them. Try telling them what they can and can't do with their computers and they'll have you called in on the carpet pretty darn quickly.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    According to TFA, there was not any P2P use or music piracy. This was about cops ripping *their own* DVDs onto their work computers.

    No, TFA didn't mention "music" piracy (I'm surprised), but it did mention, as you say, ripping DVDs. Now I don't know about Australian law, but that kind of thing is usually illegal in the US. It's not "music" piracy, it's "movie" piracy. Piracy nonetheless.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:43pm

    Re:

    no different than all the cops that speed, but pull people over.

    That's why so many of them have those special stickers they put on their and their families' private cars so that they don't pulled over by other cops like regular people. Some of those stickers even wind up being sold on eBay.

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:48pm

    Re: Re:

    Cops everywhere seem to have a penchant for hypocricy. And why not? Who's going to catch them?

    And I'm sure you are a shining example of honesty and virtue.
    Compared to some cops, he may well be.

     

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  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    BTW, nobody said all cops are bad guys.

    Re-read posts 1, 2, 3, 12...


    I did. That isn't exactly what they said. But then again, you have quite a reputation for lying. Shall I post some links?

     

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  38.  
    identicon
    Jimbo, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 4:59pm

    Re: The RAID and DVD content storage are not the same!

    The Police Department were not selling the DVD Content they were "swapping" it.

    So, you're saying that's legal in Australia? Since when?

     

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  39.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 5:11pm

    Re: Re:

    That's why so many of them have those special stickers they put on their and their families' private cars so that they don't pulled over by other cops like regular people. Some of those stickers even wind up being sold on eBay.
    It seems that California gives them special license plates for their private cars. I wonder how many other states have similar secret programs.

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    montsnmags, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 5:24pm

    Hypocrisy?

    While it doesn't preclude the possibility of hypocrisy, conflating the notion by connecting the actions of two entirely separate State police forces is an error at best, and a disingenuous attempt to support an argument at worst. "Australian police" is as descriptive and inclusive and, in this circumstance, insufficient, as using the term "American police" in relation to a State-specific US story. "Double-standards" and hypocrisy may exist in the lack of prosecution in the South Australian State Police story, but it is *not* emphasised by the fact that the entirely separate Victorian State Police were simultaneously "cracking down" on piracy.

    Hypocrites with "double-standards" the South Australian Police may be, for lack of prosecution, but not because another State's police force performed a raid on the same or similar crime.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
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    ehrichweiss, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 5:35pm

    Re: Typical

    This is slightly off topic but fits your last statement perfectly.

    In December I bought my first Mercedes(well my first to actually drive and not simply restore). Previously I'd been driving Dodge, Lincoln, Mercury and Ford and had been pulled over in all of them.

    Anyway, I decided that I wanted to put some aftermarket parts on my car in January and was sitting in the car putting them on while it was parked on the side of the road. At some point in time I hear a vehicle pull in behind my car and thinking it was my wife I looked back and saw it was a cop. First thought is "holy crap, I'm about to get shaken down". I lean out the door and ask him if I could help him and he says "I saw you on the side of the road with your trunk and doors open and thought you might need some help." So now upon purchasing a Benz, I now have what appears to be one of the best roadside assistance programs on the planet. I've sped at 10+ mph over the limit only to pull in the slow lane and realize that a cop had been following me the entire time and didn't give a rat's ass about me speeding.

    I'm not rich, hell it's not even a remotely new Benz, but it seems that they see the car and something tells them that if I can afford to keep the car in decent shape, I can afford to pay for all sorts of other stuff, like attorneys. I don't know for certain but I think it's going to affect my car purchases in the future, heh.

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, Apr 8th, 2008 @ 6:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Nah, we're paid to scour the net looking for the next new threat to our networks. Or at least *I* am. One job paid me to read 2600 Magazine regularly.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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