French Courts File-Sharing Friendly, Too

from the sacre-bleu dept

Last week, the French parliament’s proposal to legalize file-sharing looked to be moving ahead, but French courts are acting a little faster. The EFF reports that a court in Paris has ruled that file-sharing qualifies as legal “private copying” (Warning: annoying PDF file), dismissing the charges against a downloader, and following other courts in the country that had previously found downloading to fall under private copying. Things are running counter to the entertainment industry’s wishes in the country — nothing was really expected to come of the parliamentary action, but people are now taking it seriously. That plan will pay rightsholders from a flat monthly fee downloaders would pay. Rather than it be reluctantly imposed on them, record labels would be better off accepting the changing times and figured out how to adapt their business to meet them. Ah, look — it’s that pesky legislate or innovate dilemma again.

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Comments on “French Courts File-Sharing Friendly, Too”

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Dosquatch says:

Re: It is paid for already...

There is already a tax on blank media (tape, CD, DVD) sold in France

In the US, we have the “DAT tax”, which pays a “royalty” to labels and artists for each digital tape and/or player/recorder sold – even though precious few consumers ever bought equipment for home audio use. Usually DAT machines are used as (low to mid range) studio recorders. (Actually, the most common use of these tapes was for computer backups)

The interesting thing is this: the act that imposed this “royalty” gives you the legal right to reproduce copyrighted material. Yes, this is United States law I’m talking about.

This was eventually extended further to also cover blank VHS tapes, analog audio cassettes, and music CD-R (though not data CD-R), with the same provision that the royalties paid for the blank media means that any work copied to it, including copyrighted material, is legal, even to the point of that you can sell the copies you make. Legally.

This is all because the MPAA and the RIAA lobbied for this to curtail potential losses from home copying. They seem to have conveniently forgotten all of this in launching their consumer-jihad.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: It is paid for already...

If you start with a legally purchased copy…

An illegal download copies to a music CD-R is NOT legal. I don’t see that people copying legally obtained music to music CD-R’s has been the focus of the Jihad.

And now I want to go vomit and then pummel myself for defending the RIAA.

Dosquatch says:

Re: Re: Re: It is paid for already...

An illegal download copies to a music CD-R is NOT legal.

I don’t see where it says that. I can borrow a copy from the guy next door (hypothetically) and burn a copy legally. That is allowed. The labels have their royalty, I have my copy, but not the original – that went back to the guy next door. How is borrowing a copy from the guy 2,000 miles away via MP3 so different? I still have my copy, Guy still has his original, label still has its money, the only difference is distance and a couple of computers.

As I read it, royalty paid is royalty paid, and is paid for exactly this reason, by the RIAA’s own lobbying.

And now I want to go vomit and then pummel myself for defending the RIAA.

I understand completely 🙂

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