Japanese Prosecutors Still Want To Blame Developer Of File Sharing Program For Copyright Infringement By Users

from the too-bad dept

We were happy earlier this month to learn that the Osaka High Court had overturned a lower court ruling, against the creator of the popular Japanese file sharing service, Winny. The lower court had found the guy guilty of copyright infringement, despite having just developed the software, not having used it to infringe on copyrights. The higher court got it right, recognizing that just because the software could be used for copyright infringement does not mean that the developer is automatically guilty of copyright infringement. Unfortunately, Japanese prosecutors didn’t recognize the common sense and basic logic of such a ruling and are now appealing the case to the Supreme Court in Japan. Hopefully, the Supreme Court agrees with the Osaka high court, but either way, this seems like a massive waste of time and resources.

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Comments on “Japanese Prosecutors Still Want To Blame Developer Of File Sharing Program For Copyright Infringement By Users”

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Nethos (profile) says:

I like to think of it like this:

Imagine a crowbar. A useful tool, with many applications. I could, for example, use said crowbar in building a house. I could also use the crowbar to break into my neighbor’s house. The crowbar itself is no more responsible for either of these actions than the people who made it. If the people who made the crowbar advertised that it was especially good for breaking and entering it would be one thing, but simply making a tool with many lawful uses does not mean they expect it to be used in an unlawful way.

Simply replace the crowbar with P2P software, and the uses with something more fitting, and it becomes clearer.

Many people these days think completely differently when it comes to technology. While the above crowbar argument may make perfect sense, for some reason when the item in question is some new kind of new technology people seem to think backwards. Crowbars and P2P software are really both just tools, their use depends on the one using them.

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