Armenia Decides It Needs Incredibly Strict Copyright Laws

from the copy-and-go-to-jail dept

Over the years, tons of studies have suggested that strong intellectual property rights are especially damaging in poorer and developing nations. So it’s always a bit of a surprise when we see such countries willing to adopt draconian copyright and patent laws. Via Michael Scott we learn that Armenia — currently ranked 135th in the world in per capita income, is apparently preparing to put in place quite draconian copyright laws. A first offense for copyright infringement would get you fined $2,500. This in a country where the per capita GDP is somewhere between $3,350 and $5,900 depending on who you believe. Oh, and for your second copyright violation? You’re facing twelve months in jail. I’d hate to find out what the “third strike” is. Of course, the BSA has estimated that 93% of software in Armenia infringes on copyrights, so basically everyone in the country who uses a computer may be close to facing a year in jail.

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Comments on “Armenia Decides It Needs Incredibly Strict Copyright Laws”

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28 Comments
Andrew (profile) says:

Excellent.

This report suggests that only 11.5% of Armenians owned a personal computer in 2006, so that’s just 329,000 people facing jail time. Unfortunately these people tend to be young, educated and from higher socioeconomic groups, but never let a country’s progress stand in the way of copyright reform.

(Yes, I know I’ve assumed 93% of computer users infringe, rather than 93% of software infringes, but they’re probably not too different.)

WammerJammer (profile) says:

Bait and Switch

Pretty soon you won’t know what the law is because it changes depending on the mood of the politicians (liars). Kinda restricts the travel thing because if you make a mix cd or a copy of your favorite movie to travel with, you may be busted at the border. So no more personal stuff if you want to travel and you better carry the phone number of a reputable attorney with you if you travel to any of these weird countries. In the case of Amanda Knox who was tried in some strange place in Italy, that put Italy on our family’s personal no-fly list. So watch where the hell you go. Gone are the days of having your mix with you as you freely travel down the road.

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