Early-Morning Raid Sent To Confiscate 9-Year-Old's Winnie The Pooh Laptop For Downloading Music

from the a-question-of-priorities dept

One of the biggest problems with the current approach to dealing with alleged copyright infringement is the totally disproportionate nature of the action undertaken in response to it. The "three strikes" collective punishment of households that is available in France, New Zealand and South Korea is one example of this. From Finland, we learn about another completely over-the-top action:
CIAPC, the company that had The Pirate Bay blocked by ISPs in Finland, tracked an alleged file-sharer and demanded a cash settlement. However, the Internet account holder refused to pay which escalated things to an unprecedented level. In response, this week police raided the home of the 9-year-old suspect and confiscated her Winnie the Pooh laptop.
The specific details are worrying:
Tuesday morning the doorbell of the family home rang around 8am and the man, who works in the hospitality sector, had quite a shock. Police were at his door with a search warrant authorizing the hunt for evidence connected to illicit file-sharing.
This kind of early-morning raid would be more appropriate for dealing with serious and dangerous criminals than 9-year-old girls (barely even mentioning that the girl's father claims her attempts at downloading failed, leading them to go purchase the music legally anyway). Similarly, the fact that for such a trivial case the account-holder's name and address were obtained from the ISP, and a search warrant issued, shows how out of control the law has become in this area.

Under the malign influence of the copyright companies, it would seem that the police force is now little more than a bunch of heavies sent around at ridiculous hours of the day to frighten people who refuse to pay the arbitrary sums demanded. It's hard to square this colossal waste of police time and public money with the deadly threat of terrorism that we supposedly live under: is intimidating members of the public in this way really such a priority for the Finnish state? It's also disappointing to see the legal system in Finland and elsewhere acquiescing in this terrible perversion by powerful lobbies of what is supposed to be even-handed, proportionate justice for all.

Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and on Google+

Filed Under: excessive, file sharing, finland, kids, laptops

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    AB, 26 Nov 2012 @ 11:22am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Very true.

    It always irritates me when I hear someone fall back on the lame old 'but he/she broke the law' technicality. I can only assume that these people are unaware that every person in the US/Canada/UK (probably other western nations as well but I am only certain of these three) breaks the law at least once a day even if they simply stand still. There are actually laws specifically intended for the purpose of ensuring this (I learned this and some other interesting facts during a stint I spent working as an outside contractor with the police department). These laws were used to arrest serious suspects when no other evidence could be found. Sometimes just arresting someone will lead to a confession. These days they just make up false charges instead.

    The truth is that 'breaking the law' is a meaningless concept and a really stupid excuse for excessive police activity.

    The sad fact is that this situation should never have involved the police (at most one officer might have been present to ensure cooperation while examining/confiscating the computer. There was certainly no justification for the presence of a fully armed squad.

    Depressing note: Did you know that if you stop at a stop sign you can get a traffic ticket? All that is required is that your wheels stop turning. Period. Words straight from the mouth of a bylaw enforcement officer. And if you've ever had to deal with one of those people you know just how ridiculous the law can be when read by the letter rather then the intent.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.