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Department of Justice: “Illegal Streaming Should Be a Felony”…

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The Department of Justice wants Congress to make the penalty for illegally streaming media more severe.

David Bitkower, Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the DOJ’s Criminal Division, addressed the issue at a hearing on copyright infringement held by the House Judiciary subcommittee on intellectual property.

Bitkower said illegal streaming should be a felony, making it as severe as the penalty for illegally downloading media.

Illegal streaming is currently a misdemeanor.

Bitkower said:

“Misdemeanor penalties are real, but when you look at the massive profits that infringing websites can make from streaming media, misdemeanor penalties are simply not sufficient to deter those large-scale infringers.”

The Hill also quoted Bitkower as saying: “Online streaming ‘can be just as serious, and in fact, potentially even more serious’ than downloading, ‘and the penalty should reflect that…‘”.

Bitkower also said this law should only apply to “unauthorized public performances conducted for commercial advantage or private financial gain.”

 

Nina Ulloa covers breaking news, tech, and more. Follow her on Twitter: @nine_u

 

Image via Orange Is The New Black

 

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Comments (21)
  1. Anonymous

    For illegally streaming?

    Whats the penalty for illegally obtaining my data and information and then selling that or using it for profit?

    Yeah didn’t think so.


    Reply
  2. Anonymous

    Good idea.


    Reply
  3. TuneHunter

    Brilliant!
    Shazaming and lyric highjacking TOOOOO!


    Reply
  4. Anonymous

    This is why copyright reform never moves forward. On one side you have copyright maximalists wanting to make it a felony to stream illegally. On the other side you have copyright minimalists wanting to more or less abolish copyright entirely. Both sides are beyond extreme and impervious to reason.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “make it a felony to stream illegally”

      Well, that’s necessary today. Downloads belong to the past, and organized crime moves on.

      The piracy industry of tomorrow is ad-financed video streaming.


      Reply
  5. Jeff Robinson

    What IS illegal streaming and how do people do it?


    Reply
    1. TuneHunter

      When Shazam gives the name of the tune and person does not click iTunes or GooglePlay icon at $1.29 but drifts to “own free source”. Most of the music consumers do go to “own free source”
      You will avoid being a felon if you rip your tune from legal and certified by labels YouTube. Then they will get their pathetic “monetization” when and if you click on the pizza ad before your tune acquisition.


      Reply
    2. GGG

      I think this is more related to movies/TV. Sports, for example. Networks pay big bucks to get exclusive rights to certain games. But you can pretty much watch any game live by some mirror site not related to the network.


      Reply
  6. rikki

    THE RIAA has never sued black people for stealing music in the last 15 years…even ebay allowed blacks to sell mp3’s and hard drives full of stolen music for years…YOU KNOW snoop420 tina4me all sorts of “black” names….most white folks like 69 in their names…

    The RIAA may have gone after dead people grandmothers with no computers but never anyone black.


    Reply
    1. Snoopy

      … What a strange thing to claim …


      Reply
    2. GGG

      Rikki, what’s with all the race shit lately? You already called Michelle Phan a white person, might as well stop while you’re…well, not ahead, but something.


      Reply
  7. Versus

    Excellent idea.

    Let’s make sure the law is actually enforced, of course.


    Reply
  8. Why this is stupid

    THIS TEXT IS COPYRIGHTED, BY VIEWING THIS WEBSITE YOU ARE VIOLATING MY COPYRIGHT

    THIS TEXT IS COPYRIGHTED, BY VIEWING THIS WEBSITE YOU ARE VIOLATING MY COPYRIGHT

    THIS TEXT IS COPYRIGHTED, BY VIEWING THIS WEBSITE YOU ARE VIOLATING MY COPYRIGHT

    THIS TEXT IS COPYRIGHTED, BY VIEWING THIS WEBSITE YOU ARE VIOLATING MY COPYRIGHT

    THIS TEXT IS COPYRIGHTED, BY VIEWING THIS WEBSITE YOU ARE VIOLATING MY COPYRIGHT


    Reply
    1. a pirate wants to lecture us on copyright

      Actually, by using this website and making a post you provide a non exclusive license of your text to the owner(s) of the website, in order for your post to be public.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Sure, if you assume he owned the copyright on that text. You can provide a license to a copyright you don’t own.


        Reply
  9. Anonymous

    Why don’t they just debit my bank account and send me whatever music they deem I will like or want based on all my stats and data and searching and listening information and behavior?

    I mean, I know those business guys want to just send me food and goods, mostly packaged preserved stuff, right to my fridge or cupboards and immediately deduct it from my bank account based on whatever chip or robot or camera or device they have installed in my place. That’s convenience right? That’s service!

    Obviously I am not capable of deciding for myself what I want and don’t want, and because wages are down and cost of living is up, I have to work non stop all the time just to maintain this flesh vessel. Then we could have Kellogs and General Mills et all fighting over us and our fridges, all trying to be the first to get that box of preserved goods shipped out to us! Never mind I want only fresh live foods, balderdash, these suits and money men surely know what and when I want. Milk getting low, an algorithm detects it, sends the message out and some drone or robot delivers a fresh jug of milk into my fridge, because the Governments latest health charts suggest Milk is part of a growing body and a healthy diet, because the diary industry paid off whoever it needed to to make the list!

    May as well do the same with music. Heck may as well just take me out for an hour or two a day after slaving away to have enough money just to make sure I exist another day, strap me down to a chair, hold my eyes open, and force feed me whatever music or media their algorithm suggest I want all why instantaneously siphoning the legislated fee out of my bank account. What service that would be, I can’t wait, what a glory being a customer is, thanks for your incredible service peeling away every layer of privacy so you can better determine what i might like, awesome!

    :)


    Reply
    1. so proud of nothing, eh?

      Because piracy sites respect your privacy so much that they sell everything to Google/NSA…


      Reply
  10. hippydog

    Quote “Bitkower also said this law should only apply to “unauthorized public performances conducted for commercial advantage or private financial gain.””

    umm .. what?
    is this a major problem?
    If the law is not being enforced in the first place… How are higher penalties going to make a difference?


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      You’re right, enforcement is the problem.


      Reply
  11. Willis

    Based upon the amount associated with the infringement, it could be considered a felony.


    Reply

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