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.
“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