EC draft directive allows private noncommercial music downloading but comes down hard on pirates for profit – wow, that actually makes sense:
- The proposed directive, meant to harmonize intellectual property right enforcement laws in the 15-nation European Union (EU), aims to strike “a fair balance” between interests of right holders and the opportunities the Internet offers to consumers, according to Commission documents accompanying the draft.
No tougher sanctions are introduced against individuals who download tracks for noncommercial use. Criminal sanctions only apply when copyright infringement is carried out intentionally and for commercial purposes, the Commission said.
Peer-to-peer file-sharing services that encourage copyright infringement and make money from advertising are commercial, according to the Commission. “That is illegal and should be stopped,” the Commission said. Examples of file sharing services are Kazaa and Morpheus.
Even though the individual is let off the hook, the Commission uses strong words to condemn piracy and counterfeiting, which is also part of the draft directive. The Commission estimates over 17,000 jobs are lost annually through piracy and counterfeiting in the EU. [IT world.com]
This would exempt the unfortunate individual waiting for the ax to come down in the RIAA/Verizon case. And screw the commercial pirates by the way – they deserve whatever they get.