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MPAA: Illegal Movie Streaming is Still Theft

MPAA: Illegal Movie Streaming is Still Theft

Spokeswoman says its still a crime, compares it to shoplifting.

Many of us are well aware of illegal video streaming sites that allow you to watch new movie releases on-demand.

Obviously it’s illegal to upload and make content available, but what’s sort of murky is whether or not it’s illegal to simply watch it.

According to MPAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Kaltman it is, though oddly equates it with physical theft.

“Nobody who isn’t a criminal would walk into Blockbuster or Wal-Mart or Best Buy, wherever they’re selling or renting DVDs, take it off the shelf, put it under their arm and not pay for it,” she told the Chicago Sun-Times. “For a generation that has grown up with the Internet … there is a perception that because it is there, it’s available and it’s free, I can take it.”

Copyright attorney Steve Englund said while individuals whom post copyrighted material online without permission are indeed committing a crime, those watching that material may not necessarily be guilty of anything.

“It is a little more complicated question whether it is illegal to watch it when someone else has put it online,” he said.

Mickie Piatt, law professor and interim director of the Intellectual Property Law program at Chicago-Kent College of Law, said there are “some criminal penalties, but those have not been used as much.”

Perhaps it’s learned a lesson from the RIAA, that targeting consumers of your product never turns out well.

Stay tuned.

[email protected]

Jared Moya
I've been interested in P2P since the early, high-flying days of Napster and KaZaA. I believe that analog copyright laws are ill-suited to the digital age, and that art and culture shouldn't be subject to the whims of international entertainment industry conglomerates. Twitter | Google Plus
Up4Daze
Up4Daze

There are movies playing on walmart televisions often. Are you legally allowed to watch those? You haven't paid for them.

 

The MPAA are doochebags.

Seeing ≠ stealing
Seeing ≠ stealing

If I see something I didn't have to pay to see, I'm stealing it???? Man, I stole a lot of cars today! :P Just another way for the government to keep our eyes covered 24/7. Idiot lawyers.

o b 1
o b 1

So what there saying is if my friend steals a movie from someone or a store and comes over to my house and we watch it i'm getting charged for stealing it to? That makes zero sense. If a TV station puts a movie on there network that they don't have the rights to show whos going to get sued the viewers or the people that put it on? You cant control the internet get over it already you can try but you can't thats why its called the world wide web anyone in the world can get access from anywhere that its available and every country has there own set of laws. Why do you think sites like piratebay are still around it can't be stoped!!

just a passer by
just a passer by

COICA In the United States, a new law proposal called The Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA) was introduced last week, and there will be a hearing in front of the Judiciary Committee this Thursday. If passed, this law will allow the government, under the command of the media companies, to censor the internet as they see fit, like China and Iran do, with the difference that the sites they decide to censor will be completely removed from the internet and not just in the US. Please see the following article from the Huffington Post for more information. Stop the Internet Blacklist And if you are a US citizen, please take the time to sign this petition DemandProgress.org - Petition to Stop the Internet Blacklist! Update: Also for US citizens, you can email your Senator from the following link and tell him or her your concerns about this bill Tell Your Senator: No Website Blacklists, No Internet Censorship! Update, from EFF's website: the Senate Judiciary Committee postponed the scheduled markup of the Internet censorship bill — a fantastic outcome, given that the entertainment industry and their allies in Congress had hoped this bill would be quickly approved before the Senators went home for the October recess. Massive thanks to all who used the EFF Action Center to write to your Senators to oppose this bill.

Bill Ishman
Bill Ishman

Great Article. I agree with the views of the MPAA on video piracy. Many believe that movies and music on the internet should be free for the taking. If movie piracy continues at this rate, good movies will be a thing of the past. Why should hollywood produce a movie if it's going to be posted on the internet for free. I have put together a site that shows only legal movies and it has really been an up-hill battle. My visitors don't stick around to long for these reasons. 1. To many commercials during the hulu.com embed movies. (These commercials help pay for the right to view the movie.) 2. Most of the public domain movies I show are in black and white and very old. 3. No new movies on my site. Most are at least 10 years old and not 10 star rated movies( one thumb up). They want movies that are still in theaters and have not been released on dvd yet. I have made about 75.00 on my site so far this year,but I'm not giving up yet. By the way,,,how does google video and youtube get away with posting thousands of illegal movies on their site. Anyways my website url is http://www.amazingvids.org If you see any movies that are not 100% legal on my site, hit the contact me link and let me know.

johndoe
johndoe

So to make a long story short, that article seems to be saying that streaming (watching) a tv show online (for instance on megavideo or something like this) is not considered as being a crime when quoting 'Copyright attorney Steve Englund said while individuals whom post copyrighted material online without permission are indeed committing a crime, those watching that material may not necessarily be guilty of anything.' is it true then ?

wayne
wayne

HELLO, CAN I MEET GIRLS HERE ?

TSimmons
TSimmons

Do I have to make sure the radio stations that are streaming music to my radio have proper copyright authority to broadcast that music to my ears, or since it's free radio I should automatically consider it illegal? Since when did looking at something = stealing. There is no reproduction, distribution, copying or downloading (unless listening to the radio is also equated to downloading music). At what point while watching a video, say on Youtube, do I need to determine a video is illegal copyright material, before, during or after? How exactly are we also supposed to know what's infringing on a copyright vs. what isn't? The person that uploaded the video might know, but the viewers? Possibly sometimes, but where do you draw the line? It's the current enforcement/legislative system that's broken, and the MPAA is trying to hammer a square peg through a round hole.

Komodo
Komodo

Haha, the RIAA, MPAA, and the Government is so ineffective they can't even decide what is or is not theft. No worries, I'll keep committing copyright infringement...oops I mean "stealing" until someone comes along to stop me or until the filthy greedy music and movie associations collapse under the weight of their own marketing lethargy...whichever comes first. And at which time some goon comes to haul me away I'll upload my terabytes of content onto the web with a big "FUCK YOU" attached so companies can lose an exponentially more money. It's not like the collective mass of CEOs are running out of artists to shit on by giving them a couple pennies per CD anyway. Executives still have plenty of hundred dollar bills to wipe their ass with. Lord forbid if they should have to take a shit and wipe their ass with a twenty. The movie and music industry needs to evolve their business strategies or else die off. Survival of the fittest baby. Information is free, if you have a problem with that go suck an egg.

gee bee
gee bee

Why do people feel entitled to whatever they can get for free on the internet? The motion picture industry, while it's business model is far from perfect, has every right to press charges for stealing their copyrighted material. Mountain_rage...you're either an idiot, or are twisting the legalese in your favor. I think the latter. You know it's copyright infringement if you have not paid for a licensed copy for personal viewing. You can argue semantics all you like. Stealing/Infringement/etc....whatever it is, is wrong. The movie industry's business model is very mis-structured, but that doesn't justify taking what you haven't paid for.

mountain_rage
mountain_rage

To expect society to know what is and what isn't copyrighted is ridiculous, or even to expect everyone to know that a file is an unauthorized copy before accessing it is downright illogical. Copyright extends to distribution, not access. Only the individual uploading the file is responsible for copyright. Although it has never gone to court, I assume that even seeders don't necessarily break copyright law since the original up loader in hosting the file insinuates that he has the right to distribute the file and to hand that distribution right over to you. Only the original uploaded should technically be capable of copyright infringement since all other parties are unaware that the file is copyrighted. The copyright holder should require to inform said individual of the infringement, should he refuse to comply then, and only then should a lawsuit be allowed. If the copyright cartel can't work in such a system they should simply not exist, as any other restriction is unfair to society. The onus should be on them to monitor and protect their "property", not everyone else who is having their creative scope limited.

DrewWilson
DrewWilson

It's basically sabre rattling on the side, though at this point in time, I know there is a movement by the copyright maximalists to put in a three strikes regime in the US. It's only just beginning, so nothing much is being said at this point, but believe me when I say that it's only a matter of time at this point before all hell breaks lose over the subject of three strikes in the US.

World Anarchy
World Anarchy

There was an excellent graphic someone posted once, clearly demonstrating the difference between theft, commercial copyright infringement, filesharing and piracy. The text was as follows: Theft - removes the original. Gross Commercial Copyright Infringement - copies the original and sells it for a profit. File Sharing - copies the original and gives it away for free. Piracy - stealing s*** on the high seas.

m
m

This is copyright infringement, not theft. The thugs in the entertainment industry are "stealing" our language as well as our legal system and Congress.

ejonesss
ejonesss

no it isnt theft. when a car is broken into and the dash ripped open and the stereo is removed then the stereo is stolen missing there is now an empty dash bay where the stereo used to be. when you stream something you are only potentially copying the content (if you can rip the stream) most of the time the streaming would probably fall under "public performance" some might argue that money is being stolen wrong to steal the money you would have to break into the accounts of the mpaa and steal the money. even then the money is not missing it is data being shifted around.

yes
yes

yeah so this is no different then if i dl it, as for i didn't put it online to begin with. I will be sure to continue downloading and uploading. thanks for the heads up saying its legal now.

zcat
zcat

The interesting thing is, I have managed to watch entire movies in stores while waiting around for the wife and kids to finish christmas shopping. Is that theft too? I didn't pay anyone anything for the movie.

BrendanOcheltree
BrendanOcheltree

 @Up4Daze

 BUT Walmart has payed for movies to be played where as people who have simply taken a small camcorder into the movies and recorded a movie now THAT is illigal as is DVD-Rips walmart has dvd players they stream to the tv's they dont rip the dvds

Zee LEE
Zee LEE

Here in our area, piracy somehow had a good effect. Because the entertainment industry is losing so much money due to piracy, the prices of the original DVDs and CDs went down 50-80% just to encourage people to buy their products. I just hope that they did that earlier, they could have avoided more headaches.

D.AN
D.AN

Yet another drone spewing the disgusting secretion that is the fallacious, overused, and utterly idiotic preaching. It can be said that you are just another annoyingly naive dumb ass that just changed names, but whether that assumption is true does not matter, as we've already taken down at least ten of you. Try to write something new we haven't heard and destroyed more than twice.

dv8
dv8

Hey gee bee maybe you should shut your mouth and quit being an ignorant asshole.If people do not want the material they produce to fall to piracy then maybe they should learn how to better protect their material.If it was not for piracy then there would be a lot of unheard artist in this world and a lot of unpopular movies that would have never been known.People like you who let the government control their every move is nothing but a pawn,so call it stealing if you want.Maybe we should fight back and say that we wasted some valuable life when they produce something that is complete and utter shit.No laws against poor directing,hmm should be.So gee bee shut up before you find yourself at best buy tomorrow :)

Up4Daze
Up4Daze

 @BrendanOcheltree Bootlegs should be more legal than downloaded digital movies. They are shit quality and by technicality, they are altered <the alteration in sound and video quality, also the abstraction of motion and the change in aspect ratio would be editing it into an entirely new film.> Also, this is old but it's still a legitimate summary of how bullshit the MPAA is. http://www.thebestpageintheuniverse.net/images/sopa_busted.gif I pity anyone who is deluded by their bullshit.

Jim
Jim

losing money? From what I understand both the Movie AND the Record industry have reported record profits almost every quarter for several years. Get your facts straight.

D.AN
D.AN

For a second I thought you were referring to mountain_rage, ha ha.



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