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Countries Its Illegal To Download

Some countries around the world have enhanced their laws to protect the creativity of artists in the music, movies, televisions shows and software development industry from the individuals who download copyrighted files from file sharing sites such as torrents. The entertainment industry, artist and the government as well has been losing billions of dollars in revenues from piracy hence the introduction of harsh, strict laws that are meant to combat violation of copyright law and curb digital piracy. Here are some of the countries around the world that will punish you with fines and even jail terms for downloading pirated content from the internet.

  1. Germany

Germany is one of the harshest countries in the enforcement of laws regarding downloading illegal content such as torrents. Watching or rather streaming a movie online will be violating German law. Sharing files using peer to peer sharing protocol is also prohibited in Germany.

The government through special law firms sends compensation claims to offenders, and the cost of a single download will cost you between €300 to €1100. Repeated violation of the law will attract a jail term which is not less than 2 years.

  1. New Zealand

In September 2011 New Zealand parliament enacted copyright infringement file sharing act. The act states that anyone caught violating the law like sharing or uploading copyrighted material will receive three warning, and after that, a fine of £7,900 or more will be imposed, and your internet connection will be disconnected as well. This act has resulted in many individuals abstaining from downloading illegal content and opting for legal sources to watch movies online such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Instant video.

  1. United States of America

Uploading, downloading, rental or distribution of unauthorized copies of copyrighted content through any medium in the USA is violating the law which will see you subjected to a civil and criminal liability. The punishment is well written under section 2319of the title 18 which you can be fined thousands of dollars or convicted and serve a jail term of not more than 6 years.

  1. Sweden

Most Swedes are opting for legal sources of downloading content or streaming sites such as Netflix due to the severe regulations and restrictions imposed on using file sharing sites. Downloading illegal torrents or uploading of copyrighted material is strictly prohibited.

Sweden being one of the countries in Scandinavia enjoys the control of Nordic Content Protection which ensures that piracy and violation of copyright law on the TV industry is controlled and stopped. Bleaching of Act SFS 2000:171 will award you with a jail term of 2 years and hefty fines are also applicable.

  1. Denmark

Denmark is one of the Scandinavian countries in Europe hence it’s also under the protection of Nordic Content Protection. Downloading or uploading content that you fully don’t own the copyrights you is restricted under the law. Denmark has tried to win the anti-piracy battle by introducing laws such as Denmark radio and television law section 91 and breaking the law in Denmark will see you get severe fines or even an imprisonment of not more than 6 years.

  1. Italy

In Italy, the government uses ISP provider to disconnect offenders from the service when they download copyrighted material from the internet with the first notice. Italy its strict and has one of the toughest laws in the world since downloading or uploading of illegal files for commercial purpose or personal use will see you fined $ 1500- $300000 or a jail time of 3 years or both. For users of peer to peer file sharing, this is one of the laws that discourage such a practice.

  1. United Kingdom

The United Kingdom government has regularly been revising the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 and other laws that will curb piracy. The current law ensures that offenders receive a maximum of 2 years incarceration for infringement and stealing of someone’s content. Downloading or uploading torrents in U.K violates intellectual property law and as a result, your ISP provider issues warnings and a legal action is usually taken which may result in a conviction.

Recent changes in the law could see the number of years one can serve jail time increase to 10 years and in addition to heavy fines.

  1. France

France has an agency called Higher Authority For the Distribution of Works and the Protection of Copyright on the Internet ( Hadopi).Its work is to analyze and monitor file sharing networks and if your caught three emails are sent to you as warnings and if the piracy continues you can appear before a judge. Disconnection from your ISP, jail terms, and fines are some of the consequences of downloading or uploading illegal content.

  1. India

India government has been on the forefront in the fight against piracy. The government has closed some of the websites that promote copyrighted material and convicted owners of these sites. Under section 63, 63-A, 65 and 65 A of the Indian copyright act 1957 offenders are liable to a jail time of 3 years and a fine of Rs 310000.


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