Legally own a CD and want to burn a second copy for your car? Own a film on Blu-Ray but want to rip a copy to watch on your tablet during a plane flight? Want to extend the use of media you legally purchased for your own, private use by duplicating it? Thanks to a new UK High Court ruling, you’re now a criminal.
As the Electronic Frontier Foundation puts it:
In a nutshell, the court struck down the UK government’s decision to allow users to lawfully make copies of content that they have purchased for personal use, given the absence of a compulsory levy to compensate copyright owners for the “harm” that they suffer from such copying. The government’s choices are now to remove the private copying exception—making personal copying illegal again, or to supply additional evidence that copyright owners suffer no or minimal “harm” from personal copying, or else to begin imposing a new tax on users to compensate the industry for that “harm”.
So, according to the High Court, if you want a separate copy of, say, The Balcony by Catfish and The Bottlemen, an album you already own, to listen to in your car, you are “harming” the copyright holder by not buying a second copy, despite there being no proof of lost sales due to such practices. The free copying exception that most of Europe enjoys isn’t fit for us British plebs, it seems. But not much is any more (ECHR, anyone?).
Thank you Electronic Frontier Foundation for providing us with this information.
Image courtesy of WiseGeek.