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Russia Not Holding Downloaders Liable of Piracy

By - Source: TorrentFreak | B 14 comments

Russia will hold websites accountable for illegal content while file sharers will be pushed into an educational program.

Vladimir Grigoryev, head of Russia's Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media (FAPMC), recently said the government has no plans to follow the United States' lead in holding file-sharers liable for piracy. Instead, Russia plans to go after the websites responsible for providing the copyrighted content.

News of Russia's stance against piracy arrives after the launch of the Copyright Alert System (CAS) here in the States back in February. Instead of dragging alleged pirates to court and severing their internet connection, local ISPs have instead agreed to educate these downloaders using a "six strikes" method. For now this system has seemingly halted a legal assault carried out by the RIAA, MPAA and other content owners who were already facing a rising tide of brick walls in the American court system.

Speaking at the launch of the "Read Legally" campaign, a nationwide initiative to encourage citizens to obtain eBooks from official sources, Grigoryev seemingly referred to the pre-CAS days when alleged downloaders were threatened with possible fines and prison time if they didn't settle out of court. The RIAA and other organizations made tons of money using this "John Doe" scare tactic.

But within the last few years, cases have been thrown out because IP addresses don't necessarily point to actual pirates, and/or the alleged downloader resides outside the court's jurisdiction. But even with the new CAS scheme put in place, content owners like NBC are still sending legal threats to alleged downloaders subscribed to broadband services outside the CAS envelope.

As for Russia, the country seems to be taking a similar stance, wanting to keep the local court system void of any massive "John Doe" sweeps. "We do not plan to hold Internet users liable for downloading as they do in the U.S., where owners of computers can end up in court,” Grigoryev said. "Responsibility [for illegal downloads] will be placed on the owners of pirate websites."

He then added that file-sharers will "enter an educational campaign" without elaborating what that campaign will include. Like the CAS here in the States, downloaders may be warned of their actions, and then tossed into an educational program if the behavior continues. Broadband providers may even have the right to choose whether they want to throttle or sever Internet connections for a short time.

Russia's move to crack down on websites will undoubtedly be watched closely by U.S.-based content owners and lawmakers. Does this mean the Russian government plans to attack local websites directly, or issue takedown notices to search engines much like the American government does with Google? Time will tell.

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Top Comments
  • 13 Hide
    assasin32 , April 10, 2013 7:14 PM
    Wow Russia has far more common sense than what the US does when it comes to this, it's past ridiculous here when it comes to being caught pirating material. I am willing to bet their idea of education campaigne is more along the lines of our version of Traffic School too.
  • 11 Hide
    rohitbaran , April 10, 2013 7:37 PM
    Well, this probably makes sense. Uploading is a more serious problem than downloading.
Other Comments
  • 13 Hide
    assasin32 , April 10, 2013 7:14 PM
    Wow Russia has far more common sense than what the US does when it comes to this, it's past ridiculous here when it comes to being caught pirating material. I am willing to bet their idea of education campaigne is more along the lines of our version of Traffic School too.
  • Display all 14 comments.
  • 11 Hide
    rohitbaran , April 10, 2013 7:37 PM
    Well, this probably makes sense. Uploading is a more serious problem than downloading.
  • 7 Hide
    kanoobie , April 10, 2013 7:40 PM
    Russia's copyright enforcement laws might make more common sense since they probably have much less lobby groups promoting special interests in this department.
  • 9 Hide
    frombehind , April 10, 2013 8:10 PM
    In soviet russia we send you to the mines in Siberia for "re-education"
  • -9 Hide
    dimar , April 10, 2013 8:43 PM
    Governments need to get to the core of the problem. Find out why do people download that stuff in the first place.
  • 1 Hide
    danwat1234 , April 10, 2013 10:42 PM
    "after the websites responsible for providing the copyrighted content" Does TPB provide copyrighted content? Nope
  • 3 Hide
    capt_taco , April 11, 2013 12:36 AM
    here we go Russia, here we go (clap clap)
  • 1 Hide
    FinneousPJ , April 11, 2013 12:44 AM
    Moskau calling~
  • 4 Hide
    nino_z , April 11, 2013 3:06 AM
    That's right - a country decided that it will enforce its own laws over those of another country. Everything else would have surprised me anyway. I would sure hate to live in the US with all those restrictions taking place. Land of freedom my ass...
  • 0 Hide
    DRosencraft , April 11, 2013 7:18 AM
    I think [now]dimar[/nom] has the right idea. To treat a problem you have to find its source, not just treat its symptoms. While I do think it's too easy to just say that the downloader is just uninformed and without fault, this is heading in the right direction. It only makes sense that the uploader is the origination of the problem, more so than the downloader.
  • 0 Hide
    happyballz , April 11, 2013 7:48 AM
    Tom's what the hell is wrong with your forums? Keep getting errors when posting and cant access the main forum, says no permission.
  • 0 Hide
    aoneone , April 11, 2013 8:30 AM
    US should rethink their policy and do what this guy does. Go AFTER the websites that contain the piracy! Thank you! ^_^
  • 0 Hide
    punahou1 , April 11, 2013 12:09 PM
    I must say that I am very disappointed with our politicians - sounds like Russia has their act together. I have been abused by the music industry simply because I am older and have had to upgrade my music media over the years. For many songs I have 5 licenses - 8 track, 45, LP, Cassette & CD. According to this law I should be free to download anything from my old school collection...
  • 0 Hide
    sam buddy , April 12, 2013 8:50 AM
    "Soviet" Russia?! That was 22 years ago!
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