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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 June 20 - 26  > Downloading pirated content criminalized
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2012 June 20 - 26 [CIVIL RIGHTS]

Downloading pirated content criminalized

June 22, 2012
The Diet on June 20 approved a bill for a partial amendment to the Copyright Act to impose criminal penalties on those who download pirated content.

The bill was supported by the Democratic Party of Japan, the Liberal Democratic Party and the Komei Party, and opposed by the Japanese Communist Party.

The JCP argued that while digital piracy is a problem that needs to be dealt with, the government should not impose imprisonment or fines on users who download illegal copies of music or movies but focus on efforts to delete the files initially uploaded to the Internet.

Once these activities are criminalized, it could lead to the police authority’s arbitrary monitoring of citizens’ web usage under the pretext of conducting an investigation, the JCP stressed.

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