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October 20, 2011

We Have To Admit We’ve Considered Lobbying for The Creation of The Crime of “Felony Failure to Use a Turn Signal”

An organization called “Fight for the Future” is raising the alarm that a senate bill increasing penalties for online copyright infringement could, if passed into law, result in the imprisonment of Justin Bieber for five years.

Like most music fans, you’re probably thinking, “I’d give him five years just for “U Smile.”

Also, “That’s an outrage!  Probably.”

For the record, we here at Planet Moron are not entirely unsympathetic to the notion of copyright enforcement. In fact, we copyright the material on this site, which we think of less as an attempt to protect our valuable intellectual rights and more as a desperate cry for help.

Be that as it may, this latest bill (S. 978), sponsored by Senator Amy Klobuchar, who represents the great state of Vested Commercial Interests, wants to elevate the crime of online copyright infringement from a misdemeanor to a felony.

This really only makes sense.  Common misdemeanor crimes include such trifles as hitting someone over the head, sexually assaulting them, or killing them. How can those be compared to uploading the latest episode of Charlie's Angels (Better Hurry), or, doing as Justin Bieber’s mom did, uploading numerous videos of him singing other people’s songs?

People like that have to pay.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation makes the point that the intent of the law is to make prosecuting these crimes more attractive by making them more glamorous felonies and suggests that might not be the best use of our justice system.

You want to rethink that position?


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October 20, 2011 at 05:12 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink


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Sounds like a lawyer full-employment plan to me. Slide out of college and into the infingement-suit business.

Posted by: barryjo | Oct 20, 2011 9:12:38 PM

As a software engineer who wants to sell software on line, the most interesting wrinkle in this topic is this: In the on line world, the copyright owner sends me, FREE, a copy of his/her work.

Take this article. I visited Planet Moron (I do so daily, I really dig your brand of snark). Your web site host, at YOUR behest, sent me a copy of this article. You PAID them to do it. Now I've got a copy you sent to me merely because I asked for it. How am I violating copyright if I MOVE the copy you sent me to a different spot on my hard drive?

Claiming copyright infringement on anything posted on line by the copyright owner is like someone sending me a photograph in the mail and then suing me because I put it in a different frame. It's pure BS.

Posted by: MPH | Oct 21, 2011 6:02:07 PM

SEE??? I told you so!!!!

Posted by: barryjo | Oct 21, 2011 7:02:41 PM

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