What's the difference?
No, not 40%. In reality, there is no difference between these two crimes. Downloading a movie, music album or book from the Internet without the copyright owner's permission is the same as if you walked into a store, stuffed the DVD (or CD) into your pocket and walked out.
This survey, done by the Solutions Research Group in January 2007, shows the magnitude of the problem with illegal music and movie downloads. Most illegal downloading occurs on peer-to-peer (P2P) networks such as BitTorrent, LimeWire, DC++, Ares and eDonkey. These networks do not obtain permission to share copyrighted material online, unlike legal services such as iTunes and Amazon.
Sharing or downloading copyrighted files without permission over the UR network is illegal and a violation of University policy! You should review the University's Acceptable Use Policy and Copyright Policy.
The purpose of copyright is to protect the rights of the creators of intellectual property. Copyright holders have the sole right to copy, modify, and distribute their works. Therefore copyright helps to prevent the unauthorized use or sale of these works.
How would you feel if someone read your groundbreaking research paper that consumed a year of your life and then posted it on the Internet for anyone to download and copy? Or if you wrote a song or book?
Well your research paper is considered "intellectual property," the same as a recording artist’s song or a painter’s mural. So if you wouldn't appreciate someone distributing your work to the entire online community without your permission, then perhaps you should think twice before downloading or distributing an artist’s work without their permission.
Determining if a website is offering music, movies or books illegally can sometimes be difficult. There are two warning signs to look for that could indicate a site is illegal:
In addition, many artists, record companies, and movie studios list on their websites whether they allow the distribution of their materials on the Internet. Check their websites first before downloading their material from legally questionable third party sites or making their material available to others.
Lastly, copyrights can last for anywhere between 50 and 120 years. But once the copyright has expired, the works that were copyrighted fall into public domain. Works in public domain can be distributed, downloaded, and copied by anyone legally. So chances are that if the work was made recently, it’s probably under copyright.
The below three lists of legal music and movie downloading sites can help you find sites that are legal to download from.
There are also several other options:
With all these options available to you, what are you waiting for? Try these free and legal online services today!
If the University receives a complaint against you from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), or other copyright holding associations, you will be notified by email. For each complaint filed against you, you will face escalating consequences. The consequences are based upon whether you are a student, staff, or faculty member:
Please reference the following Human Resources policy - www.rochester.edu/working/hr/policies/pdfpolicies/154.pdf
If you don’t think you’ll get caught by the RIAA or the University, then perhaps you should consider what else could be happening while you’re downloading media illegally from peer-to-peer networks. While you’re getting the hottest new music and movies, some hacker could be downloading your confidential and personal information.
“How?” you may ask. Peer-to-peer (P2P) programs function by allowing users to connect to each others’ hard drives in order to access and copy files. Any files stored in shared folders are fair game for others to copy and steal. Some P2P programs don’t even create shared folders; they simply utilize existing folders such as “ My Documents” and its subfolders. That means that anything stored in your “My Documents” folder is up for grabs, including any Word documents, financial software files, photos, and other personal data. This can result in identity theft.
Did you know that one out of every three computer attacks occur through P2P file-sharing networks? Hackers know that viruses and spyware can be easily spread through peer-to-peer networks, so they take advantage of this. They can simply name a file containing a virus after a popular song. Then when the users open the file, no song plays; instead, their computers get infected.
To avoid the consequences from the University and the copyright holding agencies, we recommend that you uninstall your peer-to-peer file sharing clients. On Windows, use Add/Remove Programs to uninstall the software, and on a Mac, drag the application to the Trash.
Don't become a statistic! Know the law on downloading and distributing copyrighted files.