Posted by cageymaru 6:25 AM (CDT)
Wednesday March 29, 2017
In 2015 an Italian court ruled against the owners of filmakers.biz, filmaker.me, filmakerz.org, and cineteka.org citing them for running a pirate movie operation and generating revenue through the sale of advertising. In February 2017, the $600,000 judgement against the owners was reversed through appeal as it was determined that advertising on a website, that provides only links to pirate material, does not necessarily make it a for profit business. The prosecution must also show that profit activity is connected to an individual. The advertising on the website didn't provide financial gain for the owners, thus it was ruled to be simply file sharing. File sharing the court ruled is a saving of expense and not a for profit business. Thus the penalties of Copyright Law and associated sanctions aren't applicable in this case.
"The Judge has recognized as lawful the portals’ activities, and this despite the presence of advertising banners," Sarzana says. According to the lawyer, it is not enough to simply show that the ‘pirate’ site generates income. The prosecution must also show that profit activity is connected to an individual. If it does not, the sharing aspect could be considered as merely avoiding an expense rather than a for-profit activity designed to generate "significant gain". In the event, that’s exactly what happened.
"In fact, the Judge ruled that file sharing, i.e the sharing of files protected by copyright, is a saving of expense and not a for-profit business. Therefore, in these cases you cannot apply the penal provisions of copyright law and the resulting administrative sanctions," Sarzana notes.