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iAnonymous Declares War on Japan Over I...n/a

Anonymous Declares War on Japan Over Illegal Downloads
Hacker collective Anonymous has declared open season on the Japanese government for its passage of a draconian ban on illegal downloads and ripping, briefly taking down several government websites in a series of cyber-attacks.

The “Personal Illegal Downloads Punishment Act,” was recently proposed by the opposition LDP and their cultist stooges the Koumeito, and sailed through the Diet with no debate or opposition – 221 for, versus 12 against, with only the fringe left-wing maniacs of the Communists and Social Democrats, and a single Democrat, voting against.

As might be expected, the music industry’s belief that it will miraculously boost its declining sales was the most vocally espoused argument in favor of the law.

The most significant provision of the law is to punish offenses of unauthorized downloads of copyrighted commercial audiovisual content with a maximum of 2 years in jail and ¥2,000,000 in fines.

The law also bans all ripping where it involves circumventing a protection system – which, in the best tradition of poorly conceived laws, apparently manages to leave ripping audio CDs legal as there is no protection system involved, whilst banning all format shifting of DVDs and BDs.

The download portion of the law comes into effect in October, whilst the ripping ban is due in January.

Some summary points about the “illegal download” law as it is currently understood:

QuotationDownloading copyrighted material was already technically illegal since 2010, but no penalties were attached

The law only applies to commercially (paid-for) distributed copyrighted audiovisual recordings

As a result the law actually leaves games, software, manga and text out – all these are still “legal” to download illegally

There are mixed opinions as to whether “downloading” includes caching or streaming – it has been pointed out that it may well ban YouTube if it does, and the final decision probably rests with police and how much they want to arrest a given person

It is a “shinkokuzai” law – for police to act, there has to be a complaint from a victim

This means police need a specific complaint to act upon – it seems unlikely copyright holders will be able to obtain this kind of information themselves in the case of private downloads, although public downloads are another matter

However, police have shown themselves willing to independently goad copyright holders into pressing charges by providing them with information from unrelated cases


As it potentially criminalizes most of the computer-using population of Japan, there is some suspicion that police intend to use their new powers either to bring additional charges against people whose computers they have seized as a matter of course, or to initiate house searches in the hopes of finding additional offenses with which to charge victims.

If Japanese police follow their typical pattern of behavior (as they have done with uploaders), they will likely not crack down hard on all downloaders and infringing sites, but instead make occasional examples of offenders, or use the law to bring extra charges against people arrested for other reasons (handy if the original charges do not stick and thought to be a means of point-scoring for officers and prosecutors) or against sites considered inconvenient.

In response to all this, Anonymous has reared its ugly head, issuing an “official” press release in which it throws down the gauntlet to the Japanese government, who are doubtless quaking in their various Tokyo mansions:

QuotationGreetings land of the rising sun, we are Anonymous.

In recent years the content industry, politicians, and governments throughout the world have dramatically increased their efforts to combat internet piracy and copyright infringement. Unfortunately in doing so they have often taken the wrong approach which has lead to draconian laws, infringements of basic rights, and severely stunting the growth of technological innovations.

Japan, home to some of the greatest technological innovations throughout history has now decided to go down the path as well and cave into the pressures of the content industry to combat piracy and copyright infringement. Earlier this week Japan approved an amendment to its copyright law which will give authorities the right to imprison citizens for up to two years simply for downloading copyrighted material

We at Anonymous believe strongly that this will result in scores of unnecessary prison sentences to numerous innocent citizens while doing little to solve the underlying problem of legitimate copyright infringement.

If this situation alone wasn’t horrible enough already, the content industry is now pushing ISPs in Japan to implement surveillance technology that will spy on and every single internet user in Japan. This would be an unprecedented approach and severely reduce the amount of privacy law abiding citizens should have in a free society.

To the government of Japan and the Recording Industry Association of Japan, you can now expect us the same way we have come to expect you in violating our basic rights to privacy and to an open internet.

We Are Anonymous
We Are Legion
We Do Not Forgive
We Do Not Forget
Expect Us


They have apparently wasted no time in making their presence felt – the websites of the Supreme Court of Japan, the Democratic Party of Japan and the Cabinet Office have all reportedly suffered DDoS attacks. --Sankaku Complex
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View more // Comments (39)

01 year agosmallricochetsmallricochet
What a debate. But to step back, it's presumptuous to act like we have a right to free songs, shows, and media. A large amount of the comments here can be construed as being angry that that ability is suddenly being taken away.

Anonymous really has no right crashing government websites, even if it is a justified protest, it is a pointless one. Will the Japanese government really repeal a law because of something like that?

Don't get me wrong, I'm as pissed as the best of us, simply because after casually downloading whatever song I wanted for free for 10 years, paying for it seems ridiculous. I can rationalize it every and any way. I refuse to buy music I can't sample! I'll spend my money elsewhere! The government is trying to own the internet! This is a stupid move, like prohibition!

But let's be honest, the end result is going to be illegal downloads despite heightened consequences, as iShirt pointed out. But it's important to keep in mind the music industry is in fact, an industry, and this whole situation could be compared to the bootlegs of figures here. There are a thousand pros and cons to the law, but in the end, this 'attack' is stupid. What exactly are they expecting to accomplish?

Also, if they have the time to do this, they should start working on getting megavideo back up.
01 year agopiratepapillonpiratepapillon
iTheShirt (1 year ago) #1008085May be just me but I don't think there will ever be a conclusion to this war. It's either you let people download illegally, or make the internet government property. Both of these are direct violations of laws and amendments. I'm starting to think the debate is a paradox in itself. Dx
Well put. It's scary how complex the problem is and it's sad there's no solution in sight.
01 year agoK-MuK-Mu
iTheShirt (1 year ago) #1008085May be just me but I don't think there will ever be a conclusion to this war. It's either you let people download illegally, or make the internet government property. Both of these are direct violations of laws and amendments. I'm starting to think the debate is a paradox in itself. Dx

That's so true XD
01 year agoiTheShirtiTheShirt Seasonally Otaku'd
K-Mu (1 year ago) #1007917This is surely becoming a heated debate :) I just hope they're gonna find something once and for all to please everyone and stop this nonsense. ^^

May be just me but I don't think there will ever be a conclusion to this war. It's either you let people download illegally, or make the internet government property. Both of these are direct violations of laws and amendments. I'm starting to think the debate is a paradox in itself. Dx
01 year ago (1 year ago)K-MuK-Mu
This is surely becoming a heated debate :) I just hope they're gonna find something once and for all to please everyone and stop this nonsense. ^^
01 year agokilanikilani Sayaka Rank
A) I download and you can enjoy my yearly spending on cds, dvds, figures and more stuff I don't need
or
B) I don't download and my money is enjoyed elsewhere
01 year agopiratepapillonpiratepapillon
One issue is that we expect too much. When I buy an album I can happily listen to it for a month. A dollar a song is not overpriced but if you plan to buy a whole library of music in a single sitting then yes it adds up. You have to make what you buy last and not be too greedy and try to get everything. Excess is something that's majorly wrong with our society and I'm just as guilty as everyone else (Too many figures XD)

I'm honestly not sure what you mean when you refer to the good old days though. What do you mean? You certainly don't mean in the CD age when songs were pumped out quickly to put out an album. Do you mean when artists were releasing single song vynils? That wasn't all that different than the current music environment now. While music is not my place of expert I can't really think of a place in time where music was a completely free for love thing. Hell, I'm pretty sure cavemen were charging each other to listen to the banging of rocks.

Donate if you wish pay types have been tried and failed. Unless the artist is very popular they will not break even using that type of pay method. A restaurant tried donate what you think the meal is worth. People are d-bags and the place went out of business in a month (surprise surprise). I think most artists should make a place online to download their singles legally since it would encourage people like you who feel the CD outlet is outdated (and it kind of is in a way). Lowering the prices is iffy though since unknown bands need the cash and even well known bands still have to make the money for all the advertising, production, and other related costs. I just don't think a donation pay method would hold up economically.

No, you can't steal something like a song in a physical way but when you download everything an artists has ever put out and don't throw something back you're pretty much still stealing since others paid for the same content. I once saw the statistics for how much a game made and how much it would have made if everyone bought a legit copy. It was staggering. It makes the difference between breaking even and being a huge success. Why should some people have to pay and others can just skip over that step? If a song is considered free game once an artist puts it out than it puts everyone who works in the arts in a really bad position. Really bad.
01 year ago (1 year ago)VocaloidVocaloid
piratepapillon (1 year ago) #1006983I never meant to be insensitive and for those in that type of situation I can cut some slack. I grew up really poor so I can underestand how hard it is but I got a job as soon as I could and set out not to repeat my family's mistakes and now I'm fairly comfortable. It just bugs me when I see my well off slacker no job friends who sponge off their parents complain about how they download since they can't afford things which is total bull. As long as you're not impoverished everyone should at least make an effort to support what they love.

I don't buy CD's, never have, never will. Everything is on my ipod, all MP3 format, so when there is no online content for a single song on said CD, am I at fault if I download the song due to not being able to get it, and the fact I don't buy CD's?

Like a library, at one point the library bought the book, but every time you check it out, the author doesn't get more money.
Remember the old days, where music was made because the artist was happy to know that people liked it, didn't expect money, but greatly appreciated if they got it. There's a difference between a job and a hobby, if you like styling clothes, you know that job won't rake in as much money as a lawyer would.
To give you an idea, it's around 0.99 dollars, in my currency that is around 0.65p For me, to spend that amount on over 300 songs, would cost me almost 200 pound, 310 dollars in your currency.
And I like to change my music regularly, there's no way to afford it.
I would love to support them, but I can't, sometimes I do by donating money to them, but I am not paying for every song.
I never buy bootleg games, movies, books ect
So, for doing one thing, I can get punished?
The music industry is relying on old and ridiculous methods, why put your music online if you don't want it to be distributed? Some artists are smart and realise by putting it online, and by opening an account where people can donate IF THEY WISH, they actually make more.
How about the converters? Why not get the artists to make deals, that way we all win. Or the site sponsor them, why not for every download donate 10p? We pay for broadband, why doesn’t some of that go towards it? The ideas are there, they just need to realise it. How do Youtube make their money? They get sponsors, they get public traffic, each time you visit they make money.

You want to stop piracy then make it unprofitable. Reduce the prices of originals there will be no need for pirate copies.

Some smart people have realised that lowering the prices to around 2 p per download actually MAKES a profit as this equation happens:
Lower cost= More people buying= more money made.
Higher cost= less people buying= less money made.

So, end result.
If I were to make a song, I would expect to make a profit, A PROFIT, not millions. If you like it, great, do it, but don't expect a big profit, you need to get an actual job for that.

I would be happy to know that people enjoy my songs, and I would keep up with the times, get converters to sponsor me for every download, whilst they profit from every visit they get.
Keep with the times
Price it reasonably, my friend loves music, she has over 7000 songs, don’t expect us to pay out thousands.
We want to support you, if you give us a chance to do it, don't force it.
Set an example, if you're a millionaire, I won't give a toss about you losing 60p, if you're a small band struggling, I would try and support you.
There's a difference between buying things from a shop, and someone doing it for a job, it's not stealing in a sense, your not taking it without permission, they never really had permission. They created the song, yes, they have some rights, but that's like saying "I designed this name, anyone else that uses it is stealing it". How do you steal a song? As long as you yourself are not profiting from it.

I respect your opinion though.
01 year agopiratepapillonpiratepapillon
K-Mu (1 year ago) #1006911I understand your point, but look, you know like everyone nowadays the world is facing a major economic crisis. Many people are so indebted they have problems for food or just keeping their houses. In this depressed climate where poverty is the main topic, I'm not surprised people tends to be angry at laws like this that only benefits the powerful and the rich. I am not saying it's ok to steal or anything, but the reality is today we can't even lift a finger without being charged and this kind of law just make it worse.
I never meant to be insensitive and for those in that type of situation I can cut some slack. I grew up really poor so I can underestand how hard it is but I got a job as soon as I could and set out not to repeat my family's mistakes and now I'm fairly comfortable. It just bugs me when I see my well off slacker no job friends who sponge off their parents complain about how they download since they can't afford things which is total bull. As long as you're not impoverished everyone should at least make an effort to support what they love.
01 year agoTrishlerTrishler
K-Mu (1 year ago) #1006911I understand your point, but look, you know like everyone nowadays the world is facing a major economic crisis. Many people are so indebted they have problems for food or just keeping their houses. In this depressed climate where poverty is the main topic, I'm not surprised people tends to be angry at laws like this that only benefits the powerful and the rich. I am not saying it's ok to steal or anything, but the reality is today we can't even lift a finger without being charged and this kind of law just make it worse.

THIS!

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