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August 20, 2008

£16,000 fine for file sharing

by David Allen

This cannot be a surprise, that things have gone this far.

However, for many internet users it must have been a shock to the system when a British woman was fined £16,000 for sharing a pinball game.

But whatever anyone’s views on this matter are, it would seem that she is not likely to be the only one, in fact the London based law firm, Davenport Lyons, have confirmed that they are actively seeking the same result from around a hundred more cases.

This case is based on the Dream Pinball 3D, which is owned by Topware Interactive.

The woman is believed to have obtained a copy of the game and then made it available to be shared through peer-to-peer networks, which allow users to share files without any fees being paid the copyright owners.

File sharing is becoming a big issue these days, with government, ISPs and copyright owners getting together to see how they can stop this from happening, which will leave then with their work cut out as it is estimated that around six million people every year share files in some manner.

Story link: £16,000 fine for file sharing

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  1. Wonder how much Monopoly could claim for the amount of times their board game has been lent to friends, or how much JK Rowling could claim for Harry Potter novels being lent to friends- all going on without anything being paid to the copyright holder!

    Comment by stevie — August 20, 2008 @ 7:41 pm

  2. Stop ripping people off and they will stop sharing and downloading. It doesent cost £20 to make a CD or £40 to make a game. Evolution or revolution, Either the powers that be evolve and understand we have a clue in this modern age or the people will revolt and then the man wont be the man anymore.

    Google JAP, google TOR and share away.

    Comment by Dave Lister — August 20, 2008 @ 9:55 pm

  3. Bloody lawyers. Dream pinball should be grateful that someone even buys one copy of the crap.
    All about taking as much as possible from Joe Bloggs.

    Comment by The Baldchemist — August 21, 2008 @ 8:45 am

  4. Why is it that news stories only ever give half the story?
    Is this woman the original copier of the game, remover of the security features and uploader of the game to the filesharing website?
    In other words is she some sort of hacker?
    If she is and she has been doing this for a number of years and this involves copies of all sorts of software then the £16,000 fine might be reasonable, though no mention is made of the ISP who allowed her to do this and whether they were fined.
    I suspect though that she just used filesharing software, as quite a lot of people do, for downloading a £17.99 game and the person who originally uploaded the software, again not mentioned, gets away with it.
    Bearing in mind that if you download something you don’t get the original cd and manual, just the content electronically, what is the actual cost / loss for the software developer?
    A few pounds maybe.
    Sounds more like the fine some how compensates for lost revenue and she has just been made an example of?
    In this case a bit like speeding. You get fined for speeding because they can catch you easily.
    Can we / do we ever, get the full story?

    Comment by Pete — August 21, 2008 @ 9:27 am

  5. When a massive number of people started using CB radios smuggled in they decided to make CB legal in the UK.

    Before that a levy was placed on recording tape to compensate artists for those who recorded friends records or recorded from the radio rather than buy the records.

    So if there are around 6,000,000 people file sharing then maybe they should do something similar rather than try to prosecute enough people to frighten off the rest, because I doubt it will work.

    Comment by joseph wright — August 21, 2008 @ 10:37 am

  6. this story is an absolute load of crap!

    its scaremongering, nothing more.

    cases like this do not go to court, how many time have you heard of the ISPS sending out a letter to the wrong person, again, this story is utter crap

    Comment by Andy — September 11, 2008 @ 9:46 am

  7. I agree with you Andy.

    What they arn’t keen to tell you is that the individual did not turn up for the hearing and so Davenport Lyons won this by default. If one of these individuals do choose to defend the claim then I seriously doubt it would go in Davenport’s favour.

    In addition, I have found out that Davenport are asking for a settlement fee (usually in the region of £500-600).

    Come on people, let’s get the correct story out there.

    Comment by Danny — October 27, 2008 @ 8:52 pm

  8. if u dont want people to make rip of copys of the games or disk or what ever… the do sumthing about it and invent sumfink dat cant be copyed!!!!!!!!!! god… problem solved….

    Comment by Whos asking.... — November 11, 2008 @ 10:09 pm

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