Individuals who share personal copies of music files on the internet are safe after a Federal Court rejected a motion on Wednesday that would have allowed the music industry to sue them. Justice Konrad von Finckenstein said the Canadian Recording Industry Association hadn’t shown copyright infringement by 29 people who had allowed their music files to be uploaded.
There’s a pretty good CBC Quicktime report here. Distressingly, to be a Internet law expert in Canada, apparently you have to have Art Garfunkel’s hair. Judge Konrad von Finckenstein (is there a better name in Canadian judicial history?) compares (PDF, the complete decision) file-sharing to “a library that places a photocopy machine in a room full of copyrighted material”. This metaphor seems to work for sharing or hosting files. Surely, however, if you download a file, it’s like using that photocopier to copy a whole book, and therefore illegal? In short, this is only the first round of a lengthy court battle which, in light of how things have gone in the States, the RIAA et al are likely to win.
Regardless, this is handy, as I’ve been downloading rare tracks for the Great Canadian Song Contest Speaking of downloading music, via Richard I discovered JazzPromo.com, a Canadian jazz site where you can legally download 25 hours of MP3s for free.