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RIANZ welcomes Kazaa verdict in Australia

06 September 2005
MEDIA RELEASE

RIANZ welcomes Kazaa verdict in Australia.

The Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ) today welcomes the landmark decision of the Federal Court of Australia against the owners and operators of the KAZAA file sharing network.

The judgment establishes that the internet peer-to-peer service Kazaa is illegal and that its owner and operators are liable for the copyright infringements which happen across that network between its estimated 2.4 million world-wide users.

Campbell Smith, RIANZ CEO said:

“The KAZAA decision, alongside the USA Supreme Court ruling in the Grokster case (28 July 2005), clearly confirms that such internet services are illegal. Courts in numerous cases in various parts of the world have already declared that file swapping between individuals without permission is illegal. The KAZAA and Grokster cases now establish that another option is available to copyright owners and legal action can be taken against unauthorised services themselves.

“These decisions vindicate the initiatives of the global music and technology communities to press ahead in developing legal online music businesses. These legal services are now emerging in New Zealand and will develop rapidly over the next few months.

“No action has been taken to date in New Zealand, either against unauthorised file- swapping individuals or against the unauthorised service operators, but such action is a possibility.

“The fight against internet piracy is a priority for RIANZ and its members. While RIANZ now has clear international precedent for taking legal action against both users and operators of unauthorised file swapping networks in New Zealand, we hope these decisions provide a strong incentive to those parties to respect copyright and become legitimate. If they do not heed the warning and continue to break copyright laws, legal action is inevitable.”

ENDS

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