How much will your Dallas Buyers Club membership cost you?

Around 4,700 Australians could receive a letter of demand for illegally downloading the movie Dallas Buyers Club.

The rights holders of Dallas Buyers Club are pursuing internet users who have breached copyright by downloading and/or sharing the movie and may seek up to $9000 from each user or face the risk of being sued for much more.

Dallas Buyers Club

An Australian Federal Court ruling has ordered iiNet and other ISP’s to supply the user/customer details including name and address so that the alleged perpetrators can be pursued by the rights holders of the movie.

The downloading or uploading of copyrighted material whether for profit or not, be it movies, television series, music or games without legitimate permission or authority generally contravenes some form of legislation. Whatever the course of action may be, it is a path we or our children do not want to go down.

This is not new to us, it has always been the case with copyrighted material and in my opinion will not be changing in the near future. The most likely scenario is that any laws surrounding this activity will become MORE stringent and the penalties harsher. Whether we agree with this or not, the bottom line is, it’s the wrong thing to do.

Some may try to minimise or legitimise their involvement in this activity as it threatens their means of obtaining the material or may feel it casts a negative light on them.

Common justifications:

  • I’m not hurting anybody
  • It’s my right, I can do it, so I’m allowed to do it
  • It’s not a big deal
  • Everybody else does it
  • There is no other way I can get it
  • Nothing will happen to me because it’s not against any law

Why we don’t want our kids to do this:

  • It is morally and ethically wrong
  • Increases the chances of infecting our device with a virus or malware
  • It is easy for us to lose control of what our children are viewing online
  • Legal ramifications

How can we help our kids understand:

  • Educate them that it is wrong to download or upload copyrighted material without proper authority
  • Talk to our children about what they are doing online
  • Set a good example by not engaging in the practise ourselves
  • Monitor the programs, apps and history on our children’s devices
  • Keep an eye on our data usage. If it’s excessively high, investigate
  • Look for legal alternatives, these are generally of better quality anyway.(Stan, Presto and Netflicks are sites that contain thousands of movies and television series with unlimited views for around $10 a month)

In a media release Lori Flekser of the IP Awareness Foundation said that parents played a huge role in the education process, with the statistics revealing that parents who pirate content are more likely to have children who do the same and also that 85 per cent of children had never had a conversation with their parents about the subject. Flekser said, “Teenagers admit that the parents are the key source of their behavior”. This is a great article that highlights this issue from the victim’s perspective. To read the full article click here.

The chances our family will face legal ramifications for illegally downloading and/or uploading copyrighted material is low, but it is possible. The legalities, coupled together with the benefits and risks, should always be taken into account when we as parents and carers are considering what measures are to be put in place in our family when it comes to downloading, uploading or streaming copyrighted material.

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