1709 Blog: for all the copyright community

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Prison for camming – a UK first

Emmanuel Nimley, 22, yesterday received a 6-month sentence for filming movies with his iPhone at The Vue cinema in Harrow and uploading them to silverscreen.com. His motive: self-glory. The Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) say this is the first-ever UK prison sentence for ‘camming’.

In the US, cammers are prosecuted under the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act of 2005 – e.g. ‘the Dark Knight’ got 2 years – but the UK does not have a specific provision for this offence. According to TorrentFreak, Nimley had been charged under the Fraud Act 2006 (ss. 6 and 7) and section 107 (1)(e) of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

‘Nicholas Bull, defending,’ the Mail reported, ‘asked the judge to take into account the amateur quality of his client’s work: “The camera was unstable. It was audible my client was drinking and eating throughout at times it was tilted up to view the top of the cinema.”’



6 comments:

Crosbie Fitch said...

And all because the Stationer's Guild lobbied Queen Anne to institute their de facto monopolies...

It's like a Terry Gilliam dystopia isn't it?

You wonder how extreme the draconian measures have to get before the populace twigs that something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

The Mad Hatter said...

Crosbie,

That was the original reason that copyright came into existence. However things have changed, and copyright law hasn't. Specifically copyright law is heavily tilted towards the publishing concerns.

In my opinion copyright law needs to be changed so that it actually protects the artists, instead of the publishers. This is why I've been loudly advocating a major change to copyright law, to whit making transfer of copyright illegal except by inheritance. Publishers who wished to use a copyrighted work would have to lease it for a period of no more than five years, with no automatic renewals allowed.

This would tilt control towards those who actually create, rather than the publishers.

Wayne

Crosbie Fitch said...

Wayne,

Natural rights are inalienable because people are born with them - nature imbues us with them - and they are necessary to us.

You do not make privileges (legislatively granted rights - obtained through the derogation of natural rights) into natural rights by prohibiting their transfer.

For example, droit de suite was made non-transferable, but this by no means makes it a natural right rather than a privilege.

The Statute of Anne is the granting of a privilege, the instituting of the Stationers' Company's de facto monopolies. If you call a well established protection racket 'common law' then perhaps you can fool enough people into believing it's not an instrument of injustice.

The ability to prohibit copies is a monopoly coveted by the manufacturers of copies, NOT by the manufacturers of art, i.e. ARTISTS. Artists want their art to spread far and wide with as little hindrance as possible. If they're going to sell anything, it's their work to the largest audience possible. They are not interested in wasting their time lobbying for the privilege of a monopoly in copies, a task which anyone else and their dog can do with their eyes closed, at no cost.

Copyright is an anachronism. It is not to be rescued, but to be abolished.

The Mad Hatter said...

The ability to prohibit copies is a monopoly coveted by the manufacturers of copies, NOT by the manufacturers of art, i.e. ARTISTS. Artists want their art to spread far and wide with as little hindrance as possible. If they're going to sell anything, it's their work to the largest audience possible. They are not interested in wasting their time lobbying for the privilege of a monopoly in copies, a task which anyone else and their dog can do with their eyes closed, at no cost.

Copyright is an anachronism. It is not to be rescued, but to be abolished.

I think that we disagree on some fundamental issues. In my opinion the artists need protection from the so called Industry that preys on them, which is what I hope to achieve. Since it's easier to modify existing law, than to introduce a new concept, that is the way I have framed it.

And after all, the artists do want to control copying. They want to control copying by the leaches who make money off them. Because of that I see nothing wrong with calling it copyright law.

Crosbie Fitch said...

Wayne, 'corporate leeches' do not exploit the artist, they pay them a pittance for their state granted monopoly which they then use to exploit the public.

If making copies without restriction was lucrative exploitation, the corporations would be lobbying to abolish copyright.

What publishing corporations are afraid of is the LOSS of their monopoly, and their disintermediation by a public once more at liberty to share and build upon their own culture - enfranchised to commission the artist directly.

See Movie Debuts In Theater And On The Pirate Bay (On Purpose).

The idea that an artist should want to, let alone be granted the power to, prohibit the public from sharing or building upon their published work arises from INDOCTRINATION/HYPNOSIS/BRAIN DAMAGE inculcated by three centuries of copyright.

Sell your work. If others will distribute and promote you through the love of your work then for pity's sake do not be so stupid as to plea for their incrimination and incarceration. It takes a psychopathic corporation to resort to such measures, such as the VUE cinema chain: "8. Sound and video recording equipment and cameras are not permitted inside the auditorium. It is a serious criminal offence to copy or attempt to copy any film or other copyright protected material shown in the auditorium. Such crime is punishable on conviction with an unlimited fine and imprisonment of up to a maximum of 10 years." (see above)

At least transportation to penal colonies was based upon the stealing of a loaf of bread. With copyright infringement transitioning to a criminal offence we're talking about individuals being imprisoned for an act of cultural exchange derogated from their natural liberty by Queen Anne.

WillT said...

Does anyone have any details on the actual trial?

I am assuming he plead guilty, especially to the fraud act charges - particularly given the OiNK case earlier this year.

I know that it doesn't set a legal precedent, but it sets a rather nasty one for FACT et al. - I guess we are going to be seeing more police storming into cinemas to arrest people.