Just For Some Extra Cash?
About three years ago, a website which provided subtitle for movies were seized by the authorities. This seems a harmless act right? Is it just another way for original rights owners to make money? Well the issue starts when the site (Undertexter.se) references to pirated copy. Even though they have created their own content (subtitle) they were distributing for illegal copies of the movie. Which is in fact illegal.
“The core issue is whether the lyrics count as independent works or pure translations. If they follow the script, it’s a copyright violation to distribute them without permission, but if they’re self-published, it is not,” Wolk noted earlier… It is difficult to say where the exact line is. Subtitles need to be considered on their own merits to make an assessment.”
Authorities argue that by linking to for a illegal copy, their work is in fact illegal. “The people who work on the site don’t consider their own interpretation of dialog to be something illegal, especially when we’re handing out these interpretations for free,” site founder Eugen Archy said at the time”
“I have indicted the person I say is behind the site Undertexter.se which made the dialogue from 74 films available to the public,” says prosecutor Henrik Rasmusson.”
“This particular type of case, with pirate subtitles for pirate movies, has not been tried before. But the scale is at such a level that the penalty does not stop at fines, but imprisonment. It could be a suspended sentence,” Rasmusson says.
Do you agree? That subititle distributors are in fact illegal, or is the fine law concepts we don’t read? Because if this continues, so many lyrics/subtitle website would face the same consequence.