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UK Music Industry Launches First Wave Of Legal Action Over P2P Filesharing

by Robin Pilgrim, LawAndTax-News.com, London

08 October 2004


The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) announced this week that in conjunction with the International Federation of Phonographic Industries (IFPI), it has launched a legal campaign against "major uploaders" of unauthorised music files.

In a statement released on Thursday, the BPI revealed that it has begun the process of taking legal action against 28 UK filesharers, with more cases expected to follow.

The BPI announced that it will be seeking damages and injunctions to stop the filesharers illegally uploading recordings on to filesharing networks, and revealed that the uploaders in question include users of file-sharing networks such as Kazaa, Imesh, Grokster, Bearshare and WinMX.

Following the issuing of a final warning in March 2004, the BPI has sent out over 350,000 instant messages to uploaders' computers warning them of the consequences if they continue.

"We have resisted legal action as long as we could," chairman of the industry group, Peter Jamieson explained, continuing:

"We have done everything we can to raise awareness of this problem. We have encouraged legal services and launched an Official Download Chart. But we would be derelict in our duty to protect and promote British music were we not to take action to demonstrate that this activity is illegal and harmful to every aspect of the creative British music industry. We believe we have no alternative other than to enforce our rights through the courts."

Recent BPI estimates suggest that 15% of the UK's filesharers are responsible for some 75% of all illegal music uploads.


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