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Thread:,, legal?

  1. #1

    Default,, legal?

    I was wondering if anyone knows how legal these sites are. For all of them you have to pay for downloads but they're very cheap.

    Googling shows some controversy about how legal they are. Many say they are perfectly legal.

    They are based in Russia and under Russian copyright law it is legal for them to provide the downloads even without an agreement with the studios. They pay to Russia's copyright agency (FAIR) which distributes to the rights holders.

    It seems that the RIAA has tried to sue them before but dropped the charges before going to court.

    So, they can legally provide the downloads from Russia. However, in the US it is illegal to download them, even though they are legally available (in Russian law), because they don't have an agreement with the studios.

    Here is the US legal info:

    ... and here is one of the few explanations that go into legal details rather than just opinion:

    I also found many comments from people who have used these sites for years without problems.

    Does anyone know what the SA situation is? Is it legal to download them here?

    I'm not trying to find out how likely is it to get prosecuted, I want to know if it's legal. I don't want to buy illegal movies regardless of how safe it may be

  2. #2
    Super Grandmaster ToxicBunny's Avatar
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    Apr 2006


    They're probably very legal under Russia's skewed legal system, but in my opinion they're not very ethical.
    Quote Originally Posted by Korn1 View Post
    I have been called a retard my whole life

  3. #3


    Quote Originally Posted by ToxicBunny View Post
    They're probably very legal under Russia's skewed legal system, but in my opinion they're not very ethical.
    and the RIAA is ethical?

    The whole industry is an unethical mess, and when it comes to movies, they make billions. The question is, as a customer, where can I legally get movies for the best price?

    Is it legal to download these movies in SA if they are legally available under Russian law?

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by duncan1a View Post
    and the RIAA is ethical?
    The difference is the RIAA has the law on their side.
    "Le mieux est l'ennemi du bien." FM Arouet
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Edmund Burke
    "Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level, then beat you with experience" Unknown
    Even duct tape can’t fix stupid… but it can muffle the sound

  5. #5


    Quote Originally Posted by bwana View Post
    The difference is the RIAA has the law on their side.
    well, that's what I'm asking. In the US they do. In Russia, and some other countries, they don't.

    What is SA law re downloading something legally available somewhere else?

    US law has this clause:
    "Uploading or downloading works protected by copyright without the authority of the copyright owner is an infringement of the copyright owner's exclusive rights of reproduction and/or distribution. "

    Do we have such a download clause?

  6. #6


    OK, so I've found the SA Copyright Act 1998.

    With regards to movies:

    "Nature of copyright in cinematograph films
    8. (1) Copyright in a cinematograph film vests the exclusive right to do or to authorize the doing of any of the
    following acts in the Republic:
    (a) Reproducing the film in any manner or form, including making a still photograph therefrom;
    (b) causing the film, in so far as it consists of images, to be seen in public, or, in so far as it consists of
    sounds, to be heard in public;
    (c) broadcasting the film;
    (d) causing the film to be transmitted in a diffusion service, unless such service transmits a lawful
    television broadcast, including the film, and is operated by the original broadcaster;
    (e) making an adaptation of the film;
    (f) doing, in relation to an adaptation of the film, any of the acts specified in relation to the film in
    paragraphs (a) to (d) inclusive;
    (g) letting, or offering or exposing for hire by way of trade, directly or indirectly, a copy of the film.
    (2) [Sub-s.(2) deleted by s.8 (c) of Act 125/1992.]

    This all seems to be about making films available - not about receiving them.

    Of course the argument can be made that downloading films made available illegally is receiving stolen goods, but if it's legally available, as in Russia, then it doesn't seem that our Act has anything to relate to downloading it... The act of downloading itself doesn't appear to be prohibited.

    But, I'm not a lawyer

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