Burn Baby Burn – Legally

If amendments go ahead you will no longer be flaunting the law each time you transfer your choonz from computer to a digital player or copy a CD for your own use.

Most of us have been breaking the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 each time we’ve copied tracks from CDs to our PC or digital player, or made an extra copy to play in the car,  but soon we will be able to do so legally as long as it’s purly for private use.

Record labels accept that consumers should not be punished for shifting music from one format to another, but some are concerned it will increase the perception that music can be freely copied with impunity.  The law will still be enforced for file sharing and copying for others whether to sell or not – this is still very naughty and will see you on the wrong side of a fine or worse.

The minister for intellectual property, Lord Triesman, said:

“In an increasingly digital world we need to be sure that our copyright system keeps up with the times and works effectively. This consultation … explores where the boundaries lie between strong protection for rights-holders and appropriate levels of access for users.”

Last year’s Gowers review of intellectual property recommended that the law be relaxed to reflect the march of technology, but also suggested that punishments for large scale piracy be toughened.  You have been warned!!