Thinking about downloading a movie, video game or even a song? The New Year marked the dawn of new Canadian federal government copyright regulations designed to combat the prevalence of illegally downloaded copyrighted material.
The Copyright Modernization Act, which first received approval in 2012, will now require Internet service providers (ISPs) and website hosts to send a letter written by copyright holders to the IP addresses that are believed to be infringing on copyright. The letter serves only as a warning against illegal downloading and will not have any legal consequences.
However, the new regulations will allow copyright holders to sue individuals up to $5,000 for downloading copyrighted material for personal use and up to $20,000 for commercial use.
The ISPs must retain the letter and any records for six months, but if the case enters the court system within the first six months any letters and records must be kept for up to a year.
Copyright holders are not able to obtain the name of the person from the ISP unless a court order has been issued.
Feature Image: Copyright infringement via Shutterstock