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Blatant copyright infringement

An individual was recently found to have infringed Sky UK Ltd’s copyright by publishing links to Sky’s programmes to his subscribers and also uploading material to Youtube.

This was not a case of innocently providing information on a ‘fair use’ basis, but of deliberately making money by charging people for content which belonged to someone else, in this case to material owned by Sky.

Alex Cherrie was able to circumvent Sky’s paywall by sharing links to Sky’s programmes, a process which the court found to be totally unauthorised. In fact, Mr Cherrie regularly recruited new subscribers, eventually accumulating thousands of them, each paying a monthly subscription.

This was blatant copyright infringement. Although this case was heard in Scotland, the law applies equally to the rest of the UK. The moral of the story is: be careful what you copy. You cannot pass on paid-for content to another person. There is an old saying in the law: you cannot give what you do not own. Ownership of copyright is just as real as ownership of land, or any other form of property.

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