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Piracy Crime Games Your Rights Online

Seller of Counterfeit Video Games Gets 30 Months 165

wiredmikey writes "The FBI reported this week that Qiang 'Michael' Bi, of Powell, Ohio was sentenced to 30 months in prison for selling more than 35,000 illegally copied computer games over the Internet between 2005 and 2009. According to a statement of facts read during Bi's plea hearing, agents executed a search warrant at Bi's house and found multiple CD duplicators and more than 1,000 printed counterfeit CDs. Some of the CDs were still in the duplicator. During their investigation, agents learned that Bi would buy a single copy of a game, illegally duplicate it and sell the copies on and He also set up a website for customers to download the games they bought. Bi accepted payment through eBay and PayPal accounts in his name and in others' names."
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Seller of Counterfeit Video Games Gets 30 Months

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  • Re:Amazing... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TaoPhoenix ( 980487 ) <> on Friday December 31, 2010 @04:52AM (#34720120) Journal

    So he gets 6 months for *selling* *35,000* games, but Jammie Thomas-Rasset gets 1.X Million for copying 24 songs?

  • Re:ICE This Week (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CRCulver ( 715279 ) <> on Friday December 31, 2010 @08:24AM (#34720766) Homepage

    Whatever your opinion on copyright law, you've got to admit that copying another person's work and SELLING IT without them getting a cut is a dick move and shouldn't be tolerated.

    It is a dick move only because Western European society in the early modern era starting seeing it as a dick move. In Ancient Rome, an audience member would transcribe a poet's recital, have dozens of copies made by amanuenses, and then sold in the marketplace with no money going back to the poet. There's not a single instance of anyone complaining. Martial lampooned a guy who would put his own name on these copies, but plagiarism is distinct from mere copying. There continue to be cultures all over the world to this day where people don't understand copyright at all. Try explaining it to them, and they'll think you're a lunatic. If successive generations see increasingly less value in copyright, we're only returning to a state before what would see a freakish aberration of several hundred years.

    Yes, various cultures have also believed it was noble to own slaves or perform human sacrifice. But I think that the nature of this issue, whether respecting copyright is objectively moral or a mere government fiat with the hope of encouraging production*, ought to be carefully examined instead of simply assuming without question that copyright must exist.

    (This, incidentally, was the view of the American Founding Fathers. They had an acute sense of natural rights -- endowed by the Creator and only recognized by the government -- but did not consider copyright among them.)

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