Portugal: File-sharing for personal use is not infringing the law

By EDRi · October 10, 2012

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Deutsch: [Portugal: Filesharing für private Zwecke verstößt nicht gegen das Gesetz | https://www.unwatched.org/EDRigram_10.19_Portugal_Filesharing_fuer_private_Zwecke_verstoesst_nicht_gegen_das_Gesetz?pk_campaign=edri&pk_kwd=20121010]

The Portuguese prosecutors division DIAP (Department of Investigations
and Criminal Acts) have recently ruled against ACAPOR (the Association
of Audiovisual Commerce of Cultural Works and Entertainment of Portugal)
in a case the latter initiated in 2011 against approx. 2000 alleged
illegal file sharers.

Last year, ACAPOR members wearing T-shirts with the slogan “Piracy is
Illegal”, handed over to the Attorney General’s Office several boxes
with IP-addresses of allegedly illegal file-sharers. “We are doing
anything we can to alert the government to the very serious situation in
the entertainment industry. (…) 1000 complaints a month should be enough
to embarrass the judiciary system,” stated ACAPOR at that time.

However, DIAP not only decided not to prosecute the 2000 file-sharers,
but gave a serious blow to the entertainment industry by explaining that
file-sharing for personal use is not infringing the law: “Moreover, from
a legal point of view, while taking into account that users are both
uploaders and downloaders in these file-sharing networks, we see as
lawful this conduct of participants in P2P, for private use – art. 75
no. 2a) and Art.81 b) from Portugal Copyright law – even when it’s
considered that the users continue to share once the download is finished.”

The prosecutor emphasized that the right to education, culture, and
freedom of expression on the Internet should not be restricted when the
copyright infringements are clearly non-commercial. Moreover, the
decision considers that IP addresses do not constitute evidence enough
as an IP-address is not a person. “The IP-address is not necessarily the
user at the moment the infringement takes place, or the user that makes
available the copyrighted work, but rather the individual who has the
service registered in his name, independent of whether this person using
it or not” reads the ruling.

The Public Ministry says it is legal to copy music and films on the Net
(only in Portuguese, 26.09.2012)

Portuguese Prosecutors Say File Sharing Is Legal – Anti-piracy
organisation’s bid to block file sharing backfires in Portugal (28.09.2012)

File-Sharing for Personal Use Declared Legal in Portugal (27.09.2012)