The Internet is unfortunately fertile ground for those intent on wholesale infringement of copyright. However, as one case involving a music lover who made more than 600,000 pirated tracks available online showed, such behaviour does not go unpunished.
The man operated three websites that were used as conduits for pirated music. His activities were sustained and persistent and had continued despite his receipt of a cease and desist letter. They had resulted in a notional loss to music copyright holders in excess of £1 million.
His motive had been to share music with others and there was no evidence that he had profited significantly from the websites. However, he was ultimately jailed for 12 months after he admitted infringing copyright and having articles for use in fraud. The facts of the case emerged as the Court of Appeal noted the detrimental impact of such conduct on the music industry and dismissed his challenge to his sentence.