September 27, 2005
"Operation CopyCat" Plea
You may want to leave your camcorder at home if you plan on going to a movie. And if you do decide to bring it with you, well think about keeping it off. And even if you do have it turned on, whatever you do - don't record the movie - and worse yet, don't sell it. And if you are employed by the movie theater then clearly you would be expected to know better then to record it and then sell it.
So its not surprising to see a plea agreement when someone is accused of such conduct.
The United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California issued a press release here reporting on a plea being entered by a 19 year old for "two charges under the recently enacted Family Entertainment Copyright Act." As part of "Operation Copycat" an employee of a movie theater who worked in the box office and as a cashier in the concessions decided to hook up a camcorder to obtain two movies being shown in St. Louis, Missouri. The press release states:
"The count relating to camcording in a movie theater involves one of the provisions of the ‘Family Entertainment and Copyright Act of 2005,’ which President Bush signed into law on April 27, 2005. The camcording activity concerns a violation of the ART Act (‘Artists’ Rights and Theft Prevention Act of 2005') provision, which criminalized the use of recording equipment to make copies of movies in movie theaters. The statute also prohibits making a commercially distributed movie available on a computer network accessible to members of the public, when the individual knew or should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution. The prosecution represents the first use of these provisions of the ART Act by federal prosecutors."
The press release notes that "Operation Copycat is the local and largest part of the coordinated international law enforcement action known as Operation Site Down, which is targeting online piracy."
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