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Nov 20, 2013

Proposed law: Legally downloading music and movies form the Internet

Will downloading music and movies from the Internet, in Israel, soon become legal?

MK Meir Shitreet (Hatnuah) along with other MKs have proposed a bill that would make it legal for home users to download and copy movies and, songs from the Internet and copying disks. The law, if poassed, would only make it legal for personal use, but not for selling. The balance of this law is that it would add a tax to manufacturers and importers of equipment used for making copies of disks. Money from this new "tax" would go into a fund that would pay out to musicians and producers.

This law has been formulated in coordination with AKUM -the organization that works to protect the rights, copyrights, of musicians and producers.

This was reported this morning in the hard copy of Maariv newspaper today. Now online on their website..

The halachic position of such downloads has been debatable until now. I have  heard a wide range of piskei halacha on the topic. I think that this law would make the entire discussion moot. For those who say it is a halachic problem to download, I think it is only because legally the music/movies are copyright protected. Once it is legal to download and therefore the artists expect it to be downloaded and know they are getting their money from a specific source, I see no reason for those opinions to remain with a halachic issur.

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  1. “We [Israel] possess several hundred atomic warheads and rockets and can launch them at targets in all directions, perhaps even at Rome. Most European capitals are 22 targets for our air force. Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: “Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother.” I consider it all hopeless at this point. . . Our armed forces, however, are not the thirtieth strongest in the world, but rather the second or third. We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.” - Martin van Creveld, Zionist Jew

  2. Your link goes to Kikar Shabbat.

    From what you wrote, it's ridiculous and dated. Nobody is going around sharing "music or videos" by "disk" or using "devices to make copies of disks". They're walking around with disk-on-key's (at NIS 22 each) and portal hard disks (at NIS 300 each for a terebyte). So either they're going to start "extra-taxing" every hard disk and disk-on-key or have 0 impact. (I've got a stack of 300 blank CD's and DVD's in my house, and the number hasn't decreased in 5 years as we don't bother to burn any.)

    Since people equally use disk-on-key's for school and business, and portal hard disks for backup and business and moving large quantities of data - do they intend to tax everyone who uses computer devices to pay musicians?

    BTW, this is EXACTLY what they do in Germany. And the musician society is a billion dollar business off all those taxes, the public pays 10% extra on every computer and electronic device, and the musicians get $100 a year.

    It's a SCAM.

  3. Akiva thanks. I also think that we would all be buying more memory storage devices from overseas.


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