Japan Forgoes Making Illegal Downloads of Pirated Content in General

Politics

Tokyo, March 13 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government will not submit a planned bill to criminalize downloads of pirated content in general, including manga, during the ongoing Diet session, amid concerns about possible excessive restrictions, officials said Wednesday.

The bill drafted by the Agency for Cultural Affairs failed to be approved at a meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Wednesday. The ongoing session of the Diet, Japan's parliament, ends in June.

Currently, it is already illegal to download copies of copyrighted music and videos while knowing that the copies are unauthorized.

The bill called for expanding the list of content subject to the restrictions to include manga, anime, photos and research papers.

The bill would have limited the cases subject to criminal punishment to continued or repeated downloads of illegal copies of paid-for content. The legislation also noted that it would not necessarily be illegal to download pirated content while being unaware of its illegality.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press