Japan Enacts Bill to Ban Downloads of Pirated Content

Politics

Tokyo, June 5 (Jiji Press)--The Diet, Japan’s parliament, enacted on Friday a bill to ban downloads of manga and other content posted on the internet without the permission of copyright holders with knowledge that the copies are pirated versions.

The bill to revise the copyright law was approved unanimously at a plenary meeting of the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of the Diet. It cleared the House of Representatives, the lower chamber, in May.

Under the revised law, which will come into force in January 2021, criminal penalties will be imposed on violators deemed malicious.

The list of content subject to the download ban, currently covering only music and video, will be extended to copyrighted works in general, including manga, books, research papers and computer programs.

Downloads of small amounts of content, such as up to several frames of a manga work with dozens of pages, and those of fan fiction including parodies of existing works will not be punishable under the revised copyright law.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press