Software Piracy Should Be Avoided Essay

816 words - 4 pages

Software Piracy

Software piracy is the copying and selling of copyrighted software. There are many types of software that can be pirated including operating systems, application programs, as well as internet downloads including music, software, or movies. Many people do this knowing that they are partaking in something illegal; however, some people have no clue that they are breaking the law. In some cases, a person may have inadvertently purchased pirated software. The consequences of having or distributing pirated software can be serious in some cases. Software piracy is a common practice that can be easily avoided.

In the eyes of the law, software piracy is ...view middle of the document...

In New Hampshire, a man was arrested for software piracy. He ran a website that provided cracks and keys for over a thousand software programs. He was arrested and went to court, facing a maximum punishment of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. This is an example of a more complex software pirating crime, but the FBI and other government agents have uncovered and punished many others committing crimes equal to and less severe than this one. Penalties for less severe acts of software piracy are included in the copyright act. “The Copyright Act allows a copyright owner to recover monetary damages measured either by: (1) actual damages plus any additional profits of the infringer attributable to the infringement, or (2) statutory damages, of up to $150,000 for each copyrighted work infringed. The copyright owner also has the right to permanently enjoin an infringer from engaging in further infringing activities and may be awarded costs and attorneys' fees. The law also permits destruction or other reasonable disposition of all infringing copies and devices by which infringing copies have been made or used in violation of the copyright owner's exclusive rights. In cases of willful infringement, criminal penalties may also be assessed against the infringer.”

The act of software piracy has many negative effects for consumers and creators of software. Consumers are affected because software programmers and writers won’t be paid, if programs are not selling. If...

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