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A French magazine was just fined €10,000 for writing about piracy

French magazine Download piracy coverRelay.comThe issue advertised ‘the best software and websites to download for free’ on its front cover.

French magazine Download (Téléchargement in French) has been fined €10,000 for releasing an issue showing readers how and where to access pirated film, television, and music online, TorrentFreak reports.

The magazine released a special issue last summer advertising the “the best software and websites to download for free” on its front cover. Inside, it gave an overview of torrent clients such as iTorrent and BitComent, and also explained to readers that you can often find pirated downloads through Google Search.

In response, a local music industry group called SCPP decided to take legal action, claiming the magazine had violated French copyright law. The group’s CEO Marc Guez said in an article by French publication Next Inpact, translated by TorrentFreak, that Download had “clearly and shamelessly incited piracy.”

In France, it is forbidden to “knowingly encourage” the use of software primarily used to share copyrighted content. This is the first time a news outlet has been found guilty of encouraging piracy under this section of French law, the TorrentFreak report added.

The magazine says it emphasised repeatedly throughout the issue that piracy is illegal, TorrentFreak says, but the court of Nanterre ruled that this was not enough, and slapped it with a €10,000 fine.

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