A serial software pirate has been forced to make a YouTube video explaining his actions in order to avoid paying out a huge sum to companies that are claiming damages from him.
Torrent Freak reports that an individual known only as Jakub F was found to have pirated software including Microsoft Windows over many years, and was eventually arrested by police. Large technology companies accused the man of causing them around $373,000 worth of damages.
But the Czech Republic’s courts didn’t force Jakub F to pay out damages to the technology companies. Instead, it has come up with an unusual idea: Jakub F stars in a new anti-piracy ad, and the courts will not force him to pay damages if the video gets 200,000 views on YouTube.
Jakub F has already been found guilty and he was given a three-year suspended sentence. If the video goes viral and gets 200,000 views, then he just has to deal with the suspended sentence.
It might sound like a typical Facebook hoax where a person claims that if they get a certain number of likes, something great will happen, but this time it’s a genuine part of the legal process.
The video currently has just over 115,000 views on YouTube, short of the 200,000 target. Jakub F has set up a website to promote the video, and on the site he explains his actions (translation via Torrent Freak):
I had to start this site because for eight years I spread pirated software and then they caught me. I thought that I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I thought that it didn’t hurt the big companies. I didn’t even do it for the money, I did it for fun.
You can watch the ad in full below:
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