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Whats the worst that can happen? Free downloads

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by Giuseppe Marziano, Oct 17, 2013.

  1. #1
    I own a website called DownloadFree.info, and it really is quite unique, it allows people to download music and TV shows directly in the form of a .zip, and i mean ENTIRE TV shows that are like 4GB and download in about 30 minutes, its really taking off as im getting around 4k-7k UV a day! its all on my hosting at godaddy

    Now considering im 17, live in london, and i've never committed a crime, whats the worst that can happen?, im not even making much money from it, im just trying to sell ad space for really cheap but other than that no revenue...

    Let me know on consequences, please consider the fact there are other websites that have like 10 million downloads a day and they are still up and running
    Giuseppe Marziano, Oct 17, 2013 IP
  2. browntwn

    browntwn Prominent Member

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    #2
    So you own/run/manage a website that allows people to download music and tv shows (which obviously you don't own the rights to distribute) for free. You want to know the "worst that can happen". Well, let me first correct your statement that "I've never committed a crime" because you are committing one by running this website.

    You could face civil penalties (money) or, since copyright infringement can be a crime, you could potentially be charged with a crime as well. The fact that other people in the world might also be committing the same crime does not make your offense any less so.

    Stop kidding yourself.
    browntwn, Oct 18, 2013 IP
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  3. matt_62

    matt_62 Well-Known Member

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    #3
    actually it has happened before where someone in the UK was sent to the US to face the consequences. Just google "tvlinks" to find out what happened to the website (and this owner) and just consider the fact that the site DID NOT offer downloads (like you are doing) but was a SEARCH ENGINE that provided links to sites such as yours.

    Best thing is to get rid of the site, and apply your time and skills to something else.
    matt_62, Oct 18, 2013 IP
  4. WebDeveloperSahil

    WebDeveloperSahil Member

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    #4
    Something bad only happen if you are making more money then the real owner/author do. :D
    Chillax
    WebDeveloperSahil, Oct 18, 2013 IP
  5. Giuseppe Marziano

    Giuseppe Marziano Banned

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    #5
    You only live once LOL they are all millionaires anyway!
    Giuseppe Marziano, Oct 18, 2013 IP
  6. Emberrx

    Emberrx Member

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    #6
    Actually you can potentially spend time in jail which would be a max penalty of around 2-5 years in prison. But there has been people charged over a million dollars in fines and these people was only teenagers. There is very high penalties if you get caught. the good does not outweigh the bad sir. :)
    Emberrx, Oct 20, 2013 IP
  7. ryan_uk

    ryan_uk Prominent Member

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    #7
    Firstly, read about Richard O'Dwyer - he was lucky as he avoided extradition:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_O'Dwyer

    Unfortunately. Consider what the judge in the UK said (in particular, "During O'Dwyer's extradition hearing, it was held by the judge that the offences alleged were also illegal under UK law." as it relates to what you are doing).

    I hope they shut it down.

    So, legally, you are considered an adult and will be tried as such.

    You are committing a crime and you have confessed to it on this forum. Smart move.

    It doesn't matter that you aren't making money. You can be tried as an adult, you could be fined, some judge might decide to even make an example of you. If you're lucky, you will just face civil penalties rather than criminal. Or maybe you will attract the attention of the MPAA and US authorities and face possible extradition. Shut it down and consult a solicitor specialising in copyright law (perhaps Andrew Crossley?). That would be the smart thing to (finally) do.
    ryan_uk, Oct 20, 2013 IP
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  8. WonderingCoder

    WonderingCoder Greenhorn

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    #8
    Hahaha, this guy! I like the attidude, bud :D

    But in all seriousness, this is serious business.

    It's not illegal (well it is, but nobody cares), if you have a website where people can download things for free.

    What is illegal, though, is putting ads on that website. I've known people who did a similar thing you're doing and went to jail from 6months, to 2 years. My friends mother, who is a judge, says they got lucky.

    Granted, all of this took place here in the States. I don't know how things are run in the UK, but I'd watch my step.

    Good luck, though!

    For another note, someone in my school got sued for over $50,000 for downloading thousands upon thousands of torrents, etc. It was either that, or jail time. Lucky he had rich parents.

    Just read this -- I think I'm coming off too nicely. Although it's not that illegal to do what you're doing, by putting ads on it.. you can face jailtime. Take this dudes advice.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 23, 2013
    WonderingCoder, Oct 22, 2013 IP
  9. dscurlock

    dscurlock Well-Known Member

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    #9
    I would have said son, see you in 2-5 years....

    dscurlock, Oct 22, 2013 IP
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  10. sarahk

    sarahk iTamer Staff

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    #10
    I'd be growing up really fast and talking to an actual lawyer about your circumstances - and yes, that will cost money.

    If you stopped right now then you might be protected as you are legally a minor http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minor_(law)#United_Kingdom but criminal responsibility starts much younger and you may not be protected.

    Lets say you are protected because of your age, the responsibility (and liability) would go to your legal guardians aka Mum and Dad. Do they know and understand what you are doing? If not, you need to sit down with them and get them on board.

    I don't know the legal side of things in the UK, but I do know that in New Zealand if my ISP finds me (or a guest on my wifi) accessing such sites I can be in a ton of trouble. I wouldn't want to be in charge of the website serving up the files!
    sarahk, Oct 23, 2013 IP
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  11. XPEric

    XPEric Active Member

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    #11
    Why are you going into threads and posting completely incorrect information? Yes, what he is doing is illegal! Even if he wasn't distributing the files at all and only used them for himself, he would still be liable. Not sure where you went to law school, but you should be getting your money back.
    XPEric, Oct 25, 2013 IP
  12. WonderingCoder

    WonderingCoder Greenhorn

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    #12
    I said it is, but nobody cares. Ever heard of kat.ph, Utorrent, etc..? None of those website have ADS on them however.. so I think that's where he will run into trouble. Although he shouldn't get in the mess in the first place, it's his sole choice, not ours.
    WonderingCoder, Oct 25, 2013 IP
  13. XPEric

    XPEric Active Member

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    #13
    Kat.ph only serves the .torrent file, which is not illegal in most jurisdictions. And uTorrent is just a client. Saying that uTorrent itself is illegal is like saying Google should be shut down because they link to shady sites.

    What the OP is doing is completely illegal. He's hosting the material himself, with the intent to distribute it.
    XPEric, Oct 25, 2013 IP
  14. WonderingCoder

    WonderingCoder Greenhorn

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    #14
    I agree.

    Earlier I said I was coming off too nicely.. I didn't want to sound mean. *cough* like most of you guys are *cough*
    WonderingCoder, Oct 25, 2013 IP
  15. Giuseppe Marziano

    Giuseppe Marziano Banned

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    #15
    Im just going to sell it for extremely cheap, I think people could turn it into something else, it gets like 75k UV every month, if anyones interested!
    Giuseppe Marziano, Oct 27, 2013 IP
  16. sarahk

    sarahk iTamer Staff

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    #16
    Very wise, but keep records of when you started, when you sold, what you did etc. There will be a "statute of limitations" in the UK but until that time has passed you may still face legal action.
    sarahk, Oct 27, 2013 IP
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  17. Giuseppe Marziano

    Giuseppe Marziano Banned

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    #17
    Yeah I know thats true
    Giuseppe Marziano, Oct 27, 2013 IP
  18. dscurlock

    dscurlock Well-Known Member

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    #18
    unlikely, unless the parents where in on it...
    parents would be more likely to be more liable if their
    kids skip school; It is unlikely the parents would be held
    responsible or liable if their child is committing a crime, unless
    they choose to accept that liability and pay for his crimes....



    dscurlock, Nov 2, 2013 IP
  19. sarahk

    sarahk iTamer Staff

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    #19
    If the kid is living at home then there would be just cause in a civil case - maybe not in a criminal one. They have allowed their premises, their internet account, and possibly their computer to be used for criminal activity.

    One poor old dear in NZ allowed her adult, non resident son to store money behind her sofa. Things got ugly
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10881246
    sarahk, Nov 3, 2013 IP
  20. dscurlock

    dscurlock Well-Known Member

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    #20
    You are talking about two different things...Did they know, did they not know. If the parents were not aware of their activity,
    then that does not mean the parents will always be responsible or liable for their criminal acts, but if they did now is another matter.
    I do not think it would be a crime if the parents did know, but did not turn their kid in, but they surely would then be liable for all costs at that point....

    and just because the kid lives with the parents does not automatically make
    the parents liable. It really depends on who knows what ,
    or if the parents did find out, did they take action against their child.

    dscurlock, Nov 3, 2013 IP