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Submission + - Michael Jackson fan fined for 'pirating' bootlegs (theage.com.au)

alex4point0 writes: A grieving Melbourne fan with an 'unhealthy obsession' for the late Michael Jackson has been convicted and fined $24,000 for pirating the King of Pop's music and DVDs. Described in court as a caring and likeable, if ''unusual'', man, Matthew Zore's almost lifelong worship of Jackson grew into a lucrative online 'blackmarket' enterprise in Australia and overseas. (...) Police who raided Zore's home after British authorities found his DVDs of bootleg concerts on sale there found 7268 DVDs. (...) yet "None of the pirated work was commercially released material, but came from bootleg recordings, (Defence lawyer Michael Gleeson) said. Zore pleaded guilty to six charges, including possessing, making and selling infringing copies."

This rather strikes me as biting the hand that feeds you, with a dash of Streisand for effect. MJ fans can usually be relied on to buy every version of every album released on every continent. If they're not already aware of the bootleg industry, they are now. The article also fails to mention what relationship the UK and Australian police have in regard to sharing information. Can they provide information to prosecute someone who is breaking UK law if they're in another country? What if it's not against the law there? (convict jokes aside...)

How can you be fined for selling a copy of a recording that the studios and labels didn't create? Like the cinema industry, where insiders leak timed copies or review editions well before the screenies emerge, isn't it sound technicians and other crew who leak the better copies of concert footage?

The bootleg industry is a de-facto 'viral marketing mechanism' for everyone who profits from a tour, I can understand why it exists — and why the studios want to kill it, even though it will piss off MJ fans. They're about to run out of albums and merchandise to buy, anyway ...

(zore !zune !zerg !spore)

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