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40% of illegal music download cases by college students: NPA

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The intellectual property protection task force under the National Police Agency cracked down a total of 243 cases of copyright infringement via illegal transmission of music works for use on personal blogs in the first six months of the year, with some 40 percent of them being committed by university students, according to statistics released by the NPA.

The statistics showed that up to 97 out of the 243 violations were conducted by university or graduate school students aged between 18 and 25, indicating the students had little compulsion to uphold the current intellectual property protection laws, NPA officials said. According to Article 92 of the Copyright Law, any public oral citation, broadcasting or transmission of copyrighted works without prior permission from owners of the works is a violation of the law.

The IP protection task force has been regularly surfing websites to see if there are copyrighted works being used illegally, and sometimes based on clues offered by the International Federation of the Phonograph Industry (IFPI).

Some students were found to have randomly linked their personal blogs to music sites, so as to allow free trial listening of copyrighted songs for blog visitors, or adopted some of the songs as the background music for their blogs. Such practices, in fact, have already violated the Copyright Law, and violators can be fined NT$750,000 or face a jail term of under three years.

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