March 22, 2016
Japanese Society for Rights of Authors,
Composers and Publishers
Yamaguchi Prefectural Police Headquarters Refers Man to Prosecutors for Illegally Uploading Music Data Files Using File-Sharing Software “BitTorrent”
On March 18, the Cyber Crime Countermeasures Office of the Yamaguchi Prefectural Police Headquarters and its Yamaguchi Police Station referred a 22-year-old man residing in Shimonoseki City, Yamaguchi Prefecture, to the Yamaguchi District Public Prosecutors Office on a charge of alleged copyright infringement (violation of public transmission rights). The man is suspected of making music and other data files available to the public on the Internet using the file sharing software “BitTorrent.” (JASRAC filed a complaint against him of the said violation on February 8 of this year.)
According to the police investigation, the man had been using BitTorrent to download a large amount of music data mainly of the latest animation theme songs and related songs. It has been revealed that he had made these music data files, including copyright works administered by JASRAC, available to the public on the Internet.
There are many software applications compatible with BitTorrent such as BitComet and μTorrent. When a torrent file (a file containing the file location information) is acquired from a so-called “reach site(*),” these software applications automatically start up and upload the data simultaneously with the download of illegal files.
Since March 2010, JASRAC has been conducting public awareness activities asking users of file-sharing software to delete illegal files, based on guidelines promoted by the Consortium against Copyright Infringement via File-Sharing Software (CCIF). Since April 2014, CCIF has been conducting the aforementioned activities against BitTorrent users through Internet providers.
JASRAC will continue to issue cautions and warnings against illegal music distribution over the Internet and will seek to raise copyright awareness through public relations activities to promote the legitimate use of music.
(*) Reach site
A reach site is a website that collects information on the location of files containing illegally uploaded copyrighted works. Many reach sites are operated for the purpose of illegally making profits.
These websites can be accessed through general browsers and are also called “tracker sites” with regard to BitTorrent.
JASRAC-International Relations Department: