[linux-elitists] Copyright Law in Austria

Emanuel Pirker epirker@edu.uni-klu.ac.at
Tue Nov 28 08:55:55 PST 2000

Hi all,

has been a long time since my last posting happened. Anyway, a small
report about the Austrian way how to handle copyright issues:

Whenever you buy a flash card (e.g. Smartmedia or CompactFlash), a
percentage of the price is wired directly to AustroMechana (Austrian
version of the RIAA). You don't have any chance to escape (besides
smuggling): You buy - you pay. The lobby of photographers and journalists
(who use these memory devices in their digital cameras) simply was not
strong enough. I own a Canon A-50 digital camera, I bought a second
compact flash card and I had to pay the price. However, the card has never
seen an MP3 file. I don't own an MP3 player.

Now, they (AustroMechana) are strongly urging the government to extend
this TO HARDDISKS. Yes, this would mean, whenever you buy a harddisk in
Austria, a special percentage (probably 10%, maybe more) will be wired to
the AustroMechana. No matter, if you buy a harddisk for your PC at home or
an Enterprise Storage system - you just have to pay.

And interestingly enough, the possession of MP3 files is still
illegal. That means, first you pay because "God knows that you have MP3
files" and after they will sue you because "the law knows that you have
MP3 files".

This sucks. It deeply sucks.


  Emanuel Pirker                        

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