Group Uses Justin Bieber to Counter Anti-Piracy Bill

Using Justin Bieber (of all people) as a focal point for their message an advocacy group has created a campaign to warn U.S. citizens of the dangers found in an anti-piracy bill pending in the Senate. The bill, which was approved in the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the bill in June, would make it a felony for users to post unlicensed content online 10 times in 180 days. The bill is backed by the Recording Industry Association of America, the Motion Picture Association of America and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

So why use Justin Bieber for the campaign? Because, as the group points out Justin Bieber began his career by posting YouTube videos of himself singing other people's songs. Under the proposed law, he'd do five years in prison. Of course realistically Justin Bieber wouldn't spend five years in prison because he's a minor, but you get the point.

"Those videos are still on the Internet, so if Bieber doesn't pull them all down right away, he could be prosecuted and sent to the slammer for five years on felony charges," Fight for the Future claimed in a press release.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), would make it a felony for users to post unlicensed content online 10 times in 180 days. The bill is strongly supported by the usual suspects: the Recording Industry Association of America, the Motion Picture Association of America and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Linden Zakula, a spokesman for Sen. Klobuchar, tells The Hill that this bill would not send Justin Bieber to jail.

“The bill language specifically targets people who willfully engage in copyright infringement for commercial advantage or private financial gain," he said. "The bill does not criminalize uploading videos to YouTube or streaming videos at home.”

Fight for the Future disagrees.

"What's genuinely troubling is that this bill applies to a massive slice of social media activity," said Fight for the Future co-founder Holmes Wilson.

The group claims that the legislation would apply to karaoke videos, footage of people dancing to music and videos with music playing in the background.

Fight for the Future is using FreeBieber.org to make its point. The site features digitally-altered photos of police hauling Bieber away in handcuffs and the pop star in an orange jumpsuit sitting in a prison cell. The site's headline reads: "Justice faces 5 brutal years in prison."

As much as some people would like to see the teen pop sensation do some hard time behind bars, the point the group is trying to make is that – if this law were in place a few years ago – Justin Bieber would go to prison (or at the very least a seedy reform school).

Source: The Hill

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