Sweden eyes oppressive copyright laws

An article from afterdawn details the goings-on in Sweden where they are preparing an implementation of the EUCD (European Union Copyright Directive).

The proposed legislative implementation of the EUCD is considered one of the most prohibitive that has been proposed to date.

Among the provisions are:

  • An additional tax on recordable and rerecordable media that will amount to an additional $4 tax on DVD-RW's (taxes are per-megabyte and re-recordable media is taxed three times higher than recordable media).
  • Strict prohibition against the sale, distribution, or advertising of copy protection circumvention technologies.
  • Classifying downloading copyrighted material without the copyright-owners permission as a crime in addition to distribution of copyrighted material without permission.

The last item is of some concern as it is very difficult for the recipient to tell if they have legally downloaded something or whether the download is illegal. In most EU communities, it is the publication/distribution that is illegal, providing the unwitting downloaders with some protection.

Of course, most unwitting downloaders aren't really unwitting, so there is that to consider.