Russian films on iTunes breach copyright laws

Russian films on iTunes breach copyright laws
The BBC has reported that films available through Apple services to iPhone and iPad users are being sold without the consent of the copyright holders.

Popular films dating back to the Soviet era were obtainable through Apple's services, taking the form of applications that can be installed on Apple devices. Films include old favourites such as Gentlemen of Fortune, Assa, The Diamond Arm, Kin-dza-dza and Cheburashka.

Mosfilm and the Joint State Film Collection (Obyedinennaya Gosudarstvennaya Kinocollectsia) own the copyright to the specific Russian movies, and have not given anyone permission to provide them through Apple's services for free or for a fee.

"It is illegal to present our films as applications either in iTunes or on any other internet site. It is permitted only on our own Mosfilm site," Svetlana Pyleva, Mosfilm's deputy director general, said in an interview with BBC News. "There are no third parties which we have permitted to use our content."

Mosfilm at the time was preparing to submit complaints to Apple. Before apps can be made available through the App Store, Apple has to approve them. The company has said it takes copyright complaints very seriously and will take action immediately against any infringing app.

Written by: James Delahunty @ 1 Feb 2011 20:08
Apple iTunes
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  • KillerBug

    Once again, the real pirates get caught in the act...and surprise: it is some big corporation that sues people for pirating their wares.

    2.2.2011 00:34 #1

  • dcmorrow

    Don't get too hasty. If it's an app that was approved by Apple, as long as the content wasn't pornographic or obviously pirated, it will pass. I think it's an honest mistake on Apple's part

    UPDATE: Apparently these apps are like the single book apps (which are annoying anyway), offering the movies along with additional information. Almost all cost $3 and up. Kin Dza Dza is $5. Yeah this is totally bizarre. All Soviet.

    The only thing I can think of is that Apple just doesn't really know or can tell. They may think these films are public domain. Search Фильм in the iPhone App Store. You will see them and its Valeriy Petrenko (Ukrainian) who is making these apps. Actually this is the very person who the complaint is about.

    2.2.2011 12:59 #2

  • KillerBug

    If they thought she was charging $3 for public domain movies, I can't say that is much better than charging $3 for pirated movies.

    2.2.2011 21:44 #3

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