Largely, Piracy refers to the illegal replication of copyright protected material that is thereafter sold at throw away prices or even free of cost in the ‘parallel’ market.
The effortless creation and supply of any work to a large population across the globe was made possible with the advent of internet which was an incredible opportunities for authors. The technology has virtually removed all the traditional distinction between an ‘original’ work and its ‘copy’. Digitization has caused the expenditure of copying and distribution to fall practically to zero. But, with the given efficacy, the internet has also resulted in some complex legal disputes; inter alia, copyright infringement, as all the activities takes place in a digital environment. Also the easy access to internet with the passage of time has made piracy a more rampant form of copyright infringement.
In the contemporary word, Piracy is a prevalent form of violation of copyright that is committed by illegal reproduction of, most commonly, music, sound recordings, cinematographic films, videos, software, etc. Piracy is, nowadays, more common than ever with the use of the Internet as its principal access and delivery point. “Piracy is not a problem that can be isolated in a single country; its reach has no boundaries.” Because of the ease and speed of the Internet, piracy over the Internet crosses borders more freely than any other type of commerce or crime. The copyright holder may very likely be in one country, the violator located in another and the Intermediary in yet another. “Copyright infringement on the Internet is a global problem that begs for global solutions.”
There can be legislative measures to deal with this global malady of online piracy or court judgments to deal with them. But, the limitation faced by domestic laws and court judgments is that they only can be applied to their respective jurisdiction. For e.g any law made by Indian Parliament or judgments Supreme Court of India, can only be enforced in the Indian jurisdiction. However, there are certain International Treaties like WIPO Treaty or TRIPS agreement which have a global impact but still the question of their strict compliance and enforceability pertains.
Either it is ignorance by the innocuous population or blatant disregard by the culpable parties towards the Anti-Piracy laws which are the main triggering factors behind this outgrowing menace. The Copyright laws and Information Technology or Cyber Laws are lagging behind in adequately dealing with the fiend called Piracy. These reasons make delving into the abovementioned topic an interesting and relevant academic exercise.
In view of the complications involved viz. Ignorance of public, Fragility of laws and Jurisdictional limitations, the need to have a research on Mass awareness, Strengthening of Laws, etc is tremendously relevant in the times we live and the analysis thereof might pave the way for new solutions, or further comprehensive research.