back to article Paypal chums with City cops against naughty music sites

Paypal will cut funding to websites deemed 'illegal' by the music industry and the City of London Police, according to trade body the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI). The IFPI will identify sites that it believes are selling music without having the right to do so and has said in a statement that the …

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WTF?

well that's odd

what ever happened to "innocent until proven guilty"?

Does the IFPI have *any* authority? is it really as simple as them telling paypal "those guys over there are not adhering to our rules, so their content is illegal" and paypal will cut them off?

for a financial company as big as paypal, that doesn't make a lot of sense. more and more banks of all nations are making direct payment options available, i myself am using paypal less and less.

normally i don't really pay attention to these threads, as my stuff's mostly legal, but this struck me as rather strange, so i couldn't resist.

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Anonymous Coward

Err...

If the sites aren't under the jurisdiction of the UK, there is no way to take them to court, so there is no way to prosecute them for the selling something they're not allowed to sell.

Come to that - even if the sites were in the UK, if they aren't giving royalties to the PRS they don't really have a leg to stand on.

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Alert

jurisdiction

If the sites aren't under the UK's jurisdiction, why is it any of our business?

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Anonymous Coward

Oh, look, anarcho-capitalism

re: what ever happened to "innocent until proven guilty"?

The standard for proof at the IFPI is probably not as rigid as that with actual courts.

re: Does the IFPI have *any* authority?

They can sue you to oblivion for little or no reason. And now they can cut off your access to funds (and probably steal same) via paypal.

* I stopped using paypal long ago for their shady tactics.

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Anonymous Coward

Err...

Filth

Pigs

Piggies

Grow up and I might bother to listen to anything you have to say.

As it happens *everyone* gets protection from law, including (and I would daresay especially) criminals. These tax avoiders are merely behaving in an immoral manner, not an illegal one, I disprove of their behavior but the real target for anger about tax avoidance is Government for allowing the situation in the first place.

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Stop

replace

replace the word "police" with "muslims" and everyone would be all over you, but i guess that's a bit besides the point.

Do you know the word "generalization"?

1: cops are just doing their jobs.

2: the percentage of fucked up people on a global scale is slightly higher then the percentage of fucked up people on the force.

3: cops are actually people too, if things had turned differently in your life, you may have ended up being one yourself.

4: keep it real, dude!

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Anonymous Coward

@Matthew

I guess you don't actually know any police, I do and I can assure you they are pretty ashamed of what has happened in their name. The thing is that we're not in the 60s/70s/80s any more and things are a lot better. The guy who pushed Ian Tomlinson over is going on trial, he is not getting away with it. It is also right that people "throwing sticks" or trying to assault police with potentially deadly weapons as it could also be claimed, should be put in prison.

You wouldn't argue that the people who were smashing up (and burning) RBS branches, throwing fire extinguishers off buildings or generally going round masked up causing trouble represented the protesters, so why should a couple of police represent all police?

Yes, I was there, I wasn't on any particular side, but my office (major UK bank) was evacuated because it was felt that the police weren't handling the situation in a particularly suitable manner. So, I have reason to be down on both "sides" but I'm not, the irrisponsible are in the vast minority be they police or protesters.

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Re: @Matthew

"The guy who pushed Ian Tomlinson over is going on trial, he is not getting away with it."

That's despite the police, not because of them.

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Anonymous Coward

Actually...

It's despite the guy who did the autopsy and screwed it up. The guy who I believe got stuck off.

Also it's important to realise that prosecutions aren't brought by the police, they are brought by the Crown Prosecution Service for the obvious reason that it's very easy for the Police to use/not use prosecution inappropriately.

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Stop

Police Consider The Evidence

So at no point is there any judical review of the evidense before a company has its payment processing blocked and presumably even have existing funds held. Nice

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Mushroom

Clean your own cupboards

If PayPal want to stop doing business with sites that trade without the right to do so, they can start by closing down their operation. They've frozen the accounts of charities and never returned the money, routinely side with fraudsters in arbitration and committed a whole host of other scams and abuses - all while being completely unregulated by the authorities, as they're not a genuine financial insitution. They're so dodgy that they're prohibited from operating in the state of Louisiana, and had to relocate their HQ from California a few years back when it looked like that state was going to follow suit.

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Alert

re: Louisiana

I really loathe the idea of defending Paypal, but that Louisiana thing was just bankers trying to keep paypal out of their turf. The rest is spot on.

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FAIL

City of London police...

They are the arbitors of what is legal and what isn't are they? going by there involvment in the phorm case I wouldn't trust their word on anything to do with the interwebs.

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Silver badge

Today Justice Died

The City of London Police will pass the information to Paypal – which will then demand evidence that music that is sold has been licensed.

As others said, what happened to innocent until proven guilty. Or is this a civil tort, in which case what are the police doing 'considering the evidence'.

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Anonymous Coward

Err...

As seems to be trotted out as a standard response on this site by the pro-take what you want lot:

It's a civil matter and therefore not a crime to breach copyright. Therefore the police aren't finding them guilty of a crime.

Also - if a site does or doesn't pay royalties isn't exactly hard to discover. I would suggest that it doesn't really need to bother court time.

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Actually whether they pay royalities is not the question..

The real question is whether what the site does can be considered legal in the jurisdiction(s) where it plies its trade. The IPRS and others all screamed and shouted that AllofMP3 was in breach of the law and ripping them off etc and they took them to court. Problem was that the law in Russia is not so subservient to those who seek take away our rights to own that which we have purchased.

The court and appeal court both ruled that the activities of AllofMP2 where legal and in accordance with Russian law in respect of copyright. That however did not and has not stopped the IPRS and others from continuing to seek to curtail their activities outside of Russia by using tactics such as this to block them from selling goods to UK customers. This is also something that is legal in the UK, that is I can buy goods in accordance with the copyright laws of the jurisdiction in which the transaction takes place and then legally import them in to the UK.

This means that buying goods from a Russian or even Ukrainian website is legal (unless a UK court rules that the transaction actually takes place in the UK which they haven't). Therefore the Paypal announcement, IPRS tactics are of dubious legality to me. One may choose not to provide its services to whomsoever it wishes but if that decision is based on pressure from an EU business or other economic entity then a)Russia were it a member of the WTO would be able to raise a claim against the UK for unfair barriers to trade and b) who the hell are these oragnisations to tell me where I can shop?

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FAIL

but what about IFPI pirates ?

I assume this means they will ignore reports from individual copyright owners about IFPI-member sites that offer music to which they have no rights ?

It seems to be common practice for the industry to ignore copyright issues when it suits them.

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Mushroom

OK, so does that cover the entire creative industry?

Or is this just for bloody huge media-corps who have politicians in their back pockets?

So next time I shoot some pictures and find some piece of utter scumbag filtth ripping them off and making money. will the Police jump to my defence and stop these scum at their financial source? Or will it have to be dragged through the courts for months and come to nothing but big waste of my time as the other party pleads poverty?

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Alert

Ahahahahaha!!!

To anyone who actually believes Paypal will do this you are dead wrong. If paypal cut sites off, they lose revenue, they're not here for that. I've dealt with literally thousands of (now) shop owners who previously sold via ebay and Paypals various shoddy "shopping cart" solutions and Paypal simply do not give a monkeys about anything but taking their percentage of a transaction. Once they've got that any further decisions (such as a chargebacks) seem to be decided by the toss of a coin.

Sure, they might knock one or two of the smaller businesses on the head every couple of months or so just so they have something to show, but anyone who is processing a decent amount of money is going to be safe.

Paypal - a law unto themselves.

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WTF?

Bye bye eBay then

If Paypal will block sites that infringe copyright then eBay will have to the first to go - the amount of fake stuff on sale there is an order of magnitude more than the dodgy music and film sites are offering.

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Silver badge

What are police doing, getting involved in civil matters?

Easy question, but don't expect an answer anytime soon.

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Anonymous Coward

Need a correction...

"...a serious problem that is eroding the ability of record companies to invest in a diverse range of artists with serious consequences for jobs..."

I'll ammend.

"a serious problem that is eroding the ability of record companies to invest in auto-tune software to flog a talentless bunch of pretty boys and girls to a braindead audience with serious consequences for jobs in marketing and management".

There fixed.

No joke icon, no joke.

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Anonymous Coward

Missing The Point

Most of the outraged comments above are missing the point. Like any other business Paypal have the right to refuse to do business with anybody they choose.

There are companies, including banks, who will refuse to do business with companies based on their own moral code. I don't hear anybody complaining about that.

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Coffee/keyboard

New Keyboard please...

Using the term "banks" and "moral codes" in this way really wasnt fair! I think the wall will need washing too.

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Anonymous Coward

@Da Weezil

Heard of the Co-op bank have you?

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Sly

Paypal...

yeah... I have an account... unfunded... used only to purchase things here and there from ebay sources usually. If anything goes wrong, I call my card issuer and have them charged back. If I'm permanently dropped from Paypal... it's no sweat off my ass, but there's no way in hell they're getting access to my checking account.

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Why police?

Why are the police involved at all? Complete waste of time and resources that could be put to better use tracking down "real" criminals. In any case, since when have the police been authorised to decide what is, or is not, illegal? Thought that was a job for the courts.

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Holmes

PayPal alternatives?

I really expected Google Checkout to become a PayPal alternative.

But there is no P2P function in Google Checkout which allows you to store cash, like PayPal does, and then spend it later on, without ever withdrawing to your bank account.

Amazon Payments also lack the P2P functions that PayPal has.

Why is this? Does PayPal have a patent(s) on P2P payments?

I know a few sites that do that, for example MoneyBookers, but Visa charges me Cash Advance + Interest, when I used MoneyBookers.

You have to fund your account before you can send money to someone else in MoneyBookers. To fund your account, the fastest way would be to use your Visa Card.

Then there is AlertPay etc., but since none of them are allowed on eBay, PayPal currently has a strangle hold on P2P payments market.

If the US or EU Anti-trust regulators want to go after someone it is supposed to be eBay, abusing their market dominance, to force people to use PayPal.

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