New laws make ripping CDs and DVDs illegal again

Not so fast, Mr Pirate

Changes in the law mean it’s now illegal again for Brits to make copies of music and videos for personal use.

The high court has quashed regulations – that were introduced in October – which allowed people to legally copy CDs and DVDs bought for their own use.

Apparently, the government was ‘legally incorrect’ in deciding not to introduce a compensation scheme for songwriters, musicians and other rights holders who faced losses as a result of their copyright being infringed.

The legal challenge stemmed from Basca, the Musicians’ Union, and industry representatives UK Music.

Jo Dipple, CEO of UK Music, said: “Last month, the high court agreed with us that the government acted unlawfully when it introduced an exception to copyright for private copying without fair compensation. We therefore welcome the court’s decision today to quash the existing regulations. It is vitally important that fairness for songwriters, composers and performers is written into the law. My members’ music defines this country.”

Basically, it’s now illegal to copy your own CDs, MP3s, DVDs, Blu-rays, e-books and any other copyright material. So if you’ve been listening to ripped albums in the car, it’s probably a decent time to invest in that audio cable you’ve always wanted.

It’s not exactly the end of piracy, however. As the BBC notes, “Court action was rare under the previous law and the industry often turned a blind eye to people copying data for personal use.”