Malaysia’s updated copyright law jails streaming pirates for up to 20 years

Illegal streaming can be very costly in Malaysia. TorrentFreak reports that the country has passed amendments to the Copyright Act that punish those who enable piracy. People who offer streaming services and devices that “harmfully” offend copyright owners can face fines of $2,377 or more, jail terms of up to 20 years, or both.

The updated law also discourages companies from participating in streaming piracy or from tolerating its presence. Unless managers can demonstrate that they were unaware of a violation and have taken all due care to stop such acts, they will be considered guilty of the offense in question.

Copyright laws around the world often deal with digital piracy, but some are designed to deal with downloads and other older forms of smuggling. That was a problem for Malaysia, which couldn’t use the Copyright Act against people selling pirated streaming devices until a Supreme Court decision allowed those cases.

The potential penalties are severe and the wording suggests that it may be difficult for some companies to avoid getting involved with rogue employees. For example, how much care is required? Still, this shows how some countries can specifically tackle streaming through legislation, and it could please the US and other copyright-driven countries for fear that their neighbors will tolerate illegal internet services.

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