[NEWS] Uhh oh!

by Aileen | 1:31 AM in |

Before you start commenting, "what the hell is this?" I advise you to relax, and read this first.

Yesterday was July 23rd,
it's the start of the new copyright laws in Korea.

They have already started to hire people to monitor and enforce the new laws but the whole thing is still relatively unknown, no one really knows what constitutes a valid copyright infringement and what constitutes fair usage.

No one really knows how the 3 strikes policy is going to be monitored and enforced, or what the punishments are. But good news for copyright holders, they now get MORE MONEY benefiting us all. (sarcastic much?)

I'll explain a bit further, under the new laws, the percentage given to copyright holders has now increased significantly (Can't find the exact numbers right now but I'll post it when i find it).

This means there needs to be an increase in the cost of content to balance out the rest of the equation. I've heard numbers being thrown around of around 15% increase in the cost of CDs and so on. Nowcom seems to be using this as an excuse to make their mileage exchange program rather useless. (This is in the Clubbox Tutorial Thread).

We won't really see the impact of these laws until they start enforcing them which could take atleast several weeks to several months, also since they have no power outside of Korea, not sure how they are planning to enforce these for foreign located servers.

There is also another issue popped up yesterday
and for the most part it's a big one.

It's the introduction and passing
of the new 3 Media Laws in parliament.

The laws set out laws regarding IPTV and Media Company Ownership.

Big point of contention being the ability for newspaper companies and large corporation to own large stakes in Terrestrial Broadcasting Companies (MBC, KBS, SBS). They will now be allowed to hold up to 49% stakes in these broadcasters giving them huge saying power in the operation of these broadcasters.

Currently all 3 Broadcasters are on strike
and there is a good chance it's going to impact
what programs are going to air this week.

But there is also a deeper social issue with these laws, giving a newspaper or company decision making power in a broadcaster is going to start affecting what the broadcasters can and cannot do. This is huge issue and it means broadcasters who lose their impartiality when dealing with issues that don't agree with their owners, newspapers in Korea tend to be very biased left or right wing and rarely neutral.

There is also the issue of legality since the laws passed through parliament rather hastily and without proper conduct, but that's beyond the scope of this post.

Anyway that sums up whats been happening in the world of Korean Media Law in the last 2 weeks.

Now how is this going to affect us?
  • Depending on how long the protests go for, we won't seeing any new episodes of dramas and variety shows starting from next week onwards or even as early as Saturday.
  • Most likely there won't be a change in the copyright laws for awhile. (3 years minimum because that's how long the current government has left in power)
  • They are targeting primarily heavy uploaders and encoders of content so it remains to be seen how long Ental has left to live.
  • Public Korean Torrent sites are also under caution and uploaders are being cautious.
  • They are predicting that half of Korean Blogs and Cafes will shut down before years end.
  • Buying content legally will also become more expensive due to increases in royalty for copyright holders.
  • Nowcom hasn't said anything about their future directions for clubbox, pdbox or afrecca yet but all 3 services seem to contradict the new laws so their future isn't very clear cut.
  • Small recap of the copyright laws, parodies are illegal, posting a UCC/Youtube video of you using copyrighted content is now illegal (this includes personal reenactments of song sheets, singing, parodies etc), Blogs and Cafes are also forbidden from posting links to such content , Postings made prior to the 23rd are also considered illegal and they plan to search through community archives to find them, screen grabs from dramas and shows are illegal.

That's about it, the post was a bit long but i had a fair bit to cover.

Not really sure what the next step is for now, everyone seems to be taking a wait and see approach, no one knows how severely the government is going to enforce these laws and until then everyone is going to stay cautious.

They could also find a way to enforce their laws overseas but that seems unlikely, possible but unlikely.

Credits: Music Bank Soompi Forum

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