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Apple’s iTunes is now illegal in the UK...wait, what?



Apple’s iTunes music software now lives on the wrong side of the law in the UK.

This is the result of a recent High Court decision that makes backing up music illegal.

Back in October, new intellectual property laws meant that ripping copyrighted CDs and DVDs that you already owned was within your rights as a consumer.

However, in July this year we reported on a new ruling by the High Court, which overturned that decision entirely.

That move, which followed a legal challenge from music industry big wigs, now means that ripping a CD in iTunes is no longer legal.

“It is now unlawful to make private copies of copyright works you own, without permission from the copyright holder – this includes format shifting from one medium to another,” a UK Intellectual Property Office spokesperson told TorrentFreak.

Apple actively promotes the ability of its software to copy CDs to its player.

This means that the company is potentially liable for significant claims for damages from the music industry for facilitating copyright infringement.

This legal change doesn’t only affect ripping CDs, however. Copying a song from a computer backup or storing a track on the cloud is also against the law.

“...it includes creating backups without permission from the copyright holder, since this necessarily involves an act of copying,” the spokesperson continued.

Related: Best Music Streaming Service 2015

If you’ve copied a CD, however, you probably don’t need to worry too much about getting a knock at the door from the law.

“The Government is not aware of any cases of copyright holders having prosecuted individuals for format-shifting music solely for their own personal use,” explains the spokesperson.

This doesn’t mean you can’t be taken to court by copyright holders, however. Ouch.


August 7, 2015, 11:35 am

This is one of the most ridiculous laws I've ever heard of.
I purchased the CD, I want to listen to it when not at home so I make a copy and access it remotely. If that's breaking the law then you'd better 'cuff me, because I am a criminal.


August 7, 2015, 11:51 am

This law is virtually impossible to enforce, and even harder to prosecute for. Honestly why would anyone care?

Once you've bought the music on a medium of your choice, it should be your prerogative to then convert it into different formats to enjoy on other devices, not buy the album 2 or 3 times.


August 7, 2015, 3:33 pm

If Apple has access to the information/music in Itunes on my PC. Is there a possibility that they can be legally forced to supply this information to the Government or Music Industry. Thus leaving us open to prosecution. I.e similar to Broadband providers supplying the information of people illegally downloading.


August 7, 2015, 4:37 pm

It's all about the lawyers. They'll "settle" with Apple and get their cut and everything will go back to normal.


August 7, 2015, 11:12 pm

This ruling was not thought out at all. More British dumbness..


August 8, 2015, 9:48 pm

It should be, but it isn't.


August 9, 2015, 3:01 pm

where you from funboy


August 9, 2015, 3:12 pm



August 10, 2015, 9:24 pm

If there have been no prosecutions surely the law should be repealed as superfluous.

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