The songwriters have expressed their frustration and believe that law enforcement is not taking seriously the economic damage that is done by file sharing services. The Songwriters Guild of America wants the DOJ and FBI to take the situation more seriously and provide the same enforcement that these agencies give to bank robberies. The guild also states that the cost of piracy dwarfs that of bank robberies which are investigated more thoroughly.
In a recent article it also states that:
The Guild demands that the Department of Justice make criminal prosecutions of “willful copyright infringement” a higher priority; right now, the issue is not classed as a “serious” crime.
“Unfortunately, this misguided attitude allows domestic and foreign pirates to decimate an industry—intellectual property—where the United States enjoys a true global competitive advantage,” says the group.
In addition, the federal government should do whatever it takes to start bringing civil copyright lawsuits against online offenders, something that is currently up to the private sector. This would require a change to the law; something along these lines was considered in the PRO-IP Act, but was ultimately scrapped before passage.
The Guild contends that its members simply aren’t able to “sue thousands of infringers in the Federal Courts”—but the government could. (And should.)
Fie sharing does appear to be impervious to enforcement not only here in the U.S. but around the world. There are a few rare cases in which pirates are shut down, but this is the exception rather than the rule. With so much money at stake, it will take massive amounts of enforcement to stop those who are pirates.
So what is the answer? More enforcement? What do you think?