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Hitting Hard

Piracy laws just got tougher.

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This story appears in the June 2006 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The government is cracking down on those who threaten intellectual property rights. Consider the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act of 2005, which says anyone caught making an unauthorized recording at a movie theater can be sentenced to up to three years in jail. The same goes for those convicted of infringing on any copyrighted work "being prepared for commercial distribution."

In October, the Sentencing Commission toughened prison sentences for people convicted of illegal file swapping. Now, violators can get 10 to 16 months in jail for uploading a pirated file--even if no one downloads it.

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