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NEWS: Singapore Anime Distributor Denied Third Court Order


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quartears



Joined: 27 May 2007
Posts: 46
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:53 pm Reply with quote
Try charging the thousands of people who illegally steal this stuff. It's not gonna work.
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DmonHiro



Joined: 06 Jan 2007
Posts: 3278
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:08 pm Reply with quote
Now THAT is good news. I hope they burn Odex to a crisp
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hikura



Joined: 21 Nov 2004
Posts: 483
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 4:42 pm Reply with quote
quartears wrote:
Try charging the thousands of people who illegally steal this stuff. It's not gonna work.

Answer me this then.This is not meant to be a mean question.So are you saying it is okay to steal?If you created some for of work(music,art or literature) and you found out that someone is illegally distrubting it or making copies of it you would not mind?That is the whole point of the court cases.
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Paploo



Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1875
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:00 pm Reply with quote
Getting japanese distributors involved in this should help things- it's difficult for licensors to take on people in courts without their involvement. Many downloading sites hide behind servers in multiple countries [and let's face it folks, with some of these websites *charging* anime fans to use them, it's going to become a bigger issue]. Though given many japanese companies are having a hard enough time dealing with piracy within Japan, I can see why domestic licensors have a difficult time pursuing options like this.

If you really like anime, you should be supporting legitimate releases and official merchandise. Otherwise, you're not contributing to the production of new anime, which could prove hazardous to the fandom. And without your support, the original creators of the anime/manga, even if they're off in some faraway country, won't be able to properly pursue future projects- a LOT of anime productions rely on the involvement of US, German and other licensors from other countries to continue producing new anime titles.
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Dargonxtc



Joined: 13 Apr 2006
Posts: 4463
Location: Nc5xd7+ スターダストの海洋
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:10 pm Reply with quote
This something that I wish American courts would emulate more.

Quote:
He ordered Odex to repay Singapore $7,000 (US$4,600) in court costs.


The DC judge who was trying to sue the dry cleaners who stained his pants 52 million dollars comes to mind.

As far as this case goes, I think, at least from our standards, that Odex was on pretty shaky ground to begin with. So it doesn't surprise me. On the other hand, two judges passed this along to start with so, by Singaporean standards they might have had a stronger case than we think. But for now it seems pretty dead. Not that I was against this or anything, but they seem to have much bigger problems than this.
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ultrapostman



Joined: 15 Aug 2007
Posts: 164
Location: New Jersey. Don't you just love traffic circles?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:52 pm Reply with quote
Personally, Odex's actions don't bother me as much because I'm not a big fansub downloader. I just watch them on various sites. Anyway, people need to remember that downloading fansubs is illegal, and that means you can get punished for it if you're unlucky enough to get caught or stupid enough to get caught. I can't count the number of times I see people complaining about all the fansubs being taken down on youtube and othe sites. Hmm, maybe it's because it's illegal you morons!
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mufurc



Joined: 09 Jun 2003
Posts: 612
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:13 pm Reply with quote
hikura wrote:
Answer me this then.This is not meant to be a mean question.So are you saying it is okay to steal?If you created some for of work(music,art or literature) and you found out that someone is illegally distrubting it or making copies of it you would not mind?That is the whole point of the court cases.

No, seems to me that the point this time is that Odex blamed fansub downloaders for its business problems, without realizing that the problem lay first and foremost in the inferior quality of its products and its nonexistant PR and marketing. Sure, downloading fansubs is illegal and not very nice toward the original creators and all that, but if you want people's money you first have to let them know you exist, then have to offer some value in return for their money. As I hear, most of Odex's products were of abysmal quality, and I don't blame people for choosing not to pay for them (if they were aware of their existence at all) but download the same stuff for free, in better quality. The law may be on Odex's side (or may not, as seen from this news post), but if what people say about them is true then they fail as a company with or without fansubs.

(But then, I'm not Singaporean, so I only know what's going on from blogs and news posts.)
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kokuryu



Joined: 07 Apr 2007
Posts: 915
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:22 pm Reply with quote
This judge finally did the right thing according to the law. Odex had zero rights to anything.
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hikura



Joined: 21 Nov 2004
Posts: 483
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:21 pm Reply with quote
mufurc wrote:

No, seems to me that the point this time is that Odex blamed fansub downloaders for its business problems, without realizing that the problem lay first and foremost in the inferior quality of its products and its nonexistant PR and marketing. Sure, downloading fansubs is illegal and not very nice toward the original creators and all that, but if you want people's money you first have to let them know you exist, then have to offer some value in return for their money. As I hear, most of Odex's products were of abysmal quality, and I don't blame people for choosing not to pay for them (if they were aware of their existence at all) but download the same stuff for free, in better quality. The law may be on Odex's side (or may not, as seen from this news post), but if what people say about them is true then they fail as a company with or without fansubs.

(But then, I'm not Singaporean, so I only know what's going on from blogs and news posts.)

The companies need the support of fans by getting people to finacial support shows(or companies that release the material)and support them in other ways also.If you dislike how a company is handling something doesn't mean you should do something illegal to get what you want.You need to try to change how the company(or companies) work to improve.
Still if you download a fansub it is illegal.It hurts the company(or companies) while you are doing this.I feel no sympathy for anyone who does this and gets caught.
Let me put it this way.If you dislike the speed limit in a certain area and you speed and then get caught doing it should you get off because you disliked the speed limit?You can always see about why the speed limit is that way and if you can try to maybe change the speed limit.But when you can not for reasons beyond your control still does not give you permission to speed.
In this day and age it is very reasonable to get material that you like from it's orginial source.Yes it might be expensive but you live within your means.If your lucky you might be part of group or club and buy more material that you like.But at this stage there no just cause for breaking the law for ones convience.
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testorschoice



Joined: 28 Apr 2007
Posts: 466
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:50 pm Reply with quote
kokuryu wrote:
This judge finally did the right thing according to the law. Odex had zero rights to anything.


Odex's case has three fatal flaws (no proof of exclusive license or copyrights to all the anime, invalid claims of criminal prosecution and IP addresses as insufficient evidence of illegal activity), but it did have an exclusive right to at least one anime in Singapore. What it can actually do with that license to pursue downloaders of that or any anime is another question, but it does have more than zero rights.
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Colonel Wolfe



Joined: 05 Aug 2004
Posts: 370
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 1:55 am Reply with quote
You know, I see all of those other anime fans that Odex had contacted fighting them in court, challenging the fact that they don't hold the rights to the shows they say they have. Those prior judges might end up revoking the subpoenas for the information that they had iussued because this is going to turn into one of the worst PR campaigns for their court system.
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weils



Joined: 03 Oct 2005
Posts: 44
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 3:12 am Reply with quote
What I know from the judge in his 14-page statement about why he ruled out Odex's case:

- The managing director of Odex, Peter Go, has absolutely no evidence that his company engaged the services of the tracker company, BayTSP. From what he said in his affidavit, all he used was the public tracking solution software found at BayTSP to track IPs.

- Tracking IPs do not amount to getting court order for ISPs to disclose their users. Also remember what I said in the 1st point, when Odex most likely hadn't engaged BayTSP for their services which it claimed. Currently and before this info was released, Odex had claimed compensation costs, which include paying the US company (BayTSP) for helping to track IPs, which actually they didn't.

- Odex is just a sub-licensee, not an exclusive licensee or copyright holder and therefore unable to pursue any rights. The only exclusive license Odex has in the region is Sunrise's Mobile Suit Gundam Seed.

- Peter Go produced 13 letters from various anime companies authorizing him to pursue copyright infringement. Out of the 13 letters, 3 directly appoint Odex to do the job, but it was found that all 3 are anime distributors. As what I said in the point above, only exclusive licensee and copyright owners have the power to take down infringement. The other 10 letters however appoint Anti-Video Piracy Association of Singapore (AVPAS) to pursue rights on their behalf. Which comes to the next point...

- Peter Go produced another letter, dated 1st Nov 2004, signed by himself as vice president of AVPAS, authorized Odex, the only local member in its association, to "take such steps as may be necessary to protect and enforce Copyrights”. However please take note: This means that Mr Go, the VP of AVPAS convieniently authorized Odex, which so happens Mr Go has the highest shares and as the managing director of Odex, to proceed with legal action on it's behalf against alleged copyright violators in Singapore.

To put it simply, Mr Go authorized himself to go after copyright violators in Singapore. Which this piece of info is actually quite disturbing and fishy.
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mufurc



Joined: 09 Jun 2003
Posts: 612
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 6:02 am Reply with quote
hikura wrote:
The companies need the support of fans by getting people to finacial support shows(or companies that release the material)and support them in other ways also.If you dislike how a company is handling something doesn't mean you should do something illegal to get what you want.You need to try to change how the company(or companies) work to improve.

This is easy to say but not so easy to implement. Where I live, except for a few exceptions, most anime is released by a company whose main profile is not anime (in fact, so far there are no purely anime distributors here), and since they know that they can expect only a miniscule amount of profit from releasing anime, they don't put any particular effort in their releases (some of them are like bad bootlegs), and they're not likely to change their attitude either. I'm all for supporting the local industry, and I do buy good or at least decent quality releases by other companies, but I refuse to support this attitude.

hikura wrote:
Still if you download a fansub it is illegal.

Actually, where I live downloading is not illegal. (Sharing, on the other hand, is.)

In any case, I'm not saying that only downloading fansubs is a valid solution instead of buying, and I hate the "don't buy it, you can get it for free!" attitude so many anime fans have. If I were punished for downloading fansubs (assuming it's illegal at the time) I wouldn't whine about injustice. But I can't afford to buy everything, I refuse to buy something without at least sampling it, and I'm not ashamed for using the resources I have, in this case the Internet, to watch stuff I a) wouldn't be able to watch otherwise, b) can't watch the way I want to otherwise (decent subs, etc.). This may not conform completely to copyright laws, but I wouldn't have bought most anime I have, and wouldn't plan to buy more, if I hadn't seen them fansubbed before.
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Kibamaru



Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 35
Location: Singapore
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 11:30 pm Reply with quote
ANN is a bit slow in releaing this news eh? The court denying Odex's case has brought up many questions.

It seems that SingNet actually consented Odex and release the IP owners' details. Whatever happened to the privacy policy??

StarHub fought, but lost.

You guys might want to read this for latest information: http://www.todayonline.com/articles/207695.asp

So, it seems that the cost incurred for the crackdown doesn't seem s expensive as Odex claims.

Hmm, it's a big wonder.
-> People are getting fined btwn 3k to 5k.
-> Odex claims that all the money collected goes to paying for the cost incurred on the crackdown.
-> Odex says that they have barely paid 20% of the total cost with the amount of money collected so far,
-> Yet the article states that the fees for the crackdown doesn't take up to $100 per month.


Why the hell are we paying for the expenses of a company anyway?
So Odex is now going to use the victims' money to pay for Court fees? Seriously, it won't be a surprise if they decide to go that low.


Odex is slowly making an enemy out of the very people they will depend on even if they try to improve the quality of their products and sell them.

So down with Odex. And here we all thought 4Kids will 4Ever remain the crappiest anime-related company.
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F.A.I.T.H



Joined: 15 Nov 2005
Posts: 22
PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:28 am Reply with quote
Saw it on the news a little while ago, and I have to say it's a pretty good decision.

Right now I'm not simply talking about the privacy issues or downloaders simply being let off the hook, but more on how ODEX should stop and finally stop making themselves a laughingstock, especially if you look closely at how fansubs actually help the anime industry in Singapore.

First issue: The matter of availability of anime. Censorship is pretty big in Singapore, so you don't get things like FMP: TSR or Ikki Tousen around here. Heck, as long as there's anything involved with an 'extra' dosage of violence, sexual references etc, you won't be finding them on the shelves.

Furthermore, what's more important is the market value of the series. That's probably one reason why Shakugan no Shana and Bleach made it here fast. Ultimately it points to one thing: Profit. Anime isn't here to entertain the people, but to make money for distributors in Singapore.

Second issue: Quality of anime. There have already been worthy mention of this, I believe. VCD and DVD visual quality from ODEX as compared to fansubbed anime from fansubbers was laughably inferior. It's practically the first time you would hear of inferior goods from official sources as compared to the 'pirated' sources. This isn't just a matter of 'convenience', as some have put regarding downloading of anime.

Third issue: Advertising. As it is in Singapore, anime isn't really that great of a market, considering the small population here. Adding to this is the fact that many consider anime to be 'cartoons fit for children only' and a lack of time and resources to get the originals and learn the language while juggling stress/studies/work/life commitments. Fansubbing actually helped more people to get to know what's coming out, encouraging the growth in the anime community in Singapore itself which would in turn turn their attention towards merchandise and paraphelia (spelling? Laughing ) from the anime they had to download from the Internet. I was wondering whether this would aid or destroy the anime industry in Singapore, and whether it was detrimental to the creators that the anime industry might actually be flourishing better without clamping down on fansubbers. Perhaps that might explain why governments stop going around to clamp down on them. Laughing

In any case, I'm pretty satisfied with the rejection from the court to ODEX.
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