Ministry of Propaganda

Ministry of Propaganda - 23/Dec/2004: "Licence Fee?"

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Licence Fee?

Regular readers will know of the fun I have with TV Licensing here in the UK. But that's nothing compared to some things going on in Germany. I haven't found any reports in English yet, apologies for the German only links: A court has just decided that you have to pay a fee for a printer, another court ruled that a fee on computers is justified as well. The fee for a printer hasn't been to decided yet, for a computer it is EUR 12. The fee has to be included in the price of the computer, the computer manufacturer has to pay it to a rights management association for authors.

The reasoning? A computer and a printer can be used to reproduce copyrighted material. If you do it or not doesn't matter, it's the possibility that counts. You even have to pay it if the only thing you do on your PC is writing your own texts and then printing them off on your printer. Or if you buy it for your company to do your bookkeeping and tax returns.

Can't say that makes much sense to me.

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