The Malaysian consumer public may be shocked from the announcement from the Domestic Trade and Consumerism Ministry they want to penalize people who buy counterfeit DVDs and VCDs. The Domestic Trade and Consumerism Ministry has indicated that so that you can combat the rampant sale of pirated DVDs and VCDs, they have to staunch the demand and that can be carried out by punishing those who choose the products.
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The Domestic Trade and Consumerism Ministry (known as Kementerian Perdagangan Dalam Negeri Dan Hal Ehwal Pengguna in Malay) exists to encourage ethical trade practices and also to protect consumer interest. The ministry's functions include managing matters linked to consumer protection and ip rights.
Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said recently that buyers of counterfeit DVDs and VCDs could possibly be fined approximately 5 times the retail price with the genuine products for each counterfeit item they'd in their possession. The modification in approach would come into effect once the proposed amendments of the Copyright Act were approved by Parliament.
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Detractors from the plan suggested that turning to penalising the customer may well be a symbol of desperation by the ministry, that have did not counteract the pirating syndicates previously. Malaysia has received a history of criminal syndicates doing massive counterfeiting of flicks and music discs in addition to computer software. Much of this product was sold over the region as well as exported to USA and Europe.
However, many consumers felt this approach was unfair and punishing consumers was the wrong way to take. Some declared the price of genuine DVDs and VCDs was too high and so they resorted to purchasing counterfeit copies instead. They urged the background music and movie industries and government to be effective to lessen the retail prices to lessen the need for fakes. Also, they reasoned, in the event the Ministry was able to catch the consumer who had bought some DVDs, then why couldn't they catch the owner simultaneously?
But some agreed using the idea - all things considered, they thought, buyers of illegal medicine is punished so why don't you for DVDs too?
As Intellectual Property rights be essential as a good point to a company, the Ip holders will demand via their associations and governments for more protection to avoid counterfeiting.