Culture

Jail time for California file swappers?

Any California resident who sends copyrighted works without permission to at least 10 other people must include his or her e-mail address.

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a law Tuesday establishing fines and potential jail time for anonymous file swappers. The new law says that any California resident who sends copyrighted works without permission to at least 10 other people must include his or her e-mail address and the title of the work. Swappers who do not include this information will face fines of up to $2,500 and up to one year in prison.

Minors can be fined up to $250 for their first two offenses, and a minor's third offense can bring a $1,000 fine and a year in county jail. The law provides exemptions for people sending works to immediate family members and for the transmission of works inside a home network.