Technology Troubles

Examining the Rights and Responsibilities of Consumers


James, an entrepreneurial 16-year-old high school junior, has discovered a market for his bootleg copies of current movies downloaded from an Internet site. Through word-of-mouth advertising at school, James has developed a market for his DVDs and is enjoying his newfound income. Sharon and Jeanette, business law students, observe James selling the DVDs to a group of freshmen and believe that he may be engaging in illegal activity. After much consideration, the future attorneys decide to disclose James’s activities to a school administrator. The police are called. James is questioned and his parents are notified.


1. What creations do copyright laws protect?

With a copyright you can reproduce the work, distribute copies of the work, display the work publicly, and perform the work publicly.

2. Who can initiate legal action against James?

Copyright infringement is generally a civil matter, which the copyright owner must pursue in federal courts.

3. What duties do Sharon and Jeanette have as responsible consumers?

To report the incident and not buy from them..

4. What ethical issues are involved in this situation?

James shouldn't copyright, James should get in trouble and Sharon and Jeanette should tell someone.

5. Could James’s parents be questioned? Could they be culpable for his actions?

Parents can be questioned and possibly fined.

6. What punishment and penalties could James face?

James should be fined for copyrighting

7. If this case goes to trial, what court would hear the case?

Federal court