Honest Thief Takes on RIAA

Honest Thief Takes on RIAA

PGR BV, a Dutch Internet services company, announced the launch of The Honest Thief, a new file sharing service based in the Netherlands. Additionally, in a joint effort with a consortium of legal experts, The Honest Thief is beta testing new business software to be licensed to file sharing providers. The company website goes public today and The Honest Thief's new file sharing solution will be available in Q2, 2003. The Honest Thief is the first Dutch company to take advantage of a recent Dutch appeals court ruling that paved the way for the Netherlands to become the world's first legal haven for file sharing companies.

On March 28, 2002 judges Coeterier, Cornelissen and Sorgdrager from the Gerechtshof in Amsterdam, an appeals court, ruled that the users of internationally popular Kazaa are illegally infringing upon copyrights, not Kazaa itself. Kazaa is a legitimate service that operates much like a copy machine or a CD burner. That is, the user not the device is liable because a device cannot own a copyright and only the user chooses to legally purchase or to illegally download a song.

According to Nielsen/NetRatings figures, 13 million Americans and 6.4 million people in Europe visited Kazaa's Web site in October. In opposition to these file-sharing fans, the IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) claims that 99 per cent of all music files exchanged on the net is illegal and that in May 2002 there were about 500 million files available for copying at any one time.

Mark Mulligan, Jupiter Research analyst, recently commented in a BBC News article that the music industry would never fully be able to eradicate illegal file sharing. There will always be those willing to develop alternative illegal services, said Mulligan. It has got to be accepted that file sharing will always be there just as shoplifting is accepted as wastage in the retail sector.

Call it file sharing or shoplifting, here in Holland we call it good business, said Pieter Plass, founder of The Honest Thief. We Dutch are a free thinking people and we've never been the type to legislate morality. With our file sharing service and our new software, we hope The Honest Thief will become to file sharing what the Swiss are to banking.

About PGR BV

Based in the Netherlands, PGR BV is a young company primarily focused on Internet management services. The company was founded by Pieter Plass, CEO of CBB, the Netherlands. CBB, founded in 1968, is a management company with some 315 employees. CBB provides project management for the construction industry. With a growing demand for e-commerce applications, PGR fulfills a vital business need through the autonomous management of the highly specialized activities integral to Internet services. The PGR team is an enthusiastic group of professionals eager to excel in the Internet arena and make a difference. PGR can handle e-commerce aspects such as concept development, web design and programming. On a strategic level PGR helps companies with legal, HR and financial support for e-commerce business ventures from conception to the day-to-day operations. For more information, visit the website, a link to which can be found by following the download tab above.