Tennessee passes strict Web entertainment theft bill

If you live in Tennessee and a buddy offers to loan you his or her login to Netflix, it might be wise to politely decline. Handcuffs

A new law in the state, signed into legislation yesterday, makes it a crime to use another person’s log-in to stream video or music – even if that person has given you permission to do so.

The bill, which is primarily aimed at stopping hackers and online pirates, won’t apply to spouses and families under the same roof. Download services that see a tremendous amount of traffic from a single user, though, can now ask authorities to launch an investigation.

Using someone else’s password to obtain $500 or less of entertainment would be a misdemeanor, according to the Associated Press. It would be punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,500. Theft of higher amounts takes it into felony territory.

Given Tennessee’s music stature, the law is primarily focused on digital music downloads, but is written to apply to other downloadable entertainment sources as well.

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