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Russia Reportedly Legalizing Video Game Piracy in Response to Sanctions

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Russia is allegedly relaxing its copyright restrictions in reaction to Western sanctions imposed in response to its invasion of Ukraine. Therefore, allowing piracy of games, movies, TV episodes, and other media. 

The Russian Ministry of Economic Development recommended loosening piracy legislation earlier this week, to get around the sanctions.

“The possibility of lifting restrictions on the use of intellectual property contained in certain goods, the supply of which to Russia is limited, is being considered,” said the Ministry. “This will smooth out the impact on the market of breaks in supply chains, as well as the shortage of goods and services that arose due to new sanctions by Western countries.”

The government has also recently announced that Russian enterprises no longer have an obligation to pay patent holders for the use of intellectual property from any sanctioned nations. According to City A.M, the Russian government has now essentially legalized piracy across the country.

According to the state-owned daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta, new legislation allows Russian companies to employ technologies from hostile countries without paying for the use of their intellectual property.

When it comes to Hollywood films, it appears that the government will allow Russians to pirate them. Russian politician Dmitry Ionin even suggested that the country may unblock the torrenting suite RuTracker. This will assist Russians in pirating Hollywood films with ease.

“Since many Western studios have refused to release new films in Russia, the parliamentarian believes that thanks to the torrent tracker, users will be able to watch Hollywood films,” reports Gazetta.

The action comes after Twitch halted payments to Russian streamers a few days ago. They've also implemented new regulations to combat misinformation. Twitch can now take action against accounts that are sharing misleading information. Such information includes video game footage being misrepresented as real-life war footage.

In addition, Microsoft, Sony, and a slew of gaming and entertainment businesses have halted game and gear sales in Russia. The companies have responded to a request from Ukraine's deputy prime minister. He requested “all game creators” to halt support in Russia and Belarus for the time being.

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Evans I. Karanja is a freelance writer who loves to write about anything technology. He is always on the lookout for interesting topics, and enjoys writing about video games, cryptocurrency and blockchain and more. When not writing, he can be found playing video games or watching F1.