The Court approved the proposed revisions to the Anti-Piracy Law in Japan, strengthening anti-piracy measures and subjecting other content to these regulations, such as manga and magazines.
The illegal downloading of manga, magazines, academic texts, newspapers, and any other work will now carry criminal charges as of January 1, 2021, although derivative works (parodies) are excluded. For reference, the law previously only applied to the illegal downloading of music and videos.
Likewise, leecher sites that redirect users to hacking sites have also been considered illegal, and the regulation of these will take effect from October 1, 2020. In addition to the derivative works, the Cultural Affairs Agency declared that special cases and minor cases are exempt from this new regulation. Citing half of an essay or article is considered illegal, and downloading a single box from a dozen-page manga is considered a minor case.
Penalties for those who download illegally in Japan can be up to two years in jail or a fine of up to two million yen (approximately $ 19,000), or even both, while those who run leecher sites may be awarded a penalty up to five years in prison, fined five million yen (approximately $ 47,000), or both.