Russia's largest social networking site Vkontakte has provided the IP addresses of users who have put pirated content on its site to Gala Records/EMI in court proceedings, Kommersant business daily reported on Monday, quoting a Gala Records/EMI official as saying.
"Vkontakte's position is that they are only a platform and download nothing themselves. In other words, those who downloaded the unlicensed content should take responsibility directly," said Deputy CEO Olga Kim.
She said Vkontakte had disclosed the IP addresses of about 10 users to her company, although Gala Records/EMI had demanded their passport information.
Gala Records is not satisfied with the solution as it is impossible to identity people using their IP addresses. "Besides, we are not going to sue individuals who do not earn money with the content, unlike Vkontakte," Kim added.
Vkontakte spokesman Vladislav Tsyplukhin told the paper the network tried to avoid bringing such cases to court.
"Copyright holders can file a complaint and we will delete the unlicensed track without the possibility of reloading. It is also possible to get the right to delete your content yourself. But if the issue concerns financial claims, we think that those who have violated the law must take responsibility, I mean users," he said.
Last year, Russian internet giants Yandex, Mail.ru and Vkontakte as well as Google and the united company of Afisha and Rambler published an open letter proposing to shift responsibility for pirated content to their users.
The National Federation of Phonographic Industry Director Leonid Agronov said it was next to impossible to initiate criminal cases, as violations of individuals were too small. "In addition, IP addresses are not sufficient. Using them, we can only identify the computer, not the person who was behind it in the moment of violation."
In January 2011, Nikitin record company initiated the first criminal case in RuNet history against a Vkontakte user who posted 18 musical tracks of Nikitin's production.