Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (11/04/1997)

No Electronic Theft (NET) Act - Amends Federal copyright law to define "financial gain" to include the receipt of anything of value, including the receipt of other copyrighted works.

Sets penalties for willfully infringing a copyright: (1) for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain; or (2) by reproducing or distributing, including by electronic means, during any 180-day period, one or more copies of one or more copyrighted works with a total retail value of more than $1,000. Provides that evidence of reproduction or distribution of a copyrighted work, by itself, shall not be sufficient to establish willful infringement.

Extends the statute of limitations for criminal copyright infringement from three to five years.

Revises Federal criminal code provisions regarding criminal copyright infringement to provide for a fine and up to five years' imprisonment for infringing a copyright for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain, by reproducing or distributing, including by electronic means, during any 180-day period, at least ten copies or phonorecords of one or more copyrighted works which have a total retail value of more than $2,500.

Provides for: (1) up to three years' imprisonment and fines in infringement cases described above (exclusive of commercial gain intent considerations); (2) up to six years' imprisonment and a fine for a second or subsequent felony offense under (1); and (3) up to one year's imprisonment and a fine for the reproduction or distribution of one or more copies or phonorecords of one or more copyrighted works with a total retail value of more than $1,000.

Requires, during preparation of the presentence report in cases of criminal copyright infringement, unauthorized fixation and trafficking of live musical performances, and trafficking in counterfeit goods or services, that victims of the offense be permitted to submit, and the probation officer receive, a victim impact statement that identifies the victim and the extent and scope of the victim's injury and loss, including the estimated economic impact of the offense on that victim.

Directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to ensure that the applicable guideline range for a defendant convicted of a crime against intellectual property is sufficiently stringent to deter such a crime and adequately reflects consideration of the retail value and quantity of items with respect to which the crime against intellectual property was committed.