Copyright madness

UK Cinema Calls Police on Kids With iPhones Over Piracy Concerns

"A group of 12-year-old girls had the police called on them after they decided to bring their iPhones and iPads to a showing of The Hunger Games at a local cinema. The police officers who rushed to the scene were unable to find any recorded footage, but by then the children were too distressed to watch the rest of the film."

Also in Mail: "Girls left in tears after being dragged out of cinema by staff who called 999 after wrongly believing the 12-year-olds were filming The Hunger Games on their iPads."

I am at a loss. Why the hell would the cinema call 999 and why the hell would the police attend?

When you do want the police to act it is hard enough - they took ages to attend when out office was broken in to, and they had no interest when my bike was stolen. Clearly, what we need to do, is have a personal copy of music or film that we own on a USB stick attached to things that might get nicked - that is legal, but the second it is nicked and no longer in my possession it becomes a pirate copy and we can call 999 and get the police to take action for copyright infringement. They will take that much more seriously than any theft?

But seriously, this is utter nonsense and disgraceful. I do hope that official complaints have been registered with PCC over this.

What makes it even more stupid is that Cineworld, the cinema in question, are trying to engage people with iPhone/android apps in the pre-programme advertising so they are actually asking people to take such devices to the cinemas in the first place now. E.g. Cineme "Cinime is a new mobile app that helps you get more from a trip to the movies. There are plenty of rewards and treats on offer to ensure you get the most out of your cinema visit. Whenever you see the cinime logo, grab your phone and start looking out for rewards. Offers are available before and after the movie, so always keep your eyes open for cinime as there will be lots of benefits for downloading."

Yes, that is right: Cineworld ask you to bring your iPhone to the cinema with you and then call 999 on you when you do. And Cineworld have not even refunded what they paid!


  1. 12-year olds are allowed to watch "The Hunger Games"? Isn't that quite a violent movie?

    1. Well I am shocked. I watched an earlier instalment of the series (the one with the "quarter quell") on an airplane out of boredom and I found it quite violent. People get killed in gruesome ways all the time. No wonder kids are stabbing each other after school.

      But good thing our government is protecting them from "accidentally" accessing some porn on the Internet. Surely, THAT would damage them for life.

  2. Indeed, I think cineworld should be prosecuted for calling 999 for such an incident, when it's clearly a civil matter!

  3. Using 999 is clearly abusive, especially when there's a national none emergency police number (101). If the behaviour of cinema goers is causing an issue surely they should have staff that can remove and ban without involving police (maybe a teacher come bouncer in this'd instance)

  4. Interestingly the sloppy Daily Mail reporter neglected to mention what your own investigative skills had uncovered, i.e. that Cineworld were encouraging customers to bring along their mobile devices. That minor omission led to many misinformed reader comments along the lines of "it's the girls' own fault, what are they doing bringing an iPlayer to the cinema in the first place?"

    1. I think anyone reading The Mail counts as misinformed :-)

  5. They were "unable to find any recorded footage"? On what basis did they search for it, on devices presumably containing private data?

    This story is congruent with my view of the UK as a rather sick place currently.


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