Russia reportedly permits pirating to counter boycotts

Now hold on a minute. Before you break out ye ol’ eye patch and wooden peg, I’m talking about software pirating. No “Aaaargh” stuff. But yes, it is said that Russia is turning a blind eye to software pirating. Reports claim that changes have been made to local intellectual property rules, making it possible to bypass rights held by patent holders.

I guess this is what you get when every major Western publisher (and PlayStation) cuts you off. With situations in Ukraine getting tenser by the minute, big corpo is taking a stand against the oppressor by shutting down sales and services. But there are more ways than one to acquire digital goods, and Russia knows that all too well. If you can’t get your hands on it the legal way, there’s always an illegal way. And illegal actions can be made legal. You just need the right people to handle that.

To be clear, these alterations to IP rules are generally meant for Russian manufacturers. It’s not only game makers who have turned their backs on Russia. In order to produce goods that Russia usually imports from the West, copyright rules had to be lifted. It’s merely a fortunate bonus that these IP rules also apply to games. And that’s what makes pirating them sort of legal all of the sudden.

To some, this isn’t coming as a big surprise. The signs have been there for a while now. As posted on TorrentFreak.com, a document titled “Priority Action Plan for Ensuring the Development of the Russian Economy in the Conditions of External Sanctions Pressure” kinda gave it away by proposing the following:

“Cancellation of liability for the use of software (SW) unlicensed in the Russian Federation, owned by a copyright holder from countries that have supported the sanctions.”

So, there you have it. Years of legislation, combatting the illegal acquisition of copyrighted software, down the drain. I guess I should prepare for vodka-drinking, Adidas tracksuit-wearing Tripoloski pirates. Aaaaargh!