Winny and the Pirate Bay: A comparative analysis of P2P software usage in Japan and Sweden from a socio-cultural perspective

In this paper, we examine the ethico-legal issue of P2P file sharing and copyright infringement in two different countries - Japan and Sweden - to explore the differences in attitude and behaviour towards file sharing from a socio-cultural perspective. We adopt a comparative case study approach focusing on one Japanese case, the Winny case, and a Swedish case, the Pirate Bay case. Whereas similarities in attitudes and behaviour towards file sharing using P2P software between the two countries are found in this study, the Swedish debate on file sharing has been coloured by an ideological and political dimension, which is absent in the Japanese context. This might indicate that Swedes have been more interested in issues of right and wrong, and the creation of political subject of piracy, while the Japanese are more interested in their own individual well being
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