French Teen Charged for Posting Unauthorized Harry Potter Translation

August 8th, 2007

French police briefly detained a 16-year-old boy who posted an unauthorised translation of the latest Harry Potter book online “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” on the internet. The French teen translator, a high school student from Aix-en-Provence in southern France, accomplised a mystifying feat in translating all 759 pages of the book within days of its 21st July 2007 release.

He was picked up following a complaint from the Paris police,  but later released on the same day after questioning. The boy could face charges for violating intellectual property rights. Police has shut down the site where the boy posted the translation.

Marie Leroy-Lena, spokeswoman of Rowling and Gallimard Jeunesse ( the publishing house), said official Harry Potter translator Jean-Francois Menard is still working on “Deathly Hallows,” since he only received the official English version when it was released July 21. Menard refused to comment on the pirated version.

Readers are eager for the seventh and final Harry Potter adventure and are frustrated that it is taking him so long. The French version of the Harry Potter book is scheduled to release in October 2007.

Some French bloggers are very upset with the shutdown of the pirated translation site, though fragmented translations are still available elsewhere, including one by a 54-year-old author who published the final 10 pages of the book in French on his blog.

Neil Blair, a lawyer at the Christopher Little Literary Agency, said French police had identified an organized system of online translation networks where unofficial translations of Harry Potter are posted onto Web site networks and then onto peer-to-peer networks.

Fans in several countries have already posted unofficial translations of the “Deathly Hallows” online, including in China, where publishers fear it could lead to counterfeit books in a country where piracy is rampant.

Worldwide, the Potter books have sold more than 325 million copies, have been translated into at least 64 languages, and have been spun off into a hit movie series.

Many French readers already know how “Harry Potter et les reliques de la mort” — as it is titled here — ends. Le Parisien newspaper revealed it in an article it printed upside down.

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  1. […] Original post by Pradeep […]

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