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Where does Islam stand in Internet Piracy?

This is a very common question. Is Anything illegal by laws haram? Mp3 is one issue. Downloading illegal mp3 is strictly illegal by laws. What about jail-breaking the iphone? US courts say it is legal. But Apple does not think so.

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    There's a huge difference between "downloading mp3s" and "illegally downloading mp3s" - can you clarify which you mean? Also: is the content music? As that also obviously has relevant Islamic laws. Oct 7, 2012 at 23:35

1 Answer 1


Leaving aside the issue of whether music is halal or haram, let's look at Islam's stance on copyright.

Most Muslim scholars agree that Islam protects intellectual ownership. See this hadith:

Narrated AbuHurayrah:

The Prophet () said: Conciliation between Muslims is permissible. The narrator Ahmad added in his version: "except the conciliation which makes lawful unlawful and unlawful lawful." Sulayman ibn Dawud added: The Apostle of Allah () said: Muslims are on (i.e. stick to) their conditions.

Sunan Abi Dawud

So if the owner of the intellectual property has set limitations on copying it, and those limitations do not violate Islam, then Muslims must honor that. This means that copying an MP3 is haram if the manner of copying it runs contrary to the wishes of its owner.

Now let's take a look at Jailbreaking iPhones and such.

Now, Apple does say that you are not permitted to Jailbreak your iDevice. But, this limitation violates you're rights as the owner of the device. You bought the device legally, and you have the right to do whatever you want with it. Thus this limitation is one that you are not required to honor, so Jailbreaking is halal.

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