[pp.int.general] [Fwd: [A2k] FT: Whitehall gives ISPs piracy deadline]
Ricardo Cristof Remmert-Fontes
ricardo.cristof at remmert-fontes.de
Sat Mar 1 14:30:23 CET 2008
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Betreff: [A2k] FT: Whitehall gives ISPs piracy deadline
Datum: Fri, 22 Feb 2008 15:23:39 +0000
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The fight over ISPs' characterisation as 'common carriers' is on in Europe.
After France, the UK aims to push ISPs to enforce copyright (see FT article
below). This seems to go against the spirit of the recent Spanish court
that said that a rightsholder cannot force an ISP to hand over a
identity in a civil copyright infringement lawsuit. Gwen Hinze from EFF
good post on the Spanish ruling:
Whitehall gives ISPs piracy deadline
By Jean Eaglesham, Chief Political Correspondent
Published: February 21 2008 22:00 | Last updated: February 21 2008 22:00
The government will on Friday tell internet service providers they will
with legal sanctions from April next year unless they take concrete steps to
curb illegal downloads of music and films.
Britain would be one of the first countries in the world to impose such
sanctions. Service providers say what the government wants them to do
like asking the Royal Mail to monitor the contents of every envelope posted.
Andy Burnham, culture secretary, told the Financial Times on Thursday
deadline was a “clear signal” of the government’s determination to
tackle rampant piracy, which the music and film industries blame for the
in CD and DVD sales.
“Let me make it absolutely clear: this is a change of tone from the
government,” Mr Burnham said. “It’s definitely serious legislative
The move is a significant escalation in efforts to make internet providers
take action against the estimated 6m UK broadband users who download files
illegally every year.
A creative industries strategy paper published on Friday commits the
government to consulting on anti-piracy legislation this spring “with a view
to implementing it by April 2009”.
ISPs say it would be almost impossible to check and stop illegal
The industry has cited data-protection curbs that prevent them from
the contents of data files.
The strategy paper will not set out a blueprint for how the legislation
work. “We’re saying we’ll consult on legislation, recognising there are
practical questions and legitimate issues,” Mr Burnham said.
“We’re not saying ‘here’s one we made earlier, here’s a bill’.”
The concept of a “three strikes” regime of escalating sanctions, referred
to in reports of a leaked early draft of the strategy, had “never been in
the paper”, he said.
The Department for Business, which will lead the bill’s development, said on
Thursday night that the proposal raised “difficult legal issues”,
particularly in relation to European laws on online privacy and e-commerce.
But the government is adamant that the complexity of the issues involved
not prevent it from legislating if necessary. Ministers are frustrated
slow progress of talks between ISPs and the music and film industries.
Mr Burnham said there was “no burning desire to legislate”. But he warned
that ISPs could forestall statutory sanctions only if there were
“considerable moves forward ... a change in the nature of the dialogue
[with] good and innovative business solutions that can address the
a different way”.
The anti-piracy proposals are part of a series of measures set out by the
government on Friday and designed to support the creative industries. These
include the creation of 5,000 apprenticeships a year, involving the BBC and
Tate Modern among other employers, and an annual Davos-style “world creative
business conference” in the UK.
Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2008
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Ricardo Cristof Remmert-Fontes
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