Content owners, ISPs in global battle over piracy

Three-strikes Efforts by media companies to put ISPs on the hook for piracy on their networks are coming to a head on several fronts this week. In France, where the newly created HADOPI agency on Monday began processing complaints from copyright owners that could lead to repeat infringers losing Internet access, media companies and ISPs are still at odds over who should pay the cost (auto-translated from the French) implementing the new regs. The law imposes a fine of €1,500 per ISP address an operator fails to turn over when asked, but is silent on whether ISPs can charge content owners for identifying infringers.

In the U.K., this week marked the deadline for submitting written comments to Ofcom in its public consultation on regs for implementing the recently passed Digital Economy Act. The ISP Association is urging Ofcom to adopt a “soft launch” of any new regs so that a “proportionate and fair” system can be developed over time. Meanwhile, several ISPs have gone to court to challenge the underlying law.

In Australia, arguments began this week in the appeal brought by the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) after a lower court ruled that ISP iiNet was not responsible for copyright infringement committed by its subscribers. Members of AFACT include Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises, Inc. and the Seven Network.

Further reading:

Day Two: AFACT vs. iiNet Appeal

Ofcom gets busy on DEA submissions

Internet Account Ban No Worse Than Driving Penalty