Monday, June 15, 2009

More Carter

The Guardian makes Digital Britain predictions too. Seems somewhat half-hearted, perhaps?
Online piracy

The government sees nothing to be gained this close to an election from making criminals, with no trial, of the estimated six to seven million people who have downloaded illegally copied material. Carter will not introduce a so-called "three strikes" system which results in people being summarily disconnected – instead he is expected to codify in legislation last year's memorandum of understanding (MoU) between several ISPs and the content industry, which resulted in warning letters being sent out to persistent illegal file-sharers.

All ISPs will have to sign-up to a new warning letter regime which will be backed up by "technical measures" that will see the worst offenders have their connection speeds reduced sharply. Exactly how those measures will work and what standard of proof and appeals procedure will be needed, will be the job of the ISPs and content players to work out through the auspices of the "rights agency" – although that will not, however, be its name.

Funding for the new body and regime will come from industry, although Carter is not understood to be in favour of industry levies on computer or internet equipment. But it will still be the responsibility of content owners – either individually or through their own trade bodies – to take any legal action against persistent offenders on whom "technical measures" fail to make any impression. The new regime, however, should deal with all but the most hardened file-sharer.

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