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30/04/2012

Internet Copyright Enforcement No Closer

Major film and television studios have lost a landmark case over illegal video downloads in Australia.
The High Court upheld a previous ruling that internet service provider (ISP) iiNet did not authorise copyright infringement among its customers.
US and Australian studios had wanted iiNet to stop its customers from downloading pirated material.
In 2010, a federal court had ruled in favour of iiNet, saying it did not authorise the downloads. The film and television studios have now been dealt another blow as the High Court sides with the earlier decision.
The court said that despite being the country's third-largest Internet provider iiNet did not have the technical ability to prevent the piracy.
What Hope Is There For The UK?
Interestingly this news comes as the UK is trying to make similar legislation feasible here and in light of iiNet’s recent win you are left wondering if campaigners on the side of the copyright holders are wasting their breath.
Last month Lord Puttnam, the head of the body, which represents film distributors in the UK, demanded that internet search engines remove access to pirated sites.
The president of the UK Film Distributors' Association, Lord Puttnam, said that those using internet links to pirated films should be educated on the damage it will do to the UK film industry and called for improved copyright enforcement in the digital age, and for consideration of EC plans for pan-European licensing.
Despite fears that this case many be an indication of what’s to follow for other country’s and governments trying to enforce new legislation many believe that Aussie ISP iiNET might have won the battle in a High Court ruling but the war internationally is swinging in the favour of the copyright holders.
Things like the UK’s Digital Economy Act have put more onus on ISPs to deal with notifications and internet service providers are being told to up their game in spite of court win for Oz ISP.
Frost and Sullivan analyst Pranabesh Nath agreed that the heat is being turned up on ISPs worldwide.
"The iiNet ruling is encouraging, but it is an anomaly in the general trend around the world where entertainment industry associations have been generally successful in lobbying governments to enforce strict policies of piracy enforcement, which usually involves the ISP to take on a policing role. Take a look at France, UK, the US as prime examples."
(LB)
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