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Australian Court Gives Green Light To Disconnect Pirates

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the you-win-some-partially-you-lose-some-partially dept.

Australia 131

aesoteric writes "The Full Bench of Australia's Federal Court (three judges) has dismissed the film industry's appeal against a February 2010 judgment that found ISP iiNet had not authorised copyright infringement on its network. However, the ruling was a 2-1 majority and the judges have made several concessions to the Hollywood film studios. In particular, they set out a prescriptive path for the film industry to change the way it identifies alleged copyright infringers. The ruling says that if the film industry amends the format of its notices of infringement, pays the ISP to vet the notices and indemnifies the ISP against any fallout from disconnecting a customer, then disconnection is a reasonable step the ISPs should take to combat piracy. Essentially, the ruling gives internet service providers no absolute protection over the actions of their subscribers."

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Close one (2)

mmj638 (905944) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309142)

It's scary that one of the three judges was willing to basically let the movie industry control the ISP industry in the movie industry's interests.

But overall it seems like a good decision; even if they did bend over a little for the movie industry, they did set out some expectations about what is and what isn't the right way to go about sending notices of infringement.

Re:Close one (5, Insightful)

dwarfsoft (461760) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309176)

I find it interesting that they specified that the Movie Industry needed to pay the ISP to vet the claims. Which means that frivolous disconnect requests should be weeded out or not submitted. This also means that the industry better have real evidence rather than just circumstantial evidence against their proposed user. Hopefully it should cut down on some of the bullying... It could have been far worse.

Re:Close one (1, Offtopic)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309398)

It could have been far worse.

Especially since piracy was the reason 4 americans (who could easily have been australians) were recently gunned down on their yacht.

Woah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309780)

Especially since piracy was the reason 4 americans (who could easily have been australians) were recently gunned down on their yacht.

The MPAA is sure getting aggressive against torrent users!

Re:Woah! (1)

TheMidget (512188) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310394)

The MPAA is sure getting aggressive against torrent users!

That was not a torrent, that was a whooping big ocean!

Re:Close one (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309866)

That shit was all over the news* here in Southern Californuh. Did you know that those dumb motherfuckers(the yacht crew, not the pirates) were Christian missionaries? [christianexaminer.com]

This is from their pastor, from that article:

“Jean actually sang in our 11:30 choir Sunday mornings. Both of them had a great outreach, of course, through this ministry to take the scriptures, the Bibles, to places across the world. And they felt that call to do that, and that’s what they were doing I presume when this happened.”

Hey dear, lets shove fuckin' bibles in the faces of a bunch of pissed off Muslims who realized that they went all the trouble to meet us just to find out that we don't have shit to take! Naw, we're totally not expendable, GOD will save us!

* Implicit racism and religious bigotry, just like that period in time only a few years ago where home videos of black kids beating up white kids were always in the news. Savages!

Re:Close one (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309844)

Why should frivolous disconnect requests not be submitted? It's not like any part of the process is going to an actual court, or part of a real court proceeding.

It's appears to basically be saying, the movie industry can kick whomever they like off the internet, the ISP has to follow their direction, and the only remedy an individual may have would be to sue the movie industry in an effort to be reconnected (I guess by somehow proving they are innocent?).

Re:Close one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310036)

Why should frivolous disconnect requests not be submitted?

If the movie industry is smart, they will limit how many they disconnect. They're paying the ISP to basically kick their customers off the internet. I doubt an ISP will sit idly and watch the movie industry try to kick 10,000 of their users offline every day for instance. (As that would be 10,000 x 30-100 dollars per month)

Is the amount that has to be paid determined by the movie industry or isp? If it were up to me I'd demand a surcharge of 5000 dollars per letter to make up for the lost business. They claim they're losing millions per pirate. This is surely a cheap alternative.

Re:Close one (1)

dwarfsoft (461760) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310552)

Because they have to pay for the ISP to actually VET the request to make sure there is sufficient evidence to kick them off. The ISP does NOT want to piss of their customers. The industry will start to be very clear about specific users. Hopefully having this avenue will also mean that the sue-and-settle method of getting cash can be addressed if they didn't first take this step.

Re:Close one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309916)

> frivolous disconnect requests

Disconnection requests. Please, cease this frivolous abuse of the language.

I disconnect, you disconnect, he is subject to disconnection.

Re:Close one (1)

Billlagr (931034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309208)

It's not a horrible decision, it seems reasonable. If the movie industry wants someone disconnected, they have to pay the ISP for their time to check it out. Hopefully it might make the movie industry confirm their facts first rather than the shotgun-spray approach

Re:Close one (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309292)

This is a very disturbing ruling if the movie industry can essentially order disconnects without evidence.

Re:Close one (2)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309372)

This is a very disturbing ruling if the movie industry can essentially order disconnects without evidence.

Except that the ISPs have to paid to first vet the notices and even then if they do agree to disconnect the user the movie industry body has to indemnify the ISP against any action taken by the user. Seems like a pretty big cost and gamble that the movie industry body would have to take.

Re:Close one (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310262)

Regardless of the accuracy or otherwise of the charge (and that accuracy should be determined by a court, not some busy tech operator at the ISP), disconnection is not an appropriate response. So much of our work, social connections, purchasing and learning is done online these days, that severing someone from that is akin to making them a medieval pariah. If someone is guilty of piracy, let them be sued and make reparations. Judges who back this disconnection idea are out of touch types who probably consider the Internet that thing their grandkids use to play games on.

Whenever piracy comes up on Slashdot, you'll likely find detailed rebuttals of the justifications for it by me. I don't like a group of people living freely off the backs of those who pay, and we have to put up with things like DRM as a response to their piracy. But disconnection counts as a "cruel and unusual" punishment. No to disconnection - whether guilty or not.

Re:Close one (1)

MeateaW (1988688) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310712)

These points all actually add up to a really good thing. SO MUCH of our lives is related to internet access, having access banned entirely for breaking a non-criminal rule should be illegal, therefore the first customer to get disconnected, then sues iiNet for damages. Those damages get immediately passed onto the movie industry (they have been indemnified after all!) and that will be the last customer ever disconnected. (or if they were stupid and got a couple hundred kicked off at the same time, hello class action!) Sadly. AFACT will indemnify the ISP, which will kick off the user, the user will sue (AFACT or the isp whoever) the case if prosecuted right will yield a big precedent in favour of the user, the ISP passes the bill to AFACT, AFACT conveniently has no assets. The movie studios incorporate AFACT2 and keep getting people kicked off the internet.

Re:Close one (1)

Billlagr (931034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309458)

This is a very disturbing ruling if the movie industry can essentially order disconnects without evidence

Where does it say that? The notices have to be vetted by the ISP first, and the ISP paid to do so. That doesn't mean disconnection because the industry says so. To me it means that the claim has to be investigated by the ISP, and be compensated for their effort. If the claims aren't substanitated, then the ISP is under no obligation to do anything.

Re:Close one (5, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309232)

Not that scary, it makes the the person claiming copyright infringement fully liable for disconnecting the wrong person or having insufficient proof to justify that disconnection and they have to pay the ISP's cost. They will also have to pay for warnings (low onus off proof) and of course for disconnection (high onus of proof that the person who 'contracted' the service is actually infringing). So the more action they want from the ISP the more it costs them, with no cost recovery.

In Australia that often sides with the consumer. For example, having problems resolving issues with your incumbent Telecom, contact the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman and that Telecom gets the bill for the time you spend with the ombudsman, you'll be surprised how quickly your problem get resolved.

Re:Close one (0)

Scarletdown (886459) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309438)

For example, having problems resolving issues with your incumbent Telecom, contact the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman and that Telecom gets the bill for the time you spend with the ombudsman, you'll be surprised how quickly your problem get resolved.

If that doesn't work, does the situation escalate to a Booting? [wikipedia.org]

Re:Close one (2, Funny)

Lord_of_the_nerf (895604) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309242)

Actually, it's in our constitution, verbatim:

"Ye shall have the right to be judged two peers and the village idiot who dost equate the sharing of files with wagon theft."

Re:Close one (1)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309346)

It'd be "doth", and the Australian constitution was written in the late 1890s so it's not quite so archaic with the wording. But that's what it boils down to, yes.

Re:Close one (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35311062)

Homer's Great Great grandfather: "Doth!"

Re:Close one (1)

Billlagr (931034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309536)

But does it weigh the same as a duck?

Re:Close one (1)

MysteriousPreacher (702266) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310398)

Well played, sir!

I am glad YOU feel that way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309990)

Now, just out of educational interests.. what is your IP address?

Not asking for any particular reason, but am wondering how you will live without net access for a while based on an unsupported accusation of guilt without a court overseeing this...

disconnect all (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309168)

as long as they disconnect all without remorse, i do not see the problem.

that includes politicians, people whose children downloaded something, big firms whose connection has been used to download something from.

if that would happen people will care more about their behavior on the internet, ISPs will fight for their clients rights and RIAA and shit like that will be the bad guys they are.

Re:disconnect all (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309214)

Just disconnect the entire country. Most Australians are obnoxious little shits anyhow.

Re:disconnect all (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 3 years ago | (#35311048)

They said PIRACY. A kid downloading a movie or a song isn't committing piracy. If he's burning it to DVD and slapping a nice cover on it and selling it over eBay or some website for $5/ea to make a profit from it, he's committing piracy.

Well... (1)

LaZZaR (216092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309172)

Its not ideal, but better than having the ruling overturned. Although, the prospect of having the studios pay ISP's to process the infringement notices will give them yet another reason to complain about "the cost of piracy".

that's not a internet, THIS is patrick (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309178)

Destroying three perfectly good memes aside, I for one welcome our new Australian overlords.

Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (3, Insightful)

mykos (1627575) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309188)

They're not solving a problem; they're simply transferring money from one industry to another.

I say that if an ISP has to lose a customer over copyright infringement, then the organization requesting the disconnect needs to pay at least half of the "lost revenue" (the term so loved by the copyright organizations) for the entire duration of the disconnected customer. That way they can split financial responsibilities between them.

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309426)

They're not solving a problem; they're simply transferring money from one industry to another.

I say that if an ISP has to lose a customer over copyright infringement, then the organization requesting the disconnect needs to pay at least half of the "lost revenue" (the term so loved by the copyright organizations) for the entire duration of the disconnected customer. That way they can split financial responsibilities between them.

Here's the brilliant thing, unlike the film industry the ISP's can actually prove that revenue will be lost.

Alleged Pirate Bob has 14 months left in his 24 month contract. His contract is 59 gold pieces a month. This is a legally enforced contract so Bob cannot cancel it, that money is practically guaranteed. However if the ISP disconnects bob it means the ISP breaks the contract and effectively release Bob from the contract. This leaves a 826 Thaler hole in the ISP's bottom line.

Actual loss of income, you can bet the well trained attack lawyers will be on to the studios for the maximum amount possible (actual cost of contract + admin costs + whatever else they can get away with).

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309502)

Considering in previous cases the recording industry felt justified to demand $22500 per song that would cost roughly $1 on iTunes that means the ISP's lawyer should go for at least 18 million bucks in that example case above.

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309442)

Half?
Seeing as how those companies want thousands of dollars for every shared song or movie it would only be fair for the ISPs to demand the local MAFIAA equivalent to pay a fee of at least 50000 dollars in advance before their employees lift a finger for such a request.

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

mykos (1627575) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309534)

I agree with this statement haha

Genius Reciprocal Agreements! (1)

definate (876684) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309764)

YOU HANDSOME GENIUS YOU!

Don't you see? Our ISP contracts and service could now be increased to include "piracy insurance" which is a part of your service. This insurance then ensures that any loss resulting from "piracy" will be paid for by the ISP. Therefore, the ISP has the right to demand from the people who are suing the ISP, the amount they would get, if it were successful. Therefore, the film industry can never make any money off of it!

Huzzah for contorted logic!

Though seriously, what's the likelihood of such an agreement? I have a feeling that the insurance would be labelled a second separate contract, and as such the money the film industry is liable for, does not include this amount. Damn you corporate law!

Re:Genius Reciprocal Agreements! (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310300)

Well done, "genius", you've just created a scenario where an ISP can still get revenue whilst not having the costs of providing a service. Noooo, that's not an incentive for ISPs to cut someone off at all now, is it?

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310292)

You want the victim to pay compensation to the person that loses revenue when the culprit doesn't need their tools, anymore? I can see that principle breaking down rather quickly. "Your honour, the serial killer used to rent a lock-up from me to store the bodies. Now that the victims' families have brought charges, I stand to lose that income." "Good point - I hereby declare that in return for sentencing the killer, those families must reimburse you for lost income. Next!"

Nice.

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310356)

what horseshit

If I steal your car, nothing is lost!!!11111 I'm just transferring the car from yout o me.

Only on slashretard is such bullshit excsues for fuckign theft tolerated.

FUCKING GROW UP

Re:Copyright thugs rejoice! Bottom lines improved! (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310676)

Are isp's prohibited from re-subscribing someone who has been disconnected? If not I could see 10 day disconnect letters being used to give people time to sign up for "new" service that happens to start the same day their old service gets disconnected.

Bit of a mixed bag (1)

adamkennedy (121032) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309196)

iiNet won - good

But they can send notices now - bad

But they have to pay all the ISPs costs - good (cause it will suppress the volume they send and limit spamming)

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309234)

But they have to pay all the ISPs costs - good (cause it will suppress the volume they send and limit spamming)

Or add the takedown fees to the "piracy is destroying our industry" rhetoric they constantly spout

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

deniable (76198) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309300)

Yeah, but this is an actual cost, not a made-up one. They really don't like those.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309350)

But they have to pay all the ISPs costs - good (cause it will suppress the volume they send and limit spamming)

Or add the takedown fees to the "piracy is destroying our industry" rhetoric they constantly spout

Since, based on their arithmetic they are losing billions because of the wide-spread piracy, the situation is a Win-Win: their bottom line will improve with every pirate being disconnected and every ripped movie no longer shared; while the ISP-es get a big boost (proportional with the piracy rate) from the fees they are going to pay. Right?

And the honest/non-pirating Internet consumers will see their internet access fees going down (because the ISP has an additional income source), the effective bandwidth increasing (no longer being hogged by the pesky pirates) and the prices for the DVD/BlueRay movies lowering (as they - not actually being some greedy bloody b/tards but only innocent victims of piracy - will be getting now enough profit from the same title). Right?... C'mon, isn't it so?!

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309456)

will see their internet access fees going down (because the ISP has an additional income source)

Thanks for the laugh!

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310970)

My laugh was in this:

and the prices for the DVD/BlueRay movies lowering (as they - not actually being some greedy bloody b/tards but only innocent victims of piracy - will be getting now enough profit from the same title). Right?... C'mon, isn't it so?!

Damn, that's a good one!
My ISP may lower prices due to another source of income (since price is a major selling point). However, there is no competition in the price of blu-rays.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309472)

Let's evaluate:

their bottom line will improve with every pirate being disconnected and every ripped movie no longer shared

People disconnected from the internet can't pirate anything using the internet. But they also can't buy anything on iTunes or Amazon or subscribe to Netflix or watch commercials on Hulu. And they can still pirate using sneakernet. So that sounds like a net loss then. Oops.

the ISP-es get a big boost (proportional with the piracy rate) from the fees they are going to pay

Basically the entire fee amount goes to cover the costs of implementing the system; it doesn't generate profits.

the honest/non-pirating Internet consumers will see their internet access fees going down (because the ISP has an additional income source)

Quite the opposite actually. The ISP has the same expenses for bucket trucks and electricity whether your neighbor is disconnected or not, but if he's disconnected then the ISP loses his subscription fee and they have to make up the difference by charging more to you. Sorry.

the effective bandwidth increasing (no longer being hogged by the pesky pirates)

Not in the long term. ISPs only build enough capacity to prevent customers from revolting. If demand for bandwidth is reduced, that just means the ISP will drag its feet in upgrading the network and it'll stay slower longer.

the prices for the DVD/BlueRay movies lowering (as they - not actually being some greedy bloody b/tards but only innocent victims of piracy - will be getting now enough profit from the same title)

Nope, prices are pegged at the profit-maximizing price. Increasing sales won't lower prices. In theory if pirates actually started buying more stuff then prices would go up, because econ 101 says increased demand leads to higher prices.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309508)

Wow... thank you for the analysis... How silly for me to trust that bunch of judges to come with a solution that will make the world a better place. I'll do my best to direct your analysis to their attention, maybe they'll see how wrong they were.

(I apologize for all the above: my only excuse - must be my Friday(-thanks-God-)impaired sense of humor)

Re: (1)

mmj638 (905944) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309272)

But the toppings contain potassium benzoate.

Re: (1)

ross.w (87751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309528)

...that's bad

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (3, Interesting)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309400)

But they can send notices now - bad

It's not that they couldn't send notices before, but before it was more of a formality. They'd send the notice on as a warning that you've been noticed doing this activity, but the burden of enforcement wasn't there. Now, there's potential for a mechanism for these notices to be legitimate and enforceable - I think unless you're a hardcore committed anti-copyright activist*, you can hardly claim this is not reasonable. The burden of proof lies with the accuser, but it makes it more sensible in that Australian-based claimants should only issue notices if they have sufficient evidence to pursue conviction. Pretty sure the US ones will continue to issue their form-letter warnings no matter what.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309440)

Which ISP's would do this?

The dodgy ones yes but what happens when people actually start getting kicked off of their Telstra Big Pond accounts?

They'll go to iinet. You'll find that ISP's like iinet, Internode, Adam et al. covet their customer base very jealously. All kinds of excuses will be used for non compliance. The admin costs for this will be astronomical, they'll put VPN's in place by default. In the end all the studios have wrought is another way for them to lose money.

And all that will happen in the Oz ISP industry is the bad ISP's will lose customers.

And just wait until Telstra drops one of their rural customers who cant get on any other ISP. ACA/Today Tonight will be all over that like flies on a dog turd.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (2)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309948)

But they can send notices now - bad

Why is that bad?

It is just one avenue of copyright holders to protect their copyrights. Notices may have the effect of stopping an infringement that is going on without having to involve the courts immediately, I don't see anything bad there. However they will have to pay the cost of the ISP that deals with the notices, and I think that's a good thing. It basically means the copyright owner has to pay for their own cost of protecting their rights.

I have no idea what the legal value is of such a notice; though if a user is doing infringement, is served notices, and continues, then the damages to be gained in court will be higher. Though if the user stops, s/he may get off without any further ado. Which would be a win/win: copyrights protected, no ridiculous fines for the user. Nothing bad there again.

In the end suing someone for damages should be a last resort. Providing alternative solutions that can (and should) be tried first, is a good thing.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310358)

Unfortunately I don't have the link to hand, but I did read that the notices actually met with some success. A lot of people who pirate just do so because (a) they've never thought of it as wrong and (b) they consider themselves anonymous. In many cases, a letter arriving saying: "look, stop nicking our stuff" has made them think about one or both of these. Basically, as you say, a letter is a much better first step than a legal charge.

Re:Bit of a mixed bag (1)

MysteriousPreacher (702266) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310440)

Kind of anecdotal, but I see the same thing. From personal experience, that approach got me in to buying a TV licence. The thought that I'd not be noticed evaporated when some guy came knocking on the door.

Yeah, a personalised (i.e. not addressed to "Dear RESIDENT") letter is a pretty good start. It's a wake-up call, and also helps on the PR side should the labels decide to unleash legal obliteration against some parents who failed to get their kids to stop downloading stuff. The latter is kind of difficult to defend when there's evidence that a clear and polite warning was issued.

Digital Capital Punishment? (4, Insightful)

zlel (736107) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309284)

Why don't we cut their electricity cos they used electricity to run the PC to connect to the internet?

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309320)

Don't give them ideas!

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309342)

Back in the good old days we all recognized that misbehavior online could lead to a loss of connectivity. Spamming, fraud, harassment, black hat hacking, and copyright infringement violate most any ISP's TOS. Maybe our righteous indignation at a lot of the crap pulled by the MAFIAA has made some lose sight of this.

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310360)

Politicians are power hungry and corrupt. Even if people all over the world were on their best behaviour all the time, they would still find excuses to institute draconian policies that help their business buddies today. The fact that people made use of the freedoms afforded by the net in the early days is irrelevant.

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309386)

Huh! I'm using a SheevaPlug powered with solar panels for my pirating activities. Disconnecting the electricity will only shut down my refrigerator... errr... wait... let me put some ice into that Esky, I hate warm beer.

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309492)

You can get internet from the sun?

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309522)

Actually, it is Oracle now.

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310566)

Not the sun but from a sunny place.
My seedbox sits in sunny Tonga, I don't give a shit about that law.

Re:Digital Capital Punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309420)

In American, we will just sue the Electric Company for providing us a way to pirate movies.

Pay TV Tricks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309294)

I can see the whole pay TV tricks coming out with this. Back in the day when pay TV providers offered x days free and free installation, people would have TV for years by never paying the bill, getting disconnected and signing back up again under a different name.

people still do that to get deal by moving from on (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309408)

people still do that to get deal by moving from one system to a other one and then back after the 1-2 year deal price is over to get the new customers rate.

Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (-1, Troll)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309318)

Right now there are Somalian gangsters taking over peoples' boats and kidnapping and killing people.

To use the same term for those people and someone who downloads The.Mechanic.2011.R5.LiNE.AC3-T0XiC-iNK is just fucking ignorant.

Is it possible to have a little perspective, please?

By the way, several of the board members of the MPAA are child molesters. I don't mean that they molest children, but that's the term I use to refer to the members of the MPAA and RIAA. I would like to see "child molester" become the common term to describe any studio head, member of RIAA or MPAA or any of their lawyers.

Re:Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309330)

To use the same term for those people and someone who downloads The.Mechanic.2011.R5.LiNE.AC3-T0XiC-iNK is just fucking ignorant.

Torrentz, please!!!!

Re:Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309418)

Give up this nonsense already. Everybody knows:
1. hackers are the guys that crack someone's computer and not the smart/clever persons that fix something like magic.
2. pirates are the guys that download and share movies and not the Somalian gangsters.

Re:Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309530)

Words can have many diverse meanings. Take <fuck> [ezo-beer.com] , for example..

Re:Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309630)

It's possible to have a very wide perspective - one that allows for multiple definitions of words and multiple severities attached to those definitions.

It sounds like you're the one lacking perspective - you seem to view the world through a very narrow slit which turns everything black and white.

Re:Quit it with the "pirate" business, please (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310590)

Right now there are Somalian gangsters taking over peoples' boats and kidnapping and killing people.

To use the same term for those people and someone who downloads The.Mechanic.2011.R5.LiNE.AC3-T0XiC-iNK is just fucking ignorant.

Is it possible to have a little perspective, please?

By the way, several of the board members of the MPAA are child molesters. I don't mean that they molest children, but that's the term I use to refer to the members of the MPAA and RIAA. I would like to see "child molester" become the common term to describe any studio head, member of RIAA or MPAA or any of their lawyers.

Seeing as you appear to care passionately about the use of the term "pirate", here is one that I can think of that can be used as an alternative: "Freeloader". It means one that takes for free what others pay for, getting a free ride off other people. I think you'll find that is in no way incompatible with software piracy and there's nothing inaccurate in using that term.

The full judgement (4, Informative)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309340)

The full judgement, including the majority and minority decisions, is available here: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/FCAFC/2011/23.html [austlii.edu.au]

It's worth a read, or a skim at least. The judges were entirely reasonable in their dismissal and actually do seem to grasp the technical side of the case quite well (no doubt assisted by iiNet having some excellent technical witnesses/advisors during the trial). Overall it's a very good outcome for Australian Internet users, and confirms the very high level of consumer protection in this country compared to many other places.

The concession to the film industry that will now allow them to legitimately send infringement notices with the potential to disconnect users is OK. There is a heavy onus placed on the film industry to come up with all the evidence, show that it's relevant and pay for the ISPs time to investigate. Further, if the disconnection is later found to be unwarranted, it is the film industry that bears all responsibility and liability, not the ISP. So although there is now a prescribed path the film industry can take to disconnect people, the barriers to doing so are high, which sound reduce frivolous claims and make sure they really only go after that large-scale uploaders, not every man and his dog that occasionally downloads a film or two.

Interesting how I've seen this news on so many sites, and they all report it with overwhelmingly positive headlines ... except Slashdot. Slashdot is the only site I've seen that somehow seems to wrangle this into a NEGATIVE sounding headling. Is it just me or is /. turning into the grumpy old man that likes to complain about everything and is constantly trying to push their agenda onto other people...

Re:The full judgement (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309362)

Typo in third paragraph: 'which sound reduce frivolous claims' should obviously read 'which SHOULD reduce...' >

Re:The full judgement (1, Insightful)

pacinpm (631330) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309824)

Interesting how I've seen this news on so many sites, and they all report it with overwhelmingly positive headlines ... except Slashdot. Slashdot is the only site I've seen that somehow seems to wrangle this into a NEGATIVE sounding headling. Is it just me or is /. turning into the grumpy old man that likes to complain about everything and is constantly trying to push their agenda onto other people...

It's because it's bad decision. It introduces new punishment: denial of communication. As someone already mentioned it: why not cut people's electric power or ban computer use at all?

Internet is so important today that you can't just disconnect people. Infringements should go to regular civil trials and money punishments.

Re:The full judgement (1)

sstrick (137546) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309864)

Even in Aus we have more then one provider.....

Re:The full judgement (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310736)

Even in Aus we have more then one provider.....

Yeah, but the whinger may have been in the US, where even big cities are sometimes divided up into monopoly areas.

Re:The full judgement (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310032)

Disconnect does not necessarily imply ban. This is not a three-strikes policy. I forsee the first case being little more than a week without the internet and a bit of paperwork on the behalf of the accused, and chances are you may be able to sign up right with the same provider again.

Re:The full judgement (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310952)

An ISP can already disconnect you for any damn reason it sees fit (under their TOS). They have always been able to do this, and it has nothing to do with the this particular judgement. In fact, it makes the likelyhood of disconnection by your ISP LESS because ISPs no longer have to fear they will be held responsible for piracy and simply disconnect people 'to be safe'. It must now be investigated through a proper due process.

Plus, unlike in the US, there's typically 30+ ISPs to choose from in most given areas. You'd have to be trying pretty hard to get disconnected from them all.

Re:The full judgement (1)

bit01 (644603) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310124)

Interesting how I've seen this news on so many sites, and they all report it with overwhelmingly positive headlines

Many of those websites are not exactly unbiased.

That's been a problem with the entire "intellectual property" discussion; main stream media with extreme vested interests framing the debate (e.g. Don't think of an elephant [google.com] ). Not to mention compromising democracy in general for their own profit.

---

Like software, "intellectual property" law is a product of the mind, and can be anything we want it to be. Let's get it right.

Fuck AusFAILia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309348)

Nuke the whole goddamn country/continent off the goddamn planet.

Re:Fuck AusFAILia (1)

MeateaW (1988688) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310738)

They tried in the 50's. All they hit was South Australia. And nothing of value was lost.

To the High Court it is... (1)

srjh (1316705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309352)

In a sense, the actual verdict here was somewhat irrelevant, given that both sides were certain to appeal the outcome if they lost.

It's a little uncertain where things will go from here. The fact that one of the three justices was willing to give AFACT members the power to force ISPs to disconnect their customers based on mere allegations is extremely troubling, but the proposals by the majority justices appear to constitute what would be seen by the High Court as a reasonable compromise, making the rather extreme position held by AFACT less likely to win (particularly having lost twice already).

Could go either way, I guess, given how backwards our country is on digital technology.

Re:To the High Court it is... (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309462)

In a sense, the actual verdict here was somewhat irrelevant, given that both sides were certain to appeal the outcome if they lost.

The High Court does not have to take the case.

It is the onus of the losing party to justify why the High Court should even hear their case, with the 2-1 against ruling the studio's they have some ammunition to go to the High Court but I doubt the Court will give them the time of day with the current ruling.

So it's of to parliament they go, but Conroy also wont give them the time of day and I doubt Turnbull will either. Both are far too concerned about their reputations.

Hypocrites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309416)

For an industry built on intellectual property infringement, they are quick to go after others.

Piracy. (1, Funny)

Sasayaki (1096761) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309428)

Copyright infringement is not piracy. This woman [wikipedia.org] , known as the Lion of Brittany, was a pirate. I doubt she had many MP3s, although she did have three ships, seven children and a very successful thirteen year career as a pirate where she took great delight in personally executing French noblemen with an axe and tossing their bodies overboard.

Put into perspective, copyright infringement- even deliberate, for-profit, commercial piracy- pales in comparison. Really, now. They might as well call it "rape", from the Latin "raptus", meaning to seize by force and carry away.

... although maybe I shouldn't give them ideas. Next we'll see 13 year old kids being accused of "Multimedia Rape" for downloading a Beiber MP3, when the correct term for downloading a Beiber MP3 is "Aural Rape".

Re:Piracy. (1)

Sasayaki (1096761) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309432)

Minor correction- that's The LionESS of Brittany.

Re:Piracy. (1)

bakes (87194) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309918)

Sorry, you can't use the word 'rape' either, as that word refers to a plant [wikipedia.org] used to make edible oils.

Many words have multiple meanings, the word piracy is now one of them. As another example, if I call you a knob I am not saying you are "a rounded handle, as on a drawer or door".

Re:Piracy. (0)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310378)

I agree that pirate is a bad term. I prefer calling them "freeloaders". It's an entirely accurate word for what they do.

Concerned (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309430)

In all the press on this I read yesterday it had only stated that AFACT had lost the case 2-1 and nothing about the concessions mentioned in this article.

From what I understand TPG customers get Infringement notices - I wonder if these come straight from the studios or are forwarded on via the ISP?

Side question anyway.

Nowhere near as bad as the headline makes it sound (4, Informative)

euphemistic (1850880) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309460)

While it might give AFACT a better description of what it would potentially need to disconnect people, there are a few things in the summary by Judge Cowdroy which suggest even if they did, it still wouldn't happen.

13. Secondly, I find that a scheme for notification, suspension and termination of customer accounts is not, in this instance, a relevant power to prevent copyright infringement pursuant to s 101(1A)(a) of the Copyright Act, nor in the circumstances of this case is it a reasonable step pursuant to s 101(1A)(c) of the Copyright Act.

I find that iiNet did have a repeat infringer policy which was reasonably implemented and that iiNet would therefore have been entitled to take advantage of the safe harbour provisions in Division 2AA of Part V of the Copyright Act if it needed to do so. ... While iiNet did not have a policy of the kind that the applicants believed was required, it does not follow that iiNet did not have a policy which complied with the safe harbour provisions. However, as I have not found that iiNet authorised copyright infringement, there is no need for iiNet to take advantage of the protection provided by such provisions.

20. The law recognises no positive obligation on any person to protect the copyright of another. The law only recognises a prohibition on the doing of copyright acts without the licence of the copyright owner or exclusive licensee, or the authorisation of those acts.

The above taken from the judge's summary of the findings

426. There can be no doubt that the respondent has the contractual right to warn and terminate its subscribers pursuant to its CRA if a breach of its terms occurs. However, that does not, of itself, make termination a reasonable step or a relevant power to prevent infringement in all circumstances. It must be remembered that absent those contractual provisions, the respondent would have had no power to terminate subscribers even if they were found by a Court to have infringed copyright. The CRA constitutes the respondent’s standard contractual terms used by a wide variety of subscribers. Consequently, and unsurprisingly, the CRA seeks to provide sufficient contractual terms to cover all eventualities, both existing at the time of the writing of the CRA and into the future. That does not mean that such terms should or would always be exercised even if a contractual right to exercise them arises. 427. Further, the right to do something does not create an obligation to do something. The doctrine of privity of contract provides that the only two parties relevant to the enforcement of the CRA are the respondent and the subscriber. Should the contract be breached by the subscriber, it is entirely a matter for the respondent to decide whether to act on the contract. Had the respondent taken action against its subscribers based on an AFACT Notice and it was subsequently found that the allegation was unfounded, the respondent would have committed a breach of its contract with the subscriber and been made potentially liable for damages without any indemnity from the applicants or AFACT. In such circumstance it was not unreasonable that the respondent should have sought to be cautious before acting on information provided by a party unrelated to the CRA.

436. The Court does not consider that warning and termination of subscriber accounts on the basis of AFACT Notices is a reasonable step...

The above taken from the full findings available at: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/FCA/2010/24.html [austlii.edu.au]

Not all judges recommended disconnects. (3, Interesting)

Spikeles (972972) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309532)

Parts 436 - 442 from the full ruling show that at least one judge(remember there were 3) understands that cutting internet off is a bad idea.

The Court does not consider that warning and termination of subscriber accounts on the basis of AFACT Notices is a reasonable step, and further, that it would constitute a relevant power to prevent the infringements occurring.

Such punishment or sanction would be collective because the termination or suspension of a subscriber account would affect not just the person who infringed, but all those who access the internet through such account or use such account as a phone line via VOIP.

The law knows of no sanction for copyright infringement other than that imposed by a court pursuant to Part V of the Copyright Act. Such sanction is not imposed until after a finding of infringement by a court. Such sanction is not imposed on anyone other than the person who infringed. Such sanction sounds in damages or, if criminal, possible fines and imprisonment, not removal of the provision of the internet.

Yeah right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309832)

Hahaha it will never hap

harsh (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35309888)

Seems pretty harsh to cut off an entire family from the 'net just because their teenager downloaded a few favourite tv shows.

To quote Bugs Bunny: Of course, this means war... (1)

lexsird (1208192) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310290)

I think it's our imperative to revolt against intrusion into our digital realms by archaic industries. It's a new age, and the relics of the past need to either evolve or pass away into oblivion.
You can't set your valuables on the curb and cry to the police when they are picked up by passers by. The archaic technologies that the movie and music industry use are little more than a modern equivalent of placing their product on the curb for everyone to have at. Then they have the audacity to attempt to hinder the progressive technologies, a move which is the equivalent to complaining about your things being taken when you leave them on the curb, to remove the road, or restrict who travels down it or when.
Sadly, our systems of government haven't evolved either. They are still prone to being manipulated and controlled by these archaic behemoths, which make me pause and wonder if we don't need to replace the governments first with something more fitting to our times.

How shall we fight back? How shall we the little people, the drones, the lemmings fight city hall and the powers that be? I say lets us look to old wisdom, "The enemy of my enemy is my friend." I think we should all embrace "piracy" as a form of revolt against these industries. Instead of being innovative, they choose to manipulate the courts and the government into intruding into our "digital airspace". Did they all happen to miss the Internet Declaration of Independence? The Internet is the realm of the people of Earth, it belongs to no corporation or government. We are seeing these archaic institutions fight against the Internet even today with so many in the Middle East using it to free their minds and their selves. These evil governments are fighting Internet access, because they fear it. And they should, for freedom of information ultimately will be the undoing of wrong doings. Our founding fathers understood this when the first thing they addressed was freedom of the press.

I advocate that we force change upon them lo as they attempt to force change upon our digital realm. I say it's your moral obligation via civil disobedience to embrace piracy and to boycott the current entertainment industry. Let us take our entertainment underground and leave them without the precious resource they so desire; Money. It is of dire importance that the lesson we teach to the archaic powers of the world is this; "your attempts to control our freedom of information will not only be futile, but costly."

The cost of freedom is vigilance, and there is no exception to this especially here in this delicate environment, our "digital realm". Make no mistake, this is an intrusion, a shot across our bow and if we shrink back from this challenge, then those that are the enemy of this precious freedom for humanity, will smell blood in the water and know that they can gain ground and eventually succeed. It's what we decide to do today that shapes tomorrow; let us not be found by history to be slack or cowards in our moment of time.

So let us heed a call to arms and pass the word, lest we wake up someday soon with our digital world just as in shackles as our real one.

Re:To quote Bugs Bunny: Of course, this means war. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310368)

I think the pirates leave (upload) the valuables on the road for anyone to pick up, not the industry. I'm no apologist for the music and film industry, I just thought the analogy was misplaced.

Re:To quote Bugs Bunny: Of course, this means war. (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310636)

Are you serious or is that parody? Free Speech was about people being able to safely speak their beliefs, not about distributing Dragon Age II or Iron Man for free. Boycott has historically meant stopping buying something and doing without, not taking something and refusing to pay. I reject entirely that people writing computer games, novels, recording songs, making movies, are "archaic powers". These are people contributing to our culture and they deserve to get paid at whatever price they and their customers can meet and agree on. The Internet offers artists a chance to sell and market directly to the public and the biggest thing in the way of that is piracy.

Equilibrium karma (1)

TildeComma (1985200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310662)

If I download copyrighted content but then upload it don't the two cancel out?

Re:Equilibrium karma (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310702)

If I download copyrighted content but then upload it don't the two cancel out?

Are you suggesting that you are uploading the files back to the same place you just downloaded them from?

http://berita-indonesia-hari-ini.blogspot.com/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310716)

hmmm...
berita indonesia hari ini [blogspot.com]

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