UK Internet providers lose copyright court battle

Mar 06, 2012 By RAPHAEL SATTER , Associated Press

The High Court has endorsed Britain's new copyright rules, siding with the music industry over Internet providers in a battle over online filesharing.

The Digital Economy Act - similar to rules already in place in France and Ireland - forces Internet service providers to send an escalating series of warnings to users suspected of illegally swapping movies and music. Eventually, service providers can suspend repeat offenders' access to the Web.

The controversy over the British rules has mirrored debates over online copyright enforcement in the United States and elsewhere. Film studios, and other creative groups argue that the rules are needed to stanch the flow of illegal content flooding the Internet; while service providers and civil liberties groups fear that the regime will choke off free expression.

Leading Internet companies BT Group PLC and the TalkTalk Telecom Group PLC took their case to , arguing that the act would be unnecessarily expensive and invade users' privacy. A lower court rebuffed BT and TalkTalk, and on Tuesday a three-judge panel at London's Court of Appeal endorsed the earlier judgment, to the delight of entertainment lobbying groups.

"Once again the court is on the side of the almost two million workers in the creative industries whose livelihoods are put at risk because creative content is stolen on a daily basis," said Christine Payne, who leads actors' union Equity.

David Puttnam, the president of the Film Distributors' Association, said he hoped the judgment would bring an end to "a long chapter of uncertainty," saying he hoped the Digital Economy Act could help alert consumers, particularly young people, to "the damage piracy inflicts on the whole of the creative community."

Explore further: Verizon launches rewards program with tracking

5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

UK says illegal downloaders may lose Web access

Aug 25, 2009

(AP) -- People who repeatedly download copyrighted films and music could have their Internet connection cut off under proposed laws to tackle illegal file-sharing unveiled by the British government on Tuesday.

Hollywood fights online piracy in UK court case

Jun 28, 2011

Hollywood film studios launched legal action Tuesday against Britain's biggest Internet service provider in a fight against online piracy, thought to be the first case of its kind in the country.

Hollywood lodges appeal in Internet piracy case

Feb 25, 2010

Hollywood film studios Thursday lodged an appeal against a landmark legal judgment which found an Australian Internet provider was not responsible for illegal movie downloads by its customers.

FCC sued over new Internet rules

Sep 28, 2011

(AP) -- A media and Internet advocacy group sued the federal government Wednesday over its new rules covering Internet traffic, saying they don't protect wireless traffic from interference by phone companies.

Recommended for you

Verizon launches rewards program with tracking

Jul 21, 2014

Verizon Wireless is launching a nationwide loyalty program this week for its 100-million-plus subscribers. There's a twist, though: To earn points for every dollar spent, subscribers must consent to have their movements tracked ...

Verizon boosts FiOS uploads to match downloads

Jul 21, 2014

Verizon is boosting the upload speeds of nearly all its FiOS connections to match the download speeds, vastly shortening the time it takes for subscribers to send videos and back up their files online.

The goTenna device pitch is No Service, No Problem

Jul 18, 2014

In the new age of Internet-based crowdfunding with special price offers, where startup teams try to push their product closer and closer to the gate of entry, goTenna's campaign offers a most attractive pitch. ...

Maths can make the internet 5-10 times faster

Jul 17, 2014

Mathematical equations can make Internet communication via computer, mobile phone or satellite many times faster and more secure than today. Results with software developed by researchers from Aalborg University ...

User comments : 4

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Voleure
1 / 5 (1) Mar 06, 2012
I see this being about as successful as stopping gambling by outlawing it and putting fines on any establishment hosting games. Of course this just moves gambling/file sharing...
Vendicar_Decarian
5 / 5 (2) Mar 06, 2012
Another Corporate restriction is placed on Free Speech.
fleem
5 / 5 (1) Mar 07, 2012
I'm sure many an artist is now anxiously awaiting that big increase in royalty payments gained by the noble efforts of the execs.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Mar 07, 2012
Equilibrium here we come.