Australian ISP's Create Plan to Deal with Copyright Infringement, Rights Holders Reject It

November 29, 2011 -

While Americans were enjoying Thanksgiving last Thursday Australia's Internet service providers held a meeting to come to a consensus on how to deal with illegal file-sharing in the country. Their solution is a plan called "Scheme to Address Online Copyright Infringement," and it basically compels Australian ISPs to send "education and warning" notices to consumers who use their broadband connections to infringe copyright laws, according to an Ars Technica report.

The deal is the result of discussions between the Communications Alliance and five of Australia's largest ISPs that include Telstra Bigpond, iiNet, Optus, iPrimus, and Internode. The plan is a trial scheme to be reviewed over an 18-month period.

"The trial would be followed by an independent evaluation of its effectiveness including whether it produced a real change in consumer behavior and whether the Scheme should be continued in its initial form or modified for improvement," reads a press release announcing the plan.

The system uses four stages: in the first stage and within 14 days of a perceived infringement, a copyright holder can send a "Copyright Infringement Notice" to an ISP. In stage two the ISP tries to find the related IP address, and will then forward the account holder an "Education Notice" about copyright infringement. In the third stage - if the copyright holder believes that further infringements have occurred over the course of a year can continue to file complaints about the subscriber, who will then receive "Warning Notices" regarding the activities. If a subscriber gets one education and three warning notices it will trigger stage four, a "Discovery Notice" that informs the subscriber that legal action may be on the way.

At this point the rights holder can request access to the subscriber's details by a preliminary discovery or a subpoena application, for the purpose of taking direct copyright infringement action. If the ISP is served with an order, they would then disclose the offending account's information.

The Australian proposal also includes various safeguards including a "pre-approval" process for any Rights Holder that wants to participate in the trial of the plan. This apparently includes an inspection and audit of the rights holder's infringement detection technology and the system to create the infringement notices that will be sent to ISPs.

As part of this plan, a Copyright Industry Panel will be launched that will create an appeals process allowing the accused who think they have not engaged in infringement to "query the basis" of their notices "and gain further information" about the complaints against them. Finally, if an account accused of infringement has no further complaints in a 12-month period, the status of that account will be reset. If trouble should arise with the account again it would be treated as if the previous infringement claims never happened.

Interestingly enough, the plan is already under fire, but not by rights groups or internet advocacy groups. Rights holders don't think it goes far enough and have flatly rejected it, according to a report in The Australian.

The Australian Content Industry Group (ACIG), which represents music and film interests including the Australia Recording Industry Association and APRA-AMCOS, said on Monday that it would not ratify the plan. ACIG spokesperson Vanessa Hutley said the plan does not meet the industry's expectations.

"ACIG does not think the scheme proposed by the Communications Alliance and its members creates a balanced process and it falls well short of the expectations we had had for an open, balanced and fair solution," Hutley said. "We continue to hope that we can engage in positive discussions to bring about a solution to this important issue."

Pay-TV provider Foxtel also said it would not ratify the plan, complaining that it did not provide measures like the ability to slow down the connections of copyright infringers who are "repeat offenders."

"Piracy is undermining the business models and employment of thousands and thousands of Australians employed in our creative industries," the spokesman said. "It won't be addressed by one side, namely the ISPs, furiously agreeing with itself on what they believe is the solution without content providers agreeing to the proposed approach."

Source: Ars Technica


Comments

Re: Australian ISP's Create Plan to Deal with Copyright ...

Unfortunately they consider any check on them to be 'unbalanced'... 'how dare people be able to defend themselves and see the evidence of what they are being acused of! you should just act on our words!'

 
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PHX Corp@Adam802 We'll break out the popcorn in June12/19/2014 - 9:23pm
ZippyDSMleeMaskedPixelante: I'm itching to start it too but I will wait till the patch goes live. >>12/19/2014 - 7:52pm
Adam802Leland Yee and Jackson get trial date: http://sfbay.ca/2014/12/18/leland-yee-keith-jackson-get-trial-date/12/19/2014 - 5:24pm
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MaskedPixelanteSo I bought Dark Souls PC, and it's forcing me to log into GFWL. Did I miss something?12/19/2014 - 5:00pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/12/republicans-may-have-plan-to-save-internet-providers-from-utility-rules/ this is intreasting. congress may put net nutrality in to law to avoid title 2 classification12/19/2014 - 2:45pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.polygon.com/2014/12/19/7421953/bullshit-cards-against-humanity-donated-250k-sunlight-foundation I have to admit I like the choice o organization. congrats to CAH.12/19/2014 - 1:51pm
E. Zachary KnightIf you are downloading a copy in order to bypass the DRM, then you are legally in the wrong. Ethically, if you bought the game, it doesn't matter where you download it in the future.12/19/2014 - 12:06pm
InfophileEZK: Certainly better that way, though not foolproof. Makes me think though: does it count as piracy if you download a game you already paid for, just not from the place you paid for it at? Ethically, I'd say no, but legally, probably yes.12/19/2014 - 11:20am
ZippyDSMleeAnd I still spent 200$ in the last month on steam/GOG stuff sales get me nearly every time ><12/19/2014 - 10:55am
ZippyDSMleeMaskedPixelante:And this is why I'm a one legged bandit.12/19/2014 - 10:51am
ZippyDSMleeE. Zachary Knight: I buy what I can as long as I can get cracks for it...then again it I could have gotton Lords of the Fallen for 30 with DLC I would have ><12/19/2014 - 10:50am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/12/19/marvel-vs-capcom-origins-leaving-online-storefronts-soon/ Speaking of "last chance to buy", Marvel vs. Capcom Origins is getting delisted from all major storefronts. Behold the wonders of the all digital future.12/19/2014 - 9:59am
MaskedPixelanteSeriously, the so-called "Last Chance" sale was up to 80% off, while this one time only return sale goes for a flat 85% off with a 90% off upgrade if you buy the whole catalogue.12/19/2014 - 9:37am
E. Zachary KnightInfophile, Tha is why I buy only DRM-free games.12/19/2014 - 9:37am
MaskedPixelanteNordic is back on GOG for one weekend only. And at 85% off no less, which is kind of a slap in the face to people who paid more during the "NORDIC IS LEAVING FOREVER BUY NOW OR FOREVER HOLD YOUR PEACE" sale, but whatever...12/19/2014 - 9:28am
InfophileRe PHX's link: This is one of the reasons the digital revolution isn't all it's cracked up to be. There's also the flip side where Sony can block access to games you've bought if they ban your account for unrelated reasons. All power is theirs.12/19/2014 - 8:52am
MaskedPixelantehttp://uplay.ubi.com/#!/en-US/events/uplay-15-days You can win FREE GAMES FOR A YEAR! Unfortunately, they're Ubisoft games.12/18/2014 - 6:29pm
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