France's new culture minister has indicated that she will drastically cut the budget from the internet copyright infringement agency Hadopi. She will also encourage the agency to lay off on kicking people off the Internet, much to the delight of internet advocates. Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti has appointed former Canal+ pay-TV CEO Pierre Lescure to conduct a review of France's Act II, a set of rules for protecting culture in the digital age – which includes the use of the Hadopi agency for enforcement.
Some believe that the new Francois Hollande government might give the axe to the agency altogether. In a recent interview with France's La Nouvelle Observateur, Filipetti didn't indicate a complete closure of the agency, but does say some funding will be eliminated and that Hadopi has failed to accomplish its mission…
"I do not know what will become of this institution, but one thing is clear: Hadopi has not fulfilled its mission of developing legal content offerings," said Filipetti. "In financial terms, €12 million a year and 60 officers, it’s expensive to send a million e-mails. Finally, the suspension of internet access seems a disproportionate sanction against the goal. But all this will be considered by the Lescure mission."
Filipetti goes on to say that, as part of budgetary efforts, she wants Hadopi’s costs to be "greatly reduced for 2012." She added that she will announce specific budget cuts in September, and that she will meet with stakeholders before making a decision.
"I cannot decide on the findings of a mission that just started. All stakeholders will be met and will share their views. It is essential to go beyond the framework of Hadopi and consider all mechanisms to adapt to the digital age."