As noted earlier, I'm at the Midem music industry conference this week in Cannes, in the south of France. France, of course, has been at the forefront of many of the debates over copyright issues, with its Sarkozy-backed push to be one of the first countries to implement a "three accusations and you're off the internet" policy (despite Sarkozy's political party's own long history of infringing
). There really hasn't been that much discussion this year about the whole three strikes thing (last year, it was one of the main topics), which seems a bit odd. However, I did randomly see a twitter message from the guy who runs a travel rental business here in Cannes, Lao Watson-Smith, pointing out that all these music industry execs are complaining about all their accommodations having locked down WiFi
(even when it's offered free), and noting that the only reason why these connections need to all be locked down is because of the three strikes laws that they
pushed through. And, indeed, it is rather annoying. My hotel has "free wifi" (which seems to go down regularly) but you still need a user name and password, and once you log in with one device it will not
let you log in with any other device. You must use that one device exclusively. When the official WiFi went dead, I went in search of other networks, including one called "Free WiFi," but when I accessed that, it still asked me for my username and password (which I obviously don't have). It certainly is somewhat amusing to find out that the music industry execs are annoyed by the consequences of the law they so desperately claim they need.