Movie Studios Continue To Demand Australian ISP Admit To Supporting Piracy
from the but,-uh,-it-didn't... dept
You may recall last November that a bunch of movie studios got together and sued Australian ISP iiNet, for not being able to wave a magic wand and make all unauthorized file sharing among its users disappear. The ISP, who has taken a very pro-consumer stance, responded by noting that if there’s any “theft” involved, it should be a matter for the police to investigate, not an ISP to take action based on allegations alone:
They send us a list of IP addresses and say ‘this IP address was involved in a breach on this date’. We look at that say ‘well what do you want us to do with this? We can’t release the person’s details to you on the basis of an allegation and we can’t go and kick the customer off on the basis of an allegation from someone else’. So we say ‘you are alleging the person has broken the law; we’re passing it to the police. Let them deal with it’.
In March, the company further explained its defense, noting that direct file sharing between two individuals doesn’t appear to violate Australian copyright laws, since there’s no “public” distribution of the material.
The latest, as pointed out by Michael Scott, is that the studios are basically stomping their feet and demanding that iiNet admit that it broke copyright law.
To be honest, it appears the two sides are talking past one another. The studios insist that iiNet is breaking the law by not taking action against file sharers, while iiNet is pointing out that’s not the issue. It’s saying it would be perfectly happy to take action against those convicted in a court of violating the law. But it can’t just take the studio’s word for it, and so it sees no reason to act until a court has convicted someone.