Italy Proposes Law That Will Ban People From The Internet Based On Single Accusation Of Infringement From Anyone

from the seems-a-bit-strict dept

Glyn Moody points us to a frightening analysis of a proposed copyright law in Italy that seems positively ridiculous, in that you could lose access to the internet based on a single accusation (which doesn’t even have to come from the copyright holder):

1) citizens, outside of any judicial proceeding and without the right to appeal to the judicial authority, may be banned to access the Internet if ANYONE (a rightholder or an ordinary citizen) notifies a provider about alleged infringement of copyright or trademark or patent (“one strike” disconnections);

2) Internet service providers must comply to the blacklisting of citizens who are *suspected* of copyright or trademark or patent infringements (“proscription lists” to ban citizens from any access to the Net);

3) an Internet service provider must use preventive filters against services that infringe copyright, trademark or patents;

4) an Internet service provider must not promote or advertise, and must use preventive filters against, services that do not directly violate copyright, trademark or patents, but that *may* lead citizens to *think* that infringing services exist;

5) a provider or a hosting provider which does not use effective filters will be charged with civil liability.

The post notes that this law would be compliant with an early version of ACTA, and suggests that this was done on purpose. However, the report also notes that this proposed law would clearly not be compatible with current EU law. Either way, that’s quite a wish list from the entertainment industry.

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Comments on “Italy Proposes Law That Will Ban People From The Internet Based On Single Accusation Of Infringement From Anyone”

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58 Comments
PaulT (profile) says:

I hope this is fake, but if not it can’t be a serious attempt at drafting a law, surely? I mean, even at a glance it’s unworkable in any plane of reality. For example:

“an Internet service provider must not promote or advertise, and must use preventive filters against, services… that *may* lead citizens to *think* that infringing services exist;”

“Think that (they) exist), not think that they’re not infringing, but merely that they’re there? So, pretty much any news site, every tech site and every piece of information about ongoing legal battles? I wonder where this list of such services would come from, as well. Would iTunes be able to get Spotify blacklisted if they try entering the Italian market?

Paolo (user link) says:

Re: not a "hoax"

In the bottom of the “Twitlonger” post I included a link to the official draft text. You can check that the linked website is an official italian gov website (“Camera dei Deputati”). That said, it seems clear, at least with this first analysis, that some portions of the draft law are not applicable, not to mention the incompatibilities with the EU Acquis.

Paolo

HothMonster says:

“must use preventive filters against, services that do not directly violate copyright, trademark or patents, but that *may* lead citizens to *think* that infringing services exist;”

So all news organizations will lose their internet access, but thankfully so will any anti-file sharing groups since campaigns against file sharing lead me to think such services exist.

jsl4980 (profile) says:

The patent portion is the most interesting to me. With the Apple vs the world patent lawsuits (sorry to pick on Apple) it looks like every single smartphone, tablet, and probably laptop is infringing one patent or another. This law could ban almost every portable device from accessing the internet. Definitely the way to promote the progress of art and science…

anonymous says:

Italy has ignored EU law before so i wont be surprised if it does so again. i sincerely hope that they are taken to the Court of Human Rights before it can be progressed any further! i mean a person doesn’t even have to do anything wrong and can be banned from the ‘net. just thinking of doing something wrong is going to be enough! the entertainment industries have obviously progressed into mind reading now. what’s next, i ask myself?

Grae (profile) says:

Ultimately these sorts of laws will only undermine their own purpose by further alienating the general public from the idea that their type of laws have anything to do with reality and therefore deserve no respect or regard.

So- rock on lobbyist-funded Italian politicians? Way to cut off your own arm in an attempt to thwart the mosquito that’s biting the back of your hand? It’s not personally my thing but I guess some people enjoy exercises in futility?

Anonymous Coward says:

I would just “RAT” out all the Government Officials and their families as well.Then after I finished that list I would start working on an A-Z list of everyone until so many are “kicked” off the Internet there would be no net at all in Italy.
Hey why not ???
Won’t take long for that silly law to be wiped off the books.

Anonymous Coward says:

Italy will remove itself from the internet.

Given that it’s not possible to create an effective filter capable of blocking copyright infringement, assigning liability to the ISP will make it impossible to operate an ISP in italy.
Of course, since the one strike system will remove all the customers from the internet as well, I suppose that won’t make much of a difference.

Jef says:

Kill the Internet?

The more I read on all of these “x” number of strikes laws, the more I feel the Entertainment industry isn’t trying to stop “pirating” via normal means. I think they are just flat out trying to turn off the internet. Without the internet, people would be forced back to buying things. All of these things are wish lists. It is all just one wish. A time machine……

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Kill the Internet?

They’re not trying to stop piracy, they’re more than happy to see it, because they can use it as an excuse to get their laws passed.

They don’t want to turn off the internet, they just want it to become a broadcast medium. It’s great for delivering metered content to you, but it sucks if you can use it to compete with them by distributing your own original works.

Anonymous Coward says:

Self-Inflicted Injury

Anyone who votes for a crook to get into public office, has voted to keep themselves and all their fellow citizens in poverty. The Italians do not seem to have learnt this lesson yet. Their current prime minister has a massive conflict of interest, which has been well known for over a decade. It is baffling that the Italian electorate keeps on making the mistake of voting for crooks. Surely their history would have taught them better by now. Their injuries are self inflicted.

Remember, nobody should get sympathy for self-inflicted injuries.

fred says:

Didn't hear abot this law

I’m italian and this is news for me:
actually the latest try to enforce the law it’s in an halted state with the head of communication guarantee Corrado Calabr? that just told he’s not going proposing a 3strike law however they’re already discussing other issues (but with the actual instability we have, i don’t know how much enforcement can be done, people here is angry for other issues and lately there where violent protests too).
About the notice, it’s possible that a deputy has proposed a bill like that, it happen often, but those bills are usually sank in few time; if you count how many bills like this one where proposed (many of them came from oversea pressure), you can tell that this one it’s probably another unnecessary alarm;
I will investigate more and report if i get more info about.

Ok , this deputy is responsible of the law http://www.camera.it/29?shadow_deputato=302950 ,
the proposed bill, in italian unfortunately, here http://www.camera.it/Camera/view/doc_viewer_full?url=http%3A//www.camera.it/_dati/leg16/lavori/stampati/pdf/16PDL0051750.pdf&back_to=http%3A//www.camera.it/126%3FPDL%3D4549%26leg%3D16%26tab%3D2
the law was proposed on july 11 and discussed on sept 12 but i can’t find anything about sept 12 activities so it’s probably still placed on a dead road.
Stupid politicians from Berlusconi party proposed many times similar bills, this one will never pass.

hmm (profile) says:

distract me

step 1. Berlusconi suffocates ANOTHER hooker by sitting on her face

step 2. propose ridiculous law that gets all the press attention whilst an intern buries the corpse in Berlusconi’s hooker-graveyard (application applied to extend the ground due to lack of space)

step 3. ??????? (thats the public being confused about the new law)

step 4. profit (i.e. Berlusconi doesn’t go to prison and gets to sit on many more hooker-faces)

fred says:

update: the never ending story

Original bill was proposed from deputy Fava Giovanni from one of the party composing the actual government, it was proposed time ago, i suppose this same year;
The bill has been proposed again from deputy Centemero Elena, from another party composing the actual government, there wasn’t any fixes on the bill.
Now Giovanni Fava has reclaimed the copyright got that bill, and submitted a takedown notice to the isp responsible of the parliament website; use a translator for this page for more details: http://pierani.wordpress.com/2011/09/20/tensione-alla-camera-tra-pdl-e-lega-per-violazione-di-copyright-su-fine-opera-satirica-in-forma-di-ddl/
I would tell that this is hilarious, but unfortunately this peoples are ruling my country so i don’t have anything to laught about…..

Counter says:

Re: update: the never ending story

That’s actually a sarcastic piece, nothing of that sort happened. He’s just pointing out how the two drafts are basically a cut and paste job (likely “suggested” by the usual lobbies, the same people who want some movement on the Section 301 department), so maybe copyright infringement is in order.

fred (user link) says:

I was uncertain if the notice i linked was sarcastic or not;
today i searched again and found another article, in particulare italian Agcom (Authority for Communications) is discussing if a proposed bill can be covered by copyright since a bill proposal it’s a work payed by taxes and a public work.
I’m still doubting about the copyright takedown notice because it’s crazy thing, if i found more i’ll update again.

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