First French File-Sharer Sentenced To Disconnection Under Hadopi; But Judgment May Be Unenforceable

from the talk-about-waste-of-time dept

As we’ve noted before, Hadopi has been a colossal failure on just about every metric, and now seems on the way out. But French taxpayers’ money is still being wasted on the scheme, which continues to send out huge numbers of warnings. Ironically, given its imminent demise, Hadopi seems to have finally claimed its first disconnection victim, as PC Inpact reports (original in French.) The person involved has been sentenced to disconnection for 15 days, and must pay a €600 fine. Strangely, it seems that he or she shared only a couple of works, so even that brief period seems harsh. However, there is still scope for an appeal, so the sentence is not yet definite.

And as PC Inpact explains, even if it is confirmed, it may be unenforceable: although access to the Web can be cut, Hadopi’s rules state that the filtering must not affect email, private messaging, telephone or any associated TV services. Since these are typically all provided together, that may be tricky, or even impossible. Hadopi says it only hands out suspensions: it doesn’t concern itself about how — or even if — they can be implemented.

So after years of operation, all that the three-strikes approach has to show for the millions that have been spent, are a handful of convictions: one where someone was fined but innocent, and another where the person involved probably can’t be disconnected anyway. Great work, Hadopi.

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Comments on “First French File-Sharer Sentenced To Disconnection Under Hadopi; But Judgment May Be Unenforceable”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

There are a number of such services available right now.

What kind of hardware are they running on?

Main thing I remember is getting a document ?one that I really wanted? using up most of my quota on the other end of, oh, trying to think? a 9600? bps connection.

It was probably some kind of specification or something, and pro’lly ?what? a megabyte? Hell, I don’t remember.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

What kind of hardware are they running on?

What do you mean? The hardware they’re running on doesn’t matter to you.

These services all do the same thing. You send them an email with a URL, and their servers read the web page and email it back to you. Some services let you adjust what you get (receive it as an HTML email, or just plain text, for example).

You can easily find an assortment by searching for “web via email”, and I’m sure you’ll find one that meets your needs.

Rabbit80 says:

HADOPI may be breaking EU law anyway...

According to the above atricle..

disconnecting anybody from the net without a prior fair and full adversarial court proceeding ? exactly the thing the copyright industry had intended to bypass and cut citizens off en masse ? was completely illegal across all of the European Union, and by extension, through the European Economic Area.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: HADOPI may be breaking EU law anyway...

It is well known that HADOPI breaks the european directive. HADOPI and IIRC a british law which was later scrapped were mentioned as exceptions. So, yes HADOPI would be illegal a short time after its infancy but it had a special excemption.

Btw. HADOPI has probably been one of the best things for people against these overreaching programs since it has highlighted so many problems in the way it was handled that not even many of Sarkozys conservative bretherens in EP were defending it in the end…
It was such a clear failure politically (Even disregarding its complete lack of results) and a hefty bucket of icecold water in the face of the protectionist lobbies that they are getting a harder time convincing politicians in the future!

Anonymous Coward says:

You have to remember that most of the time schemes like this are not meant to be effective. At least not from an absolute enforcement point of view. They are highly effective at keeping the recording industry in the same seat of power they have enjoyed over the last few decades.

This whole thing is used as a talking point, a bullet point for the next power point slideshow.

It’s used to convince people that it’s a real enforcement as something is being done, even if it’s not currently effective; and because it’s not effective they should implement something else and spend even more money!

It can also be used as a legal strong arm for any new innovative start-ups that might depend on anything remotely related to something covered by this law. Even the threat that a start-up might be illegal can cause it to stall as they look into the details.

Hadopi might be a failure when compared to it’s written objectives but it’s a complete success story for all the unwritten ones.

Anonymous Coward says:


I know the Techdirt/Copyhater view is that HADOPI is dead/dying, but I don’t think that view is accurate. See, e.g.,

A few sessions at WCS particularly stood out. One was on antipiracy initiatives, such as the graduated response systems in France (Hadopi) and the US (Copyright Alert System). The most interesting thing we learned there was that, to paraphrase Mark Twain, recent rumors of Hadopi?s death (such as this one and this one) have been greatly exaggerated. (As is often the case, Ars Technica got it the most right.) The reality is that Hadopi?s core ?three strikes? system will remain intact, but without the threat of suspending users? Internet access and with maximum fines lowered from ?1500 to ?60. The Hadopi agency itself is to be disbanded, but the functions will simply move to another existing French agency, a process that has already started with the transfer of some personnel.


crade (profile) says:

Re: Re:

My thoughts are imho even your article says Hadopi is dead/dying..

The only thing that made Hadopi different/controversial is the threat of suspending internet, which your article says is going away. That was the stick.. What else is left? Three strikes and then more strikes? The core of Hadopi was the suspension, not the strikes.

It also says that the Hadopi agency is being disbanded and they are going to dump whats left of it on some existing agency to do in their spare time.. Not exactly what I would call thriving.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Key points form the ARS article:

– The success rate of the “strikes” system in France is extremely questionable;
– HADOPI (the entity) is a dead man walking. It will eventually be killed replaced by another entity;
– They will no longer disconnect people. There will only be a system of (much lower) fines;
– They are considering extending the “you must be a pirate tax” to devices such as smartphones and computers;
– They want to introduce something called “Act 2 of the Cultural Exception” which, from what I could understand, is a tax on service providers.

So the whole things is being gutted, with a few terrible ideas thrown in for balance. I still don’t see how this is helping anyone. At least it will be (allegedly) cheaper to implement.

Anonymous Coward says:

So after years of operation, all that the three-strikes approach has to show for the millions that have been spent, are a handful of convictions: one where someone was fined but innocent, and another where the person involved probably can’t be disconnected anyway. Great work, Hadopi.


How is a negligent person “innocent”? They are liable precisely because they were negligent. I don’t get it. Seems dishonest to say what you’re saying.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

He just picked an easy target to be able to act “outraged”.

Glyn normally doesn’t frequent the comments here. I don’t know why and, frankly, I don’t care. I presume that he has better things to do than to waste his time with ACs in general, and with that AC in particular.

I also presume that Glyn doesn’t have an aching necessity to “win” an argument like the AC above seems to have (just go over the comments from articles from last week and see for yourself what I am talking about).

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Check for yourself:

He’s published 547 articles on Techdirt, yet only made two posts. You can do your own math, but that to me says that, like Pirate Mike, he’s not willing to discuss what he publishes. What is it about TD? I’ve never seen a site so opinionated yet so scared of discussing the issues. Truly remarkable. Hey Glyn, if I negligently run over your family, killing them, would you say I was “innocent”?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Well, then you are guilty too, since I know for a fact that securing a network takes more than just setting up a password.

Did you know that WAP can be cracked in seconds?

WAP 2 is being replaced by WAP 3 and all of that in the space of a couple of years do you understand what that means?

It means having to buy expensive hardware all again to keep an industry secure, telcos don’t do that, they are using the same encryption protocol from the stone ages that has been broken by everyone else why should normal people be responsible for things that are beyond, way beyond their control?

Now tell us how do you secure you network stupid.
Did you set up your IDS already?

Another AC says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

…if I negligently run over your family, killing them, would you say I was “innocent”?

No, that would be ‘Manslaughter’ which is specific crime. I don’t believe there’s a law anywhere stating that not realizing someone was using you wifi to infringe on copyrights (which is what I believe you are meaning) is a crime.

Bad analogy.

The Groove Tiger (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

No, actually, negligence is defined as failing to do your job properly, and thus failing to prevent the damage that your job was meant to prevent. It could mean just not doing your job (which causes harm), or ignoring security measures.

So you can be negligent when repairing a bridge, or at doing some medical stuff, or feeding your children, or any other job where your bad decisions can cause property or health damage, but ONLY if done badly, lazily, etc, not merely because you didn’t make the perfect choice.

Calling anyone negligent for not doing something you WANT them to do but that they have no responsibility whatsoever for, that’s just twisting words, which you’re not even very good at (and not for a lack of trying).

Anonymous Coward says:

Oh this gets better. The EU has ruled specifically that cutting the internet off is illegal in the European Union. So after all this the enforcement is debatable it can legally be carried out.

In 2009, the European Union made 3 strikes disconnections illegal.

Anonymous Coward says:

So, let’s review.

– Took 4 years to convict one person, who didn’t even actually download the files in question.
– Took 4 years to disconnect one person.
– Cost millions of dollars in taxpayer money.
– Was threatened to have its funding cut, possibly inhibiting its ability to send out warning letters.
– Responded to the above when put in practice by sending out EVEN MORE letters despite supposedly have said ability reduced by reduced funding.

Aside from making the government richer, exactly how was HADOPI beneficial for music and artists?

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