by Mike Masnick
Mon, Feb 18th 2008 11:37am
Never let it be said that the entertainment industry lobby isn't comprehensive. Over the past decade plus of watching them at work, you begin to see some patterns that are unmistakable. When the industry has a new idea it plans to push through as a law, it quietly works the concept through a variety of politicians around the world, and then will have one representative of the industry slip the concept into conversation at a public event somewhere. Then, while everyone's debating the concept, it suddenly shows up in pre-written legislation around the world before anyone knows what's going on. That appears to be happening again. Over the summer, entertainment industry execs (mainly from NBC Universal) started buzzing about how ISPs needed to take more responsibility for punishing those who were sharing unauthorized files on their networks. It seemed so outlandish that people were kind of surprised that it was even brought up. But then the laws started popping up. First there was a French proposal that would have ISPs ban users after being caught sharing unauthorized files three times. Then a similar proposal popped up in the UK last week. Now, down in Australia the government is now considering a similar proposal. Rest assured that these ideas didn't suddenly occur to the politicians in each of these countries.
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