Can Someone Explain Why It Should Be An ISP's Responsibility To Deal With File Sharing?

from the it's-a-simple-question dept

Last week, we noted that there was some draft legislation in the UK making the rounds that would have ISPs ban people found to have participated in unauthorized file sharing. Some people responded by saying that this was just a draft and there was no chance it was going to go anywhere. However, the UK's Culture Secretary Andy Burnham is now saying that the government is quite serious about pushing this legislation through, and that ISPs would be wise to implement such a system voluntarily before the government acts: "Let me make it absolutely clear: this is a change of tone from the Government. It's definitely serious legislative intent." What he doesn't make clear, however, is why it should be the ISPs' responsibility to prop up someone else's business model. What's next? Will they push automakers to fight back against bankrobbers who use getaway cars?

Filed Under: business models, file sharing, isps, liability, uk

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  1. identicon
    DanC, 25 Feb 2008 @ 5:15pm

    Re: Re: liability

    "I suppose a drug distributor isn't liable either for what people do with the drug which he or she purchased from a drug manufacturer and sold to those people."

    'Drug' is a very vague. Are you suggesting that a company like Walmart that purchases Tylenol is liable for actions of consumers that purchase the Tylenol from them? It fits your statement.

    Or are we only talking about illegal drugs? In that case, your example doesn't really apply. The distributor is breaking the law, the drugs are illegal, and the people buying the drugs are breaking the law. Also, there isn't any real question of the drug's legality. In most cases they're either legal or illegal. That doesn't hold true for copyright.

    ISPs are already immune from prosecution under the safe harbor provisions of the DMCA, and there's no good reason to force or persuade them to filter content.

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