India The Latest To Think About Kicking People Off The Internet Based On Accusations Of File Sharing

from the guilty-until-proven-innocent dept

A few months back, we pointed to a discussion looking at how three countries with some of the biggest movie industries outside of the US -- Nigeria, China and India -- all were thriving, despite massive "piracy." As you looked at the details of each, it showed how each industry had been adapting to a marketplace in which some of the content was widely available, but were still figuring out ways to make money (i.e., you can compete with free). However, because competing with free actually involves work, it should come as no surprise that some are seeking to implement government protectionist policies.

Gautam John points us to the news that a "High Level Committee on Piracy" in India, put together by the Indian government has come back with a variety of suggestions including a "three strikes" plan that would kick users off the internet based on accusations (not convictions) for unauthorized file sharing. There's also a suggestion that would appear to make theater owners somewhat liable for customers camcording movies. They also support preventative detention of potential pirates -- a ridiculous idea that has been put in practice in some areas of India already -- and which the US entertainment industry has encouraged. Yes, this is detaining people who might make an unauthorized copy. Welcome to pre-crime, India-style. About the only suggestion that isn't massively damaging to individuals' rights is the idea that filmmakers "make piracy unviable" by offering their movies at more reasonable prices and in more ways, so that people are more willing to go with legitimate options. They probably should have just stuck with that suggestion and left the rest alone.
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Filed Under: copyright, india, three strikes

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  1. icon
    PaulT (profile), 12 Nov 2010 @ 7:58am

    Re: Question...

    I'm not overly familiar but my understanding is that there's much more of a physical pirate market rather than the digital one. There's certainly a tech infrastructure and some areas with high PC ownership (the places where tech jobs are being outsourced to, for example) but I'd imagine it varies wildly depending on where you are. So, it's comparable as piracy is high, but not directly analogous as the distribution methods are different.

    It's also my understanding that there's much less of a legal market, especially for non-local product. Legal copies are often either too expensive for the average person or not easily obtainable. I often see Indian gamers complaining about how difficult it can be to obtain certain games or systems as they're not part of the core Japan/North America/Europe/Australasia markets - and even the latter two tend to get screwed over on a regular basis with regional controls. I'd imagine that it's the same story with DVDs and music, especially outside of the local Bollywood/Bhangra/whatever genres.

    Again, I might be mistaken, but that's the impression I've gotten over the years.

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