France Continues Mass Processing Of Infringement Accusations: 60 People Get Third Strike Notice... 650,000 Get First Strike

from the crimininalizing-an-entire-country dept

The latest stats coming out of France's HADOPI "three strikes" (really three accusations) policy are really quite stunning. Most of the focus is on the fact that 60 ISP account holders have received their third strike, and now await to see if they'll be fined and/or kicked off the internet without ever having actually been convicted of copyright infringement. But, to me, the much more interesting numbers are the first and second strike numbers. An astounding 650,000 people have received "first strike" notices, with 44,000 of those receiving a second strike as well. Those are huge numbers. It makes you wonder, at what point do those in power begin to recognize that if so many people are engaging in this, there must be some sort of better solution.

The entertainment industry loves to call infringement "theft," but I don't think anyone would argue that 650,000 people are running around France stealing things out of stores. And that's because people inherently recognize that there's a massive difference between stealing a physical product, such that there's one less of it, and listening to a song that they like, where nothing is removed for anyone else. When a huge percentage of your population is accused of breaking the law, the problem is not with the people... but with the law.

Filed Under: france, hadopi, statistics

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Oct 2011 @ 12:11am


    This is the equivalent of just saying these people are committing "theft". Taking an actual record deprives the record store/shop owner of an actual product. Which is the legal definition of theft, "depriving someone of something". Their is an actual loss. In no way, is your "vinyl" example relevant or comparable.

    But for the sake of argument, let's just go with your example. Those 650,000 people take a vinyl record, you can easily prove this. You either catch them in the act of the theft, or follow them after the fact (through evidence) and take them to trial for the crime, after which they can be properly punished (either through fines or jail time). Justice is done according to the law in a proper manner.

    In this situation, "evidence" is laughable (AT BEST), as has been proven time and time again (printers were infringing, yeah, that right there says how reliable their methods are). 3 strikes are required to cut someone off the internet. No due process is followed. Copyright holders merely send notifications to the ISPs, who for the sake of a voluntary agreement, pass them to the customers (who may or may not have actually done anything). This is bad precedent and just bad in general. "We say you are guilty, thus you are guilty. No you cannot fight this, see evidence against you, or get any kind of due process. So it has been spoken, so it shall be." That's what this is, anyone who supports such actions, regardless of the reason behind them, poses more of a threat to society in general than any "thief" or "infringer". (And I put that in " ", because of the fact that none of these people have been proven to be guilty of anything, these are literally just baseless accusations.)

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