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Three-Strikes Copyright Law In NZ Halves Infringement 202

Posted by timothy
from the maybe-sneakernets-have-heated-up dept.
Bismillah writes "The 'Skynet' copyright act has been in effect for six months in New Zealand and rights holders reckon it halved the number of infringements in the first month. Even so, they're not happy and say over forty per cent of Kiwis continue to infringe online. The fix? Rightsholders want the current NZ$25 infringement notice processing fee payable to ISPs to be dropped to just a few dollars or even pennies, so that they can send out thousands of notices a month. ISPs want the fee to increase four times instead, to cover their costs. Unfortunately, the submissions for the review of the infringement notice fees are kept secret by the government."
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Three-Strikes Copyright Law In NZ Halves Infringement

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  • Yeah na bro (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    As I New Zealander I speak for everyone when I say:

    Hah!

    • Re:Yeah na bro (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Mathinker (909784) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @08:06PM (#40732493) Journal

      As a critical thinker, I speak for everyone when I say:

      "Never believe effectiveness reports made by industry groups who lobbied for the change in question, without actually reviewing the report methodology (which, BTW, is hardly ever disclosed in these so-called "reports")."

      • As a critical thinker, I speak for everyone when I say:

        "Never believe effectiveness reports made by industry groups who lobbied for the change in question, without actually reviewing the report methodology (which, BTW, is hardly ever disclosed in these so-called "reports")."

        Also, even if the drop is real it will almost certainly fade away with time.

      • Just like the US's alcohol prohibition if the 1920s, or ongoing War Against (Some) Drugs, it's much more likely they've just driven it underground and increased people's appetite for the forbidden fruit. You could say this behavior is as old as Adam and Eve ...

      • Brein is the music mafiaa in Holland where they forced a ban on thepiratebay.org. They then claimed this worked and reduced piracy. The ISP then said they could see no reduction in network traffic, neither has there been an increase in online purchases. Now, I am willing to entertain the thought that Ziggo (ISP) is lying but KPN? Their network engineers are the kind who drive volvo's. They can't lie, it does not fit in their world.

        But Brein lying? I can't even conceive of the idea of them telling the truth.

      • by Evtim (1022085)

        Did sales go up? If not, perhaps the claim that copying is lost sales is...hm dubious? /sarcasm

        You know what, I wish I had a magic wand. Then I'd stop all copying and have the dream of the Mafia fulfilled. Let's see how they like it..I predict they would die quick and miserable death while the art and innovation will, of course, survive.

        And since I am at it I'd also stop people from smoking, drinking, drugs and I'd make sex not pleasurable (but keep the impulse to have kids so we can survive). Thus fulfilli

      • Re:Yeah na bro (Score:5, Insightful)

        by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968&gmail,com> on Monday July 23, 2012 @04:30AM (#40734441) Journal

        Especially when there is a simple fix and its called fix your broken ass business models you douchebags which Valve has proved can work quite well.

        I'll be honest...I used to pirate the hell out of games, so did all my friends, now I can't even remember the last game I downloaded and I've even bought a good chunk of those games i pirated back in the day, why? Because Valve fixed the broken ass business model that was PC gaming, that's why.

        Now if I can't get it on steam I simply won't buy it, nor will i buy those games that require a constant net connection even if they are on Steam. with Steam i get ALL the updates automatically, all my friends and family are on there so all i have to do is look in my friends list and say "Hey you wanna play some?" and BOOM, right into the game, easy chat, constant sales and most having included DLC, when new DLC comes out you can get it cheap, etc.

        So if the damned studios would give me something just as easy, where I can buy in a USEFUL format, instead of some bug ridden DRMed to the 50th power crap, like say .AVI or .MKV to where I can just drop them on my netbook or my dad's media tank and just hit the play button? I'd be happy to buy their product. Instead i simply don't buy nor do I download, if I can't watch it online for free i just don't watch.

        All these media companies are doing is speeding up the progress of P2P, that's all. By gouging for every last nickel they possibly can and screwing over viewers with region coded bullshit all they are doing with draconian crap like this is making sure P2P will end up with full crypto and obfuscation so nobody will be able to tell what anyone else is getting. How much you wanna bet their sales figures didn't go up for shit despite the drop in downloaders? I bet many just said to hell with their product altogether, it isn't like we don't have a wealth of entertainment online for free now anyway.

        I would like to apologize to all the people of NZ as sadly we here in the USA lost any form of control over the cartels years ago so I'm afraid we can't do shit to stop them from fucking you over, sorry. Some tried writing a petition to the POTUS and all they got for their trouble was a flowery "Fuck you peasant LOL!" form letter and both parties are totally owned so we're screwed too, sorry.

    • Re:Yeah na bro (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 22, 2012 @09:37PM (#40732947)

      So infringement dropped. But did purchases of music and movies increase? That seems like a much more better question to ask.

    • The fix? TFS suggests that there is a fix. I say there is no fix. When blind fools abdicate their rights, there is no fix. For generations to come, in NZ, Australia, the UK, the US, Canada, and other nations that sign our ridiculous fucking treaties, people are going to be oppressed by the likes of RIAA.

      Screw that. No "rights holder" holds any rights that take priority over our right to download information, or to entertain ourselves with a bunch of binary digits.

      We've all got our heads up our asses, o

  • Pays to Be Sneaky (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rueger (210566) * on Sunday July 22, 2012 @06:50PM (#40732169) Homepage
    New Zealand and rights holders reckon it halved the number of infringements in the first month.

    Or just as likely, the heaviest downloaders just found better ways to fly under the radar. If "success" is measured by a drop from eighty percent to forty percent of users "stealing" content, I'd say it's time for the Industry to admit total defeat.
    • by Sulphur (1548251) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @06:54PM (#40732189)

      New Zealand and rights holders reckon it halved the number of infringements in the first month.

      Or just as likely, the heaviest downloaders just found better ways to fly under the radar. If "success" is measured by a drop from eighty percent to forty percent of users "stealing" content, I'd say it's time for the Industry to admit total defeat.

      Its hard to spot a Kiwi on radar.

    • Re:Pays to Be Sneaky (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:22PM (#40732315)

      My completely anectdotal experience living in NZ is that people just found other ways. Seedboxes especially may have actually made the industry's problem worse as they're much faster for P2P connections than local NZ broadband connections have ever been and as such the volumes achievable are higher. For example I used to hear people talk of only getting averages of 200-300Kbps with P2P using the cheap ISP supplied modems, but they can get 2Mbps+ over an HTTP connection to a seedbox, and that seedbox itself might achieve 10MBps or more.

      There was a 10% drop in NZ internet volume when the law came into effect, but little mention of the numbers since.

      So yes, I'm inclined to believe they are seeing less infringement, but in reality there's likely more than ever.

    • by digitig (1056110) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @08:29PM (#40732619)
      My immediate reaction on reading the title was "Shouldn't it be 'Three-Strikes Copyright Law In NZ Halves detection'"?
      • by Solandri (704621)
        Yeah, you can use the studios' own argument against them here. If piracy was costing them umpteen bajillion dollars in revenue, and the 3-strikes law hasn't resulted in an increase in revenue of at least a few bajillion dollars, then by their own measure it hasn't reduced piracy. It's either driven it underground, probably to sneakernet [wikipedia.org]. Or the anti-*IAA forces were right and most of those pirated songs never would've been sales in the first place, and so wasn't costing them anything.
    • by anubi (640541) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @08:50PM (#40732743) Journal
      I guess what bugs me is something like policing copyrights of publicly available information, especially music is almost impossible to enforce.

      Rightsholders are quick to privatize their profits, however they are eager to socialize enforcement costs.

      I do not want to get into a shouting match on whether or not it is theft to copy a song. Technically, I think it is, but practically, its like trying to enforce a clean mind when seeing porn.

      It stretches honesty when one is hungry and sees his neighbor's apple tree, knowing the trunk of the apple tree is his neighbor's property, yet the fruit is hanging in his yard, even dropping on his lawn, and only some law, passed by some senators lobbied by the tree owner, says he can't pick the apple off his lawn and eat it, or even take a picture of it.

      There are some things which are are very difficult to enforce... and tend to function not as a deterrent, but as a starting place for learning to disrespect obedience of law. I see this kind of law as a prime example of this.

      Like prohibition, trying to enforce law like this does more harm than good, as it gets people started at a very early age to have no inner respect for law, obeying it not for the common good, but only for fear of punishment if caught. It does not foster respect for law, instead it fosters a sense of accomplishment for finding creative ways of disrespecting the law.
      • by tftp (111690) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @11:58PM (#40733601) Homepage

        Like prohibition, trying to enforce law like this does more harm than good, as it gets people started at a very early age to have no inner respect for law, obeying it not for the common good, but only for fear of punishment if caught.

        I'm afraid you are about 50 or 100 years (if not more) too late. I don't know how it is in NZ, but in the USA respect for the law is not even a theoretical concept anymore. Widespread violations cannot be detected and the law enforced; this leads to loss of fear of punishment. You do not need to go too far to see proof of that. Everyone drives faster than the speed limit allows and the police does not even bother stopping anyone unless they are way over the limit. People jaywalk with no care in the world; robbers rob 24/7 stores as if it is their personal ATM; people park under signs "no parking", have sex in public parks, set up camps in public places, use drugs, and take dumps on police cars. What rule of law are you talking about? It's pure anarchy, with occasional firefighting done by few LEOs.

        There is no law to respect either. Over the years new laws accumulated up to a whole library of books - some with laws and other with their interpretations. Most people quite reasonably think that the law is not protecting them. And how it can be, with laws against "disorderly conduct" and with people arrested for "resisting arrest" or for filming police or for taking photos of cities? On the other hand, real criminals (petty or not) are in and out of jail faster than you can keep track of them. The police is most certainly not your friend; LEOs are not interested in helping you and they have no duty to help you. They might kill you, though, if you give them half of an excuse, because safety of one officer is more important than ten dead bodies of the rabble.

        With this whole train wreck continuing downhill with ever accelerating speed we will see more anarchy and fewer places where an nonest person can safely walk around. Downloads of music are just a minor blip on the radar of widespread lawlessness.

        • case in point!

          http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/22/california-police-fire-into-crowd-of-women-and-children-during-near-riot/ [rawstory.com]

          some quoting:

          A near-riot broke out in Anaheim, California on Saturday after a police shooting left one man dead and angry witnesses began throwing bottles at police offers. Police responded by firing bean bags and rubber bullets into a crowd of terrified women and children and even loosed a police dog on one woman and her baby.

          Residents, who have recently been complaining about allege

        • by TheLink (130905)
          I wonder what's the total amount robbed each year by "conventional" robbers (e.g. 24/7 stores, bank heists, etc). 1 billion? Half a billion?

          And what's the total amount "robbed" by those white-collar "robbers"...

          In countries with no or poor social safety-nets, if you wipe-out/halve some poor/midclass person's savings, you've very likely shortened his/her lifespan.

          Not justifying armed robbery of course, just looking at things from a different POV.
          • by tftp (111690)

            I wonder what's the total amount robbed each year by "conventional" robbers (e.g. 24/7 stores, bank heists, etc). 1 billion? Half a billion?

            Using the FBI's average valuation of $6,152 per stolen vehicle, the 737,142 vehicles stolen during 2010 caused estimated property losses of $4.5 billion. link [rmiia.org]

            And what's the total amount "robbed" by those white-collar "robbers"...

            But you see, when US bankers rob foreigners they are helping the US economy, and therefore they are good guys :-) In reality, naturally, bankers take their profits from everything that ever passes through their hands. Collusion with the government makes it unavoidable.

            In countries with no or p

        • Everyone drives faster than the speed limit allows and the police does not even bother stopping anyone unless they are way over the limit.

          That's a very bad example. Except for places where speed limits are taken as a source of income and everyone above the speed limit _will_ be stopped, speed limits are supposed to keep traffic safe. But it's not sticking to the actual number what makes traffic safe, it's the reduction in speed. If in place A there is a speed limit of 60 mph and everybody sticks to it and many people go slower, and in place B there is a speed limit of 50 mph and everybody goes faster and some people go 10 miles faster, then p

          • by tftp (111690)

            That's a very bad example.

            IMO, it's a good example. The sign "60" means that you must not exceed 60, ever, for any reason whatsoever. You are correct in saying that from logical point of view this should be treated as a good advice for a wise and aware driver. But this line of thinking fails when the law gets involved. The law does not allow you to exceed this speed - though it requires you to reduce the speed further in case of adverse weather conditions.

            When people regularly, habitually break one law

      • by shentino (1139071)

        Not to mention that the neighbor knows damn well that his apple tree is trespassing on your lawn. The owner of the tree knows that his apple tree is infringing on your own lawn, and very much likes taking your lawn space for free sunshine.

        Rather like how the DMCA stops you from format shifting, backing up, jailbreaking, etc etc etc.

      • It's more than that. The apple isn't just hanging over the yard or dropping on it, the neighbour is actively teasing and urging you to pick it up and take a bite 24/7.... and then cries foul if you don't pay him for the privilege.

        The problem is that we live in a world where the media constantly barrage us with advertising, literally brainwashing us into believing that we can't have a normal life, if we don't go watch the latest movie, or listen to the latest song, or whatever.

        This leads to people who ar

  • Begpardon? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Tastecicles (1153671) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @06:51PM (#40732173)

    It's not rights holders doing the complaining, it's the industry associations (read: RIAA/MPAA or NZ equivalents), who themselves hold no copyrights apart from their corporate logos.

    To them, I refer them to the response given in Arkell -v- Pressdram (1971):

    We acknowledge your letter of 29th April referring to Mr J. Arkell. We note that Mr Arkell's attitude to damages will be governed by the nature of our reply and would therefore be grateful if you would inform us what his attitude to damages would be, were he to learn that the nature of our reply is as follows: fuck off.

    • It's not rights holders doing the complaining, it's the industry associations (read: RIAA/MPAA or NZ equivalents), who themselves hold no copyrights apart from their corporate logos.

      They ARE rights holders, otherwise they would have no standing to complain about infringement or bring cases to court.

      • by bmo (77928) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:19PM (#40732293)

        Industry associations do not hold the copyrights. In English Common Law, the actual copyright holder (read publisher or author) is the one that has standing to sue.

        If you look at the actual lawsuits in the US where we follow English Common Law with regards to this stuff, it's never "RIAA vs. Joe Anonymous" it's always "Universal Studios vs. Joe Anonymous." The RIAA and MPAA just have the loudest mouths, so journalists and common folk think it's them who are doing the suing when no such thing happened.

        You must hold the copyright to have standing in court. Whatever industry associations there are in NZ, they are third parties and thus have no standing. Sure they can lobby and file briefs as amicus curiae, but they don't have any actual standing.

        --
        BMO

        • Re:Begpardon? (Score:4, Informative)

          by Grumbleduke (789126) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:56PM (#40732445) Journal

          Industry associations do not hold the copyrights. In English Common Law, the actual copyright holder (read publisher or author) is the one that has standing to sue.

          Actually, under English law copyright is wholly a creature of statute, there's no such thing as "common law" copyright (and one of the first big copyright cases, Donaldson v Beckett 1774, turned on that). As such, who can and cannot sue depends on what the statute says. My understanding of English procedural law is that anyone with an "exclusive licence" to do something protected by the copyright can bring a claim, however the actual copyright owner, and all other exclusive licensors must be joined to the case for it to go anywhere (which was the technical point that brought down the ACS:Law [wikipedia.org] case, where they weren't even sure who some of the copyright owners were).

          But yes, generally it is the copyright owner bringing the claim, as a key part of tort-related cases is showing damage - and if you're just an industry association, you won't have suffered any loss from the infringements.

          However, as I've noted below, this isn't about suing for copyright infringement, this is about notifications and allegations of copyright infringement under a special law. I don't know about the NZ version, but the UK equivalent [wikipedia.org] allows anyone "authorised" to act on behalf of a copyright owner to make the allegations, and it is understood that it will be the industry associations (particularly the BPI, MPAA and Publishers Association) who will be doing the actual dirty work. This lets them accuse in bulk, and has the bonus of protecting the actual copyright owners and artists from negative feedback.

          • by Phrogman (80473)

            Then its that authorization clause that needs to go first. If you want to accuse me of something in court, the least you can do is do it yourself, not farm it off to some third party contractors solely because it makes it easier for you to accuse your supposed customers.
            It sure would be nice if government would stop favoring the corporations in these matters, but I guess the bribes are just too good to ignore.

      • Re:Begpardon? (Score:4, Interesting)

        by AK Marc (707885) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:20PM (#40732297)
        They are a non-rights holder hired to enforce rights. This became an issue in the US when the court case was thrown out because the enforcement organization had rights to pursue violations, but not rights to the object themselves. The ruling was that they could be correct on all counts, but they could not have suffered any loss. They argued that with statutory penalties, such things were irrelevant, but the judge ruled that statutory losses are for when losses are otherwise hard to determine or have other externalities, and when the number is provably $0, then that number must be taken instead.
        • by bmo (77928)

          This became an issue in the US when the court case was thrown out because the enforcement organization had rights to pursue violations

          It's not just that. Bringing suit without standing pisses off judges because they have better things to do than waste their time listening to people who aren't damaged parties bringing suit.

          These rights are not assignable without assigning the copyrights. The courts have said time and again that the only people with the standing to sue are the copyright holders themselves.

      • Re:Begpardon? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Grumbleduke (789126) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:20PM (#40732299) Journal

        Everyone is a rights holder. We all have some rights of some sort or another.

        Also, (very nearly) almost everyone is a copyright owner. Given that copyright (in most places) covers anything from a doodle or quick email (or a /. post) to a great piece of artistic craftsmanship, the only way someone wouldn't be a copyright owner is if they had signed a contract with someone handing over all their copyrights (...talking of record companies).

        As for the RIANZ doing the complaining, if the NZ law is anything like the UK one, it is specifically designed so that industry associations can make the allegations and so on (mainly because most copyright owners can't really be bothered with this sort of thing, but are happy to pay their industry association a fee to do it for them). If not, it will still be the industry association who kicks up a fuss, publishes press releases and does the research, because that's how they justify their existence and pay-cheques.

        • by Kittenman (971447)

          Also, (very nearly) almost everyone is a copyright owner. Given that copyright (in most places) covers anything from a doodle or quick email (or a /. post) to a great piece of artistic craftsmanship, ...

          My /. posts are great pieces of artistic craftsmanship, you insensitive clod!

          PS Including this one

    • by AK Marc (707885)

      It's not rights holders doing the complaining, it's the industry associations (read: RIAA/MPAA or NZ equivalents), who themselves hold no copyrights apart from their corporate logos.

      It's not even that. It's the Australian versions of the American Associations that are pressuring NZ government, sometimes through local PACs set up for the sole purpose of hiding their 100% foreign ownership, but often directly as well.

  • Not anymore. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    When the law came into effect, everyone shifted to direct download sites, which can't be tracked like torrents can. Then everyone heard from friends who didn't shift that they didn't get any notices, so they've all shifted back.

    • When the law came into effect, everyone shifted to direct download sites, which can't be tracked like torrents can.

      You have that backwards. With direct-download, theres a very clear download log saying X downloaded from this server.

      With torrent, that ISNT the case.

      • Re:Not anymore. (Score:4, Informative)

        by AK Marc (707885) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:23PM (#40732319)
        You are 100% wrong, in that downloaders are not targeted. The targets are always uploaders, and if you download a file from a direct downloader, you did not distribute the file. With torrent, when you connect, you offer, as well as receive, parts of the content. That is an uploading activity.
        • Again, with a direct download site, there is a very clear log saying "X Uploaded this file".

          Torrents require you to actually download from someone to prove they have uploaded, since there isnt a central distribution site that can be subpoena'd.

          • Re:Not anymore. (Score:4, Interesting)

            by AK Marc (707885) on Monday July 23, 2012 @02:20AM (#40734047)
            I can't tell if you are just not getting it, or if you are being purposefully obtuse.

            They don't care about uploaders. They only go after downloaders who upload, never downloaders who don't upload. And uploaders aren't being targeted clearly. They "should have" gone after the megauploads uploaders. They didn't. They aren't. They targeted the owner, but not the uploaders. But they want to scare downloaders into thinking that just downloading will get you arrested. So they go after P2P almost exclusively. And people that upload to a direct download site are safe, so long as they aren't also the owner of the site, at least so far in the megaupload case.
      • Re:Not anymore. (Score:4, Informative)

        by Grumbleduke (789126) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:23PM (#40732329) Journal

        Yes, but to get that download log you need access to the download server, yes (IanaITguy)? And if that server doesn't keep logs for long, or refuses to hand them over without a court order, it can be very hard for a third party to get hold of the info. Plus (at least in the EU) you have issues with data protection and privacy about access to that data.

        With P2P stuff, though, it's really easy; you just join in the swarm, share the file with some people and log the IP addresses and times. You then have much more reliable evidence of both downloading and uploading (assuming you've done it correctly), without having to involve an extra party (although you'll still need the ISP to turn that IP into a person), and without as many of the data protection/privacy issues, as this data is all "in the public domain."

        • Yes, but to get that download log you need access to the download server, yes (IanaITguy)?

          Once you check that the file is offered by the site, you can get a warrant, and the operators will give you access.

          And if that server doesn't keep logs for long

          Lol.

          or refuses to hand them over without a court order,

          Which would be the first order of business.

          Plus (at least in the EU) you have issues with data protection and privacy about access to that data.

          Not an EU law expert, but Im guessing that doesnt apply to court orders / discovery.

          • Once you check that the file is offered by the site, you can get a warrant, and the operators will give you access.

            Yes, of course. But you need to get a warrant, and that's going to be tricky if it is just casual downloading (which isn't a crime, or even unlawful in most places) so you're into the realm of civil remedies. Which means suing the site operator and probably paying their expenses (could easily get into the $thousands). And then you have to rely on both them having the data, and that data being

      • Those logs aren't publicly accessible, though, so DDL is harder to track from the outside than torrents.
      • by Kalriath (849904)

        Who cares? On a technicality, downloading isn't illegal. Uploading is.

        • Re:Not anymore. (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Grumbleduke (789126) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @08:49PM (#40732739) Journal

          Depends on the jurisdiction. I would imagine NZ law is similar to UK law, in which case downloading probably is illegal as well, but much harder to prove both that it happened, and that the copyright owner suffered a loss.

          Actually, English law is completely insane at the moment due to a rather odd judgment that managed to slip through the Court of Appeal (although the Supreme Court will hopefully fix it next year). Under this ruling, merely visiting a website, or receiving an email can count as copyright infringement if you don't have permission to make a copy of the copyrighted contents of the page/email. While there was some discussion of website owners giving "implied licences" to copy by putting something on their website it was pointed out that these didn't matter if there was an express licence... which would, in theory, include something like "All rights reserved". So if you're in England, and you visit a website that says "All Rights Reserved" on it (such as /.), well done, you've probably just committed copyright infringement.

      • by X.25 (255792)

        You have that backwards. With direct-download, theres a very clear download log saying X downloaded from this server.

        With torrent, that ISNT the case.

        So, what you are saying is that NZ 'right holders' have access to logs on direct download server located in [insert favorite country]?

        Really, there is a reason humans have brain. You should use it.

  • Uh-huh, right (Score:5, Insightful)

    by artor3 (1344997) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @06:52PM (#40732181)

    So, the people behind the law claim that it is effective enough to have been justified, but not effective enough to remove the need for even more industry-friendly laws.

    How convenient.

    • I like the number juggling. They say it has curtailed infringement by 1/2 but still 40% continue to pirate. Ok, let's consider the math for a moment. If 80% of your population is pirating to begin with, than it stands to reason that piracy should be legal as the common law votes tend to be strongly in favor.

      If I lived in a sovereign nation where 80% of the people were pirating material regularly, I would certainly try to get the issue tossed onto a ballot or referendum to just get it legalized outright.

      • by Ash-Fox (726320)

        I don't think 80% of the internet users in NZ equals 80% of the NZ population.

        • by Calydor (739835)

          Close enough, really. According to several [msd.govt.nz] different [internetworldstats.com] sources [newmediatrendwatch.com] internet access is had by around 84.5% of the population. Even if the remaining 15.5% are all law-abiding non-downloaders the 80% of the online population (~67.6% of the total population) are still quite a lot more than half the entire country.

  • by bmo (77928) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:00PM (#40732201)

    Rights holders want the current NZ$25 infringement notice processing fee payable to ISPs to be dropped to just a few dollars or even pennies, so that they can send out thousands of notices a month.

    So what they're really saying that infringements actually cost them less than $25 per infringement in the long run. Because if it was like the thousands of dollars per, that they claim, they wouldn't have a bitch about a $25 fee. It would be a no-brainer and the battle against piracy would fatten their coffers easily even with the $25 fee. But no, they say it's too expensive. It's only too expensive if the net gain is negative.

    >the ISPs want it increased to $100

    Considering the vetting and such and going through the motions to send a customer a notice, I believe it. Even inter-office memos are not free. You'd be surprised what one actually costs if you measured it.

    The IP enforcers have no leg to stand on with regards to this argument. By all rights, the ISPs should at least double their price. And the IP enforcers should shut up and take it.

    --
    BMO

    • by Joe_Dragon (2206452) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:11PM (#40732253)

      a small but not to small fees keeps out abuse and let's small Rights holders have there say.

      • a small but not to small fees keeps out abuse and let's small Rights holders have there say.

        Is $25 not considered a small fee, especially when taking into account the losses being claimed as owing to infringement?

        Conversely, if the fee is too high for "small rights holders" then how much money are they really losing from infringement rather than plain old lack of success?

      • by shentino (1139071)

        They should charge the fees they pay to the infringers they catch.

      • by jez9999 (618189)

        Wow. This should be framed and hung up in every classroom as an example of what happens if you don't study English grammar.

    • by Zaelath (2588189)

      I want the cost of filing complaints against rights holders reduced to pennies as well, so they can be deluged with trivial notices that cost them a fortune in salary to wade through.

      I'm w/ BMO; $100 sounds cheap compared to the eleventy billion dollars every shared copy of mp3 causes in damage.

    • by msobkow (48369)

      But the *AA industries have never been willing to pay for enforcement. For as long as I've heard them whining and bitching in my life, part of their whine and bitch routine was to justify why someone else should pay the costs of enforcement.

      They are, without a doubt, the single most "self entitled" group I have ever encountered. Even the religious organizations which beg their parishioners for money don't claim the money is owed to them like these trough-suckers do.

      • by rtb61 (674572)

        Why not, someone else created the completely artificial means by which they profit, copyright law. Even when absolutely no attempt is made to ensure the content does in fact promote science and the useful arts as required under law, which technically means those profits have been stolen, factually stolen as that money was not 'copied' it was parasitically removed from the economy.

  • what are "Pennys"? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    "pennys" ... you'll never hear a New Zealander use that phrase unless they were talking about those antique coins granny has on her mantle piece.
    Closest thing to a "penny" is a 10 cent piece (no longer any 1, 2 or 5 cent coinage) so stop trying to nickel and dime away NZ culture
     

    • by rossdee (243626)

      The plural of penny is pennies. Penny's refers to something belonging to a girl called Penny.

      NZ switched to decimal currency in 1967 ("the 10th of July - next year")
      After that date the most common use of that coin was to improve the electrical connection in torches that used D size batteries.

  • by Anachragnome (1008495) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:09PM (#40732239)

    This is getting interesting.

    Earlier this month ISPs came to an agreement with the recording/movie industry to enact a "6 strikes" policy to punish copyright infringement. (see ArsTechnica article, as previously discussed on /. -- http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2011/07/major-isps-agree-to-six-strikes-copyright-enforcement-plan/ [arstechnica.com] )

    The very next day after the article was published, I noticed something interesting when I was using BitTorrent--aside from request overhead, I was uploading zero data. I'm currently watching a 3.1GB torrent--1.79 GB downloaded and 0.0 uploaded. And no, it isn't my client settings. I have checked them several times, nor did I change them any from when I was uploading normally. Seeding a completed torrent does nothing--it just sits there with no activity.

    To put it in simple terms, Comcast (my ISP) is throttling uploads by 100% but not touching download rates (at least mine). Are they, in essence, protecting their customers from the "6 strikes" policy they agreed to enforce? If so, I assume they are doing this to prevent losing customers that continue using P2P software.

    I can't imagine the MPAA/RIAA will be very happy about this.

    • The very next day after the article was published, I noticed something interesting when I was using BitTorrent--aside from request overhead, I was uploading zero data. I'm currently watching a 3.1GB torrent--1.79 GB downloaded and 0.0 uploaded. And no, it isn't my client settings. I have checked them several times, nor did I change them any from when I was uploading normally. Seeding a completed torrent does nothing--it just sits there with no activity.

      Hasn't Comcast been doing something similar [torrentfreak.com] for several

      • "Hasn't Comcast been doing something similar [torrentfreak.com] for several years prior to that article being published?"

        Not according to my own experiences with Comcast (I've been a customer for 10 years...Yeah, I know. No other choice unless I want a 10th of the bandwidth).

        I've always been capped at 1.5MB/sec download speeds (P2P--I get advertised download rates for everything else). I still get that. What changed was the upload. In the past, what I found through some experimentation was that Comcast had

      • "Hasn't Comcast been doing something similar [torrentfreak.com] for several years prior to that article being published?"

        I should have mentioned this in my other response to your post, rather then posting again. Better late then never?...

        I know for a fact that Comcast allowed seeding as recently as two months ago. How do I know this? Because I already received a "copyright infringement" warning for a previous torrent, before they even announced the "6 strikes" policy. If I wasn't sharing data in the form of

    • by Kalriath (849904)

      I find it drastically unlikely. If I'm not mistaken, almost all US ISPs are also rights-holders, or closely affiliated with them. It's more than likely just traffic management gone insane.

  • Have sales gone up?

    If sales have gone up, then congratulations, you've scored a minor victory against those stealing to avoid paying for decent content, but if not, what exactly have you achieved? Sure, people have stopped *cough* "stealing" your content, but they're not buying it either, it simply proves it wasn't worth paying for in the first place.

    Either that, or they're still downloading it for free, they just figured out another way to do it without getting caught. Thus continuing the perpetual cycle

    • If you're interested, there was a study done into the effects of the French law (Hadopi) using iTunes sales provided by the major record companies. The full study is here [electronlibre.info] if you're interested and it found a 50% relative increase in iTunes sales ... when the law was being debated in the French Parliament, but no change when letters or disconnections were taking place.

      However, that study has all sorts of other problems with it (such as missing some other relevant points, and having a rather dubious control gr

      • by wvmarle (1070040)

        If you're interested, there was a study done into the effects of the French law (Hadopi) using iTunes sales provided by the major record companies. The full study is here [electronlibre.info] if you're interested and it found a 50% relative increase in iTunes sales ... when the law was being debated in the French Parliament, but no change when letters or disconnections were taking place.

        iTunes music store launched in France on 15 June 2004.

        iTunes started offering movies in France on 30 April 2009.

        Hadopi was being discussed in parliament in April/May 2009, which coincides with the launch of the movies section of iTunes. And as such product launches are usually accompanied by major marketing pushes, I'm not surprised that the iTunes sales went up a lot in that period. Having more on offer - a complete new product line in this case - is usually a recipe for increasing sales, too. That it happ

        • Aah, interesting - I hadn't spotted that factor (again demonstrating why these studies are so pointless; it's impossible to be scientific and eliminate or account for all possible other factors). But yes, the study is pretty rubbish; also, if you look at the actual data, the French iTunes sales were already increasing relative to the control group before the start of their data period; just when drawing their graph the lined up the sales figures from before May 2009 to make it look obvious, so I'm not sure

  • by Grumbleduke (789126) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @07:15PM (#40732269) Journal

    Only halved? I thought these things were supposed to have a 70% reduction according to the earlier surveys. Oh wait, those surveys are complete rubbish, as is most data on this sort of thing. The surveys for how much this sort of thing would reduce filesharing are all over the place; according to the IFPI, the French version, Hadopi, would cause 71% reduction [ifpi.org] in unlawful file-sharing, whereas a ZdNet.fr survey put it at 4% [musicweek.com]. Then there was a really fun Hollywood-sponsored survey from Australia that found 74% would stop infringing [scribd.com] - unfortunately, in the fine detail, it turned out only 11% were actually committing copyright infringement on a regular basis, so at least 15% of people don't infringe regularly, but wouldn't stop even if threatened by their ISP.

    This is definitely one of those "detailed-study-complete-with-full-figures-and-methodology or it didn't happen" situations.

    However, it is interesting to see that the RIANZ are claiming that half isn't enough, and that more needs to be done. It mirrors my concerns about these laws elsewhere (particularly in the UK, obviously) that they have no criteria for success or failure, nor any real way to measure effectiveness. It means that once implemented the RIAA/Rianz/BPI are free to say "This is working, so we need more!" or "This isn't working, so we need more!" or "We're not sure whether or not this is working, so we need more!" no matter what actually happens, and we're back to copyright enforcement for the sake of copyright enforcement.

    Fortunately in the EU these sorts of charges to ISPs were declared unlawful, so copyright owners are being forced to meet most of the bill for the UK three-strikes program (although subscribers will have to pay an arbitrary £20 to appeal allegations made against them).

    The one good thing about the UK version, though, is that the government were persuaded that, once the three-strikes law is in force, someone should actually look into whether or not such a law is needed or will do any good, so in a year or so, after over 1m letters being sent (and however many lawsuits and prosecutions), we may actually get some independent and reliable data on this whole "online infringement of copyright" thing.

    [Disclaimer: I 'work' as a lobbyist in this area and am currently in the middle of consultation work on the UK version of this sort of thing - so I'm rather biased. For anyone in the UK interested in this, the Ofcom consultation is available here [ofcom.org.uk] and closes on Thursday.]

    • by Kalriath (849904) on Sunday July 22, 2012 @08:38PM (#40732681)

      Actually, the New Zealand government is also obliged to review the three-strikes law as well, and this is that review happening. Interestingly, although the music industry has been utilising their weapon quite frequently, the motion picture industry has flat out refused to, until the $25 fee is abolished (making it so ISPs have to foot the bill for enforcing their content - they claim that "ISPs make all of their profits from infringement of our copyrights, so they should pay"). Additionally, there have been a small number of people who have hit three strikes, and the music industry has not pursued disconnection for those people - presumably because pursuing it means taking it to a tribunal which might actually require evidence of infringement.

      • Mm, something similar is happening in the UK; but here Ofcom is planning to sit the major lobby groups down and force them to sign up to the scheme before they set it off (under their plan, the enforcement groups have to "buy" infringement allegations in advance, before each year-long period).

        As for the reporting, the main problem I have with the UK plan (and the NZ plan by the sound of it) is that the reporting, investigating and evidence-gathering is happening after the law goes into force. Call be a radi

      • Additionally, there have been a small number of people who have hit three strikes, and the music industry has not pursued disconnection for those people - presumably because pursuing it means taking it to a tribunal which might actually require evidence of infringement.

        Good point, I would like to add for those not familiar with the NZ law, if you get to three strikes and the right holders don't take you to the copyright tribunal within a set amount of time (2 or 3 months I think) the earlier strikes are thrown out and the user goes back to the start of the process, basically a use it or lose situation for the rights holders, don't accuse someone unless you are prepared to back it up.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    While it's true that P2P traffic has decreased in NZ after the law, the tunneling traffic has increased. See bellow:
    http://www.matthewtaylor.co.nz/2012/03/11/three-strikes-law-shifted-file-sharing-from-torrents-to-tunnels/
    http://www.wand.net.nz/sites/default/files/nznog12_0.pdf :)

  • Media cartels judging if their 3-strikes approach is successful based on how many people they punish. Someone needs to remind them that their job is to promote the sale of music/movies.

    If they paired their research on punishment, with data on legal sales then it might be meaningful, as it stands its just a scare story.

  • Where Rianz and co say the fee should be dropped from $20 per notice to $2 or less and the ISPs countering that with the largest saying it should cost over $1000 per notice, as they have spend half a million dollars complying.
  • If you want music for your collection, YouTube + one of the many YouTube to MP3 options is one way to get a specific song that their anti-piracy detection methods probably cant pick up.
    That or downloading from any number of websites offering music for download (including file sharing sites)

    For movies & TV, if you want to watch something once (and dont care so much about the quality) YouTube is a good way to do it if you can find a copy. If YouTube doesn't have it, plenty of other video sites that probab

    • by sqrt(2) (786011)

      I think YouTube audio is something like 64kbps highly compressed MP3 so it's even lower quality than even the worst torrents you'll find. Same with ripping from streams like Pandora or Spotify, it's usually radio quality. That used to be acceptable but today with lossless codecs and cheap storage in the terabytes there's no reason to put up with low bitrates.

      Direct download sites (I like filestube which searches many of them from one place) are the best option if you are worried about getting caught using B

      • Youtube bitrate rate depends on the video bitrate you choose. I use a plugin to force all videos to start with 720p, which has an audio bit rate of 256 kpbs. Of course, the original upload may have been of lesser bitrate, and youtube simply upscaled it. Hence I only use the official videos from vevo, etc.

  • by chebucto (992517) * on Sunday July 22, 2012 @09:40PM (#40732963) Homepage

    The problem is that 40% of the people are breaking the law as it is written.

    There are two basic ways of solving this:
    - Punish 40% of New Zealanders, or
    - Change the laws

    Methinks the second option deserves more consideration

  • I live in NZ, and a quote I heard on the radio lately says it all: "streaming is the new torrenting". Instead of torrenting you connect to one of the indexing sites and simply stream what you want to watch. That's what we do now. Not only does it use less data allowance, but as far as I know it's actually legal too, as you're not offering a copy to anyone else.

    About the only hassle is the stupid ads, and some of the sites stream data to you too slowly to watch in real time. We've gotten in the habit o
  • by rainer_d (115765)
    Maybe because Kim Dotcom has been imprisoned for some time and couldn't download himself.

    Now that he's out again and online, I'm sure he'll skew that statistic just like every other statistic....
    ;-)

  • The haves wanting more, whodathoughtit.

  • I'd like to see the ISPs MRTG graphs, in support of this claim. In theory, they should also have seen a very significant drop in traffic.

    Otherwise, "Three strikes law in NZ doubles the number of people switching to Usenet, or using TOR, or other methods" might be more accurate...

  • We will shift further away from full paid, new release entertainment even if we have to mine the 20th century in audio and black and white entertainment. We will not subsidize fascism. Turned off the cable TV racket 7-8 years ago.

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