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AU Gov't Still Wants ISPs To Solve Illegal Downloads 218

bennyboy64 writes "Australia's Minister for Communications wants internet providers and the film industry to sit down and work out a solution to stop illegal movie downloads, despite a judge ruling in favor of an internet provider not being responsible for policing illegal downloads. The film studios first dragged internet provider iiNet into the Federal Court back in November 2008, arguing that the ISP infringed copyright by failing to take reasonable steps — including enforcing its own terms and conditions — to prevent customers from copying films and TV shows over its network."
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AU Gov't Still Wants ISPs To Solve Illegal Downloads

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 07, 2010 @10:42AM (#31052306)

    that the Australian Government and all the potential murderers and all the potential murder victims sit down and work out a solution to stop murder from ever taking place in Australia.

  • About Want... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by flyneye ( 84093 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @10:45AM (#31052332) Homepage

    Let's make grocers responsible for planet-wide obesity.
    Lets make foundrys responsible for gun related crime.
    Sounds like Australia has a silly tit in office.
    Like the old saying goes, and I believe it applies here in spite of its coarseness, "sh*t in one hand, and want in the other, then see which hand fills up first."

  • It Seems... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Yaa 101 ( 664725 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @10:54AM (#31052374) Journal

    It seems that law is not going to deter them from getting their way...

  • Only one way (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @10:55AM (#31052376) Homepage Journal

    TPM/DRM at the board level and require special clients ( like netzero ) to be inserted into your IP stack. You cant have ANY file that isn't approved by the 'key server'. Even your lowly diary has to be approved, let alone music, books, movies, games, applications. Connect online without your trusty TPM enabled client, you get reported.

    Great way to kill off free speech too, that old non DRM'd PDF of Mein Kampf you legally bought off Amazon years ago is no longer permitted, AND you get reported the next time you try to view it off your backup CDROM copy.

  • Re:Not My Problem? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @10:56AM (#31052386) Homepage Journal

    He who has the money makes the rules. And apparently that isn't the ISPs down there.

  • by loftwyr ( 36717 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:07AM (#31052462)

    Why not make the Internet itself illegal! Then they can slowly decriminalize individual ports and protocols with special identifications until they have complete control over everything.

    Once that's done, nothing illegal will happen and all their citizens will be happy drones.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:11AM (#31052478)

    You seriously want to put people in jail for copyright infringement? So, someone downloads a 0.99$USD song illegally and you make a government waste thousands of dollars for this person?

    It would be less trouble and cost exponentially less for the copyright holder to ask the local government for the retail price of each illegally downloaded copyrighted material than to jail them.

    In other words, get real. Copyright infringement doesn't deserve jail nor does it deserve thousands and millions of dollars in damages.

    There's also the fact that some things aren't even sold in some markets. So yes there is copyright infringement but no actual loss of sales. So how can there be any monetary damages in these cases?

  • by GrubLord ( 1662041 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:23AM (#31052534)

    It's not representational government when you blindly push your personal agenda against the objections of just about every stakeholder and expert in the system.

    I wish Steven Conroy would hurry up and get caught looking at naughty pics of Miranda Kerr on the (uncensored) Internet during a newscast and fired, so the free world can stop giggling at all these Australian human rights violations and we can all get back to being the relaxed outback heroes people used to think of us as.

  • Re:Not My Problem? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grimJester ( 890090 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:36AM (#31052594)
    Politicians make the laws. They can't just shrug and say "The courts already decided the issue".

    That said, the ISPs have no incentive to spend money policing their customers. I don't think the studios are prepared to pay for any filtering either. Despite what they claim, they don't see piracy as a big enough money drain that spending loads of cash on ISP level policing would be worth it. Piracy is just an excuse to get tighter copyright laws.
  • by TechForensics ( 944258 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:37AM (#31052598) Homepage Journal

    Why should the ISPs enter into talks when they've already won in court?

  • by D4C5CE ( 578304 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @11:51AM (#31052674)
    ...seems to be what saved this ISP in court.
    For reasons other than network integrity, any surveillance or manipulation of users' data, such as port-blocking, DNS (or simply ToS) censorship, [cough]Phorm[/cough] or Deep Packet Inspection in general lead down a road to perdition, as courts will show little mercy with defendants who through their own actions have themselves conceded (even though inaccurately, as there are still e.g. VPNs) the feasibility of the plaintiffs' outlandish demands.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 07, 2010 @12:35PM (#31052866)

    Not true, they have a disconnect policy for people who have used their network outside the TOS and infringing copyright is certainly on that list.

    The problem is that they were never provided with a customer who had been found guilty of infringing copyright, only allegations that had not been proven in a court of law... so they did the only sensible thing, they forwarded the allegations of crime to the police and waited for the justice system to arrive at a verdict... none were forthcoming (AFAIK).

    The content owners are trying to bypass the judiciary, effectively being judge jury and executioner and on top of that want the ISPs to play gamekeeper for them too... what cheek.

  • Don't you see?! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dirtside ( 91468 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @01:15PM (#31053116) Journal

    Hollywood just had its highest box office year EVER! Clearly piracy is taking a huge toll, and... ...uh... wait...

  • by BrokenHalo ( 565198 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @01:28PM (#31053234)
    And here's another idea:

    There's a federal election coming up some time this year, and unless I'm mistaken, Conroy's seat will be up for grabs. (Federal Senate terms are for 6 years except in the case of a double dissolution.) How about the Communications Minister gets kicked out of his office? It is obvious enough to everybody that he is utterly incompetent, and that his accomplishments are better suited to running an ice-cream van.

    Disclaimer: I support his party at elections, in the absence of a more sane alternative.
  • this is simple (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bobtree ( 105901 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @01:59PM (#31053472)

    Technical approaches do not solve social problems.

    There is a trivial way to resolve illegal downloading.

    Legalize it.

  • by psychodelicacy ( 1170611 ) * <> on Sunday February 07, 2010 @02:14PM (#31053560)

    No, the ISPs are the people who build and maintain the roads on which murderers travel to their victims' houses. Or maybe they're the people who sell cooking knives. Or maybe they're the people who provide alcohol to unstable people who then get mad and murder someone.

    Equally, you could say that the ISPs are like the owners of Xerox machines, which allow people to make unauthorised copies of copyrighted materials. Or maybe they're like libraries, which allow people to read copyrighted material for free.

    The point, I think, is that there is no good analogy for the roles of the parties in this kind of "crime" because it's the result of a pretty much unprecedented set of circumstances related to advances in technology.

  • by SQL Error ( 16383 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @06:57PM (#31055794)

    There will be an election before too long. DON'T VOTE LABOR.

    Vote Liberal/National, Democrat, Independent, hell, even Green (though they're still crazy as a bedbug). Just don't vote Labor.

  • Jusicial oversight (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dan541 ( 1032000 ) on Sunday February 07, 2010 @08:53PM (#31056526) Homepage

    We already have a "piracy code of conduct" it's called The Law. ISPs should not be conducting vigilante operations at the whim of private enterprises. If copyright holders wish to stop a user from file-sharing they must take that user to court and deal with them under the judicial oversight of the courts.

  • by Eth1csGrad1ent ( 1175557 ) on Monday February 08, 2010 @01:36AM (#31058268)

    You are kidding me aren't you ?

    The only thing guaranteed is that the Liberals (the ONLY alternative government) will push exactly the same agenda with exactly the same results!

    Have you forgotten Helen Coonan seeks to censor the Web [] and Senator Richard Alston: Australia's Internet killer? [] both Ministers for Communications under the previous Liberal government ?

    Stephen Conroy is a mis-guided tool, there is no doubt, but please don't try to push the point that there is a credible alternative.... there isn't.

  • by sjames ( 1099 ) on Monday February 08, 2010 @02:00AM (#31058368) Homepage Journal

    Nobody ACTUALLY obeys the law. I don't mean everyone is a criminal, I mean that people in general do what they believe to be the right thing and hopefully the law will agree with them. Sure, they know about the speed limit (because it's posted) but just look how well THAT gets followed.. They know theft and murder are illegal but that's NOT why they don't do it, they don't do it because it's morally wrong. A great many people not only don't know that downloading a file can be illegal, they don't consider it to be morally wrong.

    Making the penalties huge out of all proportion and well beyond the penalties for things they consider to be actually wrong only convinces them that it's all a scam and makes sure they will not even listen when someone tries to tell them it's actually wrong. All more laws can do is drive it underground. Keep in mind that before the internet and MP3, people would make tape copies all the time. Nobody ever considered hiding the fact, they saw nothing to be ashamed of.

    People in Armani suits showing up in a limo will not convince anyone that they're going broke, especially when they hear that the music and movie industry are posting record profits year after year (except when it comes time to pay net percentages, in which case they never have and never will make a single dime of profit).

    Until penalties become sure enough to overcome people's natural tendency to believe it'll never happen to them and severe enough that it can't be written off like a speeding ticket, they won't stop copying. When the penalties DO become that sure and severe, they'll be out to lynch the politicians that sold them down the river. The next batch of elected officials will fix that problem at gunpoint if necessary.

God help those who do not help themselves. -- Wilson Mizner