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NZ Illegal Downloading Crackdown Law In Effect 329

First time accepted submitter sfranklin writes "As of Sept 1 at midnight, 'anyone caught downloading copyrighted content illegally could face fines of up to $15,000 and have their internet cut off' in New Zealand. You don't even have to do the deed yourself. The 'account holder needs to know what's going on even if they themselves don't do anything online ...' Scary stuff, although I wonder how much actual enforcement is likely to happen."
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NZ Illegal Downloading Crackdown Law In Effect

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  • Not all bad (Score:4, Insightful)

    by atomicbutterfly ( 1979388 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @03:00AM (#37272652)

    If I were a Kiwi (slang for New Zealander in case you didn't know), this law would give me an additional impetus to begin searching for free/open-source/creative commons software and media for all my computing and entertainment needs. Sure, I'd buy stuff occasionally as well, but if I had to buy every single thing I was using which was pirated I'd be broke and seriously in debt. Much better to hunt out legally free software and media.

    Having said that, I'm an Aussie (the bigger brother of the Kiwis) and it's a hobby for me to do this anyway even though we don't have such a draconian law. I suppose some others in NZ might find ways to get around it, but I don't see the point of risking it myself.

  • Simple (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sasayaki ( 1096761 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @03:02AM (#37272656)

    It'll be enforced almost never, except against people who earn a personal grudge from someone in authority. Turn down that creepy ex-politician for a date? Get a knock on the door from the state sponsored copyright cops. Film a cop beating up a homeless guy and post the video on YouTube? Your NAS gets seized by her majesty's finest.

    It's like criminalizing swearing. Since everyone except extreme outliers is guilty of the crime at some point or another, it's not possible to enforce it properly so the law becomes just something else to throw at people who piss off people with power.

  • As a kiwi. . (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Master Moose ( 1243274 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @03:03AM (#37272660) Homepage

    I don't think that anyone actually wants us to use the internet.

    We have always been penalised because of and by it. Expensive and slow by international standards. . . and now this finally passes (it has been on the books for some time)

    I would write more, but I am likely to go over my data cap any minute.

  • Re:As a kiwi. . (Score:3, Insightful)

    by miasmic ( 669645 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @03:33AM (#37272808)

    Yeah I'm already over my data cap, I've been waiting a week before I can start watching Youtube videos and download again, only a couple more days to go.

    It really is appalling and a backwards attitude is seen from both Telecom providers and the government here. It results in usage of search engines, smart phone apps etc that's years behind countries like the US and UK, even taking into account population differences. I'm totally disappointed to hear that this passed. The country I feel in many areas takes too much notice of what is going on in the US in legislation and corporate policy and not enough of what is going on in Norway, Sweden and Findland, for example, which have more in common with NZ in many significant ways than the US does.

    From a previous /. article about undersea cables, NZ is currently poorly serviced, but a more direct, much larger link is going in directly towards the US in a couple of years (as I remember from the map) which should hopefully improve things, with NZ having better connectivity than Australia in that direction rather than the other way round. But it's still little excuse for the current setup of things.

  • by EnergyScholar ( 801915 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @04:25AM (#37272972)
    Hey, have other slashdotters noticed the increasing number of astroturf posters in the past year or two? I presume everyone reading this knows that one can hire consulting firms that maintain stables of fake online identities to 'contribute' to the 'discussion' on all sorts of threaded discussions. I think five years ago they were few enough to barely notice. In the past year I've spotted several probable astroturf trolls attempting to sway discussions. The **IA agents are especially obvious.
  • by blahplusplus ( 757119 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @04:47AM (#37273056)

    Copyright is the new enclosure of the commons. The digital commons is being enclosed by corporate/government powers because it is a threat to the status quo.

  • by cheekyboy ( 598084 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @05:23AM (#37273206) Homepage Journal

    Why do people in real high power approve such shit laws?

    Sure if we all received a nice 350k salary we would never ever pirate anything.

    And stop using the term pirate, we arent raping people on boats.

    Its civil copywrite violations.

    Oh and btw every cop in NZ uses bit torrent to download movies for their kids, they sure dont get paid enough to buy games/movies.

    I wanna see politians on 55k salary.

  • Re:Not all bad (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @12:23PM (#37276020)

    I thought America was all free-market and capitalism? It sounds more like communism with your lack of choice.

    You're kidding, right? You must be new here or something. This subject comes up pretty regularly on Slashdot, with lots of other Americans saying the exact same things as me. I'm a little surprised given your relatively low UID.

    No, America is NOT free-market and capitalism. We love oligopolies and monopolies here. In fact, we think that any government action to limit monopolies is bad, because it's "punishing success", and that monopolies should be allowed to do anything they want to their customers or potential competitors. We even think that corporations are people; there's a good chance our next President will be a man who said those very words. Don't forget, we also believe in allowing unlimited abuse of the patent system, so that big corporations can use vague patents on obvious "inventions" to shut out competition from smaller rivals.

    However, we don't believe in communism. Communism (in practice) is where the government controls everything, and owns all the corporations. What we believe in here in America is an elite group of people running the corporations, and the government only serving to protect their interests. That's frequently called "fascism".

"I prefer the blunted cudgels of the followers of the Serpent God." -- Sean Doran the Younger