Monday, January 26, 2009

Is Three Strikes on The Way Out?

Controversy continues about New Zealand's ill-conceived three strikes regime that is due to take effect on February 28, 2008. LIANZA, an association that represents 460 public, educational, commercial, industrial, legal and government libraries in New Zealand is joining the chorus demanding delay or revision Their concerns are reported to be mainly:

“As written, every person or organisation that has a website is an ISP, as is every library, school, educational institution, association, government department, company, business and office that provides Internet access to its users or to its staff,” it says.

The second concern for LIANZA is that organisations may have their internet connection terminated over accusations of law breaches, without the allegations being proven.

BTW, it's always good to see emboldened and articulate librarians taking an independent stand and not passively accepting bad policy and bad legislation. Hopefully, this spirit that is alive and well at least in New Zealand and the USA will also come to Canada.

Meanwhile, Michael Geist has pointed to a Times article indicating that the push to three strikes is out in the UK.

As the American and Canadian RIAA and CRIA litigation have shown, information from record companies about alleged so-called piracy is notoriously unreliable. It is inconceivable that they be given any power to unilaterally force the termination of internet service to anyone.

Hopefully, we will see the end of any further movement to "three strikes", would makes IPSs (however they may be defined) liable from all sides, obliterate the presumption of innocence, and put unprecedented and unchecked power into the hands of national record industry organizations , while depriving citizens of the protection of the courts for all practical purposes.

Hopefully, New Zealand will repeal this law before it takes effect.


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