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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: April 29, 2009 @ 1:34 pm

    Round two for French file-sharing legislation

    Ciara O'Brien

    It’s Groundhog Day in France. Or it might just seem that way because French politicians are once again mulling over legislation to punish file sharers.

    It seems like only days ago that the proposed laws, which include that controversial “three strikes and you’re out” element, was rejected.  A few tweaks and amendments though, and it’s back on the table. (Sound familiar?)

    Under the planned legislation, a state agency would be set up to  do the finger wagging, sending a warning email to alleged illegal file sharers.  Keep it up and the  next warning will come via snail mail, until finally, you are booted off your connection for a year.

    There are so many reasons why this “three strikes” proposal is one of the daftest ideas someone came up with. And I’m including in that the copy protection on CDs that was broken with a cheap black marker.

    Never mind the fact that this has already been given the thumbs down at European level, proving that the person having their internet access yanked is actually the guilty party could be difficult enough. IP addresses can be faked, leading to trouble for investigators.

    I feel like I’ve done nothing but write posts lately about the music industry, piracy and how this solution – and I use that word very, very lightly – is probably not the magic wand that some quarters appear to think it will be.

    Question for the music industry: if every country brings in a three strikes rule and implements it stringently, and revenue still continues to fall, who will you blame?

    But carry on. By all means. I just can’t promise not laugh to myself in a year’s time when we’re hearing about the next solution to the problem, because (surprise, surprise) file sharing still hasn’t been stamped out.

    • Gerry Mac Donagh says:

      Yes Its a daft idea,someone should tell the french ,but Sarko doesnt listen to anyone IN FACT MOST FRENCH PEOPLE THINK ITS DAFT!

    • Jim Carroll says:

      I feel like I’ve done nothing but write posts lately about the music industry, piracy and how this solution – and I use that word very, very lightly – is probably not the magic wand that some quarters appear to think it will be.

      Ciara – the thing is there is NO magic wand. You know that, I know that, the people reading this blog know that but the record industry has yet to admit that they also know it. This is how the record industry has operated since the late 90s – sue, sue, sue, sue and, for good measure, sue. They have made so many basic mistakes that you wonder how they managed to keep their business going so long before MP3s, downloads and file-sharing came along. Then, you look at the bigger picture and see a long line of similar technology SNAFUs. To keep with the magic wand, the genie is out of the bottle and the little bollox does not want to go back in again

    • Ciara says:

      I agree completely Jim, it’s the equivalent of repeatedly banging your head off a wall. Eventually, you’re either going to realise it’s getting you nowhere or you’re going to do yourself some serious damage.

      The music industry appears to be going for the damage option.

      I wonder how much they’ve spent on legal bills pursuing people for a few thousand euro?

    • Jim Carroll says:

      I wonder how much they’ve spent on legal bills pursuing people for a few thousand euro?

      Enough to send a few thousand little legal eagles through school and college

    • petee says:

      the end of the interweb is nigh. bring back the c-90 cassette

    • Phil says:

      Really, there IS no way to stop file-sharing sites. As long as it’s illegal, young people will find it cool – obviously the music industry knows nothing about human nature, or maybe not enough.