Sunday, February 22, 2009

Blacked Out

I've managed to persuade Blogger to sort of black me out. We're all outraged of course by the "guilt upon accusation" copyright law about to come into force in New Zealand. That's section 92 of the Copyright Ammendment Act for those keeping track. See more here.
Update:Blackout now over. Russell Brown has a good discussion of the issue here. And Dean Knight begs to differ.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have not read the original text, merely the websites of your friends, but having worked for an internet provider I would like to make the following remark:

Internet access is not a right, and governed by terms of service. Usually, these terms of service have a 'reasonable use' condition, where 'reasonable' is often open for interpretation. File sharers, for example, generally cause excessive amount of traffic and may thus be disconnected, based solely on the terms of service and no real law is necessary.

Occasionally, an internet provider may come under a lot of pressure and thus choose to disconnect people much earlier to avoid conflicts. It is therefore important to protect the users as much as possible and also protect the internet provider from having to bow to increased pressure. The point of 'three strikes' seems like an academic concept to me, which probably has little practical consequences, except for isp's who choose not to bow to immediate pressure, who will then have to deal with a lot of trouble, also financially. In the real world, defending yourself costs money I'm afraid.

The isp I worked for did come under some pressure regarding a website discussing scientology, as well as under pressure from the german government due to hosting a radical left-wing website, just to name some examples. The first incident resulted in a court case lasting more than 10 years. Actually the case was also about a copyright issue (see I probably don't need to say that it would have been much easier for an isp to just comply than to run such a long courtcase.

I believe it is not the task of the isp to defend itself and its users against such pressure, but rather the task government to ensure such unreasonable pressure cannot be applied in the first case.