Campaign to Stop File-Sharers Being “Guilty Upon Accusation”

Post from: TorrentFreak

Campaign to Stop File-Sharers Being “Guilty Upon Accusation”

notinmynameThe term ‘3 Strikes’ is a familiar one to those monitoring attempts to crack down on illicit file-sharing. Many countries are looking at proposals which if implemented, would mean that a ‘graduated response’ is taken against those accused of online copyright infringement. ‘Strike One’ would earn the infringer a warning, ‘Strike Two’ would result in a slowing of the user’s Internet connection, with Internet disconnection proposed on a third accusation.

However draconian these proposals might appear, they are nothing compared to the proposed ‘Section 92′ of the Copyright Amendment Act in New Zealand. Scheduled for introduction at the end of February 2009, the act assumes that any individual simply accused of sharing copyright works on the Internet, is guilty. The punishment for ‘guilty’ is summary disconnection from the Internet. Understandably, this proposal hasn’t been well received by many outside of the entertainment industries. Indeed, RIANZ, New Zealand’s answer to the RIAA, has been a vocal supporter.

One group voicing dissent is The Creative Freedom Foundation. On January 2nd the group launched with the aim to ‘unite artists who are against the removal of New Zealander’s rights through proposed changes in Copyright law, done in the name of protecting creativity.’

Foundation Co-Founder and Director, Bronwyn Holloway-Smith is strongly opposed to Section 92, which she says threatens Internet disconnections ‘without evidence or even a trial.’

‘The result of this law could be that one rogue employee or even one virus infected computer could bring down a whole organization’s internet and it’s highly likely that schools, businesses, hospitals, and phone services will be harmed by this,’ she said.

Hollyway-Smith warns that as the government has shown support for the bill, unless there is a major public protest against it the proposals will ‘roll over into law’ – just 54 days from now. To this end, the foundation has started a petition and campaign against the ‘Guilt Upon Accusation’ laws, called ‘Not in my Name’. The petition can be signed on the Creative Freedom Federation website.

2 Comments on "Campaign to Stop File-Sharers Being “Guilty Upon Accusation”"

  1. Thanks for helping spread the word.

    We recently put out a press release stating that there are now thousands of artists against these laws in New Zealand

  2. There is currently an internet campaign to raise awareness of this new law, which is due to be enacted on 28th February. Despite petitions, letters to MP’s, radio debates, talking to politicians, etc the NZ government is determined to go ahead with the legislation.

    For details of the protest please see:
    Twitter and other social networks are buzzing with the action. Search Twitter for #blackout to see the support.

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