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76775 Posts in 13501 Topics by 1650 Members - Latest Member: insider4ever May 22, 2024, 11:34:32 pm
WinMX World :: Forum  |  Discussion  |  WinMx World News  |  Exclusive: Rogers – We Won’t Just Hand Customer Information Over to CRIA

Author Topic: Exclusive: Rogers – We Won’t Just Hand Customer Information Over to CRIA  (Read 566 times)

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Offline DaBees-Knees

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A few days ago, we reported on the Bloc, one of Canada’s federal political parties, wanting ISPs more liable for copyright infringement. Today, a spokesperson from Rogers Communications Inc., one of Canada’s largest ISPs, spoke to us on the issue of ISP liability.

2005. It’s a year, for some, is only yesterday. For others, 2005 represents a year that’s a long time ago. Whatever the stance, for Canadians, 2005 was the year that could have started a massive lawsuit campaign by the Canadian Recording Industry Association that is similar to what is seen in the United States. There was just one key thing missing – customer information against the alleged file-sharers tied with an IP address.

What went on in the Canadian court room set the stage for what has been playing out in the political sphere ever since then – a major lobbying effort to change copyright laws. For some, changing copyright laws for the benefit of consumers has been a major priority – one example being the expansion of fair use. For the copyright industry, it has always seemed to have been a long fought effort to reverse what was ruled in the courts back in 2005.

A few days ago, we reported on how the Bloc, one of Canada’s major political parties, wanted to change copyright laws to make ISPs more liable for copyright infringement. While for a few, it may seem like a crazy idea pulled out of the air, but on an international scale, it seems to fit fairly well with the industry movement to make ISPs play a greater roll on their networks against alleged copyright infringement. One example is seen in France where the president wants to implement a “three-strike” policy. In the United States, many ISPs have started implementing filtering technology to try and throttle users internet connections. One might be reminded of the Dutch ruling that said how BitTorrent tracker hosting is illegal in all of this. If you can’t go after the users effectively, go after the people that keep the internet operating. Either way, it wouldn’t be stretching the imagination too much by thinking this was inspired by things going on internationally.

For several months, many have seen the international copyright lobby as pushing through a thin-wedge through the anti-camcording law. After the bill was tabled, the thin wedge became more like an omni-bus to some. On the ISP front, it would put in force a notice-and-notice regime – a regime that is much more lax than the notice-and-takedown regime in the United States. Was it satisfactory, not according to the Bloc. While no specifics were mentioned, the Bloc is intent on making ISPs more liable for copyright infringement. So we asked the three largest Canadian ISPs what they thought about the Bloc’s ideas and we have received a response from Rogers Communications Inc.

“As you say in your article, the current regime is ‘notice and notice.’ That means that the record companies send us a notice if they think one of our customers is stealing music and we pass the notice on to our customer.” Jan Innes, Vice President of Communications at Rogers Communications Inc told ZeroPaid. “That is also the regime proposed in the new bill and we support that.”

Back in 2005, Rogers pointed out during the CRIA discovery case that there were privacy implications involved when bringing up the idea that a third party could get a hold of private customer information based solely on an accusation against an IP address. Privacy has always been a sensitive issue in Canada. One could easily take into account that Canada has a privacy commissioner as a sign that private information of people is a serious issue in Canada. Has anything changed between then and now about these ideas from Rogers? That doesn’t appear to be the case.

“As you note,” Innes said, “if the record companies want our customers name etc., we will not just hand it over to them. The record companies have to go to court and get a court order. In the earlier case referred to, the court didn’t rule that peer to peer music sharing was illegal so the record companies couldn’t get a court order.”

It’s very true. The act of sharing music in and of itself isn’t illegal in Canada – and for that matter, not in very many places around the world either. Some legal experts suggest that, in Canada, it technically isn’t illegal to download copyrighted music – a fact that should be heaven-send for digital music stores that sell music since technically, one is downloading copyrighted content once paying for it.

Still, are ISPs worried that the Bloc wants to impose laws that might increase liability? Rogers doesn’t appear to be that worried.
“As an industry,” Innes adds, “the ISP’s (ourselves included) have been working with Content owners for over five years in a very cooperative manner. There is no need to impose liability and the present bill sends the message that this is not the intent of the government to impose liability.”

Currently, there’s only one political party wanting to increase liability – the Bloc. If the Bloc hopes their views will be implemented into the legislation, they may have to hope the Liberal party or the NDP will support their views. That’s not very likely given that Liberal Critic Scott Brison has already blasted the copyright reform bill, saying it could result in a “police state”. Meanwhile, the NDP have, in numerous times, criticized copyright reform for being too restrictive. NDP member Charlie Angus has already called on the government to ensure all Canadians are properly consulted on copyright reform issues among other things. Chances are, all of this might leave the Bloc the only party in the house screaming about ISPs not being liable enough for copyright infringement.

And there you have it.  8)

WinMX World :: Forum  |  Discussion  |  WinMx World News  |  Exclusive: Rogers – We Won’t Just Hand Customer Information Over to CRIA

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