France should soften Internet 'three strikes' law, says gov't report

French copyright enforcement activities should focus on commercial pirates, not file-sharers, says a new report

France should stop cutting off the Internet access of those accused of illicit file sharing, and close down the agency that polices online copyright breaches, according to a government-commissioned report.

The report also recommended imposing a copyright levy on smartphones, tablets and other connected devices to remunerate rights holders; forcing publishers to allow libraries to loan out e-books, and encouraging copyright collection societies to allow remixing of audiovisual works on community sites, as long as the remixers do not profit.

Last August, Minister of Culture Aurélie Filippetti commissioned Pierre Lescure, a TV presenter and former entertainment industry executive, to advise on policies to support the French publishing, film and music industries in a world increasingly dominated by digital technologies and services.

A similar report commissioned by the previous government resulted in the creation of the French High Authority for the Distribution of Works and the Protection of Rights on the Internet (Hadopi), responsible for policing the country's "three strikes" file-sharing policy in which those accused of sharing copyright works face fines of up to €1,500 (US$1,947) and suspension of their Internet access.

That policy hasn't been particularly effective, however: While illicit file sharing has dropped, legal paid services have not benefited as was hoped, and the use of alternative unauthorized services such as streaming has increased, Lescure wrote in his report, published Monday. He recommended dropping the threat of Internet access suspension, limiting the fine to €60, and closing Hadopi, transferring some of its responsibilities to another agency.

Lescure proposed focusing antipiracy activities on commercial pirates, enlisting search engines and advertising networks to help "follow the money" back to those responsible for copyright infringement on a massive scale. However, he advised against forcing ISPs to block access to particular sites, or ordering registrars to redirect domain names, because of the risk of collateral damage to unrelated sites and services.

Lescure's recommendations have no legal force, but will be used to inspire and inform government policy.

Peter Sayer covers open source software, European intellectual property legislation and general technology breaking news for IDG News Service. Send comments and news tips to Peter at peter_sayer@idg.com.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags digital rights managementInternet-based applications and servicesintellectual propertyHadopicopyrightlegalMusic and audiointernetsearch enginesvideoInternet service providers

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Peter Sayer

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?