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UK to copy French stance on Illegal downloading

Times Online (opens in new tab) reports that the UK government is considering new laws to tackle the growing piracy problem, according to a leaked Green Paper.

Internet Service Providers could be legally obliged to take actions against users who are either downloading or uploading pirated material like movies, software or music files.

The Dailymail (opens in new tab) writes that those suspected of theft will be sent a warning email to stop followed by a suspension and a third infringement will end up with a contract termination.

This three-strike scenario is set to debut in France soon after the French president Nicolas Sarkozi gave his blessings to the scheme.

The rise in illegal downloads has been fuelled by the popularity of peer to peer technology like Bit torrent which makes it frighteningly easy for even Internet novices to download illegal content within seconds.

The fact that broadband prices have fallen sharply in the past years as well has prompted many to try downloading content, legal or not.

The big four Internet Service Providers have already voluntarily started to talk to Hollywood film studios on how they should tackle the issue of piracy.

This also raises the question of how the ISPs will monitor what content a user is downloading with an estimated six million internet users doing the bad thing.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.