Court Orders Necessary To Disconnect Filesharers Says Culture Minister

Owing to the widespread outcry over the government’s proposed plans to disconnect the users suspected of illegal file downloading, the culture secretary Ben Bradshaw has said that the government’s stance to deal with the illegal filesharers will be moderated.

Bradshaw told the House of Commons culture, media and sport committee that the government had no intent of disconnecting people “willy-nilly on the basis of an accusation”.

Under the new strategy, Bradshaw asserted that the right holders would have to obtain court orders before taking any action against the persistent offenders.

Earlier, business secretary Lord Mandelson noted that the ISPs would be compelled to provide the info, on users who used illicit sites, to film studios and music companies so that they could take the necessary action against the freeloaders.

In addition, Bradshaw also asserted that those targeted should be given a chance to appeal in a court against the decision.

Responding to the question about the rights of persistent offenders to appeal in a court of law, Bradshaw said: “The suspension to which you refer, which would be as a very last resort for serial and serious infringement... wouldn't just happen on the basis of an accusation”.

Our Comments

The move marks the softening stance the government adopted at the backdrop of a survey claiming that a majority of people wouldn’t vote for the political party that support stiff crack down measures against the filesharers. One can be sure that a systematic targeting of the tens of thousands of illegal downloaders would have been a disastrous move.

Related Links

Bradshaw: Courts must OK P2P disconnections


Government measures against illegal file-sharing to be watered down


Government backs down on cutting off filesharers

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Bradshaw 'softens file-sharing measures'

(Digital Spy)

UK Gov to Require Court Order for Illegal ISP File Sharer Disconnection

(ISP Review)