DEA anti-piracy measures delayed until 2014

DEA anti-piracy measures delayed until 2014

Summary: Although a judicial review of ISP complaints against the Digital Economy Act found mostly for the government, it asked for enough changes to reset the process of implementing the law

TOPICS: Legal, Piracy

The Digital Economy Act's anti-piracy measures have been delayed until 2014 at the earliest, following court cases brought by ISPs unhappy with the costs they would have to bear and with other aspects of the law.

The measures, which include sending warning letters and the threat of disconnection to internet users deemed to infringe copyright or other intellectual property laws through file-sharing, cannot be brought into effect until various legal processes are completed.

A judicial review and subsequent appeal, although finding largely for the government, created enough changes that a new impact assessment was required, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) said on Thursday.

"We expect the first warning letters to go out in early 2014," a DCMS spokesman said in an email to ZDNet UK. "This is due to the rulings in the judicial review of the DEA. The court ruled in the government's favour in both the judicial review and the appeal court; however it ruled against small parts of the cost sharing.

"Therefore the Cost Sharing Statutory Instrument will need to be changed, and as a result Ofcom will need to change their code. Both will be published when they are ready."

The Digital Economy Act was passed in controversial circumstances at the end of the last Labour government in 2010, and has attracted criticism from users and ISPs alike.

Identification of alleged infringers will be the responsibility of the rights holders, who will tell ISPs which of their customers are suspected of unlawfully downloading copyrighted material. In the first, year-long phase of the scheme, ISPs will need to write to those customers and warn them that they are suspected of unlawful file-sharing.

After that year, if so-called piracy is not down by 70 percent or more, the next phase will begin. Repeat downloaders of copyrighted material will be sanctioned, possibly through suspension of their internet access. However, it will be up to the business secretary to finalise which penalties can be applied.

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Topics: Legal, Piracy

Rupert Goodwins

About Rupert Goodwins

Rupert started off as a nerdy lad expecting to be an electronics engineer, but having tried it for a while discovered that journalism was more fun. He ended up on PC Magazine in the early '90s, before that evolved into ZDNet UK - and Rupert evolved with them into an online journalist.

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  • The whole thing is a FARCE. Dynamic IP addresses are not assigned to ONE person/address for life, and can be changed simply by resetting a router. Couple that with many tech-ignorant people having no, or very weak passwords on their routers/wi-fi means any passing person can leach someone else's bandwidth....

    Failywood need to get out of the 18th century and adapt to modern times. Scrap their out-dated and useless business models. If they made their products universally available, for a FAIR price, and in a format the people WANT, they'd make trillions. Their regionally-locked, DRM-infested, unskippable warnings/adverts are what's wrong. People WILL pay for it its user-friendly.
  • thats it for me.. im now making plans to leave this country. the whole western world is begining to look like nazi germany.
    what with Peter Cruddas selling prime minister facetime and policy, to the fluoride in ur water. and americans bombing for oil... texas has oil, why dont u bomb there.
    and now they want to dictate to me what i can download.
    i remember the good old days of 28k dial up when the web was a true free place.
    us old school ppl should put together our own www. back to the old school.

    indeed the whole world needs to STOP being greedy.
    we dont need companies making hundreds of billions.
  • It really is "not on" that a law has been passed by the Government? that the contents of which must be changed, without reconsideration, before it can be legally implemented.
    Next they will be passing blanket laws that have no content whatsoever until after they have been "voted on".
    If this is not true then I challenge the government to HONESTLY and OPENLY dispute it. How many MPs actually attended the original debates and therefore have at least a chance of understanding (or even knowing) what they passed as law.