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back to article France's 'three strikes' anti-piracy law shot down

French internet users need no longer fear having their connections cut off under strict France's Hadopi copyright infringement law, after the government's Constitutional Council on Friday ruled that portion of the much-criticized law to be unconstitutional. Under an official decree issued on Monday, the government can no longer …

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Eh, c'est la France !

One law down, one tax arises.

Anybody surprised ?

Pas moi.

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Re: Eh, c'est la France !

Not just France. The Netherlands has a nice little tax % on all devices that can carry "media" and the devices that use "media". And several other texes of similar intent. Which are, of course, applied before VAT is calculated. The Government Will Have Its' Share Of The Pie.

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Re: Eh, c'est la France !

@Grikath

I believe due to the NL media tax, you can't get prosecuted for downloading things from BitTorrent since you've already paid the tax on the storage.

I may be wrong, someone who lives there told me.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Eh, c'est la France ! @An0n

While downloading copyrighted material in many countries is perfectly legal, uploading (sharing) isn't.

The thing with Bittorrent is that unless you use a hacked client, you'll be sharing the downloaded material concurrently.

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Anonymous Coward

The Fench

Have always been good at back tracking. That's why they lost in so many conflicts.

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Re: The Fench

Well, we did not lost so many conflit, only most of those after Napoleon 1er.

But so the english, the german, the italian, spanish, etc...

But on this one, it's really like shooting yourself in the foot. They validate a law to invalidate it after. . .

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Losses

@Anarko_bizounours we did not lost so many conflit, only most of those after Napoleon 1er

The ones that always seem to matter to (us) English are Crecy, Agincourt, Blenheim - all well before Napoleon 1er.

I have to agree that it applies equally to the English, Germans and Spanish. But the Italians?

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Happy

Nice.

Bad on the tax hike, but at least they're taking out the retarded law to pasture. It's copyright which needs fixing; it was intended as a temporary grant similar to patents, but has been eternally extended thanks to Walt Disney's zealous protection of their stuff. Copyright terms should be scaled back to 56 years, no exceptions, worldwide.

And on battling piracy? How about not being asses to legal purchasers? DRM, stupid regional restrictions ... the more locks they put, the more people that resort to piracy.

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@ Daniel B. - Re: Nice.

>...

How about not being asses to legal purchasers? DRM, stupid regional restrictions ...

...<

You forgot about the 15 minutes of life wasted with every movie due to being forced to watch all the unskipable copyright notices, coming-soon-adverts and anti-piracy clips first.

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Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

Ah yes. I have 2, maybe 3 DVDs that come with an unskippable version of the hideous "you wouldn't steal a car" ad. Yeech!

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FAIL

Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

The "you wouldn't steal a car!" ad deserves some kind of anti-award as one of the most brain-buggeringly backward pieces of propaganda ever - umm - propagated.

The worst of it, I think, is that someone made a brief video demonstration of how to shoplift and snatch handbags, and then tacked it, unskippably, onto the beginning of DVDs aimed at children.

I daren't let my 3-year-old watch 'The Wizard of Oz' unsupervised, not because of Margaret Hamilton's hamming, but I don't want him to get the idea that's how you go shopping.

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Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

That's the first motivation to rip dvd. But the big guys holding the movie/music right don't care and then whine about people goint to piracy. . .

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Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

I deffo wouldn't steal a car. But if I could get my computer to make a perfect copy of one, I reckon I would.

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Holmes

Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

Wrote :- "The "you wouldn't steal a car!" ad deserves some kind of anti-award as one of the most .. backward pieces of propaganda ever"

Agreed, it so annoys me that I nearly want to go out and steal one there and then, let alone a DVD.

It also makes me think that there must, statistically, be a proportion of viewers who *would* steal one, so their premise is flawed already, like those signs as you are driving past a country village that say "Thank you for driving carefully"

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Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

The "You wouldn't steal a car, but we're perfectly happy to use music for this advert without permission, or paying the guy who wrote it appropriate compensation" adverts?

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Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

Whenever I see that advert/notice I always think of a Dara O'Brien sketch and agree with him that I might, depending on the circumstances and especially after seeing it!

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Childcatcher

Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

You forgot about the 15 minutes of life wasted with every movie due to being forced to watch all the unskipable copyright notices, coming-soon-adverts and anti-piracy clips first.

But they can be skipped! All that is needed is to download a copy that someone else has ripped for you off the net. These never have those ads at the beginning. As long as you pay the tax, the government is OK with it, so no problem there. The only people left out in the cold are the artists, but no-one is paying them anyway, it seems.

This scheme would feel a lot better if the tax went right back to the artists, but what government is going to give back money it has already added to its coffers if no-one seems to care about the people who are being harmed?

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Big Brother

Re: @ Daniel B. - Nice.

Obligatory link...

http://www.techfleece.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/piracy-vs-official-movies.jpg

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Anonymous Coward

"...all the unskipable copyright notices"

... I do love the bit about "oil rigs, prisons, and schools", though...

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maybe patents and copyright "laws" should be subject to the same free market structures as the rest of so called "free" western capitalist social structure??

you know, supply and demand unhindered by external regulation or control by government or monopolies

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You can't.

Patents and copyrights are, by definition, a government intervention meant to provide an incentive to invent and create, respectively. Without them, content creators and inventors might balk and releasing their works for fear of being immediately copycatted without recourse.

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Re: You can't.

Well thats how it works in China...

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Bub

Re: You can't.

The idea that someone passionate about music wouldn't want anyone to hear their compositions if there were no copyright law could only be promulgated by someone who doesn't understand music.

Those in the music biz only for the money might think twice - but would that be such a bad thing?

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Re: You can't.

And china is so free of piracy...

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FAIL

@Charles 9 - Re: You can't.

Wrote :- "Patents and copyrights are .. meant to provide an incentive to invent and create, respectively. Without them, content creators and inventors might balk and releasing their works for fear of being immediately copycatted without recourse."

Well I have invented quite a few things, both for my work and privately, and they have been PHYSICALLY MADE too. But the ones for personal use I have never released "for fear of being immediately sued" (as you put it) by some patent troll under one of their broadly worded patents (under which they have never made anything).

Eg, about 1973, a buzzer to warn if I opened my car door to get out with the lights still on. Standard these days but I never saw another back then; maybe someone else had invented it before me, don't know, wasn't going to find out. Seems an obvious idea to me.

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Re: You can't.

How can you say that? Who would want to live in a world without Simon Cowell?

And what about all those hardworking software engineers that make auto-tune software?

You sir are a monster.

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Re: You can't.

"The idea that someone passionate about music wouldn't want anyone to hear their compositions if there were no copyright law could only be promulgated by someone who doesn't understand music."

Oh? If I'm not mistaken, most of what we would consider the greatest works of art in the world weren't made out of the goodness of the artists' hearts. They were commissions, for the most part, meaning they were in it for the money just like everyone else. Even a starving artist has gotta eat.

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Re: You can't.

i'm not sure how it would work, but patents/copyrights should be in a competition, maybe different patent/copyright "providers" and customers would choose the best one for themselves (cheapest prices, best service, etc)

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Devil

Typical quango...

12m over 60 employees. That's a €100k _average_ salary taking into account the standard overheads formula..

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Yag

Re: Typical quango...

Welcome to France, with its long tradition of redundant, expensive and useless agencies.

"La France est un pays extrêmement fertile : on y plante des fonctionnaires et il y pousse des impôts."

Georges B. Clemenceau, 1841-1929

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a new "culture tax" on content consumption devices

And a new "transport tax" on motor vehicles to make up for the declining sales of horses and carts.

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Anonymous Coward

I'll bet this shitze don't fly

You can bet that copyright holders won't allow this injustice to stand and I don't blame them at all. Microsucks may buy France and hang the responsible beaks and pirates. The only good pirate is a dead pirate.

No ISP is required to provide internet access to a customer who violates the TOS. Read the contract that you agree to when you sign up for internet access. Absolutely no one has the right to force an ISP to provide internet service to a criminal, aka pirate, aka copyright infringer. I bet 100,000 Euro this ruling is overturned and or new legistaltion passed to prevent pirates in France from getting away with their crimes for less than a slap on the wrist.

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Pint

Re: I'll bet this shitze don't fly

Eh, if you weren't an AC, I'd take you up on that bet… The decision comes from the Constitutional Council, which generally has the last word in these matters in France…

But do keep spluttering!

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Re: I'll bet this shitze don't fly

Ahhhh, ignore it, ratfox - it is just one of the usual IP trolls that come here every time to post from the same script. I'm don't know exactly who employs them, but at least one will show up every time.

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"declining home media and ticket sales"

I simply don't believe that there is a decline in ticket sales or home media. Cinemas make an absolute fortune from every rubbish reboot blockbuster that gets released and while CDs are only bought by enthusiasts now, legal downloads seem to be doing quite well, as are devices to play them on.

Just sounds like an excuse to make a new tax to me.

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""declining home media and ticket sales"

The last I looked the share chart for CineWorld are heading in a North Easterly direction.

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Stop

Seriously?

I still rent DVDs because I cannot justify the over £30 travel/admission to a cinema for my family. Bonus: cheap snacks, no rustling papers, no kids squeeking. I'm far from the only person I know who does this (I have a daughter who has the job of cueing the Film past the enforced rubbish while drinks/snacks are sorted)

I will ALWAYS buy the CD for music - and I buy far too many, often on import - because I want to be able to play on ANY of my devices - PC, laptop, MP3, HiFi, car (MP3), phone, tablet (not prepared to use "cloud" anything, proprietory formats or iTunes).

Sheep may be the most common variety of consumer (particularly those farmed by Apple), but as usual it's the paying customers who get ripped off by DRM.

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Anonymous Coward

And once again my common sense is tingling

Well, the lescure report is just as dumb as any report about IT so far in France. (Just a quick remember, a minister once said that open office was a firewall...)

Some year ago, they wanted to tax the computer screen because of streaming and people watching TV on pc. So some people didn't bough TV anymore and by doing so weren't obliged to pay the taxes for the public tv.

There was a huge commotion, and the gouvernment stop this law projet rapidly. And they found a new way using hadopi. Seriously, that's the biggest mistake a gouvernment can make. It cost money, it's not efficient (only old people, or people that don't know about bittorrent or vpn are targeted. And once you receive the mail, you just have to google vpn, and enjoy screwing hadopi.)

And now the same constitutional council that did validate the law, says it's not constitutionnal...

Sometime I think the Vogon race in H2G2 are in reality french...

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What else is there to say

I don't think I can add anything new to this old argument. Whilst the content industry is stuck in the past they will continue to get bit on the bottom by the future. I would welcome an update by The Reg on the state of the UKs 3 strikes policy though.

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Re: What else is there to say

I second that request for an update. As Jonathan says, there is not much to be said on this subject that is new. I would like to spew some vitriol on the "culture tax" idea though, even if I'm not saying anything new; subsidising a failing model where paying customers are literally treated worse than the offenders is pure idiocy. I do like the bit where they propose targeting 'for-profit' offenders though.

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Another 'win' for Hollywood?

When will they get the message?

My media supplier is PirateBay - fast delivery. And who needs the fidelity of CDs to hear what passes for music these days?

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So if you pay the tax, you can then commit piracy with no fear of repercussions? Cool!

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The media industry needs to learn

DRM is the problem, not piracy. Some people will always pirate stuff, they often could not even afford "legal" copies. That's why they used to record music of the radio and movies of the TV, all perfectly legal in most countries. And they copied with friends. All perfectly normal. And if you want to buy a recording, just do so, it'll play on all your devices.

Now with DRM this has changed. Suddenly you cannot reliably play your media, so essentially you need to rip it for your personal use... which is illegal in most countries. The alternative is to get a pirated copy... which is also illegal, but cheaper and quicker.

DRM benefits nobody, yet it costs money. It costs money to implement and circumvent, money that could be used to actually solve problems. DRM probably costs the industry far more than piracy.

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Re: The media industry needs to learn

No, they don't need to learn. They know what they are doing. They could not care less about piracy but they reckon that most legitimate consumers will not know how to bypass the DRMs, or if they knew they would not bother to and will just buy another copy/version/format. Yes, a few would be pushed to resort to "piracy" but thousands will just pay up.

Basically, it's a scam, like selling intentionally defective product to induce buyer to pay for replacements. If our lawmakers weren't blinded by bribescontributions from the industry, the DRM peddlers would all have been living in jail, together with pick-pockets and other con people...

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