In a move to decrease the rate of internet piracy in Australia, telecommunications companies are set to implement a ‘three strikes’ anti-piracy scheme that will allow for personal details of online copyright infringers to be handed to movie and television copyright owners.
Telecommunications industry lobby group, Communications Alliance, submitted its Copyright Notice Scheme Code 2015 to the Australian Communications and Media Authority for approval on 8 April. This came a day after iiNet and M2 Group lost a court battle to keep the personal details of 4736 illegal downloaders from Voltage Pictures, the copyright owners of the hit movie Dallas Buyers Club.
If the new code is approved, copyright owners will hand lists of Australian copyright pirates’ IP addresses to a telco industry body, which will match the addresses to their customers. Warning letters will then be sent to the relevant Australian internet users.
The warnings will detail the time, place and a description of the content that was allegedly downloaded without permission, as well as educate the copyright infringer on how to purchase authorised copies of content and avoid breaching copyright.
After three warning letters or ‘strikes’ in a 12-month period, telcos will assist copyright owners in identifying Australian internet users for potential legal action.
However, users can ask for an independent adjudication panel to review the finding.
Communications Alliance reportedly said that “The scheme contains strong safeguards against any treat to the privacy of internet users”.
“[It] has a strong emphasis on public education and does not contain explicit sanctions against internet users.”
The Copyright Notice Scheme Code 2015 will be independently evaluated 18 months after it begins operating.
IMAGE: Dallas Buyers Club