EU plan to fight piracy may lead to internet policing, say critics
27 May 2011

The European Commission’s plan to tackle internet copyright infringements, such as illegal media downloads, would require internet service providers to work with the entertainment industry to monitor content. Critics fear this could lead to censorship and over-monitoring. BEUC, the European Consumers’ Organisation said, “Such practices would turn ISPs into some sort of Internet police that monitors the online behaviour of users and enforces copyright legislation. Fundamental rights of users will be jeopardized, namely the right to privacy and the right to due process.” Just last year, a judge ruled in Australia that an ISP company was not responsible for illegal downloading, stating that “If the ISPs become responsible for the acts of their customers, essentially they become this giant and very cheap mechanism for anyone with any sort of legal claim.”

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