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Over Optimistic UK Government Plans To Get ISPs To Pay For Anti-Piracy Work

Posted by: , 13:54 AEDT, Mon January 24, 2011

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The British government wants ISPs to contribute to the cost of anti-piracy activities, and optimistically estimates the benefit of such a scheme

The British government has proposed a plan in which ISPs pay for a quarter of the cost of a proposed anti-piracy system, in which suspected downloaders are notified of their illegal activities.

While rights holders will be responsible for the majority of the cost, 75%, this is in effect an Internet tax, which ISPs will no doubt pass onto subscribers.

This proposal is part of the Digital Economy Act, which was passed through parliament in April 2010. While the act was proposed by the former Labour government, the current Conservative, Liberal Democrat coalition is pushing ahead with the plan.

The government feels that a notification scheme would cut the financial damage caused by online piracy by half, if introduced. This over optimistic estimate, as some critics has called it, says that £200m worth of benefits will result from this scheme. 

Legal online music sales recently recorded a huge 30% increase in terms of sales, with critics of the notification scheme saying that providing easier and better legal ways of purchasing content is a much more effective tool against online piracy.

Do you think governments have the right to impose an Internet piracy tax, and at the same time legislate that ISPs share private subscriber data with right holders? Post in our comments section below or in our forum:



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