Controversy over the iiNet vs AFACT case has sparked an influx of comments on online articles and forums. The wide range of comments stem from readers' views on whether Internet Service Providers should be liable for copyright infringements. While some comments are insightful and backed by analogies and factual references, others comments are pure entertainment. Below are what we thought are 10 of the best posts in the heated cyber debate.
"Unsustainable Business Model
The scopes of ISP are limited to providing internet connection and service to the end user. Policing the internet traffic is simply not within the scope of ISP and they are not required by law(unless the govt change the law). I agree with iinet stance and AFACT should do their job to enforce the copyright law through legal means on the user not the ISP.
If the copyright owner has a case backed with irrefutable evidence against the end user or iinet, why not sue them and bring them to court instead of asking the ISP to act on these allegations/accusations. Send in subpoena and file charges, not accusations or "alleging infringement" as a basis for punishment to the end user.
The right way to handle this is for the copyright owner to send the infringement notice to the user (through the ISP) detailing the copyright ownership, what has been infringed, how it was infringed , etc. This is simply to notify that the file that the user is downloading/uploading/providing contains copyright infringing materials or the file is copyrighted and therefore ask the user to remove the copyrighted file/material. Give time for the user to comply, else take em to civil court.
ISP simply pass the notice to the end user and not acting further than that. After all ISP is just the pipe not the police or the criminal. The message to AFACT: do your own job and let ISP do theirs.
IMO packet filtering cost a lot and dramatically slows down the internet connection, they are a liability which is contradictory to Kevin Rudd's promise to deliver fast national broadband connectivity."
"One of the ironic parts about about this story is that Village Roadshow posted a 470% increase in profits in August. This pretty much states the opposite to what they are claiming about piracy affecting profit margins.
They may win the battle, though it's very unlikely they will win the war. Piracy will move further underground and build yet more momentum as consumers either cannot afford the ridiculous prices ($30-$40 for a DVD or $20+ for a music cd) or choose to steal them to spite the industry.
If the studios/music companies just saved the money spent on copy protection and teams of lawyers and dropped the prices on cd's and dvd's by around 25% they would likely be seeing an influx of sales... Plus they would probably be turning over higher yearly profits as well."
"I think the most useful analogy here is that of a motorway operator being taken to court because they failed to bring down the toll gates after they had been notified that some trucks, cars (and maybe even motor bikes) where entering and exiting their roadways with contraband on board.
In this fairly clear case the operator has no right, or viable way, to stop and inspect the contents of vehicles in order to enforce such a suggestion. The police would have to conduct such an operation, with approriate cause and warrants in place. Why is there even a case?"
"The offenders are iiNet's customers not their staff.
When a company sells a product is has an obligation to provide something that is fit for purpose, it does not have an obligation to ensure that the customer uses the product legally.
Even in extreme cases like gun sales and provision of prescription drugs, the vendor has legislated checks and balances to apply in the sale process, but after that has no responsibility for the use of the product."