Pirate in France, lost your internet access

Per a new law expected to pass this fall and go into effect next year:


Basically, get caught 3 times and lose your internet access for a year. Interesting angle is that the victims submit the accusations and evidence and then a new government body makes the decision. It will be interesting to see just how workable this approach is.

I heard about this. Sounds really hard to enforce… especially the part where the victims complain. It also is so broad ranging… what exactly does constitute as “piracy”? Watching a conan o’brien clip on YouTube?

What if you get a popup window that plays a conan video while you’re browsing? Is that one strike against you?

I could think of a million other examples.

I’m no fan of piracy (the non-swashbuckling kind), but, like flyinj, I am hesitant about such laws that could possibly affect those of us who absolutely do not pirate anything. What are the guidelines for having been a pirate?

Does this account just for games? Or does it take into account music, movies, and software as well? Too many questions… especially since I am considering a move to France in the near future.

You could have at least read the linked article.

It specifically talks about music and video shared between P2P networks.

that would include all the TV shows torrents like The Apprentices…

poor french…

I hope they give several warnings and allow you to dispute claims against you. Even with those, it seems like it’s likely to be both ineffective and draconian.

Even with those, it seems like it’s likely to be both ineffective and draconian.

Yes, how draconian of them to attempt to stop people stealing. Ineffective, probably. But I fail to see how it’s some mark on our civil liberties to catch IPs downloading torrents. They should give warnings and let you dispute the claims in a court of law, but if you’re downloading whole seasons of TV shows I fail to see what recourse you would have.

Edit: do the French have civil liberties? I’m honestly curious, is there anything like the American bill o’ rights over there?

You know, torrents aren’t just used for piracy.

hehe all French WoW players are now banned after downloading the next 3 patches!!!

Only if Blizzard complains. Mind you, I wonder if they could attack “Private” WoW servers this way.

I have no problem with them attempting to curb piracy. But their methodology strikes me as being prone to false positives and guilt-by-association, among other things, and the consequences could be quite severe. (At least, to my internet-addicted mindset.)

How easy is it to catch someone using bittorent and figure out what exactly they’re downloading?

I see nothing wrong with the spirit or the letter of the law. But I have no idea how hard it will be to correctly enforce.

How easy is it to catch someone using bittorent and figure out what exactly they’re downloading?

I’d like to know this too, but I’d assume if they can tell an IP they can catch what it’s downloading.

It’s actually pretty easy for anyone to do by instead doing the reverse. Rather than figuring out what one person is downloading, you start from the content and then find out which people are downloading it.

As a “victim”, all you have to do is get the .torrent files of the content you’re interested in (eg. from the public web sites).

When you connect, the tracker will supply you with the IP addresses of all the other clients (seeders and normal peers). Then all you have to do is see which IP addresses come from French ISPs.

BitTorrent was never intended to be anonymous, and in fact, it wouldn’t work very well if it were.

Sounds like a good interview question for their new president.

It’s just one of those laws where everyone is presumed guilty until proven innocent.

I agree with Salwon that this doesn’t look like it infringes on anyone’s civil liberties, however those are defined in France. The way it’s set up is designed to avoid trolling through everyone’s personal info and rather let the “victims” who feel the need simply use the technology to identify the P2P downloaders who are downloading copyrighted material.

I guess my question is whether the enforcement part of the system will be able to enforce this without issues. What do they do if a teenager is the one downloading? Do the kids parents lose their net access?

Yes they do. The Constitution of The Fifth Republic. It’s arguably a lot nicer than yours ;)

That’s how the ToS for ISPs generally work: the account-holder is responsible for all activity on the account.

Probably very effective to enforce. Parent loses internet access because of kid. Parent gives kid a beating. Kid thinks twice before trying it again.

Of course, there are the warning strikes prior to losing access that would have had to have been ignored for it to come to this.

I know Protocol Encryption and Message Stream Encryption isn’t intended for anonymity or confidentiality, but using them with with a decent black list (either with Peer Guardian or directly through a client like Transmission) has got to make it hard for the ISP or other organizations to see what that traffic is exactly. Of course, you could also use something like TOR along with those.