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Sunday, August 12, 2012

French “Three-Strikes” Appeared Too Expensive and Ineffective

After the country’s “three-strikes” regime, better known in France as HADOPI, was praised by both President Sarkozy and local movie company Gaumont, the Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti suddenly made a shocking announcement. She claimed that HADOPI was not just costing France too much money, but also failed to improve the availability of legitimate content.

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As you might remember, HADOPI was suggested by President Nicolas Sarkozy in order to tackle piracy and discourage file-sharing. After the law came in force, Sarkozy was very happy with the results, claiming that 95% of users who got the first notification stopped infringing copyright, according to a report covering the year 2011.

However, it turned out that the country’s new Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti didn’t agree and promised not to support the “three-strikes”. In the interview, the new minister said that the law is actually costing France too much money, particularly with the economic crisis happening around. Aurélie Filippetti pointed out that in financial terms, 12,000,000 euros annually and 60 officers is a very expensive way to send a million e-mails. She promised to ask that funding of HADOPI is greatly reduced as part of budgetary efforts. However, it is unclear how much her “reduced” means. Anyway, that is expected to be established sometime in September 2012.

The French “three-strikes” keeps working: according to HADOPI’s statistics for this past June, 340 unique Internet accounts are already on their 3rd strike and are to be closed under the law. Aurélie Filippetti doesn’t agree with the established kind of punishment and says that the suspension of broadband connection is a disproportionate sanction against the end goal. In addition, the Minister is disappointed with the copyright law failing to promote and create legitimate services in order to reduce the number of infringements.

The Culture Minister has no idea what will become of this institution, but she says that one thing is known for sure: the law hasn’t fulfilled its mission to create alternative legal offers. In the meantime, the experts are looking forward to a meeting to discuss the future of HADOPI, led by former Canal+ director Pierre Lescure, sometime in the following months.

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