Copyright Holders Clash With ISPs, Citizens Over Anti-Piracy Directive

Jul 11, 2011 3:00 PM PST

BRUSSELS — Copyright holders are clashing with Internet providers and citizens over Europe’s anti-piracy directive (IPRED), according to results from a public consultation released today by the European Commission.

The ISPs, citizens and other groups oppose the measures, claiming that it threatens basic human rights and stifles innovation, while copyright owners support the stricter rules on file-sharing and infringement, according to TorrentFreak.com.

The IPR Enforcement Directive would make it easier to crack down on file sharers, giving ISPs the power to monitor the Internet for copyright infringing activity.

The responses from the public consultation demonstrate there are two sides to the issue. The majority of copyright holders call for even stricter rules on copyright infringement.

But the majority of the responses oppose the stricter regulations.

“The overwhelming majority of individual citizens, consumer protection organisations and academics strongly argued against any further (over)regulation of IPR infringements, especially in the context of the online world. Filtering of content and monitoring traffic on the internet were perceived as threats to fundamental rights or even censorship and therefore clearly rejected,” the European Commission writes.

Some citizens even called for legalizing file-sharing, saying that it would increase creativity, spread culture and would help in the free exchange of information.

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