AFACT: iiNet regularly communicated with infringing customers

The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) wanted to establish iiNet had knowledge of and communicated with infringing customers on its network

The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) wanted to establish iiNet had knowledge of and communicated with infringing customers on its network

AFACT barrister, David Catterns, has pointed to iiNet chief, Michael Malone’s testimony in the original hearing, during early comments in the copyright case’s appeal hearing in the Full Federal Court.

Malone had admitted in court the information, including IP addresses and times of alleged copyright infringements by customer accounts, given to iiNet by AFACT was “compelling evidence”.

Catterns said admitting the information was compelling evidence was tantamount to admitting iiNet had knowledge of the piracy happening on its network.

He also highlighted the regular communication iiNet had with customers. This included billing enquiries and contacting high usage subscribers with offers to bump up download limits after they had eaten their monthly download quota by illegally downloading copyright content.

In particular, Catterna referred to an iiNet customer, referenced as ‘RC0’ in Court, which AFACT alleged was a frequent illegal downloader.

“Clearly [iiNet] knew the various date, time and person [infringing copyright] but would not act on clear infringements,” Catterns said. “[iiNet] had knowledge but did nothing. It had complete power to prevent in a technological and contractual sense... short of cutting [customers] off.”

He brought up various techniques including suspending accounts, slowing down customer connection speeds after a download quota is exceeded and ‘playpenning’, that is to restrict access to certain websites once download limit is exceeded, as alternatives to terminating customer accounts.

AFACT maintains iiNet failed to enforce any measures to prevent copyright infringements on its network.

The Presiding Judge on the original case, Justice Cowdroy, recognised iiNet had knowledge and power to prevent but disregarded these facts since he concluded iiNet did not authorise the illegal download of content.

The primary technology used in committing film piracy, BitTorrent, was found to be the means of infringement and not iiNet’s network, according to Justice Cowdroy.

AFACT represents a number of high profile movie studios in the case.

Tags bittorrentAustralian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT)illegal downloadingiiNetpiracycopyright infringement

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8 Comments

TrueBlue

1

Again the greedy movie and music industry want to shift blame and cost to the Internet providers. The fact is saying iiNet or any other internet provider is responsible for what people do over their connection and should monitor and stop illegal use is the same as saying that a road authority is responsible for robbing your house if they drive along the road. This case has no merit and should be dismissed.

The film and music industry either need to secure their content ( they wont because it would limit sales) or lower the online price to a point where piracy isn't encouraged. The price charged to view a movie or listen to a song is simply to high by an order of magnitude. This is what real should be investigated.

Matt

2

I wonder when they'll start prosecuting Synergy for supplying their customers with the electricity that they used to download their alleged illegal files.

Peter

3

Next they'll be after the school system for teaching kids how to use computers. What a hopeless bunch of parasites. Why don't they stop the problem of piracy in the first place by offering new movies for download. Or any movies for that matter. Insead they are beating the messenger in a child like tantrum because they probably realise now all the mistakes theyve made up until this point. And now they are topping it off with a beauty. Bunch of d-bags.

Observer

4

OK, let's nail everyone in this disgraceful act. First up, sue Dell and Dell management for the computer that was used, then Netgear for supplying the modem. Nail Telstra for supplying the phone lines to connect to the internet, and take another crack at iiNet. While you're at it, take a crack at iiNet suppliers for giving iiNet the equipment to allow their customers to surf the net. Next step, do the same with all other internet service providers and their suppliers, or are you not game enough to take on Telstra and/or Optus. But WAIT, maybe AFACT should get a list of the persons illegally downloading content and sue them, not the service providers. Would you sue AVIS is one of their rental cars was used in a holdup? AFACT have got it all wrong here ..... they're going after the wrong guys.

The S Man

5

The first 4 comments here display an all-too-common dismissal of copyright and the rights of copyright owners with glib comments about 'well, lets also blame computer / modem / telephone / electricity companies', and that protecting copyright is somehow "greeedy" How do you think the production of music and movies are funded? By people paying for them, that's how. And most musicians / actors / etc are not filthy rich.

"TrueBlue" states that 'saying iiNet or any other internet provider is responsible for what people do over their connection and should monitor and stop illegal use is the same as saying that a road authority is responsible for robbing your house if they drive along the road.' What a load of rubbish - the road authority can't control what vehicles travel at what speed along a road. iiNet DO have this sort of control over their network.

Yes, ultimately it is the perpetrators of copyright theft that are to blame, but iiNet played their part by simply turning a blind eye to the criminal activity (and that's what it is) happening right under their nose. And guess what, the more stuff people download, the more money iiNet is likely to make.

Harie Godden

6

to the S man, point taken.
oh you forget something important,
all isp's face download problems, not just iinet,
Telstra and Optus, to name only 2 others, where is your comment about them.

Jahm

7

Thieves? It's the members of AFACT that are cooking the books, and ripping off their own artists.....

The fact that they are trying to fence everyone into their their greedy and "corporate moron" distribution methods, kind of shows them up for the thieving lying hypocrites they really are.

http://torrentfreak.com/tech-news-sites-tout-misleading-bittorrent-piracy-study-100724/ [torrentfreak.com]

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100708/02510310122.shtml [techdirt.com]

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-ct-disney-20100708,0,4051564.story [latimes.com]

zarathustra

8

'The S Man' is dribbling out the same tired & hackneyed crap that the shills seem to spill: "How do you think the production of music and movies are funded?"

That'd be fine if these so-called 'anti-piracy' buffoons had one IOTA of concern for the artists' welfare.

The fact is, they DON'T! The artist appears EXTREMELY far down the list of folk who receive even a FRACTION of the monies recouped. The vast majority gets either plowed right back in to the Laws00ts or goes to the fat frigging suits behind the global mega-corps that own the labels.

Go die in a fire, corp-o-shill...

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