AFACT payment to iiNet up in the air

AFACT payment to iiNet up in the air

The copyright advocacy group wants to reduce the cost it was ordered to pay

The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) has appealed the costs awarded to iiNet in its failed copyright case against the ISP but did not elaborate on the reasons in the Federal Court.

AFACT filed a notice of motion for the court to reduce the amount after objecting to paying the full figure to iiNet.

Justice Cowdroy has reserved his order on cost and the amount to be paid will be decided after a scheduled hearing on the May 4.

Written arguments must be submitted to the court by both parties 10 days before the hearing.

Justice Cowdroy questioned the reasons AFACT requested that costs be reduced but the group's counsel could not provide the details in court.

AFACT also wants cost to be assessed individually on an issue by issue basis, meaning it will have a chance to recover some of its legal bill based on certain parts of the case raised during the initial court proceedings, including its failed arguments on safe harbour.

iiNet is unlikely to see any money from AFACT until the appeals process is over.

Meanwhile, the Internet Industry Association (IIA) also sought to recoup court costs incurred when AFACT subpoenaed the organisation during the case. The matter will be settled in a closed court.

Representing 34 Hollywood movie studios, AFACT sued iiNet in November 2008, claiming the ISP was responsible for illegal movies downloaded by its subscriber base and failed to prevent the copyright infringement activities. iiNet hit back, stating it had no obligation to police the Internet.

On February 4, the court ruled in favour of iiNet, with presiding judge, Justice Cowdroy, conceding ISPs are not responsible for their customers' actions on their networks. The copyright advocacy group was ordered to pay iiNet's legal cost, which amounted to $5.6 million.

For a detailed timeline of the court case, click here.

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Tags iiNetAustralian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT)Justice Cowdroy


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