Country Focus: France
Parliament adopts anti-piracy law
by Fabien Lemercier
23/09/2009 - After a long battle marked by several dramatic turns of events (see news), the legislation against the illegal downloading of works is finally completed. Yesterday, Parliament adopted the HADOPI 2 bill, which is added to the measures voted in May (see news).
From January 2010, the new "High Authority for the Distribution of Works and the Protection of Rights on the Internet" (HADOPI) will send email warnings to Internet users who are downloading illegally. A second email, possibly accompanied by a recorded-delivery letter, will follow if there is a repeat offence within six months.
The proceedings would then be referred to a court of law (by the rights-holders of the works or by HADOPI). The latter will be able to impose fines and the suspension of Internet access for a maximum of one year.
In the case of suspension, if the penalised subscriber tries to take out another Internet subscription, s/he will be liable to an additional fine, as will access providers who refuse to implement the notified suspension penalties.
The new law also includes a section that promotes the development of legal downloading of films, which will now be available four months after their theatrical release (see news).