Thursday, April 14, 2011

Its law

The Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this morning. Which means that from September 1, its guilt by accusation.

This is an appalling law, passed by an appalling process. The level of ignorance and hypocrisy shown by our legislators while doing it ("the internet is SkyNet!" "File sharing is illegal, now I'm off to listen to some music my friend pirated for me!") is just icing on the cake. People are rightly angry about it; the question is what we can do with that anger to force change.

The government is solidly in the pockets of the copyright mafia on this, so I think the best option is to focus on Labour. They voted for the bill as part of a compromise which saw the implementation of the disconnection penalty - which they oppose - being delayed. Hitting them hard and demanding a solid commitment to repeal not just disconnection but also guilt by accusation is the way to go. Meanwhile, I think the best short-term action is to look at how parties voted last night (National, Labour, ACT and the Maori Party for, the Greens, Hone Harawira and Chris Carter against), and vote accordingly in November.