Yesterday from the Palace of Versailles, Nicolas Sarkozy became the first president to address Parliament in 150 years. He took the opportunity to show his determination over the proposed HADOPI legislation, promising that he will “go all the way” to enforce law on the Internet.
Sarkozy’s address yesterday was made possible by the annulment of a law prohibiting a sitting president from addressing lawmakers. The last time an address of this type occurred was 1848, in Napoleon’s day.
After condemning the wearing of burqas by Muslim women in France and labeling it a “sign of subservience,” he moved on to HADOPI – France’s controversial anti-piracy law which aimed to implement “3 Strikes” for alleged pirates.
Earlier this month the Constitutional Council, France’s highest legal authority, deemed Internet disconnections unconstitutional, and stopped the law.
Speaking to both the Senate and the National Assembly in a joint session at Versailles Palace just outside of Paris, Sarkozy was clearly undeterred. During a 45 minute speech, he turned to the issue of Internet piracy, stating;
“How can there be areas of lawlessness in areas of our society? How can one simultaneously claim that the economy is regulated but the Internet is not so? How can we accept that the rules that apply to society as a whole are not binding on the Internet?”
Sarkozy Will “Go All The Way” With 3 Strikes
Sarkozy went on to say that by championing HADOPI, he’s not just protecting artists.
“By defending copyright I do not just defend artistic creation, I also defend my idea of a free society where everyone’s freedom is based on respect for the rights of others. I am also defending the future of our culture. It is the future of creation.”
In pressing for HADOPI, Sarkozy said he will “go all the way.”