New Zealand’s “3 strikes” Anti-Piracy Law Starts

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Today the Copyright Infringing File Sharing Act officially came into force in New Zealand.

Those who are caught sharing copyrighted material online will from now on receive warning letters via their ISP.

On receipt of a third notice, copyright holders can take Internet account holders to the Copyright Tribunal where they will face fines of up to $15,000 and disconnection.

An Economic Development Ministry consultation document suggests that every year hundreds of thousands of infringement notices will be sent out to alleged pirates.

Whether it will have a clear effect on the piracy rates has yet to be seen. Reports from France, where a similar law went into effect last year, hints it might not.

A survey by ZDNet.fr found that just 4% of file-sharers polled said they have stopped sourcing music from illegal services for fear of detection. Instead, many BitTorrent users simply turn to proxies and VPNs to conceal their identities.

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