TalkTalk, British ISP, Dismisses ‘Three-Strike’ Anti-Piracy Initiative
In what is likely to create legal waves around the world, the United Kingdom is progressing steadily towards a major battle pitting Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Record labels. Although, the labels have been doing most of the saber-rattling in the past few months, TalkTalk, an ISP owned by Carphone Warehouse, has drawn a line in the sand.
“The Carphone Warehouse, is refusing to buckle under pressure from the music and film industries to impinge its customers’ rights and restrict their freedom of use of the internet. TalkTalk is the first ISP to reject the BPI’s ‘three strikes’ scheme which would require it to disconnect customers who had been deemed by the music industry body to have shared content under copyright. The BPI proposals are considered by TalkTalk to be unreasonable and unworkable and the company will take every practical and legal step to defend its customers.”
In a tersely worded statement Talk Talk challenged the legality of the Three Strikes system and has begun to circle the wagons. Charles Dunstone, CEO, The Carphone Warehouse Group declared, ”our position is very clear, we are the conduit that gives users access to the Internet, we do not control the Internet nor do we control what our users do on the Internet. I cannot foresee any circumstances in which we would voluntarily disconnect a customer’s account on the basis of a third party alleging a wrong doing.”
The British government has threatened to get involved in the fight, and many ISPs have been in talks with the various record industry trade groups to come up with an amicable solution. However TalkTalk will have nothing to do with the ISPs and put the onus on the record labels.
“The music industry has consistently failed to adapt to changes in technology and now seeks to foist their problems on someone else. Rather than threatening us, the BPI’s time would be better spent facing up to the reality of our times and adapting its business model accordingly.”