If you’re part of the file sharing world in New Zealand, Now is the time to think seriously of either making dead bang certain that your activities are 100% secure and untraceable or moving to another country with less draconian laws.
Why? Because unless something happens to change things, on Feb 28, 2009 they’re putting into effect a clause in their copyright law that requires ISP’s to have a policy of disconnecting anyone repeatedly accused of copyright infringement.
Also, according to the blog post linked above, legal precedent establishes “repeatedly accused” as meaning three times. This means that if you get accused of copyright infringement three times, you lose your internet connection. No trial, no assumption of innocent until proven guilty, nothing. Then you get to set about trying to prove that you’re innocent enough to get access restored. I can just see how that’s going to go, ISPs and very probably the NZ courts will choose to not take any chances and the standards of proof will be high enough that few will be able to meet them.
So perhaps it’s time for New Zealand’s file sharing and remixing enthusiasts to think about moving. You can always drop right into some medical coding training courses and come up with a new career (or not, whatever floats your boat.)
This is yet another sign that freedom and civil liberty, both on and off the Internet, is hanging by a thread while some maniac insists on teasing it with a saw.