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Pre-2016 Press Releases 8 September 2011

Internet Society Public Policy team launches working party on HADOPI-style laws

The Internet Society’s Public Policy team today issued a call for members to participate in a working group to consider new laws emerging in various countries imposing punitive measures for copyright infringement via the Internet, such as the controversial HADOPI law in France.

The Internet Society’s mission is “to promote the open development, evolution, and use of the Internet for the benefit of all people throughout the world”, and one of its major initiatives is Enabling Access to the Internet.

The HADOPI law, and other similar laws which have been proposed or enacted in other countries, raise important questions about Internet access, which need to be carefully considered from all angles.

“This issue has elements touching on several aspects of our strategic activities, especially our Enabling Access work,” said Frédéric Donck, Director of Public Policy. “Given the complexity and sensitivity of the concerns, ISOC is pleased to rely on the support of our many members all over the world to help formulate sound policy positions.”

In this context, the Public Policy team invites all interested members to join a working party to prepare an Internet Society policy paper on these issues. The terms of reference for this project are available here. Anyone interested in joining should contact Ms. Christine Runnegar, Public Policy Manager, by 17 June 2009.

The HADOPI law – named after the acronym for the agency responsible for its administration – instituted a ‘three-strikes’ procedure for Internet copyright infringement. The last step of that procedure involves suspension of Internet access for a period between one month and one year.

Earlier this week, the French Constitutional Council declared part of that new law unconstitutional, specifically the part authorising the new government agency (HADOPI) to suspend citizens’ access to the Internet. The basis of that decision is that such powers must be exercised by the judiciary. It remains to be seen what will be the French government’s response to this decision.

See also:

ISOC Public Policy Working Group Terms of Reference, 12 June 2009
ISOC European Chapters Coordinating Council press release on the HADOPI proposal , 5 September 2008
ISOC European Chapters Coordinating Council Aide Memoire on “graduated approach” laws, 4 August 2008

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