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Films vs ISPs In India: John Doe Orders Could Be Back; No Safe Harbor?

Update: Abhijit Bera, on Twitter, says that no one cares about ISPs and they can be bypassed. My take on this: Firstly, the ISPs dont deserve this. They're not responsible for what users access and do, and my opinion is that they shouldn't be held liable in court for this. Secondly, the court isn't seeing them as dumb pipes, so this means that they might be forced to take preemptive action to prevent copyright infringement, which will lead to inordinate restriction of Internet usage by citizens. Yesterday: The Madras High Court has dismissed the plea by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to not hold them liable for piracy of content on the Internet, and as the Hindu points out, has placed the onus of prevention of copyright infringement on ISPs. Read the court order here.  The original case was filed by R.K. Productions Private Limited and Creative Commercials Media and Entertainment Ltd, which led to mass blocking of websites in India. The court has ruled that the submission made by ISPs that they cannot prevent "future wrongs" of piracy of content is not correct, and their apprehensions about the inability to "enforce or implement the order of this court are unfounded. The court found the contention that websites host both infringing as well as non infringing content "unmeritorious". The court said that there is no necessity to entertain the applications to reject the plaints even before a trial. "The respondents/defendants are undoubtedly internet service providers (ISPs) and therefore, they have an obligation…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

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