BPI seeks BitTorrent site blocks in UK

BPI seeks BitTorrent site blocks in UK
The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) is hoping to have all six major ISPs in the UK block three more websites it claims are heavily linked to piracy.

The three websites - Fenopy, H33t and Kickass Torrents - would be blocked by BT, Sky, Virgin Media, O2, EE and TalkTalk if the BPI gets its way in a court hearing. BPI argue these sites infringe music label's copyright. They are likely to join Newzbin2 and the Pirate Bay by being blocked in the country.

The Open Rights Group opposes such blocks, giving the following arguments:
  • Website blocking is an extreme response. There are growing fears this precedent will make it too easy and quick to block sites. Time needs to be taken to consider the legitimate use of the sites.
  • There needs to be a more specific and adequate definition of the precise URL or IP address to be blocked to prevent mistakes.
  • Once a site is blocked, its alleged clone sites can also be blocked, but in this case, BPI will be able to practice this without a court order. The decisions would be made between BPI and ISPs and will not be published.
  • The blocking of these sites does not come with an expiry date. This indefinite blocking is potentially problematic if the number of sites blocked keep growing, leaving a large number of sites hidden from the public.
  • These court hearings between a judge, ISPs and right holders do not sufficiently represent the needs of the user as their voice is not included during the hearing.
The ORG will not intervene in this particular case, but says it is likely to do so in the future due to the lack of user rights being represented.

Written by: James Delahunty @ 19 Feb 2013 20:34
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