France Plans To Repeat Hadopi's Costly Mistakes By Turning It Into An Even Bigger, Even More Wrong-headed Anti-Piracy Body Called Arcom

from the will-they-ever-learn? dept

Techdirt covered the story of France’s “three strikes” law, later known as Hadopi, from the body overseeing it, for over ten years. What became a long-running farce eventually cost French taxpayers €82 million, and generated just €87,000 in fines. A rational government might draw the obvious conclusion that trying to stamp out unauthorized downloads using the crude instrument of fines and threats was the wrong approach. Oddly, though, the French government has decided that Hadopi was such a stunning, and embarrassing failure, it wants to do it again, but on an even grander scale, as a story on Euractiv reports:

A new super-regulator, the Autorité de régulation de la communication audiovisuelle et numérique (ARCOM) is to be created from the merger of the Haute Autorité pour la diffusion des ?uvres et la protection des droits sur Internet (HADOPI) and the Conseil supérieur de l?audiovisuel (CSA) in order to “step up the fight against pirate sites and to include this action in a broader policy of regulating online content”, according to the Ministry of Culture website.

The merger is part of a wide-ranging new law (original in French) that seeks to regulate many aspects of the online world in France, mostly in wrong-headed ways. Next Inpact has an excellent run-down on what is included in the proposed text (original in French). The main elements include tackling unauthorized downloads; propaganda aimed at convincing young people to love copyright; encouraging new services offering material (about the only sensible idea in the bill); and a mission to monitor the use of “technical protection measures” like DRM. In addition, the new law aims to combat sites with infringing material by using blacklists, to tackle mirror sites, and shut down unauthorized services offering sports content.

Given the French lawmakers’ willingness to grant lazy copyright companies whatever new legal options they want, however unbalanced or disproportionate in terms of basic rights and freedoms, there seems little chance the bill will be thrown out or even substantially modified. France’s Ministry of Culture is certainly fully behind it. In a press release, it went so far as to claim (original in French):

This ambitious bill is fundamental for the defense of French creativity.

It really isn’t. Moreover, they said the similar things about Hadopi, and look what happened there.

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Comments on “France Plans To Repeat Hadopi's Costly Mistakes By Turning It Into An Even Bigger, Even More Wrong-headed Anti-Piracy Body Called Arcom”

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Re: Re:

THEY give everyone very expensive entertainments

No, movie studios give everyone those entertainments.

The MPAA and RIAA are nothing but bill collectors who charge studios additional premiums for operating as loan sharks – fucking terrible loan sharks, at that, because they can’t even be bothered to nail the right people.

Scary Devil Monasterysays:

Re: Re: Re: Far, far, better productive people than Blueballs

"You?re still here and still wrong."

And despite 10 years of fermenting in the utter failure of all the anti-piracy programs around, Baghdad Bob still can’t get over his instinctive urge to stand in defense of the 30 years worth of wasted effort copyright enforcement represents.

Baghdad Bob’s been screaming that any day now all we "evil pirates" would be dragged through the streets in chains. For ten years. You’d think at some point he’d realize that all his efforts will be going the same way as those of Nick Valenti about the VCR and the RIAA around the cassette tape.

Because when tech conflicts with business model, tech wins. Always.

Scary Devil Monasterysays:


Not just the internet;

The automotive industry did horrible things to the stagecoach industry. The industrial revolution put ordinary blacksmiths and weavers out of work ?n m?sse. The printing press had monasteries scrambling for another source of revenue than copying scribes.

And all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t save those industries – no matter how heavy-handed the king’s men got.

Baghdad Bob has spent the last ten years pissing straight up and screaming. That’s his choice, i guess, but he has no call to complain when factual reality then fills his open mouth with what comes down after having gone up.


Re: Re: Far, far, better productive people than PIRATES.

Interesting. 2 sentences, one unsupported defamatory lie and one laughable misunderstanding of the corporate business models you so obsessively protect.

You’re as wrong as ever, but you managed to get the whole thing in 2 short sentences rather than pages of rambling nonsense topped with whining about a spam filter working correctly. Almost efficient for you.

That One Guysays:

Beatings will continue until morale improves

If they want people to respect copyright maybe give them something to respect, a system that actually protects creativity rather than squashes anything that might be infringing and hands out utterly insane fines for everyday activities.

This ambitious bill is fundamental for the defense of French creativity.

With so much creativity and cultural growth in spite of copyright rather than because of it the idea that you need even more copyright to ‘protect’ creativity shows either a stunning ignorance of reality or a dishonest person. If they really wanted to protect creativity there are a number of ways to go about that, from strengthening fair use(or whatever the local equivalent is) and putting in place penalties for ignoring it to grants for creative works that might need some money to finish.

Scary Devil Monasterysays:


"…making stupid laws and then doubling down on the stupid when they fail is pretty universal to politicians everywhere."

Yeah, but France has tradition of adding extra levels of fail other politicians elsewhere just can’t match.

With the possible exception of Australia, recently. I guess this is just part of France’s attempt to reclaim their leadership in monumental legislative fuckups.

To be fair, it’s a good one.


2 things to add

Only looking at how much money was made from fines is not enough, looking at the money made by people going to legal services should also be considered (and also looking at people going to illegal streaming and/or buying a VPN access).

The CSA (Conseil Sup?rieur de l’Audiovisuel) is the entity trying to police television. They know they are condamned to disappear with TV so they see the opportunity to gain power and stay alive by merging with the Hadopi in ARCOM. It’s all very politic and will only punish technical illiterates.

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