AFACT/iiNet ruling due next week

The Federal Court revealed that Justice Dennis Cowdroy will announce his decision on the internet copyright case next week.

The case has been watched closely domestically and internationally, because it could set precedent on the liability of ISPs for copyright infringement by their customers.

The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFCT), acting on behalf of a number of film and TV companies, launched legal action against the Internet Service Provider (ISP) in November 2008, for allowing copyright infringement within its network, and not preventing its customers from downloading and sharing protected content. AFACT claimed iiNet had been provided with reports of customers who were infringing copyright laws, but failed to stop them.

At the conclusion of the November 2009 court hearings, iiNet CEO Michael Malone said the company was confident that the claims of breaching copyright would be dismissed.

“We do not, and never have supported, encouraged or authorised illegal sharing or downloading of files in breach of the copyright laws,” said Malone.

The ISP even published its closing submissions on its website.

According to The Australian, Simon Hackett – founder and MD of iiNet’s mother company Internode – believes that no matter what Justice Cowdroy ruled, the matter was unlikely to be settled this year because the losing side would appeal the decision.


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