Pirate Party Australia rejoices over iiNet verdict

The Pirate Party Australia welcomed the decision of Justice Cowdroy in the Federal Court today despite conceding that AFACT would probably appeal the decision.

“We take it as a victory for commonsense” the political party said in a statement.

This is a good decision by Justice Cowdroy and reflects that there is no legal basis or obligation for any ISP to act in the interest of copyright holders or to expect that they should disconnect any entity upon allegation of infringement without judicial oversight and due process.

Essentially an ISP should be considered similar to the postal service – they simply carry data in the form of packets and that communication should be considered private.” said Rodney Serkowski Party Secretary.

He continued “We still believe that reforms of the Copyright Act are necessary in order to make them more representative of the realities of the digital paradigm and better reflect the way in which we relate to information culture and knowledge.”

While the Pirate Party Australia said this judgment may be a step in the right direction for the rights of Australians it said there was still further work to be done in regards to preventing further “injustices” from occurring in regards to data security and cases involving file sharing.

Spectre of Three Strikes

Senator Conroy has previously indicated that the Australian government seeks to expand the war on sharing and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is currently engaged in secretive negotiations of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). ACTA has been shown in leaked documentation to contain requirements that could ultimately lead to ‘graduated response’ or ‘three strikes’ type regulation.

The Pirate Party Australia said it completely rejected these kinds of regulation as a reasonable response to internet file sharing. “The internet has been woven into the everyday lives of Australians. We are dependent on it socially culturally and economically. It is simply unacceptable to disconnect an entire householdfrom such an important medium of communication upon often baseless and incorrect allegations from industry-related associations without due process.

“An example of the sloppiness of suchallegations includes take down notices sent to a network printer at the University of Washington for illicit file sharing” said Rodney Serkowski Party Secretary.

It would place a regulatory burden on Internet Service Providers meaning increased costs for consumers and in many respects is simply not feasible without gross violations of privacy the party said.

“Moves to ‘Three Strikes’ type regulations will likely mean that in an attempt to either keep their communications private or to avoid detection many people will turn to encryption.

“Law enforcement agencies in Britain have stated that such regulation would subsequently increasecosts of prosecution and make investigation more difficult.

“The use of a ‘graduated response’ or ‘three strikes’ technique to lower piracy rates is flawed. Disconnecting an entire household for often unprovable claims without a fair trial is not what I’d consider to be representative of a democratic and just society.” said David Crafti President.

“A ‘graduated response’ mechanism is a threat to the privacy of every Australian. Pirate Party Australia is entirely against the implementation of such a scheme and welcomes the public to joinus against any development of such legislation.”

The Pirate Party Australia is currently forming political party and is seeking membership for the purposes of registration with the Australian Electoral Commission. It intends to contest the next Australian federal election if successful.

Pirate Party Australia says it has an interest in reforming legislation and policy surrounding cultureinnovation and the protection of civil liberties with sister organisations already registered seeking registration or active in over 30 countries throughout the world.

The Swedish Piratpartiet already has two elected sitting Members of the European Parliament after the 2009 European Elections in which they attained 7.1% of the vote.

You can sign up as an official member of the Pirate Party here — they only need 250 more people to join and then they will be eligible to be registered as an official political party.