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Magid: Internet access too important to be cut off arbitrarily

Viva la France! French lawmakers have unexpectedly rejected a bill that would have cut off Internet access to people who repeatedly download music or videos illegally. The law, which was supported by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, could have resulted in a year's suspension of Internet access for individuals after being warned by both an e-mail and a letter...

Based on the number of votes, I'd hardly call the outcome in France a repudiation. The Electronic Frontier Foundation's international outreach coordinator, Danny O'Brien, expects the bill to be reintroduced and passed. But he thinks it will then be reviewed by France's Constitutional Council, which is roughly equivalent to our Supreme Court.

"There's a strong chance that the council will have something to say about this," said O'Brien, "because it does raise so many questions about natural justice and civil liberties."

Monday, April 13, 2009
San Jose Mercury News

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