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Internet users who illegally copy movies or other copyright material will receive three warning notices over 12 months before action is taken, under a proposed industry code of practice drawn up by contending parties, including ISPs and copyright holders.

The Communications Alliance has published the draft code. It is designed not so much to punish offenders, but “change their behaviour and steer them toward lawful sources of content”, according to the alliance.

Repeat infringers would receive – in order – an “education notice,” a “warning notice” and a “final notice”. After the final notice has been sent, rights holders whose copyright work has been the subject of any of these notices will be provided with assistance to take action against the offender.

Says the alliance: “The scheme has a strong emphasis on public education and does not contain explicit sanctions against Internet users, but does provide for a ‘facilitated preliminary discovery’ process through which ISPs can assist rights holders who may decide to take legal action against persistent infringers.”
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