ISP Disconnection Law On Hold In New Zealand

A law that would have forced New Zealand ISPs to forcibly disconnect infringing subscribers has now been put on hold, according to details surfacing Monday.

The hold-off comes from Prime Minister John Key, pending further review of the initiative.  “We congratulate the government for listening to the online community of New Zealand,” said Paul Matthews, head of the New Zealand Computer Society, part of a consortium rallying against the measure.  The Telecommunications Carriers’ Forum (TCF) also opposed the plan.

The disconnection clause, Section 92a of the Copyright (New Technologies) Amendment Act, has been dubbed the “Guilty Upon Accusation” law by its opponents.  Opposing blogs, flying under the banner of the Creative Freedom Foundation, “blacked out” on Monday to raise awareness of the issue.

Instead of going into effect February 28th, 92a has now been pushed to March 27th, a date that theoretically allows the parties to reach an amicable settlement.  A third party mediator is part of that plan.  The proposed provision is part of a broader set of changes to copyright laws dating back to 1984.

Report by analyst Alexandra Osorio.