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France looks at net piracy crackdown

French First Lady Carla Bruni, who is also a singer.


Renita Jablonski: In France, some people may be about to lose their Internet connections. The goverment's looking at cracking down on those repeatedly caught pirating music, video games and movies. A controversial anti-piracy law could go through after Easter. From the European desk, Stephen Beard reports.

Stephen Beard: The proposed law is based on the principle of three strikes and you're out. Illegal downloaders will first get a warning e-mail, then a warning letter. And if they do it again, they'll get banned from accessing the Internet for up to a year. The government lost the first vote on the bill yesterday, but will reintroduce it after Easter.

Edouard Barreiro is a consumer advocate who campaigns against the measure. He thinks it will become law, because of intense domestic lobbying:

EDOUARD BARREIRO: I think that the law will pass in France because the president of France has the will to do it.

BEARD: The President wants it to happen?

BARREIRO: Yes, because his wife works in the industry of music. She's a singer.

BEARD: He's doing it for Carla's sake?

BARREORO: Yes, exactly.

Carla Bruni isn't the only one backing the new law. The U.K.'s music industry body is pushing for something similar in Britain.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

About the author

Stephen Beard is the European bureau chief and provides daily coverage of Europe’s business and economic developments for the entire Marketplace portfolio.


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