UK content owners to bear brunt of Three Strikes costs

October 2010


The UK government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has issued a press release “Rights holders to bear 75% of Online Digital Economy Act copyright infringement costs” detailing  how costs will be shared as part of theDigital Economy Act’s measures to tackle online infringement of copyright. The decision will see costs resulting from these measures split between rights holders and internet service providers (ISPs) at a ratio of 75:25, very much a victory for ISPs – content owners wanted a 50-50 split. The Government also announced no fee will be charged to consumers who want to appeal a notificationThe costs sharing decision applies to both the notification and appeals process. Following serious consideration of the issue of appeal costs, it has been decided that no fee should be charged to internet subscribers who wish to use the appeal system to refute a notification. However as a free system risks the possibility of large numbers of unnecessary appeals, the Government will monitor the situation closely, and reserves the right to introduce a small fee at a later stage.  The decision will now be notified to the European Commission before being introduced in Parliament as a Statutory Order. Ofcom’s Online Copyright Infringement Initial Obligations Code will implement the notifications process and will also reflect the decision on costs. This will come into force in the first half of 2011.

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