Stop piracy? Stop treating us like "second class citizens"

ONE of Australia's leading home entertainment providers says piracy won't be properly dealt with until Australians are able to access content legally the same time as the US.   

In comment on the Dallas Buyers Club case, Network Video General Manager Keran Wicks said while piracy was a crime, she felt the availability of product was a bigger issue here. 


 "I think it's right and just (what Dallas Buyers Club are doing). People need to realise piracy is a crime. Most people feel like it's a victimless crime but the effects of piracy are felt in many places," she said.   

"Having said that we need to stop treating Australians like second class citizens. The content needs to be available here at the same time as it is in the states.  

Keran Wicks is the General Manager of Network Video Australia
Keran Wicks is the General Manager of Network Video Australia Contributed

"They keep trying to stop the activity when they should be trying to stop the demand. Give everyone the same access at the same time.  

  "To hold ISP's accountable for piracy is a long bow to draw. I don't know what they intend to do with the information once it's supplied to them."   

Despite suggestions low income earners and veterans would be exempt from possible penalties, Ms Wicks said 'a pirate was a pirate'.   

"Whether they drive a Lamborghini or ride a skateboard, breaking the law is breaking the law," she said.   

"Circumstance doesn't make you exempt from the law. It may change the penalty but it shouldn't make anyone exempt."  

Ms Wicks said those who pirate should be worried about the verdict as it showed copyright owners have a right to know who is downloading their films.  





A scene from Dallas Buyers Club, the film in the middle of the piracy crackdown case.
A scene from Dallas Buyers Club, the film in the middle of the piracy crackdown case.



Australian iiNet, Internode and Dodo customers who have illegally downloaded a Hollywood movie be warned, you may have a threatening letter in your mailbox sometime soon. 

Yesterday iiNet and other internet service providers were ordered by the Federal Court to cough up the identities and residential addresses of 4726 who were detected to have illegally downloaded the film Dallas Buyers Club through BitTorrent between April 2 and May 27, 2014.

 This could mean the people identified could be directly sued for copyright breaches.  

The decision was considered a landmark ruling involving piracy and internet privacy.  

While the ruling has caused concern for those who had pirated the film, legal experts have said there are several ways an accused pirate could defend themselves.   

iiNet former chief regulatory officer, Steve Dalby told Fairfax Media that while parties found to be guilty would have no defence, it was tough for Hollywood studios to prove it.  

"Remember that the letter is not proof and is only an allegation," he said.   

Is it fair to take on internet pirates now when they've gotten away with it for so long?

This poll ended on 30 April 2015.

Current Results

Yes, it's about time something was done about piracy.


No, it's unfair to sting people now when we've let everyone get away with it for so long. Just introduce harsher laws from now.


I don't pirate so this won't affect me.


This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

"They can't detect downloaders so if I downloaded it but never shared it I wouldn't be concerned about it."  

Those who do receive a letter from Dallas Buyers Club LLC were urged to seek legal advice and consider whether anyone else may have been using their wifi.   

Mr Dalby said those who had an unsecured network or were free to giving out their wifi passwords may be able to use the "it wasn't me" defence however most ISP agreements stated the account holder was responsible for use of their account.  

The Sunshine Coast Daily asked readers if they thought it was fair to take on internet piracy in Australia when many had gotten away with it for so long.  

Of 351 people 81% said it was unfair and that harsher laws should be introduced from now instead of stinging those who had pirated in the past.  

Sunshine Coast resident "Tim" said that while he did download the film he was not concerned about the threats from Dallas Buyers Club.   

"I'm not concerned about legal threats at all.

"Perhaps I should've known better but my IP address was known, I had no security on my router and other people had access to my network," he said.   

He said he had no problem with film companies seeking compensation from "pirates" and he thought the ruling was not unfair in this case.   

IF you're an iiNET, Internode or Dodo Internet customer who has downloaded a Hollywood movie in the last few years, you...

Posted by Sunshine Coast Daily on Tuesday, April 7, 2015

But he said he probably wouldn't stop downloading.    

A spokesman for Voltage Pictures (the parent company of Dallas Buyers Club LLC) has said there will be some demographics who would escape punishment. 

These demographics included military pensioners, school students, low income earners and the mentally ill or disabled.   

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