[ZdNet] EU telecoms vote prompts file-sharing fears

A high-level European vote on communications legislation will take place on Monday evening, raising fears that alleged file-sharers will be denied internet access by their internet service providers.

The vote concerns the passage of a parcel of laws called the 'Telecoms Package'. The Telecoms Package contains several amendments recently added by British Conservative MEPs Malcolm Harbour and Syed Kamall that cover copyright issues. Some experts and campaigners argue that these amendments are worded to lay the foundation for so-called 'three strikes and you're out' legislation to be introduced in Europe.


At the forefront of the campaign against the Telecoms Package amendments is a French group called La Quadrature du Net (Squaring the net). The most strident support for a 'three strikes' law from a national leader has come from the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy. La Quadrature, which describes itself as a 'citizen group', has claimed the amendments "seriously threaten the open architecture of the internet, [the] mere-conduit principle, and the rights and fundamental freedoms of its users".