Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Government News Your Rights Online

Trick Used To Pass French "Three Strikes" 488

Posted by kdawson
from the foul-ball dept.
Glyn Moody writes "France's 'Loi Hadopi' — better known as 'three strikes and you're out' — was passed by the National Assembly late last night when only 16 deputies were present (the vote was 12 in favor, 4 against). Most politicians had left because it was expected that the vote would take place next week. In this way, President Sarkozy has sneaked his controversial legislation through the French parliament — and shown his contempt for the democratic process. So now what?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Trick Used To Pass French "Three Strikes"

Comments Filter:
  • Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FredFredrickson (1177871) * on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:02AM (#27445199) Homepage Journal
    While my initial thought is "Shame on those people who subverted the democratic process" I can't help but think.. "Shame on the faulty system with such a stupid loophole." Did they subvert the democratic process? Kinda. But did they do things within the boundries of their law? Apparently so.

    So shame on those living in France expecting anything different from their dumb system.

    It's like having an insurance policy, and when the insurance company decides to be assholes and use their technicalities to avoid paying you, well, shame on you for signing on to such an obviously flawed contract.

    (Please note, I'm not claiming my country is any better.)
    • Re:Shame (Score:4, Insightful)

      by AvitarX (172628) <<gro.derdnuheniwydnarb> <ta> <em>> on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:07AM (#27445305) Journal

      And shame on those whom left early to have off, whatever the custom may be.

      I mean, if I am involved in a meeting at work, and it is my job to attend the meeting, and even vote about the discussed subject, even if it's next week, I stay and do my job. Of course lawmakers have a special kind of work ethic.

      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

        by JCSoRocks (1142053) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:14AM (#27445451)

        Of course lawmakers have a special kind of work ethic.

        Yeah... the kind where you only work for a few months every couple years when you're up for election. :-/

      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Informative)

        by gnuASM (825066) <gnuASM@bresnan.net> on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:47AM (#27446061)

        Yeah! And shame on you, you illiterate clod who can't even read a French article to understand that they debated this issue for over 40 hours, were under the understanding that debate of the issue was over and would be voted on first thing next week, and the fact that the Secretary of State instructed those left at 10:45 AT NIGHT to immediately vote on the issue knowing that the majority has already gone home.

        YOU should be ashamed for leaving YOUR work when it's not done yet although you've been in your cubicle for two days straight and it's almost midnight. Shame on you when your own work is not even done!

        • Re:Shame (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Tuoqui (1091447) on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:32PM (#27446805) Journal

          It's time to shoot the French Secretary of State. Someone man up and take the bastard out. It is your patriotic duty otherwise you're just living under another monarchy that changes every what is is 4 years.

    • Re:Shame (Score:4, Informative)

      by qoncept (599709) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:08AM (#27445325) Homepage
      What can an independent citizen do, other than vote for their representation? What politician has ever shown they wouldn't do their best to try to implement and than take advantage of such a system?

      And you're right. It is like having an insurance policy, because insurance adjusters and politicians (and cell phone companies and cable companies and banks and.. you get it) ARE assholes. And individuals are kind of in the same boat here as with politicians -- you have to take what you can get.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        What can an independent citizen do, other than vote for their representation? What politician has ever shown they wouldn't do their best to try to implement and than take advantage of such a system?

        the most important freedom of a democracy or a republic is not the freedom to vote for the candidate (though that is important) -- it the freedom the freedom to run for the office.

        that is easier said than getting elected (especially in my most-money-means-most-likely-elected nation-state), but without it, you live in a place where the leadership decides the candidate. and, that is just a rigged game.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Dog-Cow (21281)

          I don't know where you live, but in the US, the leaders do pick the candidates.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by sumdumass (711423)

            No they don't. They leaders support certain candidates which gives them an advantage (some might say an unfair advantage) but in the US, it's all open to the will of the people.

        • Re:Shame (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Runaway1956 (1322357) on Friday April 03, 2009 @01:43PM (#27448119) Homepage Journal

          The one right that a US citizen has that is often neglected, is the right to revolt. We've even had a few minor revolutions - the IRS was curbed when they got to carried away with taking people's homes and property. (Not that it really stuck) California had a taxpayer revolt some years back. Maybe it's time for a few more revolutions? It's certainly time for one in Frnace.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by BZ (40346)

          > the most important freedom of a democracy or a republic is not the freedom to vote for
          > the candidate (though that is important) -- it the freedom the freedom to run for the
          > office.

          At least in the U.S., this freedom is commonly subverted, especially on the national level. For example, Illinois has different requirements for getting yourself on the ballot as a presidential candidate depending on your party affiliation (about an order of magnitude range in number of signatures needed).

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by lymond01 (314120)

        You can sue and let a judge decide. That's why they're there: to interpret the law and shove the loopholes up people's rears. There's the letter of the law, then there's what it's meant for -- you can't legislate out all human error, but when someone tries to exploit that error, you have courts to help you out.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Vintermann (400722)

          A pity the judicial branch is the least democratic, least accountable branch of government.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          You can sue and let a judge decide. That's why they're there: to interpret the law and shove the loopholes up people's rears.

          I thought snare cautery was the job of proctologists.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Your line of thinking takes one down a fairly dangerous road. While it is certainly a good idea to build in safeguards where possible, and make sure that contracts are specific, and so forth, that isn't really sufficient.

      For systems of real world complexity, it is virtually impossible to eliminate loopholes. Worse, the attempt to eliminate them tends to impose costs of its own(extra paperwork/procedure, onerous restrictions intended to prevent edge cases, and so on). It is extremely difficult, if not impo
      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Interesting)

        by mea37 (1201159) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:20AM (#27445573)

        Ok, but let's focus on the situation at hand. Why should a legislative body not require a quorum of some sort to act?

        Sure, sometimes you have to rely on people to act honorably. Sometimes your system can't be "good enough" to prevent abuse if someone's clever enough to abuse it. This doesn't look like one of those times; this looks like a case where the system is inexplicably broken.

      • Re:Shame (Score:4, Informative)

        by Creepy (93888) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:38AM (#27445891) Journal

        virtually impossible to eliminate loopholes

        heh - understatement of the year... in America, for instance, where the elected President can issue National Security directives that are instantly law, only need to be viewed by 12 people (or less - the attendees of the National Security Council, whose members are mostly picked by the President), and bypass Congress completely. Clinton and Bush were huge fans of bypassing Congress that way (FEMA powers, warrantless wiretapping of US citizens, torture in foreign countries, etc) but the ramp-up of using this method really started with the Carter administration in the 1970s (and the best known abuse of this power was the Iran-Contra affair under Reagan). The US President can also issue normal Executive Orders, which just bypass Congress and are instantly law, but are public and can be viewed and removed by Congress or a judge.

        If only we could force them to at least be reviewed by 16 people and public knowledge, like in France...

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          If only we could force them to at least be reviewed by 16 people and public knowledge, like in France...

          Even when we've had a full vote it's clear no one had read the whole thing. See bailout package 1/2. I wonder who has read the entire budget that's working on getting passed?

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by DM9290 (797337)

          The President has no real jurisdiction over private citizens, and his Executive Orders don't have the force of law except in specific cases where congress passed a real law to give them such an effect.

          There is nothing in the constitution which gives the president authority to create actual laws by any label.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          The US President can also issue normal Executive Orders, which just bypass Congress and are instantly law

          An Executive Order by the President does not have the power of law. If Congress passes a law contradicting an Executive Order, the Executive Order loses.

        • Re:Shame (Score:5, Informative)

          by Carewolf (581105) on Friday April 03, 2009 @01:20PM (#27447741) Homepage

          Executive orders are not laws. It is in the name; they are orders!

          If they contradict the law, they are no different from an illegal order from your private boss, and the dilemma is the same.

          If they don't contradict the law, they are no different from an other legal order from a private boss, and just have to be followed by his employees.

    • Re:Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sjames (1099) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:13AM (#27445419) Homepage

      The problem in France is similar to some of the shenanigans we see in the U.S. The rules were put in place with the idea that the participants in the debate and vote were dedicated to democracy and the best interests of their respective nations. In the end, they're honor systems.

      These days, that assumption just doesn't hold true often enough for the rules to work like they're supposed to. Too many in the legislatures have no honor.

      We have much the same problem in contract law. Much of the law includes various 'reasonable person' tests. Unfortunately, corporations aren't real people (even if the law grants them a fictional personhood) and they are not reasonable (literally, ever tried to call up a corporation and reason with it?)

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        Ditto for HOA's. Many of us sign in to them thinking we pay a monthly fee to maintain common land and community facilities (pools, tennis courts, etc.) seeing the long list of boiler-plate rules believing they'd only be used against egregious offenders...but all it takes is one petty person in the neighborhood and suddenly the entire community is getting sent notices threatening eviction and your hard earned money is being used to pay for lawyers, litigation and enforcement.

        The reality is most people just d

      • Re:Shame (Score:4, Insightful)

        by commodore64_love (1445365) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:59AM (#27446255) Journal

        Proposed amendment: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of a corporation, nor granting rights to same. All rights shall be reserved to the People as individuals. Congress shall accept no donations but from the People." (Or some variant thereof.)

        That would put an end to the nonsense that corporations are people. The individuals within the corporation such as Gates, Ballmer, and the sundry employees will have rights to free speech, free press, et cetera, but not Microsoft the corporation. Hopefully this law would also block the buying-out of Congressmen by corporations.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Brandybuck (704397)

        This is nothing new, it's been around since about 3271 B.C. when the first guy realized he could flatter the priest-king to gain political privilege. Here's a big cluestick for all of you: Government is comprised of mortal human beings! They aren't divine beings, they aren't angelic beings, they aren't even superior beings. They are mere human beings with all the ills, foibles an failings that come with being human beings.

        The problem is not that we have self-serving human beings in office, the problem is th

    • Re:Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

      by notarockstar1979 (1521239) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:14AM (#27445433) Journal
      Yes, shame on the faulty system. However, just because something is done to the letter of the law doesn't mean it's done with the spirit of the law in mind. Of course this may be EXACTLY the kind of thing this loophole was designed for.

      Is there any way they can retract it during a vote next week when they thought they were going to vote for it? I don't know how French law works.

      While I agree with most of what you're saying (even if I don't agree with where most of the blame goes), I don't know that I agree with the following:

      So shame on those living in France expecting anything different from their dumb system.

      If you are born somewhere, sometimes it is difficult to leave. Some people just don't have the resources or skills to leave a country and start a new life somewhere else (I know I'm finding it pretty difficult right now). What other choices do they have if the politicians don't listen to the people?

      The EU will probably shut this down anyway. We'll just have to see.

      • Re:Shame (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ShieldW0lf (601553) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:38AM (#27445883) Journal
        Yes, shame on the faulty system. However, just because something is done to the letter of the law doesn't mean it's done with the spirit of the law in mind. Of course this may be EXACTLY the kind of thing this loophole was designed for.

        Perhaps it's time to recognize that contracts and the laws that support them are contrary to a free and democratic society. If we dominate each other through trickery and exploitative contracts, how is that better than dominating each other through violence and force of arms?

        Power in the modern world comes from directing the efforts of the society of which we are a part. If that power that comes from leverage rather than the abiding support of the people that make up the society, it is tyranny. Contracts are the mechanism by which that tyranny is enforced. They are the mechanism that has been used to turn us against ourselves and cause us to labor relentlessly for arbitrary and wasteful things while the important things are being neglected and allowed to fall apart.

        We will not see things improve until we rectify this situation. Though, realistically, chances are good we will die before our time in this bed we have made without ever having even tried, and protest how unfair life is.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by TubeSteak (669689)

          Contracts are the mechanism by which that tyranny is enforced. They are the mechanism that has been used to turn us against ourselves and cause us to labor relentlessly for arbitrary and wasteful things while the important things are being neglected and allowed to fall apart.

          First of all, despite your eloquent language, you provide no facts or examples to support these assertions, which makes them no better than a poorly written rant.

          What are these "arbitrary and wasteful things" we "labor relentlessly for" and what "important things are being neglected and allowed to fall apart"? That's so generic as to mean anything.

          Secondly, Western societies have flourished because of their ability to enforce contracts in an (almost) corruption free legal system. Visit a developing country

    • Re:Shame (Score:5, Informative)

      by Jurily (900488) <jurily@noSpAM.gmail.com> on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:14AM (#27445461)

      While my initial thought is "Shame on those people who subverted the democratic process" I can't help but think.. "Shame on the faulty system with such a stupid loophole." Did they subvert the democratic process? Kinda. But did they do things within the boundries of their law? Apparently so.

      Hungarian law requires half of all MP's to be present to make any vote legit. I imagine it would have helped here.

      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Funny)

        by inviolet (797804) <`slashdot' `at' `ideasmatter.org'> on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:51PM (#27447187) Journal

        Hungarian law requires half of all MP's to be present to make any vote legit. I imagine it would have helped here.

        Yes, Hungarian law would've helped here, but it would've imposed some significant costs too... not least of which is the requirement that every MP change his last name to include the first letter of his party affiliation, like George H. W. rBush, Hillary R. dClinton, etc.

    • by Rich0 (548339)

      While I agree that it is crazy that a parliamentary body wouldn't have some kind of rule on quorums and annoucement of decision making, I don't think you can compare this to insurance policies.

      The last time you negotiated an insurance policy, how much of a negotiation was it? The last time I checked these documents are almost always take-it-or-leave-it propositions, and it isn't like just anybody can start their own insurance company to compete (it requires billions of dollars in reserves, and often politi

      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

        by FredFredrickson (1177871) * on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:39AM (#27445905) Homepage Journal
        Actually, the take-it-or-leave-it problem is very similar with countries.

        I'd be hard pressed to change the country, in the same way I'm hard pressed to make an insurance company give me good benefits. But it seems all insurance companies are equally as scammy, and I'm having a hard time finding a country I want to live in that isn't just as much suck as this one.

        So, yes, the government is like insurance. It never pays out, and no matter where you go, you'll get screwed.
    • Re:Shame (Score:5, Interesting)

      by inviolet (797804) <`slashdot' `at' `ideasmatter.org'> on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:31AM (#27445777) Journal

      While my initial thought is "Shame on those people who subverted the democratic process" I can't help but think.. "Shame on the faulty system with such a stupid loophole." Did they subvert the democratic process? Kinda. But did they do things within the boundries of their law? Apparently so.

      That's not what happened. When a vote on an issue like is needed, and everyone agrees with the new law but don't want to be on record saying so, an after-hours party like this is arranged. Everyone who agrees goes home with a wink, a nod, and plausible deniability.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Dreadneck (982170)

      It's hard to believe the French have no quorum provision in their constitution. If they had one like ours this couldn't have happened.

      Article I, Section. 5. Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller Number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House may provide.

      Instead, we just call ours in to vote in the middle of the night and early morning, still reeling from the cocktail circuit, getting them to vote on legislation they haven't read just so they can go to bed before sunrise.

  • Quorum? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:03AM (#27445219)
    Ever heard of Quorum? The French should add that to their rules/constitution to prevent that crap Sheesh
    • by kabloom (755503)

      At least in the US, the house and senate typically assume the presence of a quorum unless someone calls for quorum and demonstrates that there isn't a quorum. However, any one congressman can do that. I wonder why one of the opponents didn't do that in France.

      • Re:Quorum? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Shakrai (717556) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:17AM (#27445513) Journal

        At least in the US, the house and senate typically assume the presence of a quorum unless someone calls for quorum and demonstrates that there isn't a quorum. However, any one congressman can do that

        Yeah, but that doesn't always happen. The Hughes Amendment [gunlawnews.org] was passed on a late night voice vote when the House Chamber was virtually empty and everybody who would have opposed it was gone for the night. Isn't Democracy grand?

    • Re:Quorum? (Score:5, Informative)

      by alexhs (877055) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:46AM (#27446049) Homepage Journal

      Translated excerpt of French assembly voting rules [assemblee-nationale.fr] (emphasis is mine):

      3. - Quorum

      According to a principle reiterated by its Republican Regulations "the Assembly is always in force to deliberate and settle its agenda". The votes are valid regardless of the number of members present unless a group chairman calls for quorum before the opening of the ballot.

      The quorum refers to the presence inside the National Assembly by an absolute majority of deputies (based on the number of seats actually filled).

      When a vote may not take place due to lack of quorum, the session is adjourned and the vote postponed for at least an hour. The vote is consequently valid whatever the number of deputies present.

      Also, from the linked article (dammit, accentuation removed, won't they ever learn UTF-8 ?) :

      Apres 41 heures et 40 minutes d'une discussion passionnee sur le texte, il ne restait qu'une poignee de courageux deputes autour de 22H45 jeudi soir lorsque l'Assemblee Nationale a decide [...] de passer immediatement au vote de la loi Creation et Internet, qui n'etait pas attendu avant la semaine prochaine.

      The vote was called 41 hours and 40 minutes after the start of the session, at 10:45 pm, and the vote wasn't expected that day; no wonder only a few deputies were remaining.

  • Shame on everyone. Shame on him for 'tricking' this into law. Shame on everyone that left early because they didn't care about anything else that was left.

    • I say shame on the remaining representatives for not telling the President to stuff it, we're waiting for next week.

    • Shame on everyone that left early because they didn't care about anything else that was left.

      I have to say I agree. It's not like they had to leave to go to work or something, I suppose. They likely get paid to be in parliament and vote on things..

    • by Aladrin (926209)

      Oh, and shame on the system for allowing a session to go for 41 hours, guaranteeing that everything after the first 12 hours isn't thought about clearly.

      And shame on the system for allowing only 16 members to vote something in.

      (If I Google right, there are around 900 members of Parliament.)

      • by Stile 65 (722451)

        Seriously... isn't there some sort of quorum rule in the French parliament or something?

    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:14AM (#27445445) Journal
      Don't forget: Shame on the worthless motherfuckers who stayed and voted aye. Sarkozy is a prick; but 12 people in that room last night were the ones who actually made a mockery of the process of representative democracy.

      In a juster world, they would be hanging from the lampposts this morning.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by gmuslera (3436)
      After almost 42 hours of continuous discussion (i bet most of it was around the same wrong and boring arguments repeated over and over by the proponents) and when the actual voting was supposed to be next week?

      What you want? Robolegislators? The 12 that voted for it could had known of the sneaky move... the 4 that voted against should be treated as superheros.
  • What's the French word for "quorum" ? Clearly the National Assembly should be using it here. Dolts.
  • by thhamm (764787) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:06AM (#27445283)
    So now what?

    revolution!
  • by Gothmolly (148874) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:06AM (#27445285)

    Sounds like sour grapes to me. News Flash: Politicians use these procedural tricks all the time, why do you think that said tricks exist? At someone point, some other guys slid laws through on the same deal. Look at the absurd things the US does - the Patriot Act, Obama's "bailout" plans, that nobody ever reads, but people vote on.

  • -I- myself have great contempt for the democratic process, but I would actually point to these kind of shenanigans as part of the reason why!

  • Truth is... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by fredklein (532096)

    The people who showed "contempt for the democratic process" were the people who left early.

    • The majority, esp. under Emperor Naboleon Sarkozy, has quasi tyrannical powers, and can employ various tricks to make sure the minority can't pull a trick like showing up en masse when the majority's away.

      Furthermore they employed various procedural tricks -- they tend to do that almost all the time now actually -- to ram their laws through parliament without leaving any chance for the opposition to delay or discuss.

      Now this certainly does not excuse the main opposition party for not showing up, with few ex

  • by erroneus (253617) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:21AM (#27445595) Homepage

    Unpopular legislation is almost always passed in such ways. And now the blame for its passing is limited to a select few. I have to wonder if these loopholes and subversive means aren't there to protect lawmakers from having to make decisions that would get them booted from office? That is to say, while they support the legislation, they wouldn't want to be on record as having voted for it... so they "look the other way" while a team of patsies come in to do the dirty work for them.

  • Quorum (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PMuse (320639) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:21AM (#27445599)

    A country with a 577-member body that allows 16 people to constitute quorum? If that's actually the case, that country deserves what it gets.

    Say it ain't so.

    • Re:Quorum (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mzs (595629) on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:54PM (#27447251)

      They did call a quorum, at the beginning of bringing it to the floor, with 500+ members present, almost 41 hours before the vote, then they were told the vote would be first thing next week, so almost everyone went home. Sadly in France there is no easy way for a member to force a quorum call at a later point. This was an abuse of the rules.

  • by wiredog (43288) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:21AM (#27445605) Journal

    Like the UK.

    • Somalia (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Archangel Michael (180766) on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:40PM (#27446979) Journal

      Somalia is just about the only country which is truly free. You can do just about anything you want there.

      But I doubt most people would want to live there.

      The problem is, most people don't want true freedom. True freedom is truly dangerous. Realistically all these pseudo-anarchists want rules for everyone else, just not for themselves.

      I wonder what they would do if someone came and busted out their windows and torched their cars?

      I wonder if they would call the "police state" they are protesting?

  • Other sources: (Score:3, Informative)

    by Hemogoblin (982564) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:23AM (#27445631)

    Here's an AP article [latribune.fr], which is a little more reputable than a blog.

    And here's some commentaries that zdnet rounded up.

    http://www.zdnet.fr/actualites/internet/0,39020774,39390853,00.htm [zdnet.fr]

  • Report 'em all... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tlhIngan (30335) <(ten.frow) (ta) (todhsals)> on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:25AM (#27445681)

    If it's a three strikes law, use it to your advantage. Keep reporting all the incidents everywehere - Sarkozy hums a copyrighted tune? Report it. Flood the government or whatever bodies with reports on all potential copyright infringement by the members. After all, don't we already have proof that they do this? It should be trivial to just report that their children have broken the law as well. Keep reporting them and get their internet connections cut off.

    Sort of like "work to rule" campaigns - you make the rulemakers suffer under their own rules as well.

    Heck, bonus points for those who can get the Internet cut off at no only their personal residences, but also to government buildings also.

  • by Maxo-Texas (864189) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:33AM (#27445809)

    Obviously stupid, but a lot of people will lose internet access just like a lot of people sitting in jail could be living productive lives just like cigarette and alchohol vendors.

    Three strikes and you are out is a ridiculously low standard, so you can be sure that it will not be enforced on the elite. If it ever is, the law will be revoked.

  • More information (Score:5, Insightful)

    by krappie (172561) on Friday April 03, 2009 @11:38AM (#27445895)

    What this slashdot post needs is:
    1. A description of the law that was passed. 'three strikes and you're out' isn't very descriptive. I'm assuming it has to do with file sharing and cutting off people's internet connections?

    2. How many deputies were supposed to be there? 18? 100? 300?

  • by Nicolas MONNET (4727) <nicoaltiva@gmail . c om> on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:34PM (#27446839) Journal

    and I think my health suffered because of it. At first I was annoyed. Then I got mad. And then I was completely flabbergasted.

    The opposition asked thousands of extremely well informed and technically pointed questions. There was at times a hundred time more people watching the video stream than usual. They got tons of emails, which their staff would parse, print and bring to them during the discussions. They mentioned that several times. The majority never ever did, just sticking to their ridiculous talking points or, towards the end, not even bothering to reply.

    The law is unbelievable. Its entire purpose is to circumvent the judiciary and castrate any right to a fair trial, because as soon as a normal legal recourse is available, the sheer mass of defendants would topple the rotten thing instantly.

    This alone explains the many bizarre provisions of the law. For instance, when you get (or not, there is no hard requirements of delivery) an email warning, it doesn't mention what you were allegedly (or actually, what your connection was used for) downloading. That's right, they don't tell you. They just say, on that date and time, your connection was used to pirate shit, make it cease now, and here's a nice list of legal websites.

    The official purpose for this non-disclosure is because the download might be pornographic, and that might cause problems for families if, say, the spouse finds out. I'm not making shit up, that's what the retarded sponsor Frank Riestert (a car salesman) said, it's in the record. But the real purpose is so that you can't easily dispute the allegations. In fact, it's almost impossible to find out what's been reported against you at the "warning" phase, you can only do so when the decision to cut you off has been taken.

    Furthermore, the law explicitly limits the possibility for the accused to find out who detected the alleged infringement and how. You get to know (eventually) the copyright holder, but not which private policing outlet it had mandated for that purpose. Obviously this aims to limit the possibilities of suing for libellous accusations, or at least delay so much as to make it useless and therefore remove the incentive for the victims to sue so that this is not a bottleneck.

    Said outlets' employees will have to swear an oath to be truthful in their reports, but the law says nothing about any due diligence. In other word, as long as they don't blatantly lie, it doesn't matter if the evidence is as flimsy as a mere IP address being advertised in a Pirate Bay tracker. As you may know, it only takes *one* HTTP request to put *any* IP in there.

    This whole thing is insane. It is extremely likely to be thoroughly censored by the Constitutional Council (~ Supreme Court in this case) but that doesn't mean the end result won't be a disaster. The only hope is in the European Parliament, and if they finally pass their anti-3 strike amendment, it's on the European Court of Justice.

  • Sarkozy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by the eric conspiracy (20178) on Friday April 03, 2009 @12:57PM (#27447287)

    Does anyone find it amusing that after all the ridicule the French heaped on Americans for electing Bush that they went and elected somebody even worse?

  • Undo it (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dan667 (564390) on Friday April 03, 2009 @02:04PM (#27448433)
    Why can't the reasonable law makers come back and just pass a rescind to this legislation?

Men love to wonder, and that is the seed of science.

Working...