French body HADOPI, launched by the government to handle the three-strikes anti-piracy system, confirmed that it has filed its first warning messages.
The HADOPI email messages were reportedly sent to infringing users via their respective Internet Service Providers on Friday (Oct. 1).
“Attention, your internet connection has been used to commit legally-noted acts that could constitute a breach of the law,” begins the email. Piracy “is a serious threat to the economy of the cultural sector,” it adds.
Billboard.biz understands that all France’s main ISPs agreed to cooperate with the exception of Free (Iliad Group), which declined to send the warning messages; this follows a late August statement by Free saying it refused to do so it at its own expense. Free has said it tried to reach agreement with the government, so it remains to be seen how the authorities will respond.
HADOPI has not communicated so far on the number of warning letters sent. And during a Paris press conference today, HADOPI declined to comment on the launch of the warning messages.
“The [three-strikes] process goes on,” was HADOPI president Marie-Françoise Marais’ only comment.
She added that Free’s lack of cooperation means it is “penalizing its subscribers” as they won’t receive an initial email warning in the event of copyright infringement “but they will still receive a registered letter [in case of repeat infringement].” She added that the dialog with Free was continuing.
The IT journal PcInpact said the first warnings had been sent to subscribers of two major internet service providers, Numericable and Bouygues Telecom.
Last week, the body unveiled the text of the warning message sent to infringing users caught for the first time. The letter warns the Internet subscriber that his connection has been used for an infringing act and that, while he might not be aware of this, he is responsible of the usage of his Internet connection.
In the case of a third infringement, HADOPI’s rights protection committee CPD will submit the file to a judge who can order a fine of up to €1,500 ($2,075) for the offender and suspend his Internet access for between a month to a year.
The full name for HADOPI is the Haute Autorité pour la diffusion des oeuvres et la protection des droits sur Internet (High Authority for the dissemination of works and the protection of rights on the Internet).