Dutch Parliament has adopted the motion put forth by Independent Party D66 and Labour Party PvdA to not execute a download ban. ISPs should not be forced to block private users, a method used in France with the “three strikes” rule, which can shut down internet for a while after two warnings. The motion put forth by Christian Democratic Party CDA and Liberal Party VVD to replace the private copy fee by another method, was not voted in.
D66 MP Kees Verhoeven, who came up with the original motion, said that a ban on illegal downloading would not solve the problem, which would be better addressed by improving and simplifying the provision of legal content.
Organisations such as Norma and the Dutch Home Copy Foundation (Stichting Thuiskopie) have long pushed for a fee on electronic devices in addition to the one already charged for blank media such as DVDs.
A group of IT and telecom companies said in November that they would take the Dutch state and Thuiskopie to court over the amount of the private copy fee. The companies, including Acer, HP and Dell, want the government to take into consideration the costs that such a rule would entail. The fees for each device with a hard disk would be at EUR 5.
Stichting Thuiskopie said the copy tax will bring in a one-time time fee of around EUR 60 million, followed by a few euros each time a product sells, where music or film can be stored. Electronic manufacturers, organised into groups such Stobi and ICT-Office, said the figure of EUR 60 million is arbitrary and that they fear a high administrative burden. According to them, the Dutch film and music industry has lost no more than EUR 12.1 million in revenue due to illegal copies, according to figures provided by PwC.
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