The High Court has dismissed the copyright infringement appeal case today against Perth based ISP iiNet in what’s being called a “landmark” ruling. The high court’s 5 judges ruled that iiNet had “had no direct technical power” to prevent it’s users from downloading pirated content.
The lawsuit against iiNet was originally filed in late 2008 by Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, 20th Century Fox and Disney, before going to federal court in 2009 and ending in 2010 where federal court judge ruled iiNet could not be liable for it’s customers. The movie studios made their final appeal, which went to the high court in November.
iiNet released a statement shortly afterwards, with Chief Executive Officer, Michael Malone saying “iiNet has never supported or encouraged unauthorised sharing or file downloading.”
“Today’s High Court five-nil ruling confirms that iiNet is not liable for ‘authorising’ the conduct of its customers who engaged in online copyright infringement. This marks the end of more than three years of legal argument and challenges.”
“Increasing the availability of licensed digital content is the best, most practical approach to meet consumer demand and protect copyright. We have consistently said we are eager to work with the studios to make their very desirable material legitimately available to a waiting customer base – and that offer remains the same today.” Mr Malone said.