Tens of thousands of South Koreans have had their websites censored or been kicked off the Internet by their ISPs on the strength of a single, unsubstantiated accusation of copyright infringement, in a process that has no right of appeal, no right to face your accuser, and no right to see or contest the evidence against you.
South Korea changed its Internet and copyright laws a year ago, after being arm-twisted into a new set of rules as part of its US Free Trade Agreement (the US has also demanded new, tougher-than-domestic copyright laws in its FTAs with Australia, Chile, Central America, and many other states). Under the new rules, Korean ISPs are obliged to kick their customers (and their families) off the Internet after receiving three unsubstantiated copyright accusations.
But a second procedure allows the Minister of Culture to recommend that households be disconnected from the Internet; or that material hosted on web servers be censored, or that an ISP send a threatening "warning" letter to a customer. In the past year, the Minister has sent out 65,000 "recommendations" to Korean ISPs, and in all but 40 cases, the ISPs have complied with the recommendation -- meaning that the recommendation carries the force of law. Except, unlike a law, it has no judicial oversight, no due process, and is handed down by fiat from an unaccountable government bureaucrat.
The US-Korea FTA was the template for the much-watered-down Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, a secret, closed-door copyright treaty negotiation through which the US is attempting to write the whole world's copyright and Internet laws (South Korea joined the US in fighting to keep the treaty process closed and the drafts secret). South Korea was once the world's leader in the use of Internet as an engine for economic growth and civic engagement, far outstripping the US's own rather anemic showing in the global league-tables for Internet penetration and speed. The US Trade Representative has done his damndest to undo that competitive advantage by forcing Korea's Internet to wear shackles and weights, and he wants to do the same for your country, too.
Hopefully, it's clear what's going on. Basically, the Commission has sent out a lot of warnings, and blocked/deleted a ton of content. A total of 31 users have had their accounts suspended -- again, with no indication that there was any number of warnings or pre-notice at all. Separately, the blog post in question does note that the other method (the actual three strikes way, involving the Culture Minister) has sent out a much smaller 275 warnings and 41 orders to delete content, but none to suspend accounts.
A Look At How Many People Have Been Kicked Offline In Korea On Accusations (Not Convictions) Of Infringement
In July 2012, professional poker-player Phil Ivey won $4.8M from the baccarat tables at Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in 17 hours; on other occasions, he took a total of $9M out of the Borgata: he did it by asking the house to deal Gemaco Borgata cards, whose backs contained minute asymmetries in […]
The five Volkswagen executives who were criminally charged in the USA for their role in the Dieselgate scandal have been advised not to travel to the USA because they are liable to arrest there: they’ve also been told that leaving Germany is risky because they might be arrested and extradited to the USA.
When you open the box for a Storm Trooper snuggie blanket, you’ll discover a card telling you that by buying the blanket, you’ve waived your right to sue the manufacturer and will subject yourself to binding arbitration if your blanket gives you cancer or burns you to death or any of the other bad things […]
Computer hacking isn’t just something happening to the DNC. Major software companies need white-hat hackers to ensure the security of their products and users, and I came across a Computer Hacker Professional Certification Package that conveniently teaches those advanced IT techniques online.This course package will prepare you for various computer security certification exams with over 60 hours […]
One of the best ways to progress a career in project management is through earning recognized certifications. These certifications carry significant clout and don’t require expensive tuition or student loans. This Ultimate Project Management Certification Bundle is a great example of an affordable way to get ahead. It includes training for 9 certifications including PMP, […]
There’s nothing quite like the rush of playing against a real human opponent. But from a developer standpoint, creating fun multiplayer experiences is incredibly complex. Fortunately, the Unity3D game engine has made all aspects of game creation, including multiplayer functionality, as accessible as ever.This Unity Course Bundle introduces all of the necessary elements of creating […]