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Reprieve for illegal downloaders

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Reprieve for illegal downloaders

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A victory which makes it harder for authorities to cut off Internet service, say when a subscriber may have downloaded copyright material illegally:

This victory comes in the form of one amendment to a major reform of EU telecoms rules. The European Parliament has sent it back to the negotiating table with the EU states. Members were concerned about Internet users’ rights. They said there should be a court ruling before someone’s connection can be cut. Telecoms is an area where the Parliament and EU states have equal say. The states had given the reform the go-ahead. But the French MEP steering part of it through parliament, Catherine Trautmann, said: “When a single part is rejected the whole package goes to conciliation,” — has to be reworked. France has been working on a national law against illegal downloads. It made MEPs angry, and the amendment aimed at better rights for Internet users carried overwhelmingly. The EU telecoms ministers are due to meet on June 12, and they have the option of accepting the amendment made by parliament.