IIA refused leave to participate in the iiNet copyright case
Roadshow Films Pty Ltd v iiNet Limited (No. 2)  FCA 1391
The Internet Industry Association (“the IIA”) was recently unsuccessful in its application to participate in the copyright infringement case brought against internet service provider iiNet by Roadshow Films and various other members of the film industry.
The IIA is not a named party in the court proceedings, but sought leave to intervene because this was the first Australian case to consider the internet safe harbour provisions in the Copyright Act. Those provisions are designed to protect carriage service providers in circumstances where their customers have engaged in copyright infringement, such as by downloading illegal copies of films or music.
The IIA told the Federal Court that, as Australia’s national representative of the internet industry, it could provide “unique assistance” to the Court, and could offer a broader perspective on the various policy issues surrounding the application of the safe harbour provisions. In refusing the IIA’s application, Justice Cowdroy noted that iiNet had already raised the issues that the IIA intended to raise in the case.
Accordingly, His Honour held that there was no new material that IIA could bring to the Court’s attention which would assist in the determination of the issues. The case has now been adjourned after almost five weeks of hearings, and Justice Cowdroy has reserved his decision.