The government is expected to inform Internet Service Providers (ISPs) today of legal sanctions if they do not take action against piracy on the Internet. This follows the leak of a paper last week which claimed to propose a "three strikes" rule against UK Internet users, which would see their Internet connection terminated. Andy Burnham, culture secretary, talking to the Financial Times denied that the three strikes rule was ever in this strategy paper, now being released, and stated that the government wants to make a clear signal that something needs to be done.
The current schedule is to consult on legislation in the spring of this year, with a view to enforcement by April 2009. The details of how have yet to be determined, and ISPs could still head off sanctions if there were considerable steps toward a solution to the problem. Self-regulation is obviously more desirable but ISPs have raised concerns over the ability to actually check and stop illegal downloaders, thought to be in the region of 6 million people, and are worried over who will cover the costs.