EU counter-attacks entertainment piracy

Officials say piracy has cost the European music, movie, TV and software industries 10 billion euros ($14 billion) and more than 185,000 jobs in 2008 – but consumers the world over now expect easy online access to cheap entertainment through a variety of delivery models.

The EU executive says it will target the problem “at source,” going by plans drawn up for Financial Services Commissioner Michel Barnier and taxation counterpart Algirdas Semeta, and seek action by Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

European Commission proposals say Brussels “will identify ways to create a framework allowing, in particular, combating infringements of intellectual property rights via the Internet more effectively.”

The detail says amendments to existing legislation “should have as their objective tackling the infringements at their source and, to that end, foster cooperation of intermediaries, such as ISPs.

“A commission official admitted it was “too early” to say exactly what could be done.