21 Apr 2012

Video download decision upheld by High Court

7:19 am on 21 April 2012

Major film and television companies have failed to convince the Australian High Court that internet service providers should be held responsible for illegal video downloads by their customers.

The court upheld a previous ruling that Perth-based internet provider, iiNet, had not authorised copyright infringements - despite its customers downloading thousands of movies illegally.

US and Australian studios had wanted iiNet to stop its customers from downloading pirated material.

In 2010, a federal court had ruled in favour of iiNet, saying it did not authorise the downloads.

The court also said that the country's third-largest internet provider did not have the technical ability to prevent the piracy.

The unanimous ruling from the High Court upheld the lower court's decision.

The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft group had appealed the lower court decision, saying it set a dangerous precedent.