UK govt scraps "three strikes" piracy plan

The UK government has ruled out introducing legislation forcing ISPs to disconnect music pirates after repeated offenses.

The peak body for the British music industry, the BPI, had been pushing for a "three strikes" policy.

Under the proposal, ISPs would send a threatening letter to customers found to be engaging in illegal file sharing. After a second offence, the customers speeds would be limited, and after a third the customer would be involuntarily disconnected.

The UK IP minister, David Lammy, this week ruled out such legislation, telling the Times that a system "where we're talking about arresting teenagers in their bedrooms" would be unacceptable.

"People can rent a room in an hotel and leave with a bar of soap - there's a big difference between leaving with a bar of soap and leaving with the television," he said.

Last year several ISPs agreed to send out 1,000 warning letters a week for three months as part of a trial of the first step of the program. An estimated 7 million Britons engage in illegal file sharing each year.