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Prior to publication, it was rumoured that broadband providers could be impelled to apply a French-style three-strikes-and-out policy to clamp down on file sharing. Also thought to be in with a shout of inclusion was the introduction of restrictions to make life difficult for those who flaunt copyright laws.

In the end, all that has changed is that broadband suppliers will be forced to be more proactive by sending out letters to file sharers and will have to keep records of their customers’ usage. These, Lord Carter stipulates, must be made available to music and film companies if they wish to pursue legal action against offenders.

At least that’s all that will change for now. A scan of the report actually reveals that if these measures aren’t successful in reducing downloading by 70 per cent, then banning orders and speed humps could once again be on the agenda.

We’ll be very curious to see if the huge reduction they're aiming for is achievable. But we very much doubt that a letter, no matter how strongly worded, will have any impact whatsoever.

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