Swiss piracy plan irks Italy

Ruling based on federal study that says loss doesn't impact nation

The Swiss government’s decision to uphold legislation under which downloading copyrighted content for personal use is legal is drawing fire from neighboring Italy.

The Swiss ruling, announced Monday, is based on a federal study which, among other findings, claims that the economic loss from piracy does not impact the nation, “only big foreign companies.”

“This is the country that hid the loot of history’s biggest criminals, and whose banks shield tax evaders. Now they protect Web thieves,” Enzo Mazza, topper of Italy’s music industry org Fimi, thundered on Tuesday.

The report also insists that, while around a third of Swiss citizens over the age of 15 download pirated content, these people don’t spend less locally on entertainment as a result.

Report also criticizes other countries’ anti-piracy measures as repressive, questioning the legality of laws such as the three-strikes method in France where repeat offenders can lose their Internet access.

Anti-piracy legislation based on the French model is on the agenda in Italy.

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