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Anti-piracy law toothless

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A new law in Sweden banning the sharing of copyrighted material doesn't appear to have had any effect, Swedish ISP's say.

Niklas Jakobsson, an engineer at Netnod, Sweden's biggest internet hub, told the (free) newspaper Metro that the law hasn't influenced the traffic passing through the company's systems. However, the managing director at download company Inprodicon, says he sees a significant rise in legal downloads.

The law, which went into effect on 1 July, implement long-overdue provisions of the European Union Copyright Directive (EUCD) of 2002. It also bans technology and software such as P2P file-sharing programmes, including Kazaa and E-Donkey.

File sharers don't seem to be discouraged, because the law is rather powerless, experts say. Sweden police admit it isn't an area which they are prioritising today.

Sweden's anti-piracy group Antipiratbyrån (APB) may disagree. Last month it reported 200 people to the police for breaking copyright laws by exchanging music, games and films online. Henrik Ponten, legal council at the Swedish Anti-piracy Bureau said that the (piracy) problem is bigger in Sweden than in any other country in Europe.

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