01/26/12— In the midst of the U.S. Congress reviewing two pieces of anti-piracy legislation, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Propety Act (PIPA), the Senate of Mexico has also been in the process of reviewing its own anti-piracy propostion made by legislator Federico Döring of the National Action Party (Partido Acción Nacional, PAN). The proposal, being called the Döring Law, aims to combat digital piracy and defend protected content through the use of economic sanctions. The law would punish the illegal use of digital content as well as authorize the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (Instituto Mexicano de la Propiedad Industrial, IMPI) to solicit internet provider companies for IP addresses of alleged offenders and provide a notification system to warn internet users when they are in violation of the law. In order to do so, the Döring Law would modify Article 202 of the Industrial Property Law and the Federal Law of the Right of the Author to allow IMPI to create such notification procedures. The Federal Law of the Right of the Author hasn’t been changed since 2003 and the Industrial Property Law was modified for the first time in 2010 since its creation in 1993.
If found guilty of violating the law, one could face fines from 30 up to 20,000 days of minimum wage, which could easily reach over a million pesos. If the violator is a foreigner, the Mexican government would seek the help of international bodies.
Many have compared the Döring Law to the proposed SOPA legislation in the United States. While the law aims to differentiate between free downloads on the internet from those that are illegal, Döring states that it is not an attempt to replicate the SOPA law, nor are they similar. He emphasized that his proposed law would not censure anything or close webpages, and that he more so wants individuals to be aware of illegal activity.