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Florida Enacts Piracy Provisions

Florida Gov. Jeb Bush rebuffed pressure from consumer-electronics and
computer lobbyists and signed into law broad anti-piracy protections.

He signed the law Tuesday, and it takes effect Oct. 1.

The Consumer Electronics Association, Gateway Inc. and Microsoft Corp. had
pressured the governor to veto House Bill 79. They argued that the bill -- to
extend anti-piracy protections to such telecommunications services as Internet
connection and telephony -- would "criminalize" legitimate activities such as
digitally recording television programs for personal use.

"The bill was revised to address the legitimate concerns of the electronics
industry," said attorney Geoff Beauchamp of cable's Broadband Internet Security
Task Force. The revisions specified that the targets of prosecution must
demonstrate their intent to steal.

"Apparently, the governor agreed with us that there is no problem" with the
revised language, Beauchamp added.