Wednesday, August 29, 2007

SingNet: We did not 'consent' to Odex

Yes they released their information only after ODEX produced a court order. But, they have not given subscribers a clear answer as to why they did not appear in court.

SingNet: We did not 'consent' to Odex SINGNET has clarified that it did not 'consent' to demands by Odex to hand over details about subscribers allegedly downloading pirated Japanese cartoons, called anime.

The Internet service provider (ISP), which is being slammed online for its apparent capitulation in the controversial case, says in no way did it help Odex's application.

SingNet spokesman Chia Boon Chong said, 'We reject all requests from third parties for information pertaining to our customers. We will release such information only under a court order or if the law enforcement and regulatory agencies demand such information from us.'

In Odex's case, as it does in all such cases, he said, the firm would 'entrust the courts to apply the law and make a ruling'.

The Telecommunications Competition Code prohibits ISPs from disclosing subscriber information without a court order, and a spokesman for the Infocomm Development Authority said SingNet had not breached the code.

Odex won court orders earlier this year to get SingNet and StarHub to disclose names of subscribers allegedly downloading anime.

When Odex failed to obtain a similar order against Pacific Internet (PacNet) last Thursday, people began wondering why.

Online attacks against SingNet intensified after District Judge Ernest Lau published in his written judgement that 'for the SingNet case, the orders were made by consent'. He also said that SingNet did not even appear in court. Different judges had ruled in all three cases.

Many people, including corporate counsel and Nominated Member of Parliament Siew Kum Hong, interpreted this to mean that SingNet had agreed to Odex's application, thus expediting it.

Online users thus felt SingNet had betrayed them, and this probably fuelled the online outrage against the ISP, said Mr Siew, who maintains a well-read blog.

Read the full report in Wednesday's edition of The Straits Times.

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