I recently visited an Internet Cafe in New Zealand that has "Popcorn Time" installed on their computers. "Popcorn Time" is software designed to torrent videos and play them in more-or-less real time. I am confident that were I to use this software at home I would be in breach of copyright. The Internet Cafe does not save this data, except to cache it. The Internet Cafe installed the software on the computers as part of an image they deploy.

Section 92B of the Copyright Act 1992 appears to shield ISPs from copyright infringment. The act also defines (for this purpose) an ISP as a person who "offers the transmission, routing, or providing of connections for digital online communications, between or among points specified by a user, of material of the user’s choosing"

Is the Internet Cafe considered to be an ISP with respect to this act?

Section 37 of the Act deals with "Providing means for making infringing copies". Is my understanding correct that, not withstanding any provisions related to being an ISP above, the Internet Cafe would be liable for copyright infringement as they installed Popcorn Time on their computers, thereby "in the course of business, offers or exposes for sale or hire - an object specifically designed or adapted for maaking copies of that work, knowing or having reasaon to believe that the object is to be used to make such infringing copies"?

1 Answer 1


No of course the cafe is not an ISP.

They use an ISP, the same way you would.

  • 2
    i did not downvote you, but its not that straight forward - an Internet Cafe does NOT use the Internet the same way I would in a business - the key difference is that they are not the end user of the Internet connection - they are on onselling this connection (At minimum they are "offering the transmission, routing or providing of connections for digital online communications" - the second part of the clause is less obvious"
    – davidgo
    Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 22:14

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