Welcome to the U.S. Copyright Alert System

This story about a six strike voluntary agreement among content owners and ISPs is interesting. For each copyright violation accusal subscribers receive an alert. After six such alerts the repercussions are up to the ISP but in most cases users could get put in “slow Internet jail” for a few days or be forced to watch boring “copyright education” videos. Ok … not as bad as some of the previous incarnations supported by content owners but still things seem a bit one-sided.

Just by being accursed a subscriber is presumed guilty and must defend their innocence through an appeal process. Appealing an alert cost $35 with the idea being to stave off frivolous appeals. But what about content owners having to prove guilt and pay fees for staving off frivolous accusations?

Hope you downloaded enough episodes of Game of Thrones Sunday night to last you the rest of your life; starting this week, the five major internet service providers (AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Verizon and Time Warner Cable) have free rein to harass you with notices, block you from visiting certain websites, and even slow down your Internet speed if you are found (or suspected) to participate in illegal downloading.

The arrangement comes with the implementation of the U.S.’s nationwide Copyright Alert System, first proposed in 2011. Think of it as D.A.R.E. for illegal files.

Here’s how it works:

Content owners like the RIAA (for music) and MPAA (for movies) will monitor peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing sites like BitTorrent for their own content. Once these content owners notice a copy of, say, Bridesmaids available for illegal download, the owner will collect the IP addresses of users sharing the file (you) and tattle on you to your internet service provider.

Your service provider (ahem, Time Warner), will then issue an alert to you to let you know they know you’re in violation of copyright laws. They will repeat this alert process up to six times as you are repeatedly flagged for violations because you love illegal downloads.

via Welcome to the U.S. Copyright Alert System, Where Companies Can Slow Your Internet If You Download Illegally.


What do you think of this new agreement between contents owners and ISPs? Let us know in the comments below. See ya!

2 comments for “Welcome to the U.S. Copyright Alert System

  1. February 27, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Wow… “U.S. Copyright alert system” – ISPs can slow/block access if they suspect you are downloading illegally: https://t.co/RzM0Pxi8d2

  2. February 27, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    BLOGGED: Welcome to the U.S. Copyright Alert System http://t.co/4xZQnFsfP1

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