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News tagged: Fileswapping


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by Karl Bode 12:49PM Tuesday Jul 22 2014
After spending millions of dollars over countless years on plans to implement "three strikes" anti-piracy measures on the ISP level, the UK government has finally come to the conslusion that having ISPs play content nanny does little to deter piracy. Instead of previous, more aggressive plans to boot repeat offenders off of the Internet, a new plan taking effect in 2015 would simply warn users four times that they're violating copyright -- with no follow up punishment:
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Starting in 2015, persistent file-sharers will be sent four warning letters explaining their actions are illegal, but if the notes are ignored no further action will be taken. The scheme, named the Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme (VCAP), is the result of years of talks between ISPs, British politicians and the movie and music industries. The UK’s biggest providers – BT, TalkTalk, Virgin and Sky – have all signed up to VCAP, and smaller ISPs are expected to follow suit.
The UK's approach now more closely approaches the six strikes anti-piracy practices now established in the States, where users are bombarded with "education material" and warned several times about copyright abuses, but are never disconnected -- with offenses untracked as users move between ISPs.

The concern now is that these data collection efforts will ultimately be used for either fines or legal action down the road as the entertainment industry pushes for expansion of these programs into the sort of heavy-handed territory they originally envisioned.

15 comments


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by Karl Bode 01:56PM Wednesday Jul 02 2014
Back in February the makers of the film Dallas Buyers Club filed a lawsuit (pdf) against 31 anonymous Internet users accused of having downloaded the movie illegally. One of the film's backers is Voltage Pictures, the company that came to fame for suing 5,000 P2P users en masse for downloading their film The Hurt Locker, before heading to Canada to bully smaller ISPs.
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60 comments


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by Karl Bode 12:26PM Wednesday May 28 2014
The entertainment industry and incumbent ISP anti-piracy "six strikes" system recently reached its one year anniversary, and despite the Center for Copyright Information claiming the program was a smashing success, they released little to no detail on program stats. The program for the last year has involved ISPs tracking repeat copyright offenders then either throttling them or blocking website access until they acknowledge receipt of "educational" materials.
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by Karl Bode 08:20AM Wednesday May 28 2014
For the last few years Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, Time Warner Cable and Cox have done battle against select copyright trolls, provided said trolls are focused on areas of media these companies don't care much about (like porn and e-books). Most of these copyright trolls fire off pre-settlement letters and file suit against anonymous file traders en masse -- in the hopes of scaring users into paying cash without a trial.
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by Karl Bode 01:00PM Monday Apr 28 2014
With Hulu's owners being Comcast NBC, Viacom and Disney, it's probably not particularly surprising to see news that Hulu is now blocking VPN users over "piracy" concerns. Hulu has quietly implemented an IP blocklist for all of the major VPN providers, primarily as a way to block people outside the United States from watching broadcast content. Unfortunately, the block has also stopped U.S. users who use VPNs around the clock to protect privacy from accessing the service. “We have an existing relationship with Hulu and are reaching out to them directly to see what we can do about fixing this issue," states Andrew Lee, CEO of Private Internet Access.

62 comments


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by JKukiewicz 08:21AM Friday Apr 04 2014
A final ruling in the European Court of Justice has confirmed that it is legal for lower EU courts to force ISPs to block sites that infringe copyright, despite the fact that some broadband providers wish it were otherwise. The decision will bolster a growing trend in European countries for rights holders to pursue their interests by petitioning ISPs to block sites, either through the courts or through various forms of legislation.
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9 comments


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by Karl Bode 08:56AM Thursday Apr 03 2014
A little more than a year ago, most of the large ISPs joined a new anti-piracy initiative crafted by the entertainment industry dubbed the Copyright Alert System. In CAS, users are given warning letters for copyright infringement as has long been industry practice, but ISPs will also give users a slap on the wrist for the behavior, ranging from brief filtering of websites (until users agree to receipt of "educational" material) to temporary throttling.
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by Karl Bode 04:22PM Friday Mar 14 2014
Most of you should clearly recall the train wreck that was the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), a proposed law that was broadly and overwhelmingly criticized for its attempt to force ISPs and search engines to filter user access to "infringing" websites (among many, many other bad ideas). The House Judiciary Committee this week started the engine on what's to be a rebranding of the disastrous SOPA anti-piracy effort, which will this time be pushed under the moniker "notice and staydown."

These new push is yet another expansion of already dubious copyright law, with a focus once again on stripping ISPs of their safe harbor protections in order to make them content nannies.
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16 comments


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by Karl Bode 10:20AM Friday Feb 28 2014
NBC insists that the network worked with Olympics officials to thwart some 45,000 pirated streams of the recent Sochi winter games. Though they didn't show their math to support their claims, the network also insists it stopped 5,000 illegal streams of live Olympics events.
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by Karl Bode 12:40PM Wednesday Feb 26 2014
ISPs don't reveal the number of copyright violation warnings they send out as part of the entertainment industry's "copyright alert system," or the number of users who've received multiple warnings. In fact, as the "six strikes" system reaches its one year anniversary, no hard data on the program has been released by anybody involved, whatsoever.
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by Karl Bode 12:25PM Tuesday Feb 11 2014
The makers of Oscar nominated film Dallas Buyers Club have filed a lawsuit (pdf) against 31 anonymous Internet users who are accused of having downloaded the movie illegally. One of the film's backers is Voltage Pictures, the company that came to fame for suing 5,000 P2P users en masse for downloading their film The Hurt Locker, before heading to Canada to bully smaller ISPs. This latest case appears more targeted toward a smaller number of IP addresses while, unlike The Hurt Locker case, ensuring the targeted IPs are actually in the jurisdiction of the court.

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by Karl Bode 11:22AM Tuesday Jan 07 2014
The entertainment industry and ISP joint "Copyright Alert System" (aka "six strikes) has had little to no impact on piracy statistics, judging from a preliminary look at popular BitTorrent website traffic levels. The six strikes program was launched back in February with the cooperation of major ISPs including AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and Time Warner Cable.
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by Karl Bode 02:20PM Monday Dec 16 2013
According to Torrent Freak, AT&T has patented a new system that detects copyright infringement on its network, assigns those users a "risk classification," then can automatically take action against those users such as filtering the websites they have access to. "Thus far, copyright protection measures that have been deployed by, for example, the entertainment industry, have failed to curtail increases in Internet piracy," the patent proclaims. Granted the technology may never be used, and AT&T has explored similar technologies in the past -- ranging from piracy content filters to BitTorrent snooping technology.

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by Karl Bode 09:15AM Friday Nov 15 2013
Wikileaks this week released a copy of the latest version of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) that has been under construction behind closed doors for years. As we've long noted, the TPP attempts to take some of the worst aspects of U.S.
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by Karl Bode 10:29AM Friday Oct 18 2013
The entertainment industry's "Copyright Alert System" (aka "six strikes) was launched back in February with the cooperation of major ISPs including AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and Time Warner Cable. While the program integrates "educational" material and a variety of short-lived punishments ranging from throttling to click through warnings, early indications are the program hasn't had much if any impact on BitTorrent piracy traffic for a variety of reasons (users hiding behind VPNs or proxies, no punishment after the sixth "strike").
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by Karl Bode 10:40AM Wednesday Oct 16 2013
Public policy researchers at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center have crafted a new website dubbed Piracydata.org that takes a look at the ten most pirated movies each week and examines how many of them are available to stream, rent or own digitally. Not too surprisingly, none are available to stream, and very few are available to rent or own.
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by Karl Bode 03:29PM Tuesday Oct 01 2013
Sunday night's Breaking Bad series finale not only broke viewership records for AMC (10.3 million U.S. viewers), it also broke piracy records.
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by Karl Bode 12:45PM Friday Sep 20 2013
A new study by NetNames commissioned by Comcast NBC Universal released this week tries to get a handle on the global scope of online piracy. According to the study, some 432 million people engaged in copyright infringement during January of this year in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific alone.
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70 comments


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by Karl Bode 10:29AM Wednesday Sep 11 2013
A new study out of Australia has found that graduated response anti-piracy programs simply don't work. A new research paper from Monash University studied anti-piracy systems that have been deployed in France, New Zealand, Taiwan, South Korea and the UK.
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by Karl Bode 12:20PM Friday Sep 06 2013
In the UK, where ISPs are now being forced to impose Internet filters to block everything from BitTorrent websites to porn, some carriers are going the extra mile and taking this mandate to mean they should block VPNs as well. After ISPs signed a voluntary code of conduct requiring they block all porn by default (unless you're in Parliament, where viewing porn is apparently all the rage during free time), some UK ISPs have started blocking tools allowing users to bypass those filters:
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...VPN provider iPredator is already blocked under the “adult filter” of some, if not all, mobile providers.
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45 comments


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