isps ready antipiracy measures
Last Updated : GMT 11:59:16
Egypt Today, egypt today
Egypt Today, egypt today
Last Updated : GMT 11:59:16
Egypt Today, egypt today

ISPs ready anti-piracy measures

Egypt Today, egypt today

Egypt Today, egypt today ISPs ready anti-piracy measures

New York - Arabstoday

Americans who illegally download songs and movies may soon be in for a surprise: They will be warned to stop, and if they don't, they could find their internet access slowing to a crawl. After years of negotiations with Hollywood and the music industry, the nation's top internet providers have agreed to a systematic approach to identifying customers suspected of digital copyright infringement and then alerting them via e-mail or other means. Under the new process, which was announced Thursday, several warnings would be issued, with progressively harsher consequences if the initial cautions were ignored. ‘Educational' warnings Article continues below The companies took pains to say that the agreement did not oblige internet providers to shut down a repeat offender's account, and that the system of alerts was meant to be "educational." But they noted that carriers would retain their right to cut off any user who violated their terms of service. In bringing together the media companies and internet carriers, the deal demonstrates how the once-clear line separating those two businesses has been blurred. Eight years ago, the Recording Industry Association of America had to sue Verizon to try to uncover the identity of a customer who was sharing music online. This year, Comcast completed its merger with NBC, bringing an owner of digital content and a conduit for it under the same roof. Now the internet providers are hoping to profit as they pipe music and video of the nonpirated variety to their customers. "The ISPs want to cooperate with Hollywood because the carriers recognise that their own growth depends in part on bundled content strategies," said Eric Garland of BigChampagne, which tracks online media traffic. "They don't want to be just utilities providing internet access, but premium content distributors as well." The system involves a series of six warnings that an internet provider can send to a customer whom the media companies have identified as a possible copyright infringer. The warnings escalate from simple e-mail notifications to, at levels five and six, a set of "mitigation measures," like reduced connection speeds or a block on web surfing. As the alerts progress, a customer must acknowledge that he understands the notice. Customers will also have the opportunity to contest the complaint. The effect on consumers, the companies hope, will be a deterrent-by-annoyance. The media companies were also represented by the Motion Picture Association of America and groups acting on behalf of independent record companies and filmmakers. The internet carriers involved in the deal include AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Verizon and Time Warner Cable. Cost of piracy The music and movie companies, which estimate that digital piracy costs the US economy $16 billion (Dh58.77 billion) in lost revenue each year, have been eager for an efficient way to deal with the problem. As illegal downloading has become ingrained as a cultural habit, especially among young people, expensive litigation has become less effective, and the lawsuits against individuals were something of a public relations disaster for the music companies. The new deal, the companies say, offers plenty of chances for even the most recalcitrant pirates to reform.

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