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Strike Six! You’re Out! New Online Piracy Law to Start Soon – Tech Tuesday

If you haven’t heard by now, you will soon. The Copyright holders have gotten a law that they hope will move people back from pirating TV shows, albums and movies, to a pay system that ironically, still doesn’t offer any incentive for legit customers to use. It’s called Six Strikes and starts soon. Here’s how it works.

Photo by iStockphoto

A company called Mark Monitor will be watching for pirated content being transferred over the internet from sites deemed to be hosting pirated content. Then the major ISPs, Time Warner who serves Albany and the surrounding areas of the Capital Region, will take that info and notify users by email or phone, that they have been found to be downloading infringing content. When you hit that 5th or 6th notice, a pop up message will display that will go away if the user acknowledges that they have been warned they are downloading infringing content. After that, Time Warner will supposedly block access to “popular” sites for several days. But the list of these popular sites is not being released or how long the block will actually last. They have also stated, that account termination is not an option.

If you’re a Verizon user, they won’t block websites but will “severely” throttle your connection speed. No word on much throttle “severely” is, but I would guess enough to miff users.

While protecting your intellectual property is perfectly fine, let’s just remember that these content creators, like the movies studios, recording studios and TV studios, seem to forget something. That their business models are old, outdated and don’t work anymore. They have only come into the 21st Century kicking and screaming by the Internet. Region locks, DRM that doesn’t allow customers to watch legally purchased content on their own devices and abuse of the copyright laws seem to be the normal tools for these guys. So, will this deter piracy? Nope, nada, no way.

They also seem to forget that the data they rely on to find pirates is in most cases flawed. IP addresses can’t be traced to one person or computer, or even the owners of a particular network. This has been proven by experts in networking, and in courts of law. I think a lot of time can be saved by simply talking to customers to see what kind of system they want and giving it to them. Which the prevailing model is, like the Chinese Buffet. One price all you can eat. It’s working for Netflix and Spotify. It can work for the RIAA and MPAA too, if they would only listen.

 

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