Sunday, November 25, 2012
Anti-Piracy Program "Six Strikes" to Launch at End of 2012
After more than a year's worth of setbacks, the much anticipated anti-piracy program commonly known as “Six Strikes” is set to launch by the end of 2012. Six Strikes, officially known as the Copyright Alert System, was established in a joint effort by Hollywood studios, record labels and major U.S. Internet service providers (ISPs) to discourage and minimize piracy. Major U.S. ISPs including AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Cablevision, and Time Warner Cable have joined forces with movie and music moguls in the attempt to curb this highly disputed matter.
However, this is not like baseball, and you are not “out” on your last “strike”. The vision of the program is to educate and stop the alleged content theft in question versus punishing individuals for the act. After years of suing the users with minimal results in the courtroom by movie and music conglomerates, will a more passive approach create the results the industry is seeking? Understanding ISPs were never and never will be in sync with the austere penalties recommended by the movie and music industry to be imposed on their own customers, this may be the only viable option left.
Copyright holders will scan the internet in search of suspect IP addresses from peer-to-peer file-sharing networks. Upon locating suspect users, the program will alert the user with “copyright alerts”. These are a series of messages, warning the user their alleged activity has been detected and that penalties could follow if the behavior persists.
ISP’s have agreed to institute “mitigation measures” also known as punishments upon a user’s receipt of strikes five and six. The reprimands include temporary reduction of internet speed, redirection to landing pages providing education information regarding copyright, or other measures the ISP may deem reasonable to aide in the deterrence of file-sharing. Before a “mitigation measure” can be levied, the user can request an independent review of the acquisitions. The review will not be before a judge and will cost the defendant a $35 filing fee.
Today, in our society, without stiff penalties for file-sharing, many are still willing to take risks. With the development of Six Strikes the burden falls onto the ISPs to maintain order; therefore the BIG questions still remain. Will ISPs risk loss of revenue and customer satisfaction to help the music and movie industry? With various delays in the implementation of Six Strikes, is this last ditch passive effort too late? Time will tell, but for now, you be the umpire.
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