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American ISPs to launch massive copyright spying scheme on July 12.

If you download potentially copyrighted software, videos or music, your Internet service provider (ISP) has been watching, and they’re coming for you. Specifically, they’re coming for you on Thursday, July 12. That’s the date when the nation’s largest ISPs will all voluntarily implement a new anti-piracy plan that will engage network operators in the largest digital spying scheme in history, and see some users’ bandwidth completely cut off until they sign an agreement saying they will not download copyrighted materials.

Word of the start date has been largely kept secret since ISPs announced their plans last June. The deal was brokered by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), and coordinated by the Obama Administration. The same groups have weighed in heavily on controversial Internet policies around the world, with similar facilitation by the Obama’s Administration’s State Department.

The July 12 date was revealed by the RIAA’s CEO and top lobbyist, Cary Sherman, during a publishers’ conference on Wednesday in New York, according to technology publication CNet.

The content industries calls this scheme a “graduated response” plan, which will see Time Warner Cable, Cablevision, Comcast, Verizon, AT&T and others spying on users’ Internet activities and watching for potential copyright infringement. Users who are “caught” infringing on a creator’s protected work can then be interrupted with a notice that piracy is forbidden by law and carries penalties of up to $150,000 per infringement, requiring the user to click through saying they understand the consequences before bandwidth is restored, and they could still be subject to copyright infringement lawsuits.

Participating ISPs have a range of options for dealing with customers who continue to pirate media, at that point: They can require that an alleged repeat offender undergo an educational course before their service is restored. They can utilize multiple warnings, restrict access to only certain major websites like Google, Facebook or a list of the top 200 sites going, reduce someone’s bandwidth to practically nothing and even share information on repeat offenders with competing ISPs, effectively creating a sort of Internet blacklist — although publicly, none of the network operators have agreed to “terminate” a customer’s service.

It is because of those reasons that the content industries believe this program achieves much more than what might have been possible in the realm of public policy, and the ISPs appear to agree. The voluntary scheme will be paid for mostly by the content industries, which will share some costs with the ISPs.

Not everyone sees it as a positive: The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights advocacy group, argued that the “graduated response” scheme lacks transparency, and that copyright holders could wield the network operators like a blunt instrument in cases where their claims may not be entirely valid — which is the biggest problem with statutes codified by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. They also pressed for assurances that claim reviews will be conducted by a neutral party, and suggested that users should be given some form of due process before their bandwidth is turned down or cut off entirely.


54 notes


  1. arashikami reblogged this from iheartchaos
  2. thenightingalescode reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    If this is true, we are in for some major problems. Prepare for a war on the internet.
  3. synestheteandotherstuff reblogged this from iheartchaos
  4. shin33ee reblogged this from valkyrien
  5. valkyrien reblogged this from fookyeahconradveidt
  6. theneverendingchange reblogged this from iheartchaos
  7. itohshingo reblogged this from iheartchaos
  8. 67000mph reblogged this from iheartchaos
  9. silvermary reblogged this from iheartchaos
  10. geomantis33 reblogged this from iheartchaos
  11. laugharne reblogged this from iheartchaos
  12. captain-suspenders reblogged this from fookyeahconradveidt
  13. ladiesplusjunk reblogged this from iheartchaos
  14. adriftinthecosmos reblogged this from iheartchaos
  15. fookyeahconradveidt reblogged this from monstersdamestweed
  16. scstech reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    Watch out Internets, they coming for you!
  17. the-water-crown reblogged this from readinglist32
  18. theodorepython reblogged this from iheartchaos
  19. twistedevilbitch reblogged this from iheartchaos
  20. readinglist32 reblogged this from iheartchaos
  21. tylerbearhart reblogged this from spookystrasse and added:
    Well… Shit…
  22. rustontheroses reblogged this from iheartchaos
  23. memoryjar reblogged this from iheartchaos
  24. a-powerful-wizard reblogged this from iheartchaos
  25. monstersdamestweed reblogged this from iheartchaos
  26. jessicapax reblogged this from iheartchaos
  27. tropicmonkeys reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    Well then
  28. zombiefuhrer reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    Cool because we shouldn’t crack down on hackers or child porn; that’s less serious obviously >_> wtf?
  29. deadpixel-powered-painter reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    So. Who’s up to riot on Thursday, July 12?
  30. gmorel1916 reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    This. Is. Bullshit.
  31. spookystrasse reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    Gentlemenpirates, it’s been an honour.
  32. scary69 reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    Well I’m screwed…
  33. hor0logy reblogged this from iheartchaos and added:
    if this is ferrreal i will die
  34. getkloaked reblogged this from iheartchaos
  35. Larry Wilson submitted this to iheartchaos

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