February 10, 2017

Another attempt to clamp down on Pirate Bay et al

The press this week has been getting its knickers in a twist again about illegal downloads, peer-to-peer distribution of pirate content and the like. Here’s one example, from the Birmingham Mail:
Customers of Sky and Virgin Media found [to be] users of these sites will be issued a warning.
The warnings, which are part of the government-backed Get It Right campaign, will inform customers they have 20 days to stop downloading content illegally.
The campaign is attempting to educate web users about the dangers of piracy.
“Copyright owners are monitoring peer-to-peer (file-sharing) networks to identify instances where their content is uploaded and shared without permission,” states the campaign.
“They will note the Internet Protocol (IP) address and then contact the appropriate ISP – including BT, NowTV, PlusNet, Sky, Talk-Talk and Virgin Media.
“The account holder may then receive an Educational Email from their ISP referencing one or more instances of peer-to-peer uploading and file sharing activities that have been confirmed to breach copyright.”
Click here for the full story. Bizarre that the Mail story on the web is packed with ‘How to use Kodi’ videos, isn’t it?

Anyway,  the actual measures to stifle piracy are still laughably half-hearted and the ‘stop, or else...’ threat is completely toothless:
Sky says that any users who receive an educational email won’t have their broadband suspended.
“Your broadband service won’t be affected as a result of receiving this email alert,” the company wrote.
“However, if you continue to share content illegally using your broadband connection, Sky will request that you take immediate steps to remove or disable any file sharing software that is being used to share copyrighted content illegally.”
Ow! Stop slapping my wrists! It won’t work of course - Pirate Bay users (and wasn’t that supposed to be blocked?!) know full well what they’re doing and aren’t going to be deterred by a tepid telling off in an email. What is more, according to uSwitch; “Internet providers will not actively monitor people’s online activity in order to find instances of illegal file sharing, nor will copyright holders. Instead, copyright holders will track activity on peer-to-peer networks to identify instances where their content is being illegally uploaded and shared.” So they’re not even going after downloaders so any Torrent users who are smart enough to throttle their upload channel won’t even get the email. Pathetic
And let’s not forget that there are still (I think) Usenet communities sharing content that presumably isn’t being targeted by this campaign either.

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