RIAA and MPAA are coming after you!

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Thom Hartmann A...
Thom Hartmann Administrator's picture

The largest online protest in the history of the Internet may have derailed SOPA and PIPA earlier this year – but major entertainment corporations like the Recording Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America are still coming after you.  With the help of Internet Service Providers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T – tabs are being kept right now on people who are sharing copyrighted material online. 

And on July 12th, Internet providers will begin putting in a place a new anti-piracy plan – warning internet users that they could face penalties of up to $150,000 if they continue to file-share.  Providers will begin cutting down – or eliminating altogether – bandwidth for so-called offenders – until said offender agree to take an education course on piracy.  Providers may also restrict access to only major websites like Google and Facebook.  And most disturbingly – providers may share your information with other Internet providers to effectively create a blacklist of people who won’t be allowed to sign online. 

This is the corporate lock-down of the Internet that we’ve feared – and it’s the reason why Libertarians and Free Marketeers are wrong.  Without the government protecting us from industry – be it Wall Street, dangers in the workplace, or the Internet – corporate power always creeps in to strangle consumers.


captbebops's picture
A hilarious little "Copyright

A hilarious little "Copyright Math" rap by the founder of Rhapsody.


We've got plenty of time to organize a huge boycott if their STASI plans ever go into effect.  We got SOPA and PIPA voted down and I think we can organize enough heat to keep the ISPs from going along and send the Hollywarts back to the drawing board.

Let's make the weekend after July 12th the lowest grossing in movie history!


mdhess's picture
isn't it ironic that the list

isn't it ironic that the list of ISP providers keeping tabs on people sharing copyrighted material reads the same as the corporate criminals who colluded with the NSA to spy on citizens?  I doubt that Congress will be providing retroactive immunity to people accused of infringing on copyrights. 

Pierpont's picture
Looks like Peer to Peer (P2P)

Looks like Peer to Peer (P2P) file sharers will have to get their music and videos at their local library where they'll take out CDs or DVDs, both which can be easily copied. As for software, the problem isn't getting "cracked" software through P2P networks. Most vendors offer free trials. All a perp needs is a small key generator or crack... and distribution of these tiny files can't be stopped by shutting down P2P networks like eMule or BitTorrent.

The Copyright Police might now have the cooperation of some ISPs, but in this virtual "arms race" the P2P community will just develop more countermeasures like IP blockers like PeerBlock, proxy download services, and distributed P2P systems like Tribler.

As Star Trek's Spock would say: "Fascinating!"

Yet it all leads to a legitimate debate of how government copyright protections benefit us all by encouraging creativity and innovation… and how those who game the system use those protections to milk the public. We saw this in the copyright extensions for Disney's Mickey Mouse.  





captbebops's picture
And actually a study revealed

And actually a study revealed that old Walt (or young Walt back then) failed to properly copyright "Steamboat Willie" and that Disney holds a trademark on Mickey so they didn't need to extend copyrights for that.  The thinking is that the extension was for 1930's Disney films that were about to fall into the public domain.    They try to look altruistic by extending copyrights for everybody and thus garnering support from starstruck congress critters.


Pierpont's picture
captbebops wrote:We've got

captbebops wrote:
We've got plenty of time to organize a huge boycott if their STASI plans ever go into effect.  We got SOPA and PIPA voted down and I think we can organize enough heat to keep the ISPs from going along and send the Hollywarts back to the drawing board.

I have to wonder how this can work. I can't imagine the ISPs monitoring every P2P transfer to determine if it's copyrighted material. That would be an immense effort. I suspect they'll let the traditional P2P Gestapo do this so they can ID the P2P up/downlader's IP address, then notify the ISPs so they can actually ID the account. One way to get around this is using an IP blocker like Peerblock which will  block direct connections between a P2P computer and any other group... be groups hunting P2P activity or even all corporations. Peerblock can be use dto just block advertisers or malware sites. It just depends what list you use.

captbebops's picture
What I wonder is Hollywood

What I wonder is Hollywood going to pay the bill for the extra people and gear the ISPs will need?  If not the ISPs may tell them to buzz off. 

Being in the entertainment industry I always noticed that industry execs were no more tech literate than any other exec (except CE ones), IOW tech illiterate.  They've also wanted a "sure deal" on what is always more of a gamble than other products.  With many manufactured goods you can make a limited "first run" and if sales are brisk make more.  With entertainment you need enough sales to cover the production of your product.  Ticket sales need to be brisk the opening weekend for a movie or it is all downhill from there. 

Blame the studios that they've trained the public for "extravaganzas" that cost a lot to produce over compelling storylines and small productions that are little risk at all.  Disney just took a bath on "John Carter".  I could have guessed it would have been a tough sell but then I don't have an MBA from Harvard like the studio execs do which give them "great wisdom."  Interestingly I once had a chat with one of their professors who told he didn't think they were very good students at all.


Thom's "best step" to enforce

Thom's "best step" to enforce the borders is the enforcement of E-Verify and dealing with the "illegal EMPLOYER problem" first and foremost.  I think there are parallels to be drawn here.

I believe that a cyberlocker site which is demonstrably engaging in "willful blindness" providing a user-friendly place for uploaders to post in-demand copyrighted material (complete with a fine print "disclaimer" telling users what NOT to do...ummmm...OK...) -- sometimes even incentivizing these users through payments based on the traffic their respective uploads get -- and relying on the inability of copyright holders to "police" the entire internet AS THE DMCA REQUIRES (even captbebops has pointed out that this is a farce) -- and then taking the proceeds from credit card/PayPal "premium download subscriptions" AND Google AdSense...I believe that this is analogous to the "E-Verify and employer" dynamic.  The fact that there is profit in playing the game and "looking the other way" provides a "moral hazard" not unlike the moral hazards confronting mortgage brokers in the G.W. Bush era.

So, as E-Verify puts employers "on the spot" (as opposed to customers, suppliers, or clients), isn't it time to look at strategies that involve the revenue side?

If you need a primer on the "cyberlocker" model: check www.popuppirates.com