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Ireland's Largest ISP Settles With Record Industry

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the don't-encourage-them dept.

The Internet 222

An anonymous reader writes "In what has been billed as a world first, four music companies and Irish ISP Eircom have agreed to work together to end illegal music downloading. The Irish branches of the record companies (EMI Records Ltd, Sony BMG Music Entertainment Ltd, Universal Music Ltd and Warner Music Ltd.) brought a High Court action against Eircom last March which has resulted in this settlement after eight days of trial. Eircom will be implementing a three-step process — informing a subscriber that their IP address has been detected infringing copyright; warning the subscriber that if they do not stop they will be disconnected; and finally disconnecting the user if they fail to heed the warning. Which technology they will be using to spy on their customers is currently unknown. EMI and the other record companies have recommended US-based Audible Magic, which (among other things) claims to block copyright violating web content from sites like Youtube and MySpace. However, digital surveillance is nothing new in Ireland and Eircom may have already tested and implemented the necessary technologies."

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Freedom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652423)

Dear Ireland: google "Freenet"

One Checkbox (2, Interesting)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653785)

Forget Freenet. Most Bittorrent clients have a checkbox in the options somewhere that routes traffic through the Tor Network. This measure is going nowhere.

Re:One Checkbox (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653881)

Tor is painfully slow. By the time DarkKnightAVIdvdQuality.torrent has downloaded, it'll have been a christmas re-run.

Let' see how fast they will run out of customers (4, Insightful)

egnop (531002) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652439)

Since they probably will go disconnecting people very soon. And that will end up getting another ISP to get connected again.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (4, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652661)

I hope you're right. The fact the Eircom rolled-over in just 8 days demonstrates that these companies have no interest in protecting our rights. For them it's all about the money, and they obviously took the cheapest route of not fighting.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653041)

The fact the Eircom rolled-over in just 8 days demonstrates that these companies have no interest in protecting our rights. For them it's all about the money

Of course it is. It is not a company's job to protect your rights. A company's main purpose is to make money for its shareholders.

Laws are what are supposed to protect your rights, because that company has to operate within the law. If the company's actions are an abuse, then the law should be changed (or enforced) so that this does not happen.

Of course, I'm assuming you were referring to legitimate privacy rights here, not to a non-existent right to download material in breach of copyright.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

zoney_ie (740061) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653561)

They won't be giving the record companies any private information, or indeed anything at all except presumably some bulk figures on warnings/disconnections.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

zoney_ie (740061) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653609)

Also the summary is incorrect. Eircom will not be doing any monitoring of users traffic. Record companies will just various means open to them to track illegal downloads over the Internet (the usual shenanigans). They then provide Eircom with IPs that they allege are infringing (I don't think Eircom has to take their word for it - they'll probably just issue warnings/disconnects on the basis of how much downloading is occurring for that IP).

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (2, Interesting)

dmoo (1255628) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653917)

Because its not as if there is any chance of some one using your average joe's default wireless router supplied by eircom other than the owner is it?? http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/10/02/eircom_wireless_security_flaw/ [theregister.co.uk]

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

malkavian (9512) | more than 5 years ago | (#26654041)

Actually, it's not the cheapest route, as long as there's competition, or the prospect of competition.
If you completely upset your client, and they have somewhere to go, then they'll go.
If you upset enough people, then even more will go, as they'll anticipate that you'll do bad things and few will take their place (as you're known to be 'bad') from the available market of people looking for your product.
Oh, and you'll also have to pay for the policing action that upsets your clients too.

Net effect, you have to pay for something that could feasibly vastly reduce your client base (net effect expensive and detrimental to your core business), rather than have another company go through the standard legal progression that applies to the rest of the world (net result, cheap to you, and a way to keep your client base feeling happier).

I see where you're coming from, but I don't see where 'cheap' comes from.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (4, Interesting)

ionix5891 (1228718) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652671)

Good thing then that their wireless passwords for the routers they give out are easy to crack

http://taint.org/2007/10/01/185837a.html [taint.org]

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653119)

yeah, I was just thinking about that. I can get onto two out of three eircom networks I pick up at home. Now I just have to figure out which one is the noisy asshole next door.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 5 years ago | (#26654033)

So find out who is a user, hook up to their AP, download some songs and watch the ISPs drown in support calls because they disconnect innocent people.

It could serve multiple purposes. First, it teaches ISPs that collaboration with the MAFIAA (or its respective European counterparts) costs money, and while they may not care about customers, they care about money. Second, it costs the ISPs that bend over and ask for one more whack customers. "Good" customers, i.e. customers that don't use a lot of bandwidth. And finally, when appearantly "everyone" breaks copyright laws, lawmakers might reconsider their position towards them. You don't want to have the whole population against you, not even in a mock democracy.

I'm usually actually for copyright laws. But I'm even more for a balance of the rights between buyer and seller.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

zoney_ie (740061) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653515)

Eircom probably will not disconnect most people that they are given an IP for by the record companies. They probably won't even send out letters. All they have to do, is do that where the user in question is a heavy user, and they will simulataneously keep the record companies happy, and get rid of a subscriber who is actually a burden on their network.

A small percentage, in Ireland at least, of any ISPs subscribers are heavy users. None of them need to cater for such users, and none of them want to. The only reason they've not done much up till now is lack of a mechanism for getting rid of them.

In any case, there are still alternative options for heavy users in many urban areas. At the very least, they can pay for multiple subscriptions, or extra data past cap limits for the ISPs who do now have a data cap.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

mk2mark (1144731) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653517)

Nah, people in Ireland are too willing to put up with crap like this. We like to complain, just to neighbours, not people that will actually do something about it.

Allied to the fact that Eircom controls all the phone lines in the country (charging over â23/$30 a month for rental), and the fact that the state of cable and wireless broadband in Ireland is a shambles; I'm not sure Eircom will have much to worry about in terms of prospective customers.

Re:Let' see how fast they will run out of customer (1)

uigin (985341) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653875)

Unfortunately, Eircom are the only realistic option for broadband connections for the vast majority of users in Ireland. And don't forget, if they are successful at identifying downloaders those are exactly the users an ISP can live without; they use a disproportionate amount of bandwidth. Eircom will be left with cash-cow customers, like grandma.

D

A comparison (5, Insightful)

peterprior (319967) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652471)

I wonder how people would react if the postal service were allowed to hold envelopes up to a light, say "theres a CD in there which could have illegally copied copyrighted data on it!" and then after doing that 3 times, stop all mail to your house without having to provide any actual evidence or give you a chance to prove your innocence.

Re:A comparison (1, Informative)

Covert Penguin (1094443) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652547)

Don't joke. What if the real purpose of 5 day delivery [usps.com] is because they've already begun doing it?

Re:A comparison (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652597)

[b]FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2001
Release No. 01-036
[/b]

please cvsup before posting news again, m'kay?

or buy a new battery for your CMOS.

It'd put a pretty big crimp... (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652713)

It'd put a pretty big crimp in Netflix's business model. I suppose you could say it would be an attempt to close the "snailmail" hole in the law.

Re:A comparison (4, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652727)

I'm sure a lot of people are going to respond to this comment with "But ISP's are private entities, not the government postal service." But the harsh fact is that most people have little more choice in their ISP's than they do in their postal service. Most people are like me. I have a grand total of two options if I want a broadband internet connection: AT&T's DSL service and Comcast's cable service. So basically, I can't anymore just "take my business elsewhere" (if I got banned for alleged piracy) than I could with the postal service. Getting banned from these two private entities would effectively cut me off from the internet permanently, with no recourse. That's pretty serious business in an age where your very livelihood can depend on the internet (particularly if you're a techie like me).

Re:A comparison (-1, Flamebait)

furby076 (1461805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652863)

Then don't download pirated content and you should be fine.

Re:A comparison (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652909)

did you miss the part where they don't have to prove you were actually doing any pirating, and you had no way to appeal the decision?

Re:A comparison (5, Informative)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653021)

Then don't download pirated content and you should be fine.

Oh really? Where exactly does TFA say you have to actually download anything to get disconnected?

But this agreement now denies Eircom's own customers all future access to due process when accused of infringement. All that is needed to terminate an Internet connection is three accusations from a narrow set of third-party companies.

Re:A comparison (1)

furby076 (1461805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653705)

Oh really? Where exactly does TFA say you have to actually download anything to get disconnected?

Are you just a plain old moron? The RIAA is not targetting someone who is surfing porn sites, they are targetting people who are downloading music they represent. They could careless if you download a song that your cousin created in his garage, they do care if you download Metallica's songs.

FTFA

"Three strikes" rules have come to Ireland in a sudden and unexpected way, as the country's largest ISP settles a court case brought by the music industry and agrees to take action on file-swappers. Repeat offenders will be disconnected from the 'Net.

Users get two warnings regarding file-sharing, and a third violation brings down the banhammer.

They charged that the ISP was essentially aiding and abetting piracy by doing things like advertising its services on The Pirate Bay, and the labels believed they could get a judge to force the ISP to install network monitoring equipment.

To be a file-swapper you have to upload and/or download files.

Also, from TFA, this deal was made to prevent the RIAA from getting access to this companies server logs. They were worried the RIAA would be able to see their customers personal information.

Re:A comparison (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26654021)

Define, "File-swapper".

If a file-swapper is a person who downloads files then every single person connected to the internet is a "file-swapper" since everything visible on a web browser is really stored as an HTML (or php, or the like) file on a server somewhere.

I would like for someone to explain how the IPS would differentiate between a Pink Floyd download (still under copyright) vs. my Robert Johnson collection (under public domain in regions that use life + 70 - since he died in 1938).

Re:A comparison (4, Interesting)

VEGETA_GT (255721) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652755)

This is where I like to point out there are also loads of false positives. Great example is me, over past few months I have gotten 3 letter saying I have downloaded movies on the eDonkey network, even listing the specific movies. Fine except I am the only one in my house who uses eDonkey and I know for a fact that I did not download that content they specified especially since 10 feet form the computer are at least 2 of the 3 dvds for the content specified. now in Canada they really don't do anything else, Rogers just forwards on the e mails and that's about it.

so with all these 3 strikes and you are out crap, I would not not have net access for actually not only not downloading content but for buying the DVD's. There are so many simple ways of avoiding these things of laying blame on others like spoofing ip's and then there are ways around it liek encription and proxies. so really when will they stop this kind of crap and find better ways to deal with the issues, Like servers set up for blanked non DRM subscriptions where I can download all I want for a monthly fee or some other method that would work. And get over the fact no matter what you do downloading content is not going away, you are just making people come up with new solutions to your issues and there are more people trying to get around the issues then make them. O and ya don't forget we still see record sales of dvd's/movies and music is growing online downloading in leaps and bounds so you can't tell me you are not making cash.

SCO is finely dyeing off why cant the RIAA and equivalent news

Re:A comparison (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653953)

Did you quite politely send them a couple of photographs of you holding said DVDs and tell them that the next letters they send accusing you of a crime you'd not commited had best be addressed to your solicitor?

I think that might get a little attention.

Re:A comparison (2, Insightful)

furby076 (1461805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652825)

Well - this isn't a court of law it is a business. If they want to stop servicing you they have a right to do so. They do have evidence, they have trace logs. Yes someone may spoof you, hack you, etc - but I am sure that is a fairly small percentage. I would think that pirates, on average, are a bit more computer savvy about virus programs, firewalls, etc. While there are many idiots out there when it comes to this (my brother) it is a small percentage.

A letter in your mailbox saying "we know that you d/l'ed XYZ file at 123 time using IP ##, cease and desist" is pretty compeling. I have gotten these from Comcast and they were always spot on. I never received a letter I did not deserve. Then again, I didn't care. It was TV shows that comcasts DVR box failed to record even though it recorded the previous show in that tv series.

If you think there will be an exodus from this company you are mistaken. First this company may have a local monopoly, or be heads and shoulders better then there competition (for example I hate comcast, but my options or cable highspeed or DSL....I need the speed so I stick with cable). Second most people don't pirate - most go online check their e-mail, surf sites, and maybe play soduku online.

So this company is doing what they feel is correct for their business model.

Personally I think it is crappy, and I am willing to bet this "spying" will cause some network lag - but if you want the RIAA to get off our lawn then we need to stop downloading their content and stop buying their content.

What about fair use? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652475)

I mean, it's understandable to block pirated songs from p2p networks, but c'mon. Youtube!?!?

Whatever happened to free culture on the internet?

Re:What about fair use? (4, Funny)

oahazmatt (868057) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652697)

Whatever happened to free culture on the internet?

It wasn't profitable.

Re:What about fair use? (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653107)

Whatever happened to free culture on the internet?

It wasn't profitable.

New Sig Time!

Wait a minute.. (1)

AlterRNow (1215236) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652491)

informing a subscriber that their IP address has been detected infringing copyright; warning the subscriber that if they do not stop they will be disconnected; and finally disconnecting the user if they fail to heed the warning.

There seems to be a distinct lack of understanding of this simple concept:
The person paying the subscription is not always the one infringing copyright.

Re:Wait a minute.. (2, Funny)

AlterRNow (1215236) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652531)

On another note, shouldn't the IP address be punished for infringing copyright, not the subscriber?

Darn those thieving IP addresses *shakes fist*

Re:Wait a minute.. (0)

furby076 (1461805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652903)

Irrelevant. The subscriber is responsible for what happens on their connection. This is not anything new - it's been like that since the mid-90's with AOL.

Also if your argument were true then corporations would use it when their employees got the company in trouble "He doesn't own the company so we have no responsibility for what he did while working for us".

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

AlterRNow (1215236) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653009)

The subscriber is responsible for what happens on their connection.

Personally, I find that odd considering a significant number ( most? ) of those subscribers probably barely know what is happening on their computer ( being part of a botnet, for example ), let alone their connection.

Also if your argument were true then corporations would use it when their employees got the company in trouble "He doesn't own the company so we have no responsibility for what he did while working for us".

I can see your point, but the company made a conscious decision (to hire that person) whereas a subscriber with a hijacked system did not.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

furby076 (1461805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653523)

I can see your point, but the company made a conscious decision (to hire that person) whereas a subscriber with a hijacked system did not.

Another person posted a comment, and I'll repeat it here. How many malware programs are out there causing someone to download torrents of cds, movies, etc to their hard drives?

Also, the person getting the letter will most likely call the cable company and ask "what the hell, I don't do this crap" and the company will say "well we have evidence someone is using your computer to do this. So either it is a family member or someone hacked your computer. We can help you with the latter, but not the former. Please go to http://...../ [.....] to read how to protect your computer. And please speak with your family members...."

I don't think the cable companies are going to suddenly become Evil Emperor wannabe's. They don't want to lose customers and will try and work with people.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

uffe_nordholm (1187961) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652973)

What do the record companies care? At least here in Sweden all they want is a person to hold responsible. Whether or not that person has actually done anything is beside their point. 'Cause after all, they are all about making money, whose money they get is secondary.

A few weeks ago one of the record industry representatives was involved in a chat with newspaper readers. A journalist asked a question along the lines of "Suppose my neighbour hacks into my wireless network, and starts sharing files. Who would have to pay the bill?" The answer was "The owner of the wireless network" (or words to that effect). This was not about disconnecting people, but making them pay for having shared files. The principle is quite likely to be the same when it comes to disconnecting people though.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

AlterRNow (1215236) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653057)

Which is why it is odd that ISPs are taking part..

If they start disconnecting innocent subscribers, they are going to lose business/money. The RIAA would have to be paying well, I guess.

Ads (1)

number17 (952777) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652495)

I wonder if it will detect the songs in ads and automagically block their servers for us.
Nevermind. Ad agencies will get access around the filter after they have paid up.

Fuck You Eircom (1)

Decado (207907) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652513)

After years of dicking around and holding back the broadband rollout in Ireland so they could squeeze every extra penny out of people stuck with dial up they immediately roll over for the content companies and decide to screw over their customers again.

I am very glad I switched away from eircom years ago. The main problem though is that they control all the actual physical lines and others have to lease bandwidth so I can see them quite happily using this shit as a stick to beat their competitors.

Re:Fuck You Eircom (1)

ratbag (65209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652677)

Using that stick sounds equally messy for them and their competitors.

Well there's always dialup (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652593)

They don't censor stuff, and you have a few hundred different companies to choose from.

There's also satellite internet.

end illegal music downloading? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652607)

Why, that's easy! You just filter every mp... no, won't work, wait... you need to disallow bitt... no sorry, let me try again, all you have to do is, at the network level.. hm, well, they should just outlaw illegal music downloading! Or downloading in general?

It won't work (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652611)

But it will probably be annoying for a while, for a lot of people.

And then, every other country will have the response ready in case it happens.

does anyone still use them? (1)

ionix5891 (1228718) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652623)

€ir$cum? i told their sales people where to stick it many years ago, UPC 20mbit cable with no caps is much faster and reliable and none of this nonsense

botnet (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652629)

It's a good thing that Irish computers never get infected with spyware, worms, or viruses, or such that could relay a music download. It's nice to know that everyone's wireless access points are so secure that nobody could hijack them. Wow! We could learn a thing or two about computer security from the Irish.

Re:botnet (1)

value_added (719364) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652741)

It's a good thing that Irish computers never get infected with spyware, worms, or viruses, or such that could relay a music download.

Maybe I haven't kept up, but I'm not aware of malware in the wild that would cause your computer to download the latest Backstreet Boys CD.

The concept, however, does raise an interesting question. If "aiding and abetting" merits a "graduated response" on the part of the ISP, then why aren't those users participating in botnets subject to a similar response?

Re:botnet (1)

hobbit (5915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653079)

Maybe I haven't kept up, but I'm not aware of malware in the wild that would cause your computer to download the latest Backstreet Boys CD.

Maybe that's because it hasn't needed to exist until now?

Re:botnet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653349)

It's more because the authors of the malware do have SOME sense of morals and fair play; there are some things to which even they wouldn't stoop!

Re:botnet (1)

colesw (951825) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653821)

There may not be any malware currently in the wild that does this, but if these sort of laws/regulations become common place you'll see some people make malware such as this just to have some fun screwing with people.
A lot of people are jerks and like seeing others suffer, sad but true.

bar of sope (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652639)

They will also send out the SWAT team if you take a bar of soap from a hotel.

Re:bar of sope (1)

coastwalker (307620) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652849)

The people of Ireland are easy to push around. Apart from following a Deity on Earth religion the population are predominantly young people. A lot of "progressive" legislation that would face resistance in the rest of Europe is tried out on them. Its one of the most oppressive countries in Europe.

Re:bar of sope (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652945)

Thanks. I needed a good laugh today. I rarely get time to laugh these days what with all the waiting for the second coming.

Re:bar of sope (1)

Crumplecorn (904797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653215)

The irony of this is that up until now the Irish have been able to sit back and watch as the US, UK, and on occasion the continent get DMCA or equivalent legislation enforced, while no-one really cared enough about us to bother implementing it here.

As for this, I might care if I or anyone I knew was actually with eircom.

Blacklist Ireland and RIAA member companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652643)

How about blacklisting all of Ireland such that they can't access Internet sites? Even better would be to get the IP addresses of all of the RIAA members and prevent their access as well.

Botnets (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652645)

Fun, fun, happy fun if a botnet decides to move a file around that triggers the filter.

How to disconnect 1/8th of a country.

Re:Botnets (1)

MadKeithV (102058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653111)

Who says that this isn't what the music industry is aiming for? "If we kill the internets, there will be no more illegal music downloads! 4: Profit!!"

It's all a red herring (3, Insightful)

yttrstein (891553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652655)

Watch how fast https becomes ubiquitous. When everyone is encrypting everything, the RIAA will be utterly powerless.

As they already are when it comes to any encrypted connection to any number of swarms or usenet servers.

Re:It's all a red herring (5, Interesting)

Yacoby (1295064) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652923)

Watch how fast https becomes ubiquitous. When everyone is encrypting everything, the RIAA will be utterly powerless.

Wait until people go back to swapping data on disks.

Uploading a music collection onto a 16 Flash drive and downloading it at a friends house doesn't take very long, and transfers many thousands of tracks. I doubt the record industry is ever going to stop that.

It is all moot anyway, as in 20 years time, the people who grew up pirating music will be in Government.

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

Taibhsear (1286214) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653137)

Watch how fast https becomes ubiquitous. When everyone is encrypting everything, the RIAA will be utterly powerless.

Wait until people go back to swapping data on disks.

Uploading a music collection onto a 16 Flash drive and downloading it at a friends house doesn't take very long, and transfers many thousands of tracks. I doubt the record industry is ever going to stop that.

Indeed. Never underestimate the power of the sneakernet, especially with tech savvy broke people. I already have a bandwidth of 2000 albums per visit.

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

Dog-Cow (21281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653173)

It is all moot anyway, as in 20 years time, the people who grew up pirating music will be in Government.

This line of reasoning is utter nonsense. The vast majority of people who download copyrighted materials (songs, movies, etc) do so because they are free. That is, they receive a direct benefit from doing so (no capital expenditure). When they are in government, they will receive a direct benefit for legislating against. That is, they will receive bribes and kickbacks for doing so.

This has nothing to do with a change in the morality of the culture. This is about simple self-interest.

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653513)

When they are in government, they will receive a direct benefit for legislating against. That is, they will receive bribes and kickbacks for doing so.

Plus they won't care beacause by then they'll have already downloaded everything worth having, twice over.

# Oh da-ray domma-doo domma-da, whackfol de daddy-oh...

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

silanea (1241518) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653939)

This line of reasoning is utter nonsense. [...]

I disagree, the parent poster has a point. The vast majority of top-level politicians today is out of touch with the Internet and its phenomenons and the information-sharing mindset it created - they're simply too old! To most of them a computer is a fancy typewriter with an included telefax machine and that thing where they can enter a word, click "Search" and get a list of other things which mention the word in question.

To them issues like net censorship, surveillance, digital downloads, net neutrality, open source etc. are foreign. They have advisors that tell them what to do on those subjects, but they don't have any personal stake in them.

The generations which grew up with today's Internet, on the other hand, take YouTube and other services for granted and feel the effects of restrictions and criminalising legislation. They stand to lose things they enjoy. And I am convinced they won't forget that all too quickly.

Re:It's all a red herring (0, Flamebait)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653277)

>It is all moot anyway, as in 20 years time, the people who grew up pirating music will be in Government.

That makes no sense. The people in government now grew up in the wild 60s yet theyre the fiercest drug warriors and culture warriors around.

I doubt those who take oaths to enforce the law are going to promote copyright infringement especially now that its brain-dead simple to visit amazon or itunes and buy digital music legitimately.

The idea that youre part of some "movement" is laughable really. Youre just cheap.

Re:It's all a red herring (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652951)

They will probably make encryption illegal. If you've got nothing to hide, there's no reason for you to use encryption, is there? If you use bit torrent over SSL, you're screwed, they'll come into your house and confiscate everything you own until they find something to charge you with or they sanctify you for finding that you were 100% legal, after you starve to death because you have lost everything you've earned in a life time (whether you worked for 5 or 50 years, it would still be everything you've ever worked for and it would be even worse because you might not have anyone to help you and you don't have much experience).

Re:It's all a red herring (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653011)

Yeah, then watch how fast the ISP becomes the "man in the middle". You'll have to accept their certificate to make any SSL connection.

ISP's are stupid to even consider stuff like monitoring traffic. By doing that they are not longer a utility and are making themselves liable for everything on their network. Of course in big industry they're all buddy-buddy and probably don't really have to worry about it... at least not until a consumer sues them. They could be sued for anything from defamation, cyberbullying/stalking, hate speech, etc.

Re:It's all a red herring (2, Insightful)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653231)

Not really. They join existing torrents and simply log all the IPs attempting to download from their seeders. The transport may be encrypted but youre talking to them asking them "Hello there sir, can I have piece 5949 of 'Metallica-Discography.rar.'" Blammo your ISP sends you a letter.

I doubt everyone will move to private trackers. In fact, I doubt they mind private trackers very much. Its impossible to stop the motivated and technically informed, but the harder it is for Joe Average to get music the better.

Now, if ISPs could use this technology to detect and take botnet members offline, we might have something good going on here.

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

scruffy (29773) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653263)

Watch how fast https becomes ubiquitous. When everyone is encrypting everything, the RIAA will be utterly powerless.

This will also create more motivation to move toward IPsec and IPv6 and increase use of Freenet, Tor, and other darknet technologies. All our communications should be encrypted anyway as a matter of privacy and confidentiality.

Re:It's all a red herring (1)

crimperman (225941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653495)

Watch how fast https becomes ubiquitous. When everyone is encrypting everything, the RIAA will be utterly powerless.

Just as long as they don't start using self-signed certificates [slashdot.org] we'll be fine :)

Seriously though - the IRMA (Ireland's RIAA) will not need to examine the data between you and the sites you visit. They'll just need the fact that you visited a suspicious sounding url itself and then make a pretty big assumption. From that they contact Eircom with an accusation and (as Eircom do not actually require the evidence to be proven) you get your first strike.

Not only eircom (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26652747)

"Eircom is pleased with the settlement [irishtimes.com] as it does not have to add software to its network, which could interfere with the broadband service. It also doesnâ(TM)t run the risk of running foul of privacy laws by having to provide details of its subscribers to the music industry."

"As part of the settlement, the record companies will supply Eircom with the IP addresses of all persons who they detect illegally uploading or downloading copyright works."

"Other ISPs contacted by The Irish Times last night could not confirm if they would implement the system. A spokeswoman for 3 Ireland, which has 130,000 mobile broadband customers, said it would be âoehappy to look into the matterâ."

The main problem here is that eircom has the local loop and provides the connectivity for all the land line based ISPs in Eire. How will this interfere with the other ISPs?

As for commodore64_love's advice of using dial-up, there are fewer dial-up ISPs here than broadband and once again there's the problem of going via shitty old eircom.

Doesn't matter (1)

koan (80826) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652875)

The thing with the RIAA, MPAA, and others, is that they are always behind the curve with technology, business models and ethics. (ha ha) I wonder what will happen to my internet connection when it's all encrypted, will they make that illegal too? Who does the Internet belong to? Us or Them.

At some point, if we let them, the Internet will be price tiered, monitored, and filtered to the point of uselessness.

I'm gonna laugh... (1)

lordsid (629982) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652879)

I'm gonna laugh when they go out of business from disconnecting a large share of their customers. I suppose they deserve it though.

Bounce Effect? (1)

Schiphol (1168667) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652933)

Maybe initiatives such as these increase the audience's awareness of anonymous P2P [wikipedia.org] .
That would be not completely unfunny.

But ... (1)

Sfing_ter (99478) | more than 5 years ago | (#26652975)

It doesn't take that long to download Enya's entire catalogue!!!

Downloading isn't illegal ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653027)

... and I will continue to claim that until someone can point me to a court decision to the contrary.

Unlike most media nowadays, even TFA doesn't say anything about illegal downloads, but uses the terms "file swapping" and "file sharing", which although imprecise at least correctly describe what the people are actually being sued for. Kudos to arstechnica for getting it right. Slashdot editors, I'm disappointed.

Customers Response (1)

andrewjj20 (716117) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653109)

And in another first, customers dump these ISPs(ATT et al) for those that don't tattle on customers. Oh wait, In the US, this is the wrong generation. The don't help rabble-rousers. They take video of security tackling the offender and post it on You Tube.

Re:Customers Response (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653179)

I wish I could. But AT&T and COMCAST (with AT&T the lesser of two evils IMO) are the only high-speed ISPs I have available. And I like to play some WoW from time to time without using an old modem via a small local ISP.

from SCO to ISP, then: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653145)

if it's not "sue your custumers" it's "kick your custumers away"?

nice business plan!

In a recent statement from the RIAA (1)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653155)

In a recent statement from the RIAA public relations VP, ....On behalf of our member companies, and associated groups across the globe, we would like to say to the people of the world:

We're sorry, we accidentally the whole Internet.

We would particularly like to apologize to people who live in those parts of the world where it is likely easy to shoot at our executives and not be caught. Sweden, we're still not happy with you.

Moving forward, we promise to only prosecute those individuals who admit to downloading content they don't plan to pay for at some future date. Beginning Monday, we're going to turn the Internet back on. Please tell your friends and family as we know some of them will not have gotten the news without an Internet connection.

Peace

RIAA Honeypot (1)

link-error (143838) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653265)

1. Setup some fake files with dummy recording of noise using filenames that would trigger their stupid bots.
2. Wait until your disconnected from your ISP.
3. Take them to court.
4. Profit.

This is awesome! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653317)

Think about it. The ISP is saying they are responsible for the content on their network. Now you can sue your ISP for wasting your resources on SPAM (especially all the illegal stuff).

Or anything else like if your underage kid views porn. Oops, ISP you should have blocked that!

Or somebody posts untrue comments about you in a forum from one of these ISP's. Forget about trying to find the person doing it, that's expensive and hard. Just sue the ISP into the ground!

(same goes for Comcast and all those other companies that signed up to monitor their network; they can kiss their neutrality goodbye because now they are liable!)

Simply solution.... (1, Troll)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653393)

...go buy the CD.

Sorry, people, but the facts are these:

1. If you're downloading music for free because it's not worth the money being asked for it, then you're either listening to the crappy music and/or not hunting down the best prices for your CDs.

2. Paying £10 for a classic album that might well stay with you for 50+ years of your life seems pretty good value for me. (Hell, I bought Led Zeppelin 4 on vinyl, tape & CD over the past 30-odd years & it's still worth every penny for the amount of times I get enjoyment from it).

3. Don't equate hoarding music to loving music - there's a big difference & the former is usually done by young males with small penises out to impress girls with 20,000 tracks on their iWanks^H^H^H^H^HPods.

4. So a particular CD only has 2 good tracks on it? Soution: buy it second hand or wait till it's in a bargain bin. If a good CD is worth £10 then a half-good CD is worth £5 - do the maths.

5. Read reviews, listen to samples & spend time researching your music - take-away food is quick, cheap & not very good for you, neither is take-away music.

6. No I don't work for the music industry & never have done - neither to I play an instrument, sing or have ever been part of a band. But I don't mind paying money for something that's good value.

7. As a regular CD buyer, how the *HELL* do you think I feel subsidising you people with your *FREE* music collections?

Rant over.

Re:Simply solution.... (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653595)

A couple of questions 1. How do I know if its worth the money? Where can I listen to a decent collection of music for free to find out if I want to buy it, without possibly running up against this monitoring? 2. What happens when the monitoring system reports that I downloaded copyrighted material that I never heard of?

Re:Simply solution.... (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653745)

1. How do I know if its worth the money? Where can I listen to a decent collection of music for free to find out if I want to buy it, without possibly running up against this monitoring?

Amazon? The artist's web site?

2. 2. What happens when the monitoring system reports that I downloaded copyrighted material that I never heard of?

No idea. But maybe if you can demonstrate that you legally own a fair proportion of what you listen to, then it would be more difficult to bring the case to a court? Maybe if people didn't download it free in the first place, that wouldn't give them an easy excuse for monitoring your activities? And why should I be affected when I don't do it?

Re:Simply solution.... (1)

hack slash (1064002) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653613)

"...go buy the CD."

Yeah cos everyone knows all the music you can download can be bought on CD...

Re:Simply solution.... (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653773)

You're arguing semantics.

Read my comments again - I'm specifically talking about music that is produced with the expectation that the listener pays something towards it.

Living in the 90's? (1)

Fearan (600696) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653755)

1. Best price = free

2. What about if I download Led Zeppelin albums? That I own in other formats already? Is that OK with you?

3. *rolleyes*

4. Isn't that what iTunes is for?

5. True... what's your point?

6. I play guitar and love learning songs based on tabs & youtube vids. Does that make me a bad person? The RIAA thinks so.

7. People still buy CDs?

Re:Simply solution.... (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653893)

Now, please explain to me where I can buy the Alundra [wikipedia.org] soundtrack? Because not every piece of music people want is available for sale at any price.

I've just cancelled my Eircom order (3, Interesting)

haggisbrain (945030) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653449)

I moved to Ireland last week and placed an order with Eircom for broadband. After reading this story earlier today I decided to have another look around for an ISP in my area. I found one, placed an order with them and cancelled my Eircom order. It's not that I want to download copyrighted material, it's just that having a home broadband connection is just far too important to trust the "evidence" of these record companies.

RIAA vs IRA (5, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653575)

Q: What's the difference between the RIAA and the IRA?

A: One of them used to be a bunch of terrorists.

Re:RIAA vs IRA (1)

infalliable (1239578) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653795)

nice. I'm going to hang onto that one.

Not As Invasive As It Seems (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653639)

OP here. I did some more digging around after posting this. It seems that Eircom will not be providing any additional information to the record companies as a result of this settlement. They will simply be acting as an intermediary between the companies and their own customers - issuing warnings after being provided with offending IP addresses and timestamps.

Where the record companies get these IP addresses is up to them (apparently they will be using Danish company DetecNet - the new MediaSentry). Of course the potential problem here is: what is the accused and disconnected customer's recourse if the timestamps are incorrect, or they happen to share their Internet connection with others?

This settlement seems to give the record companies a new vehicle to punish P2P users whom they catch, without having to pay lawyers. Eircom also gain because the have an excuse to disconnect heavy P2P users.

Reading Material [siliconrepublic.com]

"Effectively, a third party will be hired by the labels to find out who are the largest illegal P2P downloaders. They will then come to us with the IP addresses of the suspected parties.

"We wonâ(TM)t reveal the identities of the users, but we will contact them and if they fail to comply we will follow the process agreed with the music industry. Currently the industry pursues these individuals in the court. We will now begin a three-step process that will begin with the issuing of a warning.

"The labels have agreed to pursue similar deals with other ISPs in the marketplace," the Eircom spokesman said.

hmm (1)

Fackamato (913248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653725)

Currently living in Ireland (but I'm not Irish). When I first heard about Eircom's router's key being based on the SSID I almost died of laughing. Good thing for me though, means free wireless almost anywhere I go. I use NTL (UPC Chello) myself, and the guy who set it up for us even activated WPA on the router, I was surprised. They don't throttle the traffic either. I hope NTL doesn't agree to this... but, AFAIK they might rent the tubes from Eircom which means NTL traffic is monitored aswell.

I've said it before (1)

JohnnyGTO (102952) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653825)

and I'll say it now. To stop this madness all we need to do is STOP BUYING RIAA MUSIC, force the artist to go direct.

Good luck Ireland, time to call the ACLU in U.S. (2, Insightful)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653885)

If this mode of operation were to come to the U.S.A. we should hope the ACLU and EFF challenge it. Here is why:

More and more, the internet is being used as an access gateway to the government in order to participate as citizens. Removing this access without due process would certainly be actionable.

Corporations MUST NOT be allowed to be judge/jury/executioner for citizens. There must be due process and a jury of peers for any such action.

the innocent have nothing to fear .. (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 5 years ago | (#26653913)

"The criminals, who you really want to capture, are the very people who will take the trouble [independent.ie] to know how to get around this, so although they will possibly leave digital footprints, it could be extremely difficult to find them"

Why do the government need to spy on us to protect us from the terr'ists? Clicking here [indymedia.org.uk] may adversly affect your employment prospects, as well making any kind of public protest [wikipedia.org] ..

--

"Without privacy, there cannot be freedom, and without freedom, there cannot be personal or social growth, freedom of speech without freedom of response is meaningless"

Not as invasive as it seems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26653951)

It looks like Eircom are not actually providing the record companies with any more information than they already have. They are simply providing a service to the record companies to punish copyright violators without having to use the courts.

The record companies will be continue to gather IP addresses and timestamps of copyright violators (using danish company DetecNet - the new MediaSentry), and will simply pass them on to Eircom in the hope that Eircom will act on it.

The potential problem here is what recourse do Eircom customers have if they are falsely accused due to incorrect timestamps or the fact that their Eircom wireless router is still so easy to hack [theregister.co.uk] ? At the moment, the transparency of the whole process is minimal.

Reading material... [siliconrepublic.com]

A spokesman for Eircom explained to siliconrepublic.com that the collaboration with the labels will not involve any network intervention. âoeEffectively, a third party will be hired by the labels to find out who are the largest illegal P2P downloaders. They will then come to us with the IP addresses of the suspected parties.

âoeWe wonâ(TM)t reveal the identities of the users, but we will contact them and if they fail to comply we will follow the process agreed with the music industry. Currently the industry pursues these individuals in the court. We will now begin a three-step process that will begin with the issuing of a warning.

âoeThe labels have agreed to pursue similar deals with other ISPs in the marketplace,â the Eircom spokesman said.

Similar rules discussed in Turkey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26654045)

recently a similar rule is being discussed in Turkey. However instead of "just" disconnecting the users, this law allow the goverment to charge the downloader, even imprison him if the download is too high...

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