×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Internet Providers To Begin Warning Customers Who Pirate Content

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the looks-like-you're-not-using-tor dept.

Verizon 442

beltsbear writes "Welcome to the future that you warned us about. Starting soon, Verizon, Comcast and others will work with the Center for Copyright Information to reduce piracy. Customers thought to be pirating will receive alerts. 'The progressive series of alerts is designed to make consumers aware of activity that has occurred using their Internet accounts, educate them on how they can prevent such activity from happening again,' If a customer feels they are being wrongly accused, they can ask for a review, which will cost them $35, according to the Verge."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

442 comments

I should not have to pay $35 (5, Insightful)

Skapare (16644) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719471)

... if I didn't do anything wrong. THEY should first prove I did.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (5, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719485)

C'mon - Verizon and Comcast likely wrote that provision themselves. After all, why treat it as a procedure when you can treat it as a profit center?

Just wait until they feel that profits aren't high enough...

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (4, Insightful)

RanCossack (1138431) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719587)

They don't even have to raise the fee; that's the best part of this, to them. They can just increase profit by going "Oh, let's pick accounts at random and accuse them of piracy."

35 dollars later, they say "oh, our bad", and they keep the money.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1, Redundant)

houghi (78078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720081)

They can just increase profit by going "Oh, let's pick accounts yearly and accuse them of piracy."

There, fixed that for you.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (4, Insightful)

Nyder (754090) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719599)

C'mon - Verizon and Comcast likely wrote that provision themselves. After all, why treat it as a procedure when you can treat it as a profit center?

Just wait until they feel that profits aren't high enough...

They are a corporation, profits are never high enough...

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720015)

They are a corporation, profits are never high enough...

Whatever, Che.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (5, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719613)

C'mon - Verizon and Comcast likely wrote that provision themselves. After all, why treat it as a procedure when you can treat it as a profit center?

I've received about a dozen of these alerts. You know what I do with them? right-click... delete. Go ahead, tell me I'm pirating. Go ahead, threaten me. They once sent me a very intimidating "final notice" saying they were going to cut off my internet. It was the only one I replied to -- via a certified letter. All it had in it was a print out of the e-mail and the following word: "Nuts."

It's been four months and several terabytes of pirated material. I haven't heard a peep from them. Here's the truth guys: Ignore, ignore, ignore. They're trying to use fear to motivate people because they know the "problem" is so widespread that it would take tens of millions of lawyers working around the clock and an equal number of judges, experts, juries, etc., at a cost of many billions of dollars to go after everyone legally. Ignore your ISPs until they actually turn off your internet. Then... complain to your public utilities commissioner and legislators and explain how they're engaging in vigilante justice, it's unamerican, etc. Be creative, but above all, be loud, and send your complaints on something with a stamp on it, not an e-mail. Or use a fax machine. That shit gets read, unlike e-mails. We are legion. Don't forget that: Hundreds of millions of us. A few dozen of them. Even if they have machine guns and tanks, they're still fucked.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (5, Interesting)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719637)

Bravo.

For once, a post I can agree with 100%.

The contract I signed with them has no provision for "punishment" based on some 3rd-party's say-so. If they tried to throttle me or cut me off, that is fraud or at least breach of contract.

They can threaten all they like, but I'd bet you a lot their lawyers told them they'd damned well better stop short of actually taking any action.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720079)

If they tried to throttle me or cut me off, that is fraud or at least breach of contract.

Usually not.

And they're not afraid of you. They'll just start answering those incoming John Doe requests.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719647)

That worked before because they didn't have this infrastructure in place. Now it will all be automated and the account will shut down just based on the number of notices it says you have in their system.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (3, Insightful)

flimflammer (956759) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719865)

I don't think so. The ISPs will do everything they can short of disconnecting the user or harming their connection because all that will do is result in losing customers. ISPs only put up with this shit as much as they do because it's not losing them business. If they have to start giving up customers, you damn well better believe the ISPs are going to start fighting, kicking and screaming.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (2)

copb.phoenix (1976866) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719901)

There's a void slowly forming for services that aren't directly associated with copyright infringement but won't answer to Old Media, either, to fit into.

I doubt I see it here, but Frontier was hesitating about joining the bandwagon. I don't know what they're at now.

All I know is, as long as people believe in a model of freedom in sufficiently high enough numbers, it will prevail. The only reason this happened is because people let themselves be told "even if you're not part of our problem, you deserve this".

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719923)

If they have to start giving up customers, you damn well better believe the ISPs are going to start fighting, kicking and screaming.

Not exactly. I have yet to see very many companies not roll over and play dead at the threat of legal action. The only time they ever do is when complying with the demand costs them more money than the retainer's fee. Someone sat down in some meeting room and decided with a few other people to go ahead and do this. That someone is very high up in the company, and it would take them hemmoraging cash before they swallowed their pride. Techies always think about the system, never about the people in it. No, they'll lose customers left and right, bleeding them out, until the shareholders ask why earnings are down. Then, and only at that point, will Pridey McPrides-a-lot reconsider.

And here's the thing: If all the other ISPs in your area decide to do the same thing (collusion!), they're going to figure there's not much incentive. You may switch to a competitor, but you'll still have the same problem there, and so on and so on, until you're out of the market. All these ISPs have been told nobody will go without internet -- and all internet providers have to "be in it together". But, if people do start dropping off, and not buying internet at all, the entire industry will convulse and retaliate then.

Not that I expect that to happen. I do, however, expect and ask that anyone who gets their internet shut off file lawsuits against the company. It does not matter if it's justified. It does not matter if you think you can win or not. File one. Everybody, file a lawsuit. File many lawsuits if you can. Keep them busy, keep them in court, and most importantly: Cost them money. And cost the courts time. Because they're overloaded, it takes months to get in on a civil action -- and lawmakers and judges will sit up and take notice when their dockets start filling up with the same thing over and over again. You hammer them, over and over, force them to spend money defending themselves. And at the same time -- make sure your assets are safe. Ask your family to take the title to the car, etc., once you file the lawsuit. Make sure you have nothing they can take away from you.

Kick those fuckers in the balls so hard their kids are born dizzy. That's how you win. And trust me: It works. If even 1% of the population contested their speeding tickets, the court system would implode just on that. I mean, as in, smoking crater of ruin. I'm not asking everyone who gets a letter to do something: I'm asking 1% of you to. If you can, if you're in a position to put up a fight... do it. Stand up for something.

This is how you fight authority... and win.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719983)

They won't dare kick off too many users. At least on cable. They're already losing massive numbers of people from their tv services.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719665)

I wouldn't ignore the first letter. I'd make life a living hell for the sender.

But then, I'm not pirating several terabytes of pirated material and then bragging about it on an internet website while also giving free (if dubious) legal advice and essentially saying "the system is broken so loot everything". Guess that gives me something of a moral high ground if I do get a letter.

You go on being legion. I'd rather be an individual than part of your mob.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719849)

You *still* believe pirating is stealing, even after spending time on slashdot?

(If you didn't mean to say loot, that's cool, we all make mistakes, just say so)

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (2)

khallow (566160) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719893)

You *still* believe pirating is stealing, even after spending time on slashdot?

I don't know about the other poster, but I do. It doesn't mean I'll get worked up enough to defend a failed business plan. This seems like one of the opportunities to get rid of crime by making it legal.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720101)

You *still* believe pirating is stealing, even after spending time on slashdot?

(If you didn't mean to say loot, that's cool, we all make mistakes, just say so)

I don't believe pirating is stealing, and never have. It's not theft, it's copyright infringement, but that doesn't magically make it legal or moral. Whether or not that should be illegal is a different discussion. Whether or not the term "loot" is fully appropriate is a strawman argument.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719857)

I wouldn't ignore the first letter. I'd make life a living hell for the sender.

It's hard to make life a living hell for an entity that sold its soul a long time ago. I ignore all letters unless served to me by the sheriff as a matter of course. In this society, the threat of legal action usually shuts people up. I'm something of an exception to the rule though -- until legal action actually commences, I really don't give a fuck. Remember, there's plenty of time to settle or negotiate, it's not like the legal process is fast.

But then, I'm not pirating several terabytes of pirated material and then bragging about it on an internet website while also giving free (if dubious) legal advice and essentially saying "the system is broken so loot everything".

While I am bragging about it on an internet website, fair enough, nothing I say here is under oath. I can lie all I want; as long as the words themselves aren't inciting people to violence or in some way providing a clear and present danger to public safety. "Download ALL the stuffs!" doesn't exactly make my list of Things People Say That Reasonable People Get Scared About. Actually, it makes the Things People Say Everyday That Only a Very Very Very Super Very Tiny Number Of People Have a Problem With list... and that's about it.

Guess that gives me something of a moral high ground if I do get a letter.

You had the moral high ground from day one. Fair use used to be legal. I could share music and videos with you freely -- even copies, even copies of copies, or copies of copies of copies. The operative word is of course 'free'. I can't charge you for it, and you can't make a profit off it. But as long as you stayed within those boundaries, it was all good. And the reason for this was that a lot of our music, media, movies, art, etc., is part of our collective culture. My sister made a reference to the Jetsons the other day -- despite never having actually seen an episode of it. That's part of our culture -- it's symbolism for something about us. The future, flying cars, whatever, it's part of who we are. There are tens of thousands of things just like that, songs "everybody" knows. I have yet to meet a girl who can't recite the lyrics to Sweet Dreams (are made of these), etc. Fair use isn't a cheat -- it's an essential part of retaining and spreading our culture. Locking it up and saying only the wealthy can afford it is wrong. It may be legal, but it's wrong. It will always be wrong. There is no way in which a moral and ethical person can conclude it's anything but wrong.

Legal does not mean right, and illegal does not mean wrong. I do what's right, what I think is fair, and act within the standards of my community, not some arbitrary standard set out by some rich fucker in a suit who thinks he has a say. Listen, rich fucker, you don't. You never did. All the money in the world can buy you corrupt laws and public officials and a lot of influence, but it can't buy you me.

I am free. So take your laws, your lawsuits, your bullshit ideology -- and literally fuck yourself with them. And I do mean literally... print them out on a sheet of paper, and shove it up your goddamned ass. Are we clear here? This isn't about me being part of a "mob", this is about me being a proud member of my community. I am proud of my values, and I know these are values that the majority of people in my community, in the country, in the world, support and agree with. That is what I mean when I say "we are legion."

You cannot threaten or cajoule me into doing something I feel is wrong. That's what standing up for what you believe in means, and I'll do it every time. They got my number, they know where I live... anytime they feel like coming over and trying to force their ideas onto me, I'm up for it. I'm here, ready, waiting. I'm not hiding. I'll fight... but I won't go looking for one. And I encourage you to do the same. Any fool can make a law, and any fool will mind it. You do what's right, that's all any moral, ethical, member of your community can ask... the law... doesn't matter.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (5, Informative)

rgbrenner (317308) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719947)

Fair use used to be legal. I could share music and videos with you freely -- even copies, even copies of copies, or copies of copies of copies. The operative word is of course 'free'. I can't charge you for it, and you can't make a profit off it. But as long as you stayed within those boundaries, it was all good.

You do NOT get to make shit up. You obviously have no idea what you are talking about.

Look, I get it... you're pirating material.. and you're telling yourself all day long, it's ok... this *used* to be legal.

But it's NOT true. If you want to have a reasonable discussion about copyright law.. then YOU NEED TO STICK TO THE FACTS.

The first copyright law was the The Statute of Anne in 1709 in Britain. It did not apply to the colonies. The first copyright act in the US was the US Copyright Act of 1790.. it was similar to the Statute of Anne. http://www.copyright.gov/history/1790act.pdf [copyright.gov]

That from and after the passing of this act, the author and
authors of any map, chart, book or books already printed ... shall have the sole right and
liberty of printing, reprinting, publishing and vending such map, chart, book or books, for the
term of fourteen years ...

And be it further enacted, That if any other person or persons, from and after the
recording the title of any map, chart, book or books, and publishing the same as aforesaid, and
within the times limited and granted by this act, shall print, reprint, publish, or import, or cause
to be printed, reprinted, published, or imported from any foreign Kingdom or State, any copy or
copies of such map, chart, book or books, without the consent of the author or proprietor thereof,
first had and obtained in writing, signed in the presence of two or more credible witnesses; or
knowing the same to be so printed, reprinted, or imported, shall publish, sell, or expose to sale,
or cause to be published, sold or exposed to sale, any copy of such map, chart, book or books,
without such consent first had and obtained in writing as aforesaid, then such offender or
offenders shall forfeit all and every sheet and sheets
, being part of the same, or either of them, to
the author or proprietor of such map, chart, book or books, who shall forthwith destroy the same:
And every such offender and offenders shall also forfeit and pay the sum of fifty cents for every
sheet
which shall be found in his or their possession, either printed or printing, published,
imported or exposed to sale,

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719995)

girlintraining frequently makes shit up. Everything (s)he says sounds really truthy, but is actually very far from reality. :(

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (3, Informative)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720129)

The first copyright law was the The Statute of Anne in 1709 in Britain. It did not apply to the colonies. The first copyright act in the US was the US Copyright Act of 1790.. it was similar to the Statute of Anne.

If we're going to have a measuring contest over who can nitpick the best, I'm going to win. The first copyright law in the United States was common law, which our laws were derived from, and Clause 8 of the US Constitution. In other words, until 1790, all our laws were case law, decided by judges. After that, a small portion of copyright law was codified. That's the very small part you quoted. Fair use predates that and continued after the passage of that law in our common law system.

Now, if you'd be so kind, please reply with another wall of text only tangentially-related, as is traditional when someone pulls your pants down around your ankles and giggles at your ineptitude in a public forum...

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719969)

I'm as chaotic good as the next guy - in fact almost certainly more so. I don't agree with the system, but I also don't agree with you. I am an individual and don't need to believe "the majority of people" support me in order to do what is right.

The greatest tragedy in this to me is that you demean yourself here through word and action. I don't think you are free, at least not like I am free, but only because you shackle yourself.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (3, Informative)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720089)

Mod parent up. Although, there is a caveat (isn't there always?):

What you seem to be describing is the Shareware Concept. This isn't so much fair use as a licence to copy and distribute. For those of you born after the days of bulletin boards and floppy disks on the front of magazines, here's how it works:

You get a copy of a piece of software from wherever (I'll use a copy of FractINT 18.0 I got on the front of a magazine a few years before my oldest child was born). The licence that comes with it (in electronic form, a file named license.doc and another called vendor.doc) says I can distribute as many copies of the software as I like, to whomever I like, BUT:

1. I cannot charge for the software. I am, however, allowed to charge for the media and bare distribution costs such as postage and packaging.
2. If I distribute the software as part of a compilation I MUST get permission in writing from the copyright holder (they're usually very good about this).
3. The software must not be modified in any way. Ancillary files not essential to the software's functionality but included with it (such as the licenses) must be bundled with it. Usually the license documents include a list of the files that must be included (an exception to this is the example given, where the authors actually encourage community input into the program, great mods/additions make it to the next version).
4. If I find the software useful, I should consider paying the author. Sometimes, what you have is a locked-down version (a "demo") of the full program. Pay a small fee and you get the unlock key. Sometimes it's a 30-day period with full functionality then it locks down. Same thing. OR for some games, you get to distribute the first level or three, pay the fee to get the rest of the game sent to you in the post (what a weird concept these days!)

Now, I've been using FractINT for nigh on two decades, it's the most fantastic bit of geek porn. I've also made regular donations to the authors in time and development (as they say, "Don't want money, got money. Want recognition". Great philosophy!) and I've managed to sort of keep up with the latest developments myself (though I still prefer the DOS version).

What the Shareware Concept and associated licence does in these days of wireless broadband and "What's a CD-ROM?" is reduce the cost of distributing software attached to it, to almost zero. You're not buying media or envelopes, or paying postage anymore. You're opening a Bittorrent client and hooking up to a tracker. There's no effort involved anymore, and that is what is scaring the SHIT out of the big vendors and the associatives - their business model is COMPLETELY OBSOLETE.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719809)

As someone who makes his living, and buys food for his family, working on exactly the sort of material that people pirate: fuck you.

Yes, yes, yes...you're getting away with it. You're so clever.

It can't get bad enough for you fast enough.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719817)

It can't get bad enough for you fast enough.

Clearly the solution is to protect your artificial monopoly at all costs even if it means harming innocent people who have never downloaded any copyrighted material. All without a court being involved in the process at all.

No, fuck you. Even people who like copyright should be against this.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719937)

Different AC here. Let me explain something

My artificial monopoly consists of me. My skill, whits and talent that put food on the table and a roof over my head and available for you.

You're stealing from me. If you have something that you should have paid for to obtain ownership of and you haven't paid for it, you have taken without consent, stolen. Either that or you have broken the contract of ownership and that's fraud.

You better hope to hell that your pirating is counted as theft because fraud caries a lot heavier penalty.

I work hard and make things available. I want my due recompense - my wages.

I like copyright, it feeds me. I am against this. It's nothing short of extortion.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

garaged (579941) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719999)

Would you be willing to keep paying a small amount of your earned money to the guys that sold you the computer you used to create your work? Just because

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720077)

My artificial monopoly consists of me.

No, it consists of an idea. That's the entire point of copyright.

You're stealing from me.

I haven't taken anything or downloaded any copyrighted material. Or did you just assume that I download copyrighted material because it sounded as if I was in opposition to that other fellow? Interesting that you feel the need to do that.

That said, no, it isn't stealing. They have two very separate legal definitions, and to call it stealing is blatantly incorrect.

Either that or you have broken the contract of ownership and that's fraud.

It's actually legally known as copyright infringement.

Morally, you don't own it. The data is stored on someone else's hard drive.

I want my due recompense - my wages.

Then find a working business model and stop making excuses for why you're justified in trying to control other people's property and censoring information.

I like copyright, it feeds me.

And I'm sure plenty of people who lost jobs thanks to automation hated automation; that doesn't mean they get to use the law to uphold their shitty business models!

As for me, I'm sticking to open source and avoiding shitty 'artists' like you like the plague.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720087)

You're stealing from me.

Actually, they're raping you. To call it stealing makes rape seem less worse than it really is.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719859)

When the content producers stop fucking around with the system (Infinite copyright terms, SOPA, DMCA, DRM, etc...), then then I'll consider buying stuff legitimately.

As long as they're passing laws that that keep works out of the public domain for over a century while raiding the public domain for stories to exploit themselves, they can go fuck themselves.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719819)

Wow.. well FUCK YOU TOO

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720027)

How lucky you feel today? The problem is not that they won't go after everyone, the real problem is if they will go against you in particular, and use that as an example to intimidate the rest even more. Remember the cases with lawsuits for hundreds or millons of dollars for pirating songs to grandmas?

Don't push your luck, if they don't get enough people complying, they could get lobbyed legal backing to actually cut your connection or other generic fast/automated mass punishment that don't need a lawsuit/lawyer/etc.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (2)

houghi (78078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720113)

In Belgium it used to be (not sure if it still is) that if you do not make any money from it, the courts do not want to open a case and will consider it obstruction of the court.
Obviously if you make money from pirating then they will be happy to help. e.g. if you copy DVDs and sell them, you can be going to court. If you make a mixed tape to give to your loved one, you won't.
Running torrents won't bring you to court, unless you are the person who makes money from it.

That is why the local MAFIAA goes after the providers and (unsuccessfully) try to block TPB.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

GeoBain (1954832) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719949)

Just wait until they feel that profits aren't high enough...

Maybe then I'll finally be able to kick my digital habit.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

mlts (1038732) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719557)

I'd write up yet another diatribe about guilty until proven innocent, but that is par for the course these days.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (4, Interesting)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719677)

I should not have to pay ... if I didn't do anything wrong. THEY should first prove I did.

For the consumers that are reluctant to pay $35 to be reviewed and cleared, they will soon have $1000 (per file) fee for downloading content they consider illegal. And by then the new Terms and Conditions mandatory arbitration clause will be in place if it isn't already, so you'll have no recourse - and occasional $35 "compliance" surcharge will be a wise choice. If you never pay the fee, an occasional "mistake" may happen, where you are charged for a couple of illegal files even if you don't download anything (again, see the new arbitration clause).

I know someone is plotting this, because it will make money and I do not remember ever having a choice of internet provider (maybe 2 options at most) regardless of where I lived in the past 10-12 years.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719787)

I've not had more than three either. The one humorously was in a small town that had no high speed internet until the town started running fiber itself. After which both telephone and cable companies got around to offering internet service. I live in a bigger town now. I've got two high speed options. There aught to be at least three if not more options.

CenturyLink
Comcast

These companies aught to provide landline service although don't:
Sprint
Verizon

The reason I say this is because they have operations in which to work out of already in this area. I'd bet if the law was not such a bitch there would be more competition. If not from these companies then from startups.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720075)

... if I didn't do anything wrong. THEY should first prove I did.

Which is why I have an attorney on retainer. If they want to push it, they'll have to provide all that information to my lawyer during the discovery process, and when they are unable to show any solid proof they'll be covering the court costs as well.

Re:I should not have to pay $35 (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720117)

If you pay the $35, all that changes is that you get an infinitesimal chance of not receiving mail from them again.
If you don't pay $35, you can claim they tried to blackmail you with false accusations if it ever goes to court.

vpn (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719475)

vpn

Re:vpn (2)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719709)

vpn

How would that stop them from accusing you or charging you fees? An unusual or hidden traffic pattern may be proof enough.

Even more suspicious than downloading files -- because identifying file ownership is not that easy. But people hiding traffic must be doing something bad.

[/sarcasm], just in case.

Ooor.... (3, Insightful)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719477)

What's stopping them from extorting people by blanketing these notices and collecting $$$ for "reviews"?

Can I sue them for defamation instead?

Re:Ooor.... (1)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719529)

What's stopping them from extorting people by blanketing these notices and collecting $$$ for "reviews"?

Public insurrection.

Overturn a few cable company trucks in the town square and burn them, and the CEO/CFO's will think twice about this kind of shit. It will never happen, because most people think this kind of stuff will never happen to them. Most people also have no fucking clue that a illegitimate program can run under their user account, act as a vpn tunnel and download content from the internet. Good idea to make it lucrative for the 'bad' guys to frame the clueless when the clueless have to pay their way out of it.

Re:Ooor.... (2)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719631)

What's stopping them from extorting people by blanketing these notices and collecting $$$ for "reviews"?

Nothing.

Can I sue them for defamation instead?

Maybe, but unless you're Warren Buffett, they'll outlawyer you and you'll lose bigtime. Keep in mind these are the exact same people who claim that an IP address is 'positive identification' of a pirate's 'guilt'. This is just a way to scam up $36 bucks at a time off millions of customers, which will make them tons more money than spamming the odd hundred thousand customers to cough up a 5-10K 'settlement' since there's no paperwork or lawyers involved. All they'll ever have to show is a kindly-supplied logfile from your ISP showing 'unusual downstream bandwidth in use' and the judges will find for them if it ever comes to trial. For $36 bucks? Not likely. Think economy of scale.

Re:Ooor.... (3, Interesting)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719675)

"... and the judges will find for them if it ever comes to trial."

Actually, more and more judges have been ruling that an IP address does not identify a person.

As we saw here on Slashdot just the other day, the first "three strikes" prosecution in the Netherlands was thrown out of court on that very basis: all they had was an IP address. It could have been anybody.

And take a situation like mine: I keep my router open as a public service (as suggested by EFF)... and I have one of the strongest signals around. People on the next block over could be using my internet. I neither know nor care, unless they were to become abusive of my generosity.

Re:Ooor.... (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719733)

As we saw here on Slashdot just the other day, the first "three strikes" prosecution in the Netherlands was thrown out of court on that very basis: all they had was an IP address. It could have been anybody.

Doesn't matter what they do in the Netherlands, we're talking about ISPs in the US. You're comparing apples and hand grenades.

Re:Ooor.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719861)

Yeah, an IP address isn't enough, but an IP address with a timestamp is plenty.

Re:Ooor.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719989)

No, it's not. And if you think it is, you clearly don't understand the issue.

Re:Ooor.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719701)

I guess all those people who use windows 7 home or windows 7 professional while using utorrent and some virus scanner which reports all files too skynet will be getting a letter in the mail. Dumb asses, if your going to use windows at least use ultimate. If your going to down load torrents use an open source client, and encrypt all communications, also remove tracker istole-it from the list. Also, if your using your computers as the administrator there is no hope for you, and you should go to jail just for being stupid.

P.S.
You'll never catch me you bastards. Open source all the way, encrypt all communications, vpn through tor while in a virtual machine. Share my connections will all my neighbours which is about twenty-five different users, on any given day there could be at least ten new people who pop-up onto my open internet connection. They'll have to get a court order for at least 400 different users.

cost them $35? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719487)

how much will be the penalty for being wrongly accused then?

Re:cost them $35? (1)

flimflammer (956759) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719879)

A begrudging notice that they will no longer record that you are dirty pirate, however this notice does not represent their opinion that they were wrong about you, just that they're removing the entry.

I didn't know, RLY (2)

D,Petkow (793457) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719503)

yo ISP, am I downloading warez? I am just running a TOR relay and I also participate in folding dem protein chainz, dem electric-sheep, dem distributed computing sh!ts. Oh, did i also mention I am running a public open WiFi Hot Spot and a proxy server for my friends in foreign countries, who cant access our local private warez sites, I meant linux trackers?? it wasnt me. it was the evil hacker next door, i guess. I doubt ISP's in Pridnestrovie Republic or other similar regions will comply, LULZ. Yawn.

Re:I didn't know, RLY (5, Funny)

game kid (805301) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719547)

In your case they'd probably just add the $35 charge to your next bill plus $15 for the interpreter they'd hired to read that. :)

Re:I didn't know, RLY (1)

multicoregeneral (2618207) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719633)

Shit, I know whachu mean dawg. Jus cuz they be readin my packets an seein someonez downloadin dr who an homeland dont meen that I be stealin no pirate contentz an shit. Serisly its my brothuh. I cant controll what he duz wit my connectionz dawg. I dont wanna even know what he downloadin with his frends in russia. Shit.

Google Fiber (5, Funny)

moniker127 (1290002) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719535)

Hey does anyone in Kansas City have a REALLY long ethernet cord?

Re:Google Fiber (2)

multicoregeneral (2618207) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719595)

I will, but they haven't come to my neighborhood yet. Bitches have only deployed it in Westport and the Plaza so far. So you'll need to talk to the smug hipsters and college kids.

Re:Google Fiber (1, Informative)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719965)

Hey does anyone in Kansas City have a REALLY long ethernet cord?

Anything much more than 100 meters and it's useless. First, there's capacitive, inductive, and ohmic losses -- all of which eat away at signal integrity. But even if you cryogenically cooled it so it had zero line loss, signal latency still puts an upper limit of only a few miles. The ethernet standard has certain timing requirements and links become unstable, if not totally unusable, if the signal become desyncronized. There are other high speed networking standards that are made to go over long distances. Some of them could even be run over a several mile length of ethernet wire (if you were feeling more Scotty than LaForge). But basic 10/100/1000-BaseT? Forget it.

Re:Google Fiber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720073)

well obviously you'd have to put in a few repeaters somewhere to extend the cable length~

Stolen internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719573)

I sorta feel bad for the idiots that I steal internet from. I know what I download is considered copyrighted material, and I know the owner is going to get nabbed from my bad doings, but I honestly don't care. I will download 100GB worth of videos a month. I won't do it on my own network. These fools that leave their network open that was set up by these ISP's will get to deal with the problems that they set them selves up for by trusting these ISP contractors. It is really their own fault so they can't blame the home owner for the professionals short comings.

Legal groundwork (4, Insightful)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719577)

This is just to lay the legal groundwork for the music and movie industries. This way they can demand this list from the ISP and show that the evildoer just kept going in the face of legal threats.

Pretty dumb for any ISP to help to attack their customers. When will the media companies learn that going to war with your customers is not a sustainable business model?

Plus I torrent Linux quite often how long before they start threatening even legitimate torrent users?

Re:Legal groundwork (1)

Jerry Smith (806480) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719609)

Plus I torrent Linux quite often how long before they start threatening even legitimate torrent users?

You just have to pay $35 every time you want to be able to use the word "legitimate". Pay for your innocence.

Re:Legal groundwork (2)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719703)

"This is just to lay the legal groundwork for the music and movie industries. This way they can demand this list from the ISP and show that the evildoer just kept going in the face of legal threats."

(A) It doesn't lay any "legal groundwork". They are simply notices that say someone else told them you were illegally downloading or something.

(B) The above point is important: the ISPs aren't informing the "copyright police", it's the other way around.

"Pretty dumb for any ISP to help to attack their customers."

Yep. It will eventually turn around and bite them in the ass. I suspect that sooner or later there will be some lawsuits, too.

Tool for Harassment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719855)

Sounds like a great tool for harassment. Most people own the copyright to something, if there is someone you don't like (perhaps a member of congress, or your least favorite presidential candidate) simply complain to their ISP that they are violating your copyright. $35 probably doesn't sound like a lot to someone like that, but $35 x 100,000 would probably get their attention.

Re:Legal groundwork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719735)

Just wait until someone figures out how to use an ISP's "piracy" list to access other transmitted data. Unless theres a TON of direct human control over the system (which there won't), you can bet safe money they'll end up recording non-piracy related information

Once that happens, there will be a shitstorm that makes the Wikipedia blackout look like a crazy old man yelling outside of city hall if legally confidential or financial information is stolen from this.

Re:Legal groundwork (1)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719751)

Pretty dumb for any ISP to help to attack their customers.

Not when they hold full control over said customers! I can't think of many companies that have so much of a monopoly

I live in a building that's wired for [some provider]. I don't even remember their name (goes through building management), but their shitty internet connection is all I've got.

Previously I lived in RI and internet was... Cox. Where getting Basic Cable + Internet was $5 cheaper than getting just Internet

Where are those customers going to go after being attacked? The ISPs could raise the prices until I decided to live without internet, so I suppose it was surprising that they only charged what they did and not more.

The first rule about (2)

networkzombie (921324) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719579)

I'm using a VPN. I am very curious why they haven't complained about my bandwidth usage, which runs around 50 GB per month. Is that high or does it compare with Netflicks? I don't know, but my mkv goodness with no advertisements, censorship, or in-screen ads, is marvelous. I still go to the theatre but it feels like a total rip-off. My experience last month was the bright smart phone displays making it impossible to enjoy the film. You'd think they would fix that. Oh yeah, the popcorn at home costs about a nickel, with real butter.

Re:The first rule about (2)

arekin (2605525) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719659)

Before Comcast stopped enforcing their data cap it was set at 250gb per month, I think you're safe at 50gb whoever your provider is.

Come On, Out With It! (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719711)

"I'm using a VPN."

Maybe you could do us all a public service and explain how we can get torrents via some kind of public VPN.

Re:Come On, Out With It! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720011)

You have to pay for a service called a "seedbox", it's basically a rented computer somewhere else, that runs torrents for you 24 hours a day at top speed. Then you log on and simply download the files over an encrypted connection. So your home computer never runs any torrents, and you don't get in trouble!

isn't this ... (3, Insightful)

vlad30 (44644) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719585)

an illegal wiretap

Re:isn't this ... (4, Insightful)

geek (5680) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719601)

Only if the government does it. The contracts you sign up on likely cover this. Not that anyone reads them.

Re:isn't this ... (1)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719785)

The contracts you sign up on likely cover this. Not that anyone reads them.

They'll probably put in an arbitration clause soon (just like eBay and PayPal are doing now). So no court recourse

And what choice do you have anyway.
I occasionally read these contracts, but if I find something outrageous, what can I do? When I sign up for something where I have options, I will cross outrageous things off or perhaps go elsewhere. But when it's the only game in town (ISP, both Apple user and Apple developer contracts come to mind here), I basically have to sign it regardless of how much I dislike it.

Re:isn't this ... (2)

mrbene (1380531) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719909)

No.

  1. MarkMonitor goes to The Pirate Bay and grabs the .torrent files for today's top illegal content.
  2. MarkMonitor has a farm of BT clients, all of which connect to the swarms as normal clients would, but that also log the IPs of all other members of the swarms.
  3. MarkMonitor sends those IPs to the appropriate ISPs.

By participating in a swarm, you've made your information available to anyone else who joins that swarm.

There may be something that can be done with regards to "illegal to record my calls" in some jurisdictions, but it'd be a stretch.

Fairness (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719591)

If a customer feels they are being wrongly accused, they can ask for a review, which will cost them $35, according to the Verge.

My initial reaction was the typical knee-jerk thought that "innocent until proven guilty" has clearly been thrown out the window, but after further reflection I changed my mind. If you are accused of a crime in court you will end up having to pay legal fees. This is not that different. Reviewing the case requires manpower and the review is not working for free.

To be fair, the fee for the review should only be charged if the customer is found guilty. If the customer is innocent, then the accuser should be charged a fee. In addition to the amount for the review, the accuser should be forced to pay for at least one month of service for the customer, to compensate him for the inconvenience.

There must be deterrents against false accusations and none against proving one's innocence, otherwise this will be abused like DMCA takedowns.

Of course, I don't expect such a reasonable system to be put in place. The telcos just want to make money. They're only doing this to relieve the pressure from the content mafia. They know that even if it makes customers unhappy, relatively few will let them know about it and fewer still can actually do anything.

Re:Fairness (3, Insightful)

arekin (2605525) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719687)

This is sadly not something you will be able to fight. Honestly I would never pay for this review because it will just come back the same and you will now be $35 dollars short. The reality is that their "research" is to use the same information that resulted in a letter being sent to you to verify that you pirated material (whether you did or did not). Ultimately you're screwed. Best means to fight it is to get a legitimate copy of materials you were downloading and claim that you have a license to own a backup of said materials. Not sure that this would work, but it is the best means I could imagine that you would be able to legitimize any downloads you have made. Course I would only do this if they say that they are taking you to court.

Re:Fairness (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719743)

If you are accused of a crime in court you will end up having to pay legal fees.

The difference is that this isn't a court case and should not be handled by ISPs. That's just asking for abuse.

I got one (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719605)

I got a letter like that from Telus, my ISP in Canada. I asked them specifically who asked *them* to send the letter to me and they would not tell me. Needless to say I told them to F-off. If they want to be someones bitch they can but don't drag me into it. Oh, I changed to a different ISP just to spite them. Telus has piss-poor customer service anyway so no loss to me.

DOWN-loading? (1)

Zimluura (2543412) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719621)

Probably just for uploading.

If this is really for downloading it's sorta scary as it bypasses the legal system for default guilty with your ISP. If enough people go to smaller ISPs after being gigged for listening to a song on youtube the big ISPs may learn to stop treating their customers with contempt though.

If it's illegal to DOWN-load copyright material without permission...well, in that case things are pretty messe.....err... Ahem, In that case I'd like to inform YOU that by viewing this message you've clearly illegally downloaded this message without my permission and you owe me 150000 usd (150000 per time you've hit the refresh button).

the customers will be asked (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719635)

" the customers will be asked to acknowledge that they received the warning. "

and just how are they going to issue this warning? send it to your comcast.com email account that no one uses?

I had this same shit back in the dialup days with ATT, got a 300$ bill cause they wanted to change my unlimited plan to a byte limited plan, only notification I got was sent to my worldnet email which I never even knew the fucking password for ... a good cussing and a theat of suit made that go away with one phone call.

now they want to warn me cause I might download linux off of a torrent?

fuck you! lets not forget who pays your damned bills, and I am about sick and tired of crapcast as it is.

Re:the customers will be asked (2)

Dwedit (232252) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719721)

They send you the warning by replacing http websites you visit with the warning message.

This (2)

shentino (1139071) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719825)

This is exactly why we need competition.

Shithead companies that have nothing to fear will abuse everything they can to make a buck.

In fact, the strongest reason to support competition is probably how much they hate it.

Anything that pisses off the bad guys is probably a good thing.

moving over to a different ISP (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41719889)

There are a few other ISP's in the area that are not very well known but they have excellent reviews and they don't monitor your traffic. Instead you get gigabit internet for private or businesses. It's double the cost of mid-tier comcast but at this point it seems worth it. There are lower tiers I think but remember -- 38mbps is not needed if you're capped at 1mbps on a website.

Tell you what... (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719961)

...stick your fixed line contract up your arse. I'll find an ISP that DOESN'T do SPI, DOESN'T do traffic shaping, DOESN'T cap, and DOESN'T pander to Mafia interests! Oh, and offers BETTER SERVICE with no wires at ONE THIRD THE PRICE!

Traffic Court (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41720001)

You knew it was coming: everything is mimicking the traffic court precedent.

Cop: Here's your ticket.
You: I didn't do anything.
Cop: Take it up in court.
Court: That will cost you $100.
You: But the ticket is only $80.
Court: U mad?

We did this. It is our fault.

Accuse everyone and profit (3, Insightful)

flyingfsck (986395) | about a year and a half ago | (#41720105)

1. Accuse all users of infringement
2. Collect $35 from all suckers
3. Profit1

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...