Copyright Alert System
The Copyright Alert System (CAS) is now live. It was created by internet service providers to help reduce copyright infringement and illegal downloading. The system is a “six strikes” protocol that will enable ISPs to blacklist you and cause your internet service to be degraded and potentially banned for life. Those who receive “strikes” will also be required to complete an online copyright prevention class.
The issue with this policy is that it makes the internet service providers judge, jury, and executioner. You are automatically guilty. This is not a law from the government, it is a policy put together by different internet service providers.
Members of this movement include The Motion Picture Association of American and MPAA members, Recording Industry Association of America and RIAA members, AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Verizon.
People that want to download illegal content will find ways around this. They will find open WI-FI access points, spoof their IP address by making it look like someone else’s, or use VPN, or other methods. Innocent consumers will get “strikes” against them if someone hacks their Internet or uses their IP address to download illegal content.
Below is some information directly from the Center of Copyright Information about this new policy. There is also a video explaining it as well.
What is a Copyright Alert?
Artists, moviemakers and other owners of content join public peer-2-peer (P2P) networks to see if the music, movies, and TV shows they’ve made available are being shared without permission and in violation of U.S. copyright law. If they notice that a file is being shared illegally, they notify the appropriate Internet Service Provider (ISP) and that ISP, in turn, passes on that notice to their subscriber as a Copyright Alert.
How Do Content Owners Know About My Activity?
CCI’s content partners – companies that own and develop music, movies and TV shows – join peer-to-peer networks and locate the music, movies or TV shows they have created and own. Once they see a title being made available on the peer-to-peer network, they confirm that it is, in fact, copyrighted content.
After confirming that a file appears to have been shared illegally, content owners identify the Internet Protocol (IP) address used by the computer making the file available. Each IP address belongs to an Internet Service Provider (ISP), so content owners notify the ISP to which the address is assigned and the ISP then passes a Copyright Alert on to its customer.
No personal information about consumers is shared between the content owners and ISPs, and ISPs are not involved in the process of identifying copyrighted content.
What Do I Do if I Think the Alert Was Wrongly Sent?
Subscribers who receive multiple Alerts can file for an Independent Review if they feel that Alerts have been sent in error. Initial educational Alerts are not eligible for the Independent Review Process. If infringing activity on your account continues and you reach the mitigation stage (where your ISP is going to take corrective measures), you will be offered the opportunity to ask for a review.
Once you choose to have your Alerts reviewed, you will be asked to complete a series of steps, including paying a $35 fee (you may request a hardship waiver). Once a request for review is filed, any possible Mitigation Measures (i.e. an action that would temporarily affect your Internet experience) will be suspended pending the outcome.
NOTE: YOU HAVE ONLY FOURTEEN (14) CALENDAR DAYS AFTER RECEIVING A MITIGATION ALERT TO FILE A REQUEST FOR INDEPENDENT REVIEW.
If you are successful in your challenge, no Mitigation Measure will be applied, any applicable previous Alerts will no longer be associated with your account, and the $35 filing fee will be refunded. However, if you are not successful, the Mitigation Measure selected by your ISP will be applied.
Here is a video explaining the policy:
What do you think? Good idea, bad idea? Does this seem legal since the internet service providers are the ones who decide who is guilty and who is innocent? Please comment below and let us know!
The “six strikes” copyright alert system rolls out today. Some warning signs that the campaign will not go well: eff.org/r.3bJD
— EFF (@EFF) February 25, 2013