Digital News Report – The major Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will be working with the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) with the new “Copyright Alert System.” This system is going to be implemented with the major Internet providers such as Verizon, AT&T, Comcast Corp., Time Warner Cable Inc, Cablevision Systems Corp. The alert system will be sent up to six times with either an email or a pop-up message. If the messages are ignored and the person continues to access unauthorized copyrighted material, they could either have their Internet service terminated or slowed down.
They will also be directing the flagged infringers to the Center for Copyright Information. This website will tell the consumer how to tell what is legal and illegal downloading of copyrighted material. The alert system hopes to stop 70 percent of the copyrighted material thefts by implementing this program.
The first alert will have the ISP give an online alert to the subscriber of their service. This could involve sending an email to the subscriber warning that they have had illegal activity on their account. The second alert will be in a similar manner to the first. The third alert would provide a click-through pop-up notice to ask the user to acknowledge the receipt of the alert. The fourth alert will be much like that of the third alert.
The fifth alert may include “mitigation measure,” which will cause a temporary slowdown of Internet speed. They may redirect the person to a page that makes the subscriber contact the ISP. When contacted, the ISP will give the person an education about how to properly use copyrighted material online. The ISP could not disable a person’s telephone service and ability to call 911.
In the Center for Copyright Information and Copyright Alert System Fact Sheet, they say that the ISPs “are not obligated to impose any Mitigation Measure which would disable or be reasonably likely to disable a subscriber’s voice telephone service.” They also will not cancel the service if it is used for any security or health service, such as home security or medical monitoring services. It could be possible that the Internet service could be canceled, but it is up to the ISP at this point, what they want to do. The sixth alert will notify the user again, and at that time, the ISP will decide if a Mitigation Measure is to be implemented.
The alert system does not require the ISP to terminate an Internet subscriber’s account. But the group goes on to explain that under section 512 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the law requires the ISP to have a repeat copyright infringers termination policy ready to implement as part of their service agreement.
The ISP will not share personal information with the copyright owners, unless issued a subpoena or court order to do so.
The full list of participating Internet Service Providers are: SBC Internet Services, Inc., BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc., Southwestern Bell Telephone Company, Pacific Bell Telephone Company, Illinois Bell Telephone Company, Indiana Bell Telephone Company, Incorporated, Michigan Bell Telephone Company, Nevada Bell Telephone Company, The Ohio Bell Telephone Company, Wisconsin Bell, Inc., The Southern New England Telephone Company, and BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc. (the AT&T Inc. companies); Verizon Online LLC, Verizon Online LLC – Maryland, and Verizon Online Pennsylvania Partnership (the Verizon companies); Comcast Cable Communications Management, LLC; CSC Holdings, LLC (solely with respect to its cable systems operating in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut) (the Cablevision systems); and Time Warner Cable Inc.
Those groups that are wanting the copyright infringement protection are:
1. MPAA and the following MPAA members: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Paramount Pictures Corporation, Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Universal City Studios LLC, and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
2. RIAA and the following RIAA members: UMG Recordings, Inc., Warner Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and EMI Music North America.
The Copyright Alert System is a notification system. The group says that it is not changing what is already part of the Digital Millenium Act, it just offers the Internet user a chance to become aware of the copyright infringement so that they can stop.
By: Victoria Brown