British Music Industry Threatens ISPs Over Piracy

The music industry opened up a new front in the war on online music piracy yesterday, threatening to sue internet service providers that allow customers to illegally share copyrighted tracks over their networks.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, or IFPI, said it would take action against internet companies that carry vast amounts of illegally shared files over their networks. It stressed that it would prefer not to pursue such a strategy and is keen to work in partnership with internet providers.

John Kennedy, the chairman of the IFPI, said he had been frustrated by internet companies that have not acted against customers involved in illegal activity. He warned that litigation against ISPs would be instigated "in weeks rather than months". Barney Wragg, the head of EMI's digital music division, said the industry had been left "with no other option" but to pursue ISPs in the courts.

The IFPI wants ISPs to disconnect users who refuse to stop exchanging music files illegally. Mr Kennedy said such activity is in breach of a customer's contract with the ISP and disconnecting offenders the IFPI had identified would significantly reduce illegal file sharing.

News source: The Independent

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The IFPI wants ISPs to disconnect users who refuse to stop exchanging music files illegally. Mr Kennedy said such activity is in breach of a customer's contract with the ISP and disconnecting offenders the IFPI had identified would significantly reduce illegal file sharing.

People are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Just because some organization says they are doesn't make it so.

Hopefully ISPs will think along the same route.

This article reminds me of a guy I know who downloaded some PS2 games off the web and was warned by his ISP (some cable company, I think Comcast or Starstream), and then downloaded more games and got his cable shut off permanently. It's sort of odd because it seems like cable companies would want to make money (as has been stated in previous posts).

With UK band Koopa going straight in at number 31 in the official uk charts without a record contract you have to ask yourself, what is the point of a record company in the modern day? Let's just have self promoted bands through social networking sites, the one with the biggest mouth gets the chart positions and the fame!!!

So all thats needed is a band, website, social networking site(myspace anybody??) and maybe a manager to sort out some LIVE gigs like a promoter.

Lets have done with these record companies there just sucking artists money and the artists should start realizing it, i think the record companies are realizing that they're days are numbered and they're SHI**ING it. haha nice!

The music industry is just wildly suing everyone in sight, hoping they'll win a case somewhere. Desperate attempts to stay alive...

They already tried this in Canada and got an ass kicking in court. I would assume that laws would be close to the same in the U.K.

Problem is that will never happen. Are all those giggling girls in the mall going to stop buying their pop princess CDs because of the RIAA? They don't even know what the RIAA is, and wouldn't care if they did. Same goes for probably the majority of consumers.

[sarcasm]i know A FREAKING HELL LOT some friends who do piracy lend music and don't give it back (digitally)...
I didn't report that to police ripp-off lawyers and GEMA (german equivalent to RIAA, tho actually not the same in all functions)
PLEASE! get me in jail the holel! I DESERVE IT!
oh but basically... i dont actually KNOW it... i just... well... think it could be :cheeky:
I know some companies that dont steal music but freedom... *COUGH* and get to jails all time with absolutely rediculous fights all time.
Did piracy ever decrease in history because the heaven-sent RIAA/MPAA/GEMA/whatever "fight piracy"???.... oh... i shouldn't have put that question.
some1 will kill me for speaking that out, eh?


holy mama...


Hmm, when ISP's start fearing to lose customers to others from these attacks, it'll be interesting to see how things unfold, as opposed to sole users, ISP's have the cash to go to court. I'm pretty sure there was a clause under the DMCA that exempts ISP's from responsibility over these things, because it would be impossible to enforce for them anyway, and an unfair responsibility to put on them? I mean, surely there's a reason ISP's have had no legal problems with their customers violating copyright laws in the past? Isn't it because it's generally agreed that the main service an ISP tries to provide isn't piracy?

This has to be some sort of "worse option" of winning for the IFPI, as they tried to sue customers first.

The IFPI wants ISPs to disconnect users who refuse to stop exchanging music files illegally.

"exchanging music files"... You have to love that imprecise stance of theirs... The devil is in the details here; exchanging music isn't illegal, only copyrighted music without the copyright owner's permission. And then a host of technical and organizational problems arise. Is it the ISP's jobs to detect what's copyrighted or not, and then even if using standard BT protocol encryption features?

The music industry would presumably rather eat its own sweaty feet than admit that a significant reason that sales are dropping is that they keep pumping out shallow, manufactured, soul-less pap instead of investing in genuine new talent.

Well its about time! Sorry, pirates, but don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

Now, if only USA and Canada would follow...

ISP's have and will battle these kind of things vigorously because they risk losing revenue on it though, and as opposed to solitary customers, these guys have the money to put up a fight. They've won numerous times in the past, so we'll see how it goes... As for IFPI, there's the problem of ISP's providing a service primarly intended for exchange other than pirated material, and I believe the DMCA relieves them of the same kind of responsibility e.g. a site more focused on piracy would have.

The point is not wether or not a crime is being committed. That is pretty much a given anyway. The point is that ISPs not only have to uphold the law, they also have to maintain the privacy of the customers using their network. To proactively disconnect users who share illegal files would require them to invade the privacy of their users and snoop on every bit of data transferred to and from a customer. Also as someone else said above, they would then have to somehow distinguish between legal and illegal file transfers.

Put simply, ISPs doing this is unfeasible and I think they will have no problem in getting these lawsuits thrown out of court.

What the music industry should be required to do is to produce evidence of illegal usage to an ISP (evidence such as IP, data and time, files transferred, etc) and the ISP should then be required to turn over relevant information of who performed that transaction at that time. So in short, all of the effort to track the usage should be done by the recording industry.

I'd buy more music if it was actually better quality (the music itself), not over priced and more available in my area. I'm not going to go hunting for music, finding credit cards or going to the bank to EFT money just to buy one album. I'd rather use my simple, not-so-fancy debit card at some place close by.

Why we don't apply this rules to firearms sales, if people don't stop killing each other then we should prosecute the manufactures and stop then to produce firearms.

GygaMan said,
Why we don't apply this rules to firearms sales, if people don't stop killing each other then we should prosecute the manufactures and stop then to produce firearms.

Actually no your analogy makes no sense in this instance. By your analogy, they should be suing the Artists and Record companies, since they are the ones create and produce the music. If they didn't create the music in the first place, then we would not have any music to pirate.

A better analogy for you would be 'we should use the stores that sell the guns, since they are the medium by which we get them'. Same thing for ISPs, they are only the medium (middleman) in this ordeal.

Personally I think the IPFI needs to watch what they are doing, have they never heard of the saying "don't bite the hand that feeds you". In the end, if they push this to hard they will end up only hurting themselves.

Go figure. This one will never end.

One thing: How about artists making better music? I for one am disgustified at the loss of quality of music these days, and i aint talking compression.

How do the British Music Industry know which ISPs are allowing this piracy? Or are they just assuming that because 'everyone' pirates nowadays, all the ISPs must be involved?

they dont, but they love sueing, probs to get money to sue even more... or to ... err...
get the loss of piracy back LOL...
i mean seriously... u cant speak of stealing it since im COPYING bits and bytes...
stealing a CD in a store -> store bought it but doesn't get money for it.
"stealing" mp3s on the inet -> err... i copy something i wouldnt even buy if i couldn't rip...
so basically the music label dusnt even get to know im stealing by having a look in the sales reports...
so this is what we call stealing nowadays?
mmhm OKAAAY....
the fact i am NOT ALLOWED to make private backups of my music if i bypass copy protection is a farce and im breaking that law in a heartbeat, even if its just for principe


Why not go all out and sue God because at the end of the day, if he hadn't been a smart arse and invented Earth, this problem wouldn't be here.