U.K. Threatens ISPs with Legal Action

Britain will impose legislation on Internet service providers (ISPs) by April 2009 if they do not work with the music and film industries to curb illegal downloading, the government said on Friday. The government released a strategy paper to address the problem of illegal file sharing after the two sides failed to come to a voluntary agreement over how best to tackle the issue. The paper said the government would still prefer a voluntary solution, but said it would start consulting on possible legislation later this year.

The move follows a decision by the French government to ban access to the Internet for those who repeatedly download material illegally, and follows years of lobbying by the music industry which has been damaged by piracy. Industry estimates put the number of broadband users in Britain who download files illegally at around 6 million. "Within the space of only four months, two governments, in France and Britain, have now embraced the simple idea that Internet service providers are uniquely positioned to help in the fight against digital piracy," John Kennedy, the head of the international music trade body IFPI, said.

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lol just wondering

6 Million estimated. Well i think it's more than just 6 Million.

U.K. is crazy. How are they going to stop this. I think it's too late. It may be possible but its going to be a pain in a ass.

I think this law is going make a big impact on ISP.

If ISP can ban www.rapidshare.com, www.megaupload.com and other popular sharing sites. And also torrent sites.
It's a game over.
Sharing can be done through Mirc but most of the isp blocks it now.

Let's wait and see what happens in future.

GOOD LUCK GOVERMENT AND ISPs.

I dont really care anyway. UK isp are sh*t anyway. One of the worst in the world. America is way better than UK in speed although it is slow. I think Japan has fastest internet speed.

I have to wonder about people like SniperX who doesn't realise how bad this law really is, it's not really about stoping pirates as it never does, but the idea that the goverment or worse still, companies can see anything we do on the net should worrie everyone, you have to remember that goverments have been wanting to take control of the internet for quite some time now and this wouldn't supprise me if it's a move to do just that.

Now imaging this SniperX, say you've got wireless internet at home, most of us do nowadays, imaging someone hacks into your connection and starts downloading movies, games and music, how would you feel if you got a letter saying your getting fined for something you've not done and don't even know about it?, this could happen to any wifi or mobile connection no matter how secure it is.

Many people would be scared of letting other people on there computer in case they go on something where they end up copping it themselfs.

This is a bad law not because of pirates, but because of privacy and the fear that any one of us could be a target by hackers.

I remember when the internet wasnt a viable method of downloading pirated material, because everyone had only 56k connections or less. But if you wanted illegal software it was sooo easy to find someone who could import it from other countries on cd.

If ISPs are successful in their attempt to block illegal material, then people will simply find other sources to get it. Blocking downloads will just change the way people get illegal material, it wont stop anything. Sure it might stop causal users from downloading music for a limited time, until they find other sources to get what they are looking for.

As long as prices for music, movies and software are so high, there will always be piracy for people who are looking for it, its just the method of aquiring it will change from time to time.

The UK government want one thing and that is to control the population. And here we have the record industry handing them another reason on a plate, to spy on their 'subjects'.

It will happen.

And what happens to them people that leave wireless internet connections open?

What happens if someone at a school downloads an MP3 does the school get banned?

What happens if?....

What happens if?....

What happens if?....


LoL we are a first world country, were freedom of speech is considered the norm, we are not in China.

Have they considered what happens to the general economy if you ban business and so forth from the Internet because of "one person"

Have they considered any of the basic questions?

Wait I have a better idea, lets follow China and ban everyone!

Why don’t we talk about the more important fact that an AMERICAN corporation can obviously bribe opps I mean "DONATE "enough money to British and Other World Government officials to change the laws in Corporate favor. We ALL need to stand up for our Rights to privacy and Choice...
It is obvious your business model is failing in a digital world. Instead of trying to make criminals out of your support base why don’t you try listening to them instead... 20 bucks a CD is redundant. So is charging 300+ for bloated useless software. Instead if you focused on quality and charged 2 dollars a CD and 50 bucks for an OS then 'piracy' would be run out of business. Don’t like that idea? Try adopting a World of Warcraft business model. Open your Entire back end for download for 20 bucks a month unlimited access charge more for advertisement removal. Just because previous generations tolerated your FOR profit only business model does not mean this generation will. This does not mean for the naysayers that I support stealing but it does mean if you try to take my rights away be you my government or corporation then it is My right to take you down. infact I will start by offering anyone who would like a free copy of my entire Legally purchased music collection of 3 thousand CD i will send you all of them in return send me your music collection. Someone should start a cd sharing website in the UK now.... :sleeping:

(Dualkelly said @ #14)
Why don�t we talk about the more important fact that an AMERICAN corporation can obviously bribe opps I mean "DONATE "enough money to British and Other World Government officials to change the laws in Corporate favor. We ALL need to stand up for our Rights to privacy and Choice...
It is obvious your business model is failing in a digital world. Instead of trying to make criminals out of your support base why don�t you try listening to them instead... 20 bucks a CD is redundant. So is charging 300+ for bloated useless software. Instead if you focused on quality and charged 2 dollars a CD and 50 bucks for an OS then 'piracy' would be run out of business. Don�t like that idea? Try adopting a World of Warcraft business model. Open your Entire back end for download for 20 bucks a month unlimited access charge more for advertisement removal. Just because previous generations tolerated your FOR profit only business model does not mean this generation will.

Agreed. It's not us, it's them who are greedy and who have been robbing us with their overpriced (and sometimes bad quality) production. Open the non-DRM-ed digital content for unlimited downloading in exchange for a flat monthly fee, you may end up making more revenue than from the falling CD sales.

Oh and btw, they should stop mixing up stealing and copyright infringement.

I think what bugs me most about this is that if there is a fairly foolproof way of telling what someone is specifically downloading (which is what the government seems to think), why the hell hasn't a law already been implemented to force the ISPs to catch paedophiles?

(Fourjays said @ #12)
why the hell hasn't a law already been implemented to force the ISPs to catch paedophiles? :angry:

I was surprised this wasn't mentioned earlier. This is what I find alarming.

(Dakkaroth said @ #12.2)
Because pedophiles don't cost the industry anything but the innocence of a little boy or girl.

The horrific thing is this is very true. When you look at it this way, the way the publishing industry and complicit governments behave in regard to this situation is fairly disgusting, and begs the question of who are truly the 'greedy' ones, some folk who download music because they love music, or the companies who don't give a toss about individual privacy because they percieve themselves to be losing on potential (and that's always the important word) sales.

We don't need new legislation and privacy violation, we need a new business model for the entertainment industry. It's time they realised that.

(cycro said @ #11)
We don't need new legislation and privacy violation, we need a new business model for the entertainment industry. It's time they realised that.

Yup - and they're (very slowly) getting there. Now that DRM is dead for music i'm feeling a bit more positive about things tbh. One day.. one day..

I think the guy above is saying they're not going to monitor all your traffic, just block all those warez and torrent sites. If they're all blocked, where are you going to go?

(Popcorned said @ #10)
I think the guy above is saying they're not going to monitor all your traffic, just block all those warez and torrent sites. If they're all blocked, where are you going to go?

Except it's really easy to get round site-blocking

What's to stop someone ripping a CD and distributing it to their friends, or recording the top 40 of the radio on to a cassette tape, or listening to a friends vinyl? It's ridiculous the government is considering sacrificing so many peoples right to privacy to protect a business model that has been open to piracy since day one. Thought I expect nothing less from the same people who are trying to push through national ID cards and introduced a permit to protest freely outside the house of parliaments.

Piracy is here to stay, accept it and move on.

What's to stop someone ripping a CD and distributing it to their friends, or recording the top 40 of the radio on to a cassette tape, or listening to a friends vinyl? It's ridiculous the government is considering sacrificing so many peoples right to privacy to protect a business model that has been open to piracy since day one. Though I expect nothing less from the same people who are trying to push through national ID cards and introduced a permit to protest freely outside the house of parliaments.

Piracy is here to stay, accept it and move on.

They can threaten to legislate all they like. The fact is there's no foolproof way to monitor what everyone is doing with their connection without grinding the internet to a halt. As usual this government has dreamt up another hair-brained over budget IT scheme which isn't even remotely feasible. This will simply speed up the adoption of encrypted traffic.

the majority is always right. why the hell cant government f***kn see this? a good product will be bought. most people who download illegal wouldnt buy it in the first place. Musicians should care more about people hearing their music, not paying for it. Just like an sports player should care more about the game and not his paycheck.

It amazes me, the number of people who think they are invincible. We get "I'd like to see them try", and we get "You will not stop us from sharing what we want", and then there are those who are banking on the likes of TPB to be their salvation.

The simple and real truth is that your days of sharing and downloading illegal content, at least through the UK ISPs, is coming to an end. You can shout to the contrary, all you like. And who do you have to blame for this ever-increasing restriction on your Internet use? Your own greedy selves, I'm afraid.

And for those who argue that your beloved pirates will find a way around this next move. Well, then another law will come into place, and then another, and then another, until you can barely chat on the Internet without it being restricted. You really do only have yourselves to blame.

I disagree. You mis-understand that we aren't specifically arguing about them wanting to stop us downloading illegal material, rather, how they would know we were downloading illegal material. If they did a good job of it, they would be monitoring everything you do (after all, you can download illegal material in many many ways). This wouldn't affect pirates alone - it would affect the privacy of everyone in Britain.

There's no new restrictions - it's always been illegal to download copyrighted material, it's just people haven't obeyed the restrictions already in place.

Anyway, how exactly do you suppose they are going to be able to do this eh? Log every page, image, images on pages, file and website every person in Britain visits? They can't block torrents - there's plenty of legitimate things on there (how else do you think I download huge game patches so quickly?).

However, I do agree with you saying it's their own greedy fault (although I'm sure if record companies could curb their greed it would help).

(Sazz181 said @ #6.1)
It would affect the privacy of everyone in Britain.

Yes, it ultimately will. Thank your illegal file downloaders for that beauty.

There's no new restrictions - it's always been illegal to download copyrighted material,

Restriction was a poor choice of word by me. However, the requirement of the ISP to accept legislation, and then subsequently act upon that legislation, presuming it comes about, (and anyone who seriously believes that it won't is living in a dream-world) is a new, and really quite bold, measure that is being brought about as a direct result of the illegal file-sharers. That's stone cold fact which is inescapable.

Anyway, how exactly do you suppose they are going to be able to do this eh?

The technical part is the easy part, and it will continue to get easier, month after month. Remember, they don't need to stop piracy completely. They need to significantly reduce it, and that will happen. The question for ISPs has been how can they do it without being seen to attack their customers/users. Now the Govt. are paving the way for them.

Log every page, image, images on pages, file and website every person in Britain visits? They can't block torrents - there's plenty of legitimate things on there (how else do you think I download huge game patches so quickly?).

They don't need to. They just need to make it so much more difficult to download illegal content. That part is easy, and everyone really knows it. The only reason it's not being done right now is because it doesn't have to be, and ISPs would rather not pee off their customers. However, once it's law, they get to save face, save some bandwidth, and save money. Lovely! In reality, ISPs will be rubbing their hands at this legislation as it does their dirty work for them. :)

Of course, there is the inevitable threat of "we'll boycot x, y, or z ISP and they will lose money". Good luck with that option too. Many of those stating that are using the ISP that their parents have set-up, so they have no choice. The others? Well, if it's across the board of all UK ISPs what do they realistically hope to do? It's just talk. They'll have to and will submit, despite their initial moaning.

(SniperX said @ #6)
It amazes me, the number of people who think they are invincible. We get "I'd like to see them try", and we get "You will not stop us from sharing what we want", and then there are those who are banking on the likes of TPB to be their salvation.

The simple and real truth is that your days of sharing and downloading illegal content, at least through the UK ISPs, is coming to an end. You can shout to the contrary, all you like. And who do you have to blame for this ever-increasing restriction on your Internet use? Your own greedy selves, I'm afraid.

And for those who argue that your beloved pirates will find a way around this next move. Well, then another law will come into place, and then another, and then another, until you can barely chat on the Internet without it being restricted. You really do only have yourselves to blame.

Wow - that must of made you feel real all warm and fuzzy inside - but as Sazz181 says this is a very dangerous precendent and I for one don't really want the government or (perhaps worse) third party companies with self-interest (music/movie industry) deciding who gets punished outside of the court system and having a direct impact on personal privacy (something that we seem to no longer care about in the UK).

Sorry to break it to you but this will do very little to kill off filesharing or piracy - all they're contemplating is grabbing IPs off trackers and matching them to users. Two warnings then a service cut off. Woot. Go Britain! I'm so proud.
Presuming users don't switch to something like Tor or another completely end-to-end encrypted network then it's simply a matter of using a proxy to hide your IP on the tracker. No sane person would suggest it's in any way practical to break down encrypted packets so what can they do? How with they cope with people downloading from NGs or private FTPs?

Logistically it's never been possible to eradicate piracy on the net - this isn't going to change in the light of a new law.
To think otherwise is.. well pretty shortsighted.

(dangel said @ #6.4)
Wow - that must of made you feel real all warm and fuzzy inside

I always tend to get that feeling when I see tears starting to form in the eyes of the pirates, yes.

I for one don't really want the government or (perhaps worse) third party companies with self-interest (music/movie industry) deciding who gets punished outside of the court system and having a direct impact on personal privacy (something that we seem to no longer care about in the UK).

Tough. That's what you're going to get. The opportunity to learn to moderate yourself has long since expired.

Sorry to break it to you but this will do very little to kill off filesharing or piracy - all they're contemplating is grabbing IPs off trackers and matching them to users. Two warnings then a service cut off.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see who is right.

then it's simply a matter of using a proxy to hide your IP on the tracker.

Please tell me that you're thinking of something a little more ambitious that a proxy. lol Good grief...

Logistically it's never been possible to eradicate piracy on the net

See above post. It doesn't need to be eradicated, just lessened for now. If you believe that won't happen as a result of this, you really are blinkered.

SniperX
Tough. That's what you're going to get. The opportunity to learn to moderate yourself has long since expired.


Ahem - I'm not pirate, I don't appreciate that thank you. And no, I think ultimately this is going to blow up in their faces - and all we'll get it headlines full of people being wrongly cut off with little chance for recourse (because how the heck are you going to defend youself once 'found guilty'?).

SniperX
Please tell me that you're thinking of something a little more ambitious that a proxy. lol Good grief...


"lol" all you want (how old are you kid?) - but the truth is if you're harvesting IPs (which is the only practical way of clamping down on torrents) rather than decryting packets and getting actual proof of downloading (rather than just connecting to a tracker which, in itself, is no offence) then a proxy (so long as it's anonymous and copes with port forwarding - many do) is a pretty darn simple way round it. Really this is torrent's only real vulnerability (given encryption is forced), since users MUST give an IP to a tracker and therefore make themselves known to the rest of the swarm. Outside of torrent-land see the previous paragraph (OP). At least i'm offering some kind of tangible analysis - you?

SniperX
See above post. It doesn't need to be eradicated, just lessened for now. If you believe that won't happen as a result of this, you really are blinkered.


And there you did yourself in - lessened for now - that's about the best you can expect and the only reason for that is that you'll get a "scare factor" in the media. Even the BPI have stated they don't know if this will affect revenue. That's the horrible (and real as you'd put it) truth of the matter - this is pretty pointless and has far greater potential ramifications on privacy online in the UK.

Yes, it ultimately will. Thank your illegal file downloaders for that beauty.

So? You think people are just going to sit around and accept their ISP's to log and analyse everything they do? No. Me neither.

Tough. That's what you're going to get. The opportunity to learn to moderate yourself has long since expired.

So because people download illegal files, you think the whole nation should have all virtual privacy invaded? "Good grief" indeed.

The technical part is the easy part, and it will continue to get easier, month after month. Remember, they don't need to stop piracy completely. They need to significantly reduce it, and that will happen. The question for ISPs has been how can they do it without being seen to attack their customers/users. Now the Govt. are paving the way for them.

"How" was the keyword to look for. Your point is both false and incorrect.

So you want to block illegal downloads from websites. The only way you could do that (currently) is to match those websites with a blocklist. Now think about how much virtual resources that would take for an ISP with millions of customers all browsing throughout the day? I'll tell you what, you sit back and have your privacy invaded by an expensive ISP, while everyone with some sense goes to do something about it.

Torrents - it would be almost impossible to check whether a user is using torrents to download illegal content, so just forget any ideas/plans for that and move on.

And let's not forget, good ol' email, slow, but works. Heh, I don't really need to explain how that would be financially and resourcefully impossible do I?

You seem to think ISP's give a damn about what their customers download. It's not like the governments giving them money to do this is it? Do you really think ISP's want to spend time and human resources on setting up a poor mechanism to prevent piracy? Seriously, what planet are you on?!


(SniperX said @ #6.3)

They don't need to. They just need to make it so much more difficult to download illegal content. That part is easy, and everyone really knows it.

they just need to make it so much more difficult to download illegal content, by making it so much more difficult to download anything at all? sorry im not getting you there....

the only thing that worries me about this is what effect this will have on newsgroups. the newsgroup servers are usually the ISP's own servers so will they monitor or restrict uploads to them ?

god damn, time to emmigrate? i think so...
the amount of people who benefit from torrenting in the UK is far larger than the number of people who have much to lose. surely thus it is in the governments interests to allow companies whose copyright is infringed to prosecute individuals who have a high volume of infringed material, but not to actively try to disadvantage their people

(theyarecomingforyou said @ #1.1)
A law preventing people from stealing stuff? I'm sorry but I fail to see your point.
downloading is copying, copying does not equal stealing.