Are You Taking The ISP? 17/03/2008

*ring ring*

Music Industry – “Hello?”

Voice of reason – “Oh, hi there, is this the music industry?

MI – “Yes, and who is this?”

VoR – “Hi I’m the voice of reason, you may know me as ‘common sense’ or ‘sensibility’; I do go by many names”

MI – “I must admit I’m unaware of who you are”

VoR – “Oh don’t worry, I expected that would be the case. Right, it’s just a quick call really. You see, I’ve just been reading the papers and it says that you’re thinking about getting Internet Service Providers involved in tackling piracy? I presumed it was a mis-print so I just wanted to call you and let you know you’re being misquoted in the press”

MI – “No, that’s right.”

VoR – “Excuse me?”

MI – “Yeah we’re thinking about introducing the ISP’s in some way; maybe with a ‘3 strikes and you’re out’ rule for their clients or by just by suing the crap out of the ISP themselves

VoR – “Erm, ok, but don’t you think…”

MI – “Or we could go for what Jim Griffin has said and whack an extra fiver a month on everyone’s broadband subscription bills and split that up between the copyright holders”

VoR – “How about the people who don’t illegally download though?”

MI – “… meh”

VoR – “You know my uncle ‘Fair and Balanced Argument’ told me you’d be like this”

MI – “Can you lend me twenty quid?”
So the music industry is now looking towards ISP’s as yet another potential solution to the problem of internet piracy.  Does this one have actually have traction? Or is it just another flash-in-the-pan hair brain scheme to distract everyone whilst the consumer stands around waiting to find out find out what the industry blames them for next (whilst illegally downloading the new Nick Cave album at the same time).

I can see where they’re coming from here, after all; you couldn’t download illegally (and legally let us not forget) without your trusty ISP providing you with super fast broadband enabling you to carelessly throw around Duffy’s debut album in neat little pockets of pirated data wirelessly around your house now could you?

But it’s not the ISP’s job to watch what we’re doing is it? Do you like the idea of some bloke at BT checking what you’re downloading? Guessing you’re demographic from your internet habits (Porn, facebook, more porn, Xbox live, illegal copy of latest Arctic Monkeys album, more facebook, yet further pornography – yep, this guy’s a student alright).

If the ISP’s are expected to start checking our downloading habits then are we getting a step closer to that inevitable Orwellian future that we all know will haunt our grandchildren? Someone quite rightly suggested what the government is proposing is similar to asking the Royal Mail to monitor the content of every envelope posted (imagine what the Daily Mail headline would read if that came to fruition… they’d probably blame the Polish somehow).

Yet at the same time ‘Entertainment Media Research’ recently stated that in their research they discovered that 70% of online pirates would cease immediately if their ISP presented them with a warning so is the suggestion really that bad?

What do you lot reckon?

What I’m listening to this week: Elbow (Check out ‘On A Day Like This’ on thier new album ‘The Seldem Seen Kid’ – it’s ace) and Green Man Says Go

What I’m reading this week: Various SXSW blogs

Stay tuned

sP

~ by Sentric on March 17, 2008.

7 Responses to “Are You Taking The ISP? 17/03/2008”

  1. If the Music Industry had bothered to look into how we can legally downloaded music rather than trying to sue people they’d have made a killing years ago and we’d have the latest music we want. Instead they got caught out by new services. First it was Napster and Torrents but now they’re complaining about legal services such as iTunes, and Amazon.

    Don’t even get me started on DRM

  2. Today’s Telegraph is reporting that Virgin Media are the first UK ISP to respond to the government’s threat to introduce legislation by working with the BPI, and disconnecting anyone found illegally sharing files (on a three strikes and you’re out basis). Virgin clearly believe that legislation is on the cards, but it’ll be interesting to see how this affects their broadband sales.

    Interestingly, Virgin aren’t going to monitoring usage but will be tracing users from IP addresses supplied by the BPI. Whilst that might deter the casual limewire/soulseek user, many torrent users already use IP blocking. I can imagine the BPI will still be pushing for legislation to force ISP’s to monitor actual usage.

    I can’t help but think we’ll see a rise in people using packet sniffing to hack wi-fi passwords, which is hardly a great leap forward.

  3. […] presents Are You Taking The ISP? posted at Sentric Music’s Weekly Blog, saying, “So the music industry is now looking […]

  4. […] Hard-Fi a cheeky dig so it was about time I reminded you all of my stance towards them).   Anyhow, click here to read this post from March for some background info on all the goings on.   The second part of […]

  5. […] Hard-Fi a cheeky dig so it was about time I reminded you all of my stance towards them).   Anyhow, click here to read this post from March for some background info on all the goings on.   The second part of […]

  6. […] music in 2007 (up 16% from 2006) – a problem that the industry is hoping will be solved by the new ISP initiative. Results are yet to be seen but I remain sceptical towards the whole idea. Also, I’m not entirely […]

  7. First of all, I want to thank you for attempting to view this subject with some amount of objectivity. Unfortunately, most of the blogs I searched through while attempting to gain more insight on the matter of internet service providers becoming regulated simply shot the idea down without even discussing the pros. It’s like you hint at in your post, one of the key reasons why so many people download illegally is because it is so simple to do now, and it can be done so quickly. If the internet service providers began restricting the bandwidth of those caught downloading illegally however, it would undoubtedly impair their desire to do so again. What really concerns me about the whole thing is the issue of privacy. I like your quote, “If the ISP’s are expected to start checking our downloading habits then we are getting a step closer to that inevitable Orwellian future that we all know will haunt our grandchildren? Someone quite rightly suggested what the government is proposing is similar to asking the Royal Mail to monitor the content of every envelope posted.” I don’t think that many would feel comfortable with the idea that their internet service provider was essentially spying on them. The funny thing is that the ISP’s being threatened with lawsuits say they feel the exact same way, “(They) say it would be almost impossible to check and stop illegal downloaders. The industry has cited data-protection curbs that prevent them from inspecting the contents of data files.” As uncomfortable as regulations may make us feel, let’s face it, we have to do something. The music industry has been, and still is, taking a huge financial hit. All of the entertainment industries have. I suppose the question that we all have to ask ourselves is, how important is entertainment to us? At what cost are we willing to save it, to prevent the movie and music industries from crumbling? Can we accept the thought of paying for our favorite songs again? I suppose that only time will tell.

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