Virgin Agrees To Be IFPI's Copyright Cop

from the but-why? dept

Back in February, there were reports that the entertainment industry had somehow convinced the UK gov't that the "file sharing issue" should be the responsibility of ISPs, rather than the record labels whose obsolete business model caused the problem in the first place. The UK gov't then issued a very public threat that ISPs had better start kicking file sharers off the internet, or it would pass a law requiring them to do so. It appears that rather than push back, Virgin Media has jumped right in and will start kicking those accused of unauthorized sharing off their system using a "three strikes" policy. Of course, some might find this a bit ironic, considering that part of Virgin's entire marketing campaign was around how you could get free stuff via its internet connection. In the meantime, it's still not clear why ISPs should be responsible for propping up a different industry's business model.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 12:13pm

    Some would view it as not propping up a failed business model (although that may in fact be true) but one of just enforcing the law. Until you change the law, companies will push for the law to actually be enforced.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Mar 31st, 2008 @ 12:15pm

    Virgin self-sacrifice

    Think of it as a Virgin self-sacrifice.

    All their users will leave them in droves and they can thus demonstrate the folly of this policy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Mar 31st, 2008 @ 12:23pm

    Re:

    Some would view it as not propping up a failed business model (although that may in fact be true) but one of just enforcing the law. Until you change the law, companies will push for the law to actually be enforced.

    So enforce the law properly: if it's a civil matter, have the companies sue the folks responsible. If it's a criminal matter, have the police take on the case.

    In this case, they're asking a 3rd party to take on the situation.

    So, no, it's quite different than just "enforcing the law."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Matt, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re:

    I agree with you. This is just the music companies complaining to the government about people sharing music/movies online, whether its downloading from a P2P or even going as far as saying that streaming music/movies on sites like yahoo is illegal. The ISPs should fight back. This is just governments and the music/movie industry trying to bully someone else into doing the work for them.

    You know that once these people are kicked off virgins internet, that the music/movie companies will want to get their IP address, name, etc so they can sue them for illegal downloading

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Ima Fish, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 12:47pm

    Re:

    "Some would view it as not propping up a failed business model (although that may in fact be true) but one of just enforcing the law. Until you change the law, companies will push for the law to actually be enforced."

    What law are you talking about? Did you even read the blurb from above? The blurb said, "The UK gov't then issued a very public threat that ISPs had better start kicking file sharers off the internet, or it would pass a law requiring them to do so."

    In other words, there is no law to be enforced!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Bill, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 1:07pm

    You're partially right

    While I'd agree that it's not the responsibility of an ISP to monitor the actions of their customers, there's no way I can make the judgment leap that the reason people pirated music on P2P networks is because they couldn't buy the songs online legally.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    comboman, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 1:08pm

    Why is anyone surprised?

    Didn't you know Virgin is also a record company?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    mike allen, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 1:12pm

    It appears

    Tiscali tried this last year without telling anyone, (like customers) they had a list of "offenders" supplied by the record companies all 19 of them 4 of those nineteen lost their connection. Hang on didn't the record labels say over 70% of people download unauthorized content does that mean tiscali have only 26 customers!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I hope Branson's company can afford to lose about 2.5 million customers (glad Im with a different devil.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    mike allen, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 1:31pm

    Re: You're partially right

    Just for starters try to buy a Beatles track on line legally!!!!!!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    mike allen, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 1:34pm

    Re: Why is anyone surprised?

    In name only Branson had to sell it when he set up virgin radio.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    UK Boi, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 2:53pm

    Re: Why is anyone surprised?

    EX-Music company, they are in the process of getting out Thank god.

    NVD, no comcast over here :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    GT, Mar 31st, 2008 @ 6:46pm

    Re:

    I thought the infringement was uploading, not downloading?

    Besides, this is a civil matter, not a legal one.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:39am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I've been predicting that as soon as this sort of thing starts to become widespread, the next major worm attack will be one that automatically downloads MP3s to peoples systems. The ISPs will stop enforcing these rules if it means that 50% of their client base is "infringing" without being aware of it.

    I'd also predict that Virgin will see an exodus of its tech-savvy consumer base at some point soon. Not because the people leaving are "pirates" but because they don't appreciate being spied on by service providers. It also depends on how they do the monitoring - protocol? (WoW and Linux users won't be happy at piracy accusations over downloading patches and ISOs) filenames? (what if the songs are legal but the filenames are similar to an illegal file?) bandwidth? (again, gamers won't be happy...). The article suggests that the IFPI will be doing the monitoring to begin with, so if they're as accurate as the RIAA data, it'll fail very quickly as innocent people complain.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Jez, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:38pm

    Re: Virgin self-sacrifice

    Problem is that most of Virgins customers are from the old NTL (Virgin took them over) ... it means they are on Cable. It would be difficult (but not impossible) to simply switch to BT.. Someone would have to install a phone line.

    Who knows how to encrypt my .torrents ? ;)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Leo, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 11:15am

    Re: .....

    File sharing isn't illegal......sharing software, movies, and music is.......so technically they setting themselves up to lose alot of customers.......

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Danny, Dec 14th, 2008 @ 9:10pm

    Hi, I agree with "mike allen". Yes, he is correct.
    ------------------------------------------
    Danny
    Visit Sexxat.com - Free Live multi cam videochat community

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Danny, Dec 14th, 2008 @ 9:10pm

    Hi, I agree with "mike allen". Yes, he is correct.
    ------------------------------------------
    Danny
    Visit Sexxat.com - Free Live multi cam videochat community

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This