AT&T And Comcast Willing To Cut Off File Sharers

from the no-surprise-there dept

While ISPs have been reluctant to admit to agreeing to be a part of the RIAA's three strikes plan, if you had to take a guess who would be involved, AT&T and Comcast would probably lead the list (along with Cox, which has already admitted to doing so). So, it probably comes as no surprise that News.com has confirmed from internal sources that, indeed, both AT&T and Comcast have agreed, in principle, to participate -- though neither will admit to it publicly for fear of public backlash. Of course, in places like where I live, what do they have to fear? The only options for broadband here are... AT&T DSL and Comcast cable. So it's not like there are alternatives. It shouldn't impact me directly, since I don't engage in any file sharing, but the principle of the thing is quite bothersome (not to mention the false positives that occur). No matter what other issues one might have with Verizon, the company should be given credit for (a) actually investing in much faster fiber networks and (b) being willing to openly stand up to the entertainment industry over the years. If only FiOS were actually available where I live.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Jan 28th, 2009 @ 7:09pm

    What are my options?

    Screw AT&T! I can always ditch them for Comcast!

     

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  2.  
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    Jeff, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 7:51pm

    I certainly hope Qwest doesn't take part.
    Someone needs to stand up to the RIAA and tell them off.

     

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  3.  
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    Steve R. (profile), Jan 28th, 2009 @ 7:51pm

    What is the Source of this Right to Filter?

    Where does company A get the right to demand that company B filter the content stream that person C is passing? I would say that when a customer subscribes to a service, it is the responsibility of the service provider to deliver those packets. They do not have a right to inspect those packets and arbitrarily turn off the data stream just because someone says so. How would the ISP feel if the customer only paid if they felt like it. This is ludicrous, essentially the consumer is left with no rights.

    If we generalize this, I could walk up to some unknown person who just happens to be standing there and demand under the penalty of death that they break into a house on the simple belief that the house might contain something of mine. This would not appear to be a civil society that is based on the rule of law. Seems that we are falling into corporatism.

    Not only are they attempting to deprive you of your paid for service, AT&T and Comcast are are attempting to hide it ==> "though neither will admit to it publicly for fear of public backlash." I guess the corporate leaders of AT&T and Comcast have not learned anything about ethics from the collapse of our financial system. If companies are not willing to be honest and transparent, the companies deserve to be regulated.

     

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  4.  
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    This are always alternatives, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 8:16pm

    Alternatives

    "it's not like there are alternatives"

    I understand why dialup might not be considered an alternative, but if you want to make a statement and still need connectivity .....

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 8:22pm

    first! Not second or third time I get an email about possibly cutting me off for file-sharring, Im out!

    0 tolerence for this BS!

     

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  6.  
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    inc, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 8:41pm

    I hope they do start fucking with people. Then when it blows up in their face we can laugh.

     

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  7.  
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    OldGeek, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 8:54pm

    Oh Fun

    This is going to be so much fun now that where I'm going to school is using a P2P system for lectures and some online items for classes. Especially since the file sharing I've been doing for the last two semesters have been custom copies of linux and BSD.

     

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  8.  
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    Rekrul, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 10:09pm

    When the announcement was first made that US ISPs would start cooperating with the RIAA in disconnecting people, I predicted that AT&T would be one of the ISPs involved. I see that I was right.

     

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  9.  
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    Rose M. Welch, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 10:52pm

    It shouldn't impact me directly, since I don't engage in any file sharing.

    What do you mean? Do you mean that you never download anything from the Internet? Or that you don't own a printer that might engage in file sharing?

    Considering the letters sent and lawsuits filed previously, it might impact people who don't even have computers, roflmao.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 10:56pm

    google back in the game?

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/burningIssues/idUKTRE50R6W020090129


    still haven't figured out how to place url tags in here.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 11:12pm

    What's sad about this entire thing is that it's being supported by legal efforts. But oftentimes, you can use complexity of an organization as an advantage.

    NetFlix allows you to legally download some videos using an internet connection, immediately.

    While some complain about their connection, just remember, in Japan, you can get 100MBs and a 300GBlimit. Why? The demand was there. Hell, Canada has faster Broadband than the average US user.

    So, maybe the best answer to investing in network upgrades is to create a legal demand which is underserved by AT&T and/or Comcast customers.

    GET THE NETFLIX BOX!!!

     

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  12.  
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    Dan, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 3:04am

    Its time

    for another BIG telco breakup and lets include the cable operators this time. To much power in to few hands, where is the competition. Are you listening DOJ and FCC?

     

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  13.  
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    Jerry in Detroit, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 4:11am

    Comcast & File Sharing

    I'll give you a good one. Comcast hands out free copies of MacAfee to subscribers. Last year I went to install a free copy of MacAfee on a friend's computer. The installer downloaded OK but when the installer went to download the rest of the software from MacAfee, the Comcast network would stop the download. Eventually, I had to resort to the trick of turning the cable modem off and back on so Comcast would allow me to complete the installation. Hello! Right hand meet left hand!

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 4:53am

    Re: Comcast & File Sharing

    Jerry, that has nothing to do with the three strikes or any filtering on Comcast's part. That sounds like typical cable internet behavior where a modem reset resolves any number of issues.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:10am

    Re: Alternatives

    These days, dial-up isn't really connectivity...

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:12am

    Re: Oh Fun

    Presumably they'll only cut you off if the RIAA accuses you of copyright infringement, not simply because you're using the bittorrent protocol. But all the RIAA has to do is accuse you, not prove it.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:18am

    It shouldn't impact me directly, since I don't engage in any file sharing, but the principle of the thing is quite bothersome (not to mention the false positives that occur).

    Mike, it feels like your missing your own point. First, all the RIAA has to do is accuse you, not prove they're right. And it's been shown repeatedly that they aren't accurate and they can be easily fooled -- hence letters sent to printers, etc. So all that needs to happen is for you to be connected by one of these ISPs and all bets are off as far as the stability of your connection. A dishonest downloader could divert them to your address and you'll be kicked off. That's a problem.

     

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  18.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:44am

    Give me a few days

    I've been actively seeding Linux distros (and now that NIN torrent) ever since Comcast implemented the 250G cap, never did reach that cap. Since my torrents are encrypted they don't know what I'm downloading. Once they cut me off for file sharing I'm going to stop all payments to them, including TV, and switch to my only other option, Verizon DSL.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:47am

    I think P2P will soon be passe

    As google revs up plans for everyone to have their stuff on remote servers and people are basically using terminals, I will bet it wont be long before people are able to just transfer whole files to each other remotely. So the question will be...can the RIAA start monitoring personal stuff on other servers? Probably since they are able to get court orders to look at private stuff on home computers.

     

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  20.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Jan 29th, 2009 @ 6:27am

    A-holes

    If they cut me off, it will severely be shooting themselves in the foot. Without my downloading, I will be buying a heck of a lot fewer games. I do not buy the music so much unless it is RIAA free. Like my recent Metsuo purchase (guys who did part of Max Payne soundtrack). I was able to listen to their tracks. I loved them. Contacted them over myspace and found out that their label is not any sub-part of the RIAA and that they actually get most of the money from my purchase. So I bought all their stuff. It is great. By this time though, I spose the RIAA wouldn't be losing anything since I refuse to buy any of their band's music by now. But still, Comcast would be losing a customer who generally doesn't top 125GB in a month. I need more HDD space before I can download the NIN HD Video content like Chrono. =(
    As I have said before. Comcast is my only option here, aside from satellite or dial-up, which are not really options at all for a gamer. Sad really. However, if they want to boot me, over file sharing, when the sharing I do is sanctioned by the creators, I will heavily take them to task and shove their reputation in the mud some more.

     

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  21.  
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    Devious, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 8:01am

    Limitations may already be occuring with AT&T

    I do a ton of uploading, FTP, and some Backup streaming for websites and a new media business I maintain. I have had problems lately where my connections will just time out or I cannot connect through certian ports by to my servers on the WWW. I have a business account with AT&T but this still seems to be occuring, I can reboot my modem, obtain an new IP, and pick right back up where I left off for a few weeks, then again, I seem to get restricted with these time outs. I use nearly 100% of my connection all the time, I wonder if I am tripping some unknown limits and they are in a sense shutting me off?

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 8:09am

    Verizon is different?

    Why are you giving a pass to Verizon on this? The linked news.cnet.com article lists them as having a deal with Disney to forward take-down notices to suspected users. Doesn't sound much like standing up to the entertainment industry.

     

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  23.  
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    yolo pantillo, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 9:28am

    Mike,

    It does affect you whether you realize it or not. This move is step #1 towards censoring the internet and forcing you to content on either an ATT portal or Comcast portal.

    These companies need to be busted into a zillion little pieces.

     

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

  24.  
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    Grady, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 11:59am

    Ummm....???

    Let's see. First, I haven't read these comments, too lazy at the moment. Second, WTF?

    What about legit file-sharing? Do they realize that one of the most popular game developers, Blizzard, uses a BitTorrent style files-haring program to distribute updates to World of Warcraft, along with their games via their online store?

    I've also used file-sharing programs to get updates for some less known games, provided by the developers. And a lot of direct to drive games use a file-sharing program... What are they going to do? Block these users until they can verify they are legit downloads? Are they going to limit it to just uploaders? I've used uTorrent to download games I own, but no longer have usable CD's/DVD's, which is legal.

    They're going to cut-off a lot of theier subscribers.....

     

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  25.  
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    SeawayOutset, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 12:19pm

    At least Verizon FioS is almost within my grasp!

     

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

  26.  
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    4G, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 2:45pm

    deliverance; in a year or so

    Luckily for those of us that live in a major metropolitan area, much of the country will have 4G wireless services available by the end of the year through Sprint/Clearwire's WiMax service. Sprint is the one carrier that has remained loudly and proudly behind net-neutrality. Portland and Baltimore already have service available with DC and Chicago to follow shortly and many others, such as Atlanta, Vegas, Boston before year end.

     

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

  27.  
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    Krak-Ho on P2Ps, Jan 29th, 2009 @ 5:29pm

    So why

    Why does anyone still use them? Drop kick them like a hot potato and speak loudly with $$$.

     

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  28.  
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    Fuc Banners, Oct 25th, 2009 @ 4:39pm

    This is bull sh!t

    WE AS A PEOPLE USE A LOT OF INTERNET USAGE I MEAN ANYONE WHO IS READING THIS CLEARLY IS IN THAT RELM BUT TO BE CUT OFF FOR BEING ACCUSED BECUSE WE USE ALOT OF DATA EVEN IF WE ARE FILESHARING THIS IS OUTRAGEOUS ACT AGINST OUR FREEDOM OF USAGE IF WE CHOSE TO SHARE FILES THATS OUR CHOSE BUT INVADING OUR PRIVICY AND TAPING IN ON OUR ISP'S IS AN ACT I WILL NOT STAND FOR SIMPLY SAYING TO MUCH DATA IS OVER YOU PAY FOR YOUR INTENET FOR A REASON USE IT!!!

     

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


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