Shouldn't The Infringement Tracking System Used In New Six Strikes Program Be Open To Scrutiny?

from the nope.-it's-hidden dept

With the entertainment industry and ISPs agreeing to a “voluntary” six strikes plan, which treats users as guilty until proven innocent and takes away completely valid defenses (for example: that file is in the public domain is not a valid defense!), you would think that the very least the public could ask for is that the system used to make the accusations is open to scrutiny.

But, of course, there was no one representing the public at the negotiations, so instead, the monitoring system is shrouded in secrecy. No one will speak about it on the record. TorrentFreak has gotten off the record sources to confirm that it’s going to be handled by DtecNet, which means we should expect some problems with the accusations. This is, after all, a company that didn’t even understand how BitTorrent works, but put out a totally misleading report about it, which was so bad that the company eventually retracted it.

Doesn’t it seem highly questionable that no one involved in this plan is willing to discuss the monitoring technology publicly? If they actually had faith that it worked, wouldn’t they be showing it off? The problem is they know it’s not good. They know it doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. They know there will be people falsely accused. But they don’t care. As long as they think that they’re holding on to some tiny bit of a business model that is pretty much dead… they can pretend that they’re doing something smart. And the public and our culture suffers as as result.

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Companies: dtecnet, mpaa, riaa

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Comments on “Shouldn't The Infringement Tracking System Used In New Six Strikes Program Be Open To Scrutiny?”

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Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Why should I have to prove anything? They got the contract. Someone looked over it. Just because it wasn’t you doesn’t mean that it isn’t any good.

First rule Science: Results should be verifiable by anyone.

Second rule of law: Justice must be seen to be done.

If it’s not in the open for anyone to review than by definition it isn’t any good.

abc gum says:

Re: Re:

This post was sarcasm and here is why:

“They’ve learned from their mistakes”
— obviously this will never happen

“and now they have a solid product.”
— and neither will this

“Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t solid.”
— stating the obvious

“It’s no wonder that they keep regular freetards from seeing their system because you folks will just complain about it anyway.”
— use of the freetard tag

:Lobo Santo (profile) says:

Re: Other business models

Indeed, selling non-functional plans/equipment to government agencies & big businesses has had quite the banner decade.

Let’s see, there’s the “nude” scanners, the “internet filters” (ha ha), the electronic voting machines, a certain newspaper’s online paywall, a $1.2bn “security” network for a certain defense agency.

Honestly, I’m surprised there isn’t news about somebody selling “air-free aerogel” to NASA for like $100bn or a “positive feedback only news network” to Congress for even more $$$$.

Yes, there ARE business models that don’t need piracy to succeed–and as long as you’re lying scum you can make tons of money of ignorant legislators and executives in a manner which isn’t yet considered to be fraud.

Joe Publius (profile) says:

Re: Re:

can you not accept that there are other business models that don’t need piracy to succeed?

I’m sorry, I’ve seen that despite your clever attempts to sound like a regular TD reader, I can see that you’re new here. Let me try and clarify a common misconception folks have in regard to Mike’s views on business models.

Good models make money by knowing the true scarcities connected to their business, and uses open and postive connections with customers to buy products and services related to those scarcities (e.g merchandise, performances, etc.).

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Yet as always, most people don’t want merch or performances, they want the content. Many potential fans will never be within reasonable distance of a performance, and there are only so many t-shirts you can buy.

The truth is what people want, what people enjoy, what people will listen to over and over again in the music.

It’s just too bad that Mike can’t seem to understand that people will pay for what they want. Just ask the NYT.

charliebrown (profile) says:

Re: Re:

You said “…..can you not accept that there are other business models that don’t need piracy to succeed?”

I do believe that you are confusing “downloading” and “free” with “piracy”. If somebody, say a musician, offers a free download of a song, the person downloading it is not a pirate. You do not need a legal degree nor a degree in mathematics to understand the difference between “free” and “piracy”.

While I’m on my high horse or soap box, I would like to point out to people in general, no necesarilly just the Anonymous Coward that I am responding too, that “free” as part of a business model does not always mean everything must be free.

Take, for example, “Free Comic Book Day” held the first Saturday of every May. The publishers give away SAMPLES of their regular comic books, some containing no more than half a dozen pages from a two dozen page book, others containing a complete 22 page story. This is to attract people to try new titles, try comics full stop and even give a comic book fan a good excuse to go to their nearest comic book store. Now, you can’t tell me those “free” comic books are “free” in the sense that the paper and ink costs money, plus distribution to stores. But it is a cost that comic companies bear in order to attract more customers.

Of course, there’s bound to be somebody who poo-poo’s the fact that I mention comic books, an industry that, big as it is, has been relatively struggling since the mid-1990’s (if not longer). So let’s try another example. YouTube: How many people watch videos of, say, TV shows for free on YouTube. If it is an official upload – and they DO exist – you are often given a link to where you can purchase the DVD’s if you like the show. And so that is an example of “free” as part of a business model: You can watch the show for free online (bandwidth costs notwithstanding) and buy the DVD or download for more convenient viewing (often of higher quality) at a later time if you so choose to do so.

Remember, though, this does not work for everything. You can get a FREE sample of, say, food. Once those free samples are gone, you have to buy the product is you want to eat more. Or you can pay a smaller price for a “sample pack” in som cases, like a few years ago Kellogg’s of Australia brought out some new cereals which they sold in 100g boxes (approx 1/4 pound) for $1 each for people to rty before they bought the big boxes at full retail price.

There are, of course, people who do want things for free and will not pay for them. They are not in your target market; they never were and never will be. Just pretend those people don’t exist and the commercial world will be a lot better off. Maybe.

And just for the heck of it, I’d like to add that I do not drink Kool Aid, I have never seen any (does it come in a cup or bottle even?) and I’m pretty sure it’s not available in Australia. Would green cordial suffice? =)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Giving away samples is way different from giving away the product. What would you think the value of a comic book would be if they gave them away, hoping people would buy $30 t-shirts to support the production of the magazine?

Samples and free are very different animals. Samples is using a small amount of your product to get people to buy more of the same product. Free is giving away your product hoping someone will do something else that makes you money. It’s the “free peanuts to sell beer” mentality, except in the Techdirt world of stupidity, we are giving away the beer and charging $20 for peanuts.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

I’m convinced Masnick freaks out about this stuff because he’s worried about being busted. He says he doesn’t steal anything, but I’m convinced the opposite is true: he steals everything, just like all his readers do.

Once he said he didn’t have Netflix I knew there was something screwy going on. With the hatred the guy has for all entertainment companies, you know he can’t stand the thought of giving them any money.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:

Your deductive reasoning is astounding. And it seems your method for determining if someone is a pirate is about as hard evidence-based as the new six strikes program! Mike and all the commenters on this site are clearly pirates because you think they are.

Actually, I’m starting to think you are a very smart pirate. You know that few things make the IP maximalists look worse than their supporters trolling websites that want a fairer system and making the most inane and illogical statements possible. You’ve developed these trolls persona’s to make the real IP maximalists look stupid. And in that respect, I applaud your efforts and wish I had the patience to be as consistent and dedicated as you are to coming up with pathetic attacks everyday.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

It’s supposedly “one of the biggest pro-piracy blogs on the web” and yet Mike has repeatedly said that he’s not pro-piracy and has repeatedly talked about how artists can use newer business models to make money regardless of whether or not their content gets illegally copied.

The problem is your false dichotomy approach to the issue. You believe, “if you’re not with me, then you’re against me.”

You don’t believe that someone could be staunchly against excessive and abusively maximized IP laws without also being deeply in favor of “piracy.” So as far as you’re concerned, anyone who isn’t screaming for harsher IP laws and enforcement must be a pirate.

This simply isn’t true, however.

abc gum says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

“Mike Masnick regularly plays fast and loose with facts,”
— At least he has some facts to present, unlike yourself.

“and openly misrepresents things all the time.”
— Which, of course, you never do.

“No one is going to believe something he said just because he says it’s true.”
— It would be astonishing if everyone used this approach to everything they read, heard, etc. Don’t hold your breath.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

“No one is going to believe something he said just because he says it’s true.”

He’s being accused by you of being a pirate and you’re saying that he should prove that he’s not.

By that logic, prove to me that you’re not a terrorist.

Or better: provide real, hard evidence that Mike is a pirate.

Miff (profile) says:

Remember back when everyone thought that if your IP is revealed you become “hackable”? Well, now it’s true!

I forsee a severalfold rise in “injector” software that allows one to insert IP addresses into a BitTorrent swarm.

Maybe we could shut down (, (, (, (, and more- the possibilities are endless!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Those addresses are on the super secret ‘white list’ that are allowed to do anything they want, they have to be able to find the material on the net before they can copy it, claim it as their own, and sue others for trying to share it, you understand how this works, right?

Expect a knock on the door anytime now, we know where you are and nobody will be hearing from you soon…

We’re from the government and we’re hear to help (the industries who pay us the most)…

abc gum says:

Re: Re:

I read somewhere that just becoming part of a swarm added the IP Addr in use to a list of infringers subject to subpoena and potentially subsequent extortion attempt. It was alleged that the act of down or up loading was not used to discriminate nor was infringement determination of any content in question.

So, I doubt there is a need for any new software that injects an address.

deadzone (profile) says:


The isp’s can’t even give us a bandwidth meter that works and reliably tracks our CAPPED services and we have seen numerous examples of how clueless the entertainment industry is about technology and their ham fisted clueless attempts to control it!

There is no way that they have come up with a reliable and ACCURATE system to don what they claim it does. The proof is in the pudding and the simple fact that they dont want tp provide pudding to anyone speaks volumes.

If they truly had something they would be shouting it to the rooftops and demonstrating some sort of verifiable data to everyone they could in triumph!

A Guy says:

Finally, We Can Troll Them

I don’t know how their product works, but if I get one notice I will sue the company that sends the notice for libel and defamation. If they accuse me of infringement (or my internet connection) to my ISP, they better have rock solid proof. Otherwise, the whole “demonize those nasty file sharers” campaign that equates file sharers with thieves will backfire. You cannot falsely accuse someone of thievery to their business partners (read ISPs) without expecting a lawsuit if the charge cannot be proven.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: one answer

Class action lawsuit.

I presume you mean a civil class action. Why is that the ?one answer??

The DoJ guidelines on horizontal price fixing state:

Per Se Violations. Price fixing, bid rigging, and market allocation are generally prosecuted criminally because they have been found to be unambiguously harmful, that is, per se illegal.

So why do you think a civil class action is the appropriate remedy here? Shouldn’t Attorney-General Holder apply his department’s guidelines?

NamelessOne says:


Maybe we could shut down (, (, (, (, and more- the possibilities are endless!
these get boned many times a month you just have to realize they gotz a rise of the apes gorilla guy there flipping the reset switch all day so to see it defaced you have to reload the browser often no really everyone should just try that for a month…..”its not a dos i just wanted to show that the site gets defaced your honor”

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