Six Strikes Administrator: Loss Of Open WiFi Access At Cafes Is Acceptable Collateral Damage

from the really-now? dept

We recently covered some of the details of various “six strikes” policies being implemented by most of the large broadband providers in the US, noting that with Verizon’s, it appeared that small businesses that offered free and open WiFi could get in trouble for doing so. TorrentFreak has followed up with Jill Lesser, the executive director of the Center for Copyright Information (CCI), the organization coordinating these plans, and discovered that this impact on small businesses is not an error, and Lesser does not seem to see a problem with it, arguing that offering such open and free WiFi is a violation of the terms of service for most small businesses.

“In addition, the terms of service on such accounts do not allow them to be used to provide free WiFi or ‘hotspots’ so the hypothetical cafe owner offering public WiFi will not be subject to the CAS if they are following their terms of service.”

Similarly, she says that if it impacts small businesses or home-based businesses that use residential accounts, she doesn’t see it as a problem, since those businesses shouldn’t “allow” their employees to “engage in copyright theft.” Of course, it’s not theft, but infringement — and it’s frustrating that someone like Lesser would misrepresent these things.

That said, her cavalier attitude towards these very common scenarios, which will have real impacts on a variety of small businesses, is unfortunate and dangerous. The importance of a fully working broadband connection to small businesses todays cannot be overstated. To suggest that all of this is okay because they’re not following an almost universally ignored term in the terms of service on such accounts seems to be dismissing things way too simply.

The end result of this is likely to be a lot less public and open WiFi at a time when we actually need much more open access. That may not matter to the RIAA and MPAA — who still don’t understand the importance and value of internet access — but it matters an awful lot to the pubilc and a variety of small businesses.

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Companies: cci, verizon

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Comments on “Six Strikes Administrator: Loss Of Open WiFi Access At Cafes Is Acceptable Collateral Damage”

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Ninja (profile) says:

One thing I found awesome in the US when I was there a few years back was the widespread availability of open networks. I mean even buses had open wi-fi. Recently I went back there and I found it somewhat harder to find open wi-fis (while you could still ask for the access on many places). Maybe it was the differences of the regions (first I went to Washington, near Canada and the last time was Miami).

Point is having open wi-fi all around is good for the user and bad for the telcos. I felt no need of a mobile connection. I wonder if there are subtle interests in the widespread acceptance of such abusive system by the telcos…

In any case, the obvious outcome of this moronic program will be the extinction of open wireless access. The places that still provide internet access for free will be forced to keep expensive log systems and request their users ID just to play safe.

Once it goes public I hope EFF and whoever sticks a huge lawsuit up their arses and grabs an injunction (or whatever you call it) to prevent such madness from becoming reality. In fact they should do it preemptively.

MRK says:

Re: ISPs do not need to worry about customer backlash.

If the ISP that serves my favorite coffee shop forces them to cut off open WiFi, I’ll just go to another cafe. Unless of course that cafe also is forced to shut off the open WiFi. Then I’ll go to the library and use their WiFi… oh, the Library also cut off the open WiFi… How could this happen?

Oh yeah… that’s right… the entire city is served by a single ISP.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Oh for the love of god…

Six Strikes is a system of Punishment Upon Accusation. Get that through your thick skulls. PUA is a disgusting thought because it completely sidesteps the judicial system and hands almost unheard of power to punish upon third parties. Nothing in Six Strikes allows for the possibility of false accusations or of punishing those who repeatedly make false accusations.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

With Open WIFI, six strikes does not punish the person infringing copyright, but rather the person providing a service and anybody who made use of the service without infringing copyright.
With this attitude, the copyright based industries will not be content until they destroy the Internet.

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Wow, thank you for that incite full comment. Perhaps would do some good to stop and really consider things here, like who is really “ruining it for the rest of us”

You want to point and say the pirates are ruining it and yet these copyright industries cant even keep their own networks clean. So they expect a small business to monitor and control their network when the big movie studios can’t even control theirs?

Here is something else to think on. What about the company that does their best to secure their network and still gets these strikes? After all, a lot of us “filthy pirates” are only slightly annoyed by wireless security, it rarely will actually stop anyone.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

No-one actually has to DO anything. Six Strikes is all about the accusations. So a business can theoretically have a Wifi network, not open it up at all to anyone, and yet still be accused multiple times and punished. There are legendary news articles from a few years ago of networked printers being accused of copying movies, and of people without computers.

ltlw0lf (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

There are legendary news articles from a few years ago of networked printers being accused of copying movies, and of people without computers.

It actually isn’t that hard to do. It was amazing to me back in 2002 how many folks had network printers up on the internet without any sort of firewalls. The paper above is really old, and needs a re-write, but it was interesting at the time that most printers had hard drives in them, and quite a few had nasty backdoors that allowed instant and unauthenticated access to those hard drives (ahem…Xerox, xerox.htm.) We had all sorts of discussions back then about using printers to serve up porn or other stuff. Turns out, a couple years later, I’d find a company that had a problem with its users uploading music to their printers because the company prevented IPODs and they could listen to their music off of the printer (which wasn’t being monitored or protected.)

ltlw0lf (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Wait, why would a company have speakers built into a printer? The hard drive bit is hard enough to understand, but speakers?

They didn’t. The folks dumped their music onto the printer’s hard drive, and then played the music on their computer using Microsoft Media Player. They didn’t have anywhere else to put it because the servers were monitored for the material, as were their computers, but the printer wasn’t monitored, so they could store the music on the printer without being caught doing so. The company never removed the media player from their computers.

I thought it was pretty inventive, and didn’t see it as an issue at the time, but the company was not so happy about it. I believe they ended up revisiting the rules about ipods, since it wasn’t likely they would be sued by the RIAA if they allowed ipods at work, but would have if their printers continued serving music.

Greevar (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Like the others have said. This is a complete bypass of “innocent until proven guilty.” It’s very much like calling someone a witch and then burning them at the stake without any further investigation or opportunity to dispute the accusation. No evidence is provided and no chance to contest that evidence is provided. It’s slanted in the accuser’s favor and the accused has to just take it up the ass even if they are 100% innocent. AND IT WILL HAPPEN TO INNOCENT PEOPLE

MonkeyFracasJr (profile) says:

Re: Re: Innocent until Proven Guilty

While I personally dislike policies that are apparently arbitrary in their application, where the “accused” has no apparent recourse against the policy or his accuser, I have to say in many cases such policies fall in a category of “the right to refuse service to anyone.” The “accused is not being tried, convicted, or punished (specifically), only denied access to a service. Yes there are many questions and debates to be had about “Was payment rendered for the service?”, and “Is said service such a great necessity that users have some right to access it?”. But those discussion have been, so far, avoided.

I agree the “accusers” are avoiding those discussions, and I agree these types of policies are rigged against the consumer, “the people.” I’m also sorry I don’t have a better suggestion than to stop doing business with companies that pursue these policies, but I see no other way to effect change than to show said companies that policies and related actions like these adversely affect the “bottom line.”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Innocent until Proven Guilty

That is why there will be lawsuits against the ISPs for breach of contract and failing to provide the service that has been paid for. Once this happens often enough these lawsuits will turn into class action lawsuits that stand to cost the ISPs a fortune. It is at this point that they will discard these practices.

Greevar (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Innocent until Proven Guilty

Imagine if this was housing. Imagine if people were being evicted on mere accusation of wrong-doing regardless of guilt. No evidence, no chance to challenge the accusation. We don’t have to worry about that because people are protected. They don’t get evicted without due process and fair treatment. They get fair warning and notice. They also have legal recourse to pursue if they feel the action is unjust. They don’t get tossed out on their ass the second someone cries “criminal!” A landlord has a “right to refuse service”, but that isn’t absolute. Tenants have rights. The landlord isn’t free to boot anybody out on a moment’s notice because some record exec from Hollywood says he’s a criminal. ISP shouldn’t have the right to disconnect paying customers on flimsy accusations. The ISP has no business even involving themselves in a civil dispute anyway, much less taking extralegal action against their customers without justification. Such action should be subject to penalty for violating consumer rights.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Innocent until Proven Guilty

I have to say in many cases such policies fall in a category of “the right to refuse service to anyone.”

Yes, so?

I’m also sorry I don’t have a better suggestion than to stop doing business with companies that pursue these policies, but I see no other way to effect change than to show said companies that policies and related actions like these adversely affect the “bottom line.”

In most of the country, not doing business with these companies means not having internet access at all.

I have a better suggestion: apply pressure to these companies in every way we can to get them to renounce or at least not enforce these policies. Which is what we’re doing.

And, it’s working. At least one major ISP has a fairly weakened six-strikes policy where once you get to your sixth strike, they give your info to the accusers and then leave you alone. That does mitigate at least the very worst aspects of six strikes.

Niall (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Innocent until Proven Guilty

Which is one thing when you have competition n the market. But when you have a government-mandated (near-)monopoly then simple denial of service becomes a bit like telling an accused speeder he can’t use the roads at all, not even by public transport, so he can only use someone else’s means of transport. Oh, and the same applies to his whole family.

“First Strike? Ok, can’t use the westbound main route.”
“Second Strike? Ok, can’t use the northbound main route.”
“Third Strike? Ok, can’t use any major roads.”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Piracy is just the excuse they happened to use. If they weren’t able to blame piracy, they would’ve blamed something else.

This is, as it has ever been, about a few obscenely wealthy conglomerates further increasing their profits while decreasing the amount of productive work they have to do, all at the expense of the general public.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

And what about the paedophiles that abuse open Wi-fi? Like they’re not an issue.

But no, it’s infringers that are the problem, and it’s all THEIR fault. (/s)

The real issue is that economics hates monopolies through regulation. People keep saying how copyright actively promotes creation, when the truth is it promotes, stagnation. The last genuinely innovative film was probably Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

Anonymous Coward says:

Lesser has obviously been brainwashed or bribed to go along with the thinking of the MPAA/RIAA, ie, what i want is what i will have and i dont give a flying fuck about anyone else that is detrimentally affected! so what about the countless number of businesses that are ‘allowed’ to give free wifi? their business will easily suffer and they dont matter? i thought that when she was given the job, she was not supposed to be biased for the needs of the entertainment industries? seems like that was the usual bullshit then! when are people, politicians and governments actually going to wake up and admit to the damage that is being done by this continual backing of the entertainment industries over every other industry on the planet? they know what is happening, are they going to wait until it really is too late to change things? look at the state of the economy. so many businesses are failing, but the entertainment industries are given whatever they want, including tax breaks (which, because of Hollywood Accounting probably wont give the studios and execs much more money!) to keep them going. add to that the smaller amounts of money that the majority of households have left to spend on ‘entertainment’ or new products, like TVs, is it any wonder the number of high street businesses that are going to the wall? the more taken from families in whatever way, the less they have to spend. basic economics!!

Rekrul says:

Re: Re:

i thought that when she was given the job, she was not supposed to be biased for the needs of the entertainment industries?

Are you serious? Her entire agency has no other purpose other than to push the agenda of the entertainment industry.

when are people, politicians and governments actually going to wake up and admit to the damage that is being done by this continual backing of the entertainment industries over every other industry on the planet?

The governments and politicians already know, they just don’t care as long as the checks from the entertainment industry keep coming in.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

With the six strikes, throttling isn’t enough. You’re basically responsible for anything anyone does on your network. On top of that it’s accusations. This means that someone somewhere gets to decide based on a non-fixed set of rules… which works so extremely well… (See MegaUpload, Schwartz, RIAA considering artists websites as evil, and thousands of terrible DMCA abuses).

Basically what’s being pointed out here is that if it only takes 6 “accusations”, and people can abuse accusations, then anyone can basically shut down any WIFI out there. Thus we’re going to start limiting any open access available.

I sincerely suggest before you shrug this off as only affecting “pirates” you go look at the results of how well the “strike system” has been working where it has been implemented (people who haven’t done anything getting taken to court, fined, and losing internet connection). In fact while I have seen multiple cases where the strike system didn’t work, I’m still waiting to see a case where it did work on stopping a pirate….

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

“They’re not stopping email checking at Starbucks, you buffoon.”

They might as well be, if a cafe’s Wi-Fi is slowed down to 256kbps, shared amongst what? 40 or so customers? Internet access will slow down to an absolute crawl, completely unusable.
I want you to state in plain English: You WANT this system, of punishment upon accusation, to go forward?

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

There is no “licence” when it comes to the internet. If you get tickets for driving, they’re given to you by police officers, who are deputized with the power to do that.
Not so with Six Strikes. Anyone can accuse anyone, and punishment is immediate.
The rules here are INSANE. How would you like it if you were accused six times, knowing all the while you did your best to stay within the rules, and hence got your connection slowed to a virtual crawl? Why is it such a thought never enters your skull?

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

You compared using the internet to having a driver’s licence, which is a document granted by the government saying you now have the legal privilege to drive a vehicle on roads: the theory being that only those who have proven themselves capable of driving said vehicles at high speeds should be allowed, to try and minimise bodily harm.
A TOS IS NOT A LICENCE! Just because I break the TOS of an ISP doesn’t mean I’ve broken a law and should be prosecuted for one.
AGAIN, for the last fucking time, this is all PUNISHMENT UPON ACCUSATION. Not by deputized police officers but by random third parties.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

I’ve just pointed out every difference between a driver’s licence and a TOS…
and all you can say is they’re EXACTLY THE SAME? How? One is issued by a government body, the other by a private entity; one is issued to those who have passed training and proven themselves, the other just needs a click on “I Accept”…the list goes on. They are NOTHING alike.

Lowestofthekeys (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Exactly – Adverb:

Without discrepancy (used to emphasize the accuracy of a figure or description).
In exact terms; without vagueness.

Hrrrm, you do sound pretty vague, I mean you didn’t really consider that speeding tickets cost money, and the strikes don’t, which really isn’t…you know, exact, but hey we all have our off moments.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

“TOS is exactly like a license.”

Unless you consider all the ways in which it differs completely. I don’t remember having taken a test to get an internet connection, and the TOS is not enforceable by any government agent, just to give 2 examples. Not to mention the fact that if I disconnect from one company for whatever reason (be that voluntarily or through breaking a TOS clause), I can go to another company and get the same service – that mere fact alone should clue any intelligent person in on the differences.

Yet again an AC troll latches on to some analogy that’s completely stupid and won’t even admit the problems with it that a 5 year old can see. Presumably, est it lead to actual discussion and the possibility that his preconceived assumptions might not be correct. Must be a day with a y in it again…

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Oi Rikuo.. He’s just trolling, can’t reason with someone being willfully blind 😉

Most of us has seen the failure in his argumentation. We know the license is required because vehicles need skill to be used safely as opposed to TOS that serve as means for the company to avoid lawsuits for 3rd party liability or to be able to terminate the service due to abuse. While file sharing may be seen to abuse they’d have to follow a judicial process to prove the infringement really came from a determined IP and they CANNOT hold a company that provides open, free wi-fi liable for what is done in their network (while they could ask for cooperation to get to the individuals engaged in such infringing activities but that’s too obvious and right for them, right?).

Ignore and move on.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Furthermore, once they do this and sufficiently piss off the public, the public hits back at the ISPs and the ISPs dump the policy to save their business, and the Content Cartels start asking for the cooperation from the public, do they honestly believe the public will assist them then after all of this mess they have created in the first place?

Lowestofthekeys (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“Yes, I want your drivers license taken away if you get 6 tickets in a year.”

It’s a bit hard to take you seriously when you equate piracy with something like speeding, which not only threatens lives but actually requires visible proof to issue the ticket.

I know the blood flow to your brain is restricted by the twist Masnick puts into your panties, but you may want to re-think your analogies before posting.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Yes, I want your drivers license taken away if you get 6 tickets in a year.

Not sure where you’re from, but where I live they can’t suspend your driver’s license until you have x amount of convictions or admissions of guilt. You could have 50,000 accusations (tickets) of wrongdoing that you have successfully fought in court and still retain your license.

That’s a huge difference, don’t ya think?

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

And if you’d like to fight any of your 6 strikes you can.

If I ever get one, I most certainly will. Since I don’t make conscious decisions to download content illegally, I would most assuredly be in the right on this.

I will gladly pay the $35 bucks for the chance. The one thing I won’t do is limit myself to the the cheesy defenses they limit me to. If that’s not acceptable to them, I will take it up in an actual court of law.

Anonymous Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

I wonder if these strike notices might be considered defamatory? I suppose there is limited exposure as they probably won’t be published…hey wait, maybe there’s an opportunity here. A website that collects all the notices and publishes them, with a branch to Facebook for better exposure maybe. Not a lawyer here, so I am not sure what else is necessary for defamation, but accusation without proof certainly seems defamatory.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Quit pretending you can’t tell if torrents of entire brand new theatrical and music releases are fair use or infringement.

You look like a fucking idiot when try to play that con.

You can’t tell. That’s the point. Fair use doesn’t hinge on what content was obtained, it hinges on the use of said content. But you know that already, don’t you.

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Quit pretending you can’t tell if torrents
of entire brand new theatrical and music
releases are fair use or infringement.

Oh, so you’re claiming that fair use is available as a defense for accusations of infringement involving anything other than torrents of entire brand new theatrical and music releases?

You might want to tell the RIAA and the MPAA that, as well as the ISPs they’ve beaten into submission because they don’t seem to have gotten your memo, you dishonest douche.

Greevar (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

No, you want punishment to assuage your anger over something you clearly clueless about. You want to make someone suffer because you’re angry and you want it to be the one that made you angry because that would make you feel better. That’s what defines the difference between justice and vengeance. Vengeance is petty and selfish. You want vengeance. It’s a disgusting emotion and you’re a disgusting person to possess it.

This six strikes is unjust and should be illegal. It assumes guilt without a shred of evidence. You’re guilty, even if you’re not. All it takes is an accusation and there’s no burden of proof, no standard to meet in order to warrant action against someone. Any member can pluck a random IP address and a work they control, then claim that person pirated it. The accused would have no defense but to pay a $35 fee for the chance to dispute it but then they’ve made $35 off of the accused and they still would likely lose.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Except this is accusations against account holders based on IP addresses that can be spoofed, connections that can be hacked, and non-law enforcement accusers who never have to prove anything.

This is like getting a unchallengeable ticket when the only evidence that you sped was that someone reported seeing someone speed who drove the same type of car as you.

Why would you support someone getting their license taken away when it’s never confirmed that they actually deserved a ticket?

I hear you murdered someone. Report to jail immediately. We don’t need to confirm it was you who did it. An accusation is proof enough. Death penalty FTW!

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Yes, I want your drivers license taken away
if you get 6 tickets in a year.

Another analogy fail. Maybe you haven’t noticed, but when you get a ticket, you’re not automatically convicted, nor is your license automatically suspended. You have the right to require the state to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt before any punishment can be assessed, each and every time, and the fact that you got two previous tickets is irrelevant regarding proof of guilt for the third ticket.

In other words, you can’t lose your driver license based on mere accusation, yet you’re advocating for exactly that regarding copyright.

n_mailer says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“Yes, I want your drivers license taken away if you get 6 tickets in a year.

And so does everybody else that follows the rules and wants to drive on the street.”

No, we don’t, you screwball. The police don’t even want this. We’ll take the revenue, thanks.

When someone speeds past me or runs a red light, I am concerned for my safety and his, not about “following the rules.”

PatBeirne (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: re: 256kbps

I just got back from a visit to the Amazon. My hotel gave me about 200kbps internet, and there were many sites that were unusable. Even the standard GMail inbox page refused to load; I guess the JavaScript expected a certain response time and refused to function outside those limits.

Throttling people to 256kbps is going to hurt a lot more today than it would have 10 years ago, when web pages had lower expectations.

Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

They’re not stopping email checking at Starbucks, you buffoon.

How do you figure that? Either a business can offer wifi to their customers, or they can’t. If they offer it, they have very little control over what their customers use it for. Throttling won’t stop someone from infringing copyright – if either the business does it, or their ISP throttles the whole connection.

If you had the slightest bit of technical knowledge, you would understand this. Let me give you a scenario of what happens.

Customer goes into Starbucks and orders their expensive coffee. They sit down and use their laptop to connect to the wifi. The laptop has a bit torrent client running, and when it sees that internet connection, it goes and announces itself to the swarm, and says its sharing some music or movie, and the IP address it is at – which is the coffee shop’s IP.

Now, one of two things will happen, depending if the infringement detection is monumentally stupid, or just dumb. It it is monumentally stupid, as soon as it sees an IP in the swarm sharing something, it adds it to the strikes list. Or, if it just dumb, it starts downloading the content from the laptop. It may only get a few pieces if the connection is throttled, but a few pieces is all it needs to add the IP to the strikes list. Either way, the coffee shop IP is now on the list.

Repeat this 6 times. Coffee shop is either cut off completely by their ISP, or is forced to stop offering wifi to everyone – regardless if someone is checking their email or infringing copyright.

anonymouse says:

Re: Re: Re:

“They’re not stopping email checking at Starbucks, you buffoon.”

Are you just plain stupid or really so ignorant, you are coming across as someone just as dumb as the person doing this. If wifi cannot be open for fear of accusations they will remove it. Therefore no wifi no email, simple as. Gees even reading a few of the comments in here should show you your comment is just plain stupid.

gorehound (profile) says:

It was all about Control

The whole Six Strikes Scam is all about controlling the population and being able to give them what data you want them to have.I do firmly believe that the whole “Piracy” thing is just a crock of shit and the excuse they used to slowly take away the Freedoms of the Internet.
I do feel that those who control Data are the ones who will be in charge.
Newspapers and TV News do nothing to help out and have mostly sold out to their Big Content Masters.
I made this gallery as an example of the Newspaper here in Portland, Maine called “Portland Press Herald” .

I am hoping to see small businesses dump their ISP for one who refuses to take part in this fiasco.I am pretty sure that here in Portland you can go with a slower connection using “GWI” who as far as I know have sworn to not take part in the Six Strikes Shit.
For now I am using a Non-Logging VPN located in Malaysia and sometime this year I will probably opt to lose some speed by dumping Slime Warner and going with that slower GWI.
I really hate these fucking MAFIAA Assholes and I do totally Boycott their World.You hear that MAFIAA and your Shills: I DO NOT CARE WHAT YOU ARE PUTTING OUT !!! I ignore your whole Industry and am not interested in any products you do.You fucked with my world so I Censor you from my wallet.And I will be thrilled to see Millions more join up to Boycott your Greedy Corrupted Asshole Industry.

Lowestofthekeys (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: It was all about Control

It is difficult to take the whole morality argument seriously when record labels have a fine habit of providing a paltry 9% royalty rate on mechanical licenses with little to no overhead.

Next thing we know, he’ll say Eminem’s producer and James Taylor are trying to steal from the artist through their current lawsuits against Warner Bros for unfair compensation.

Lowestofthekeys (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 It was all about Control

Apparently, James Taylor doesn’t either, but he’s still getting screwed by Warner Bros… sounds pretty immoral to me, which makes it even sweeter when shills like you preach from your soapbox.

On a side-note, you must be the idiot who argued that ISPs can hack VPN encryption without providing any evidence for the claim.

Milton Freewater says:

Re: Re: Re:2 It was all about Control

“It is difficult to take the whole morality argument seriously when record labels have a fine habit of providing a paltry 9% royalty rate on mechanical licenses with little to no overhead.”

It is difficult to take the whole morality argument seriously when people go onto a blog to condemn copying digital material from someone else’s computer with their consent, otherwise known as using the Web.

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: It was all about Control

Fact: Pirates, and pirates alone,
brought this on.

You bounce back and forth like a superball with your idiotic rationalizations for this.

One minute it’s “This isn’t draconian, it’s no different than a speeding ticket”. (Which is nonsense on its face.)

The next, it’s “Yes, this is draconian and ignores all the notions of due process and presumption of innocence that we value in America, but it’s all you pirates’ fault for being such a-holes, so suck it.”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: It was all about Control

Noone in this country stands up for principals… All of you talk big about dropping this isp, or changing to that one, not buying this or that product…

Sony is sure running strong, Comcast and Time Warner sure aren’t hurting for customers, and the list goes on…

Hell you talk about not buying anything Sony because they are strick about their copyrights, then when their latest gaming monitor goes on sale your right there in line buying it…

I welcome these types of plans, I welcome them not because I want to see ppl losing internet… I welcome them because so many of you blow hot air and these companies all know it so they simply ignore you

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Great...

I thought that too, except it turns out Comcast, Optimum and Time Warner all apparently prohibit open Wi-Fi even in their business-class agreements:

Verizon says ?you are responsible for all use of your Service by others?:
Charter has similar wording:

I haven?t been able to easily find agreements for CenturyLink, Cox and Frontier. The only ISP I can verify doesn?t seem to have a policy regarding sharing or reselling their service (even for home users) is EarthLink cable (but possibly not DSL).

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re: The future

The law requires they have a repeat infringer policy.

By the end of 2014 every ISP in the US will have this.

In other words, contrary to what everyone has claimed all along, the six strikes policy really IS a plan to kick infringers off the net. Thanks for finally admitting the true purpose of the effort.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 The future

A repeat infringer policy can be anything that the ISP deems necessary, that does not mean 6 strikes. DMCA leaves that decision at the hands of the ISP. One could easily argue that the system they have in place now is legally sufficient.

Small ISPs are notoriously independent. Size has a lot to do with it. The cost of implementing a system like this would be deemed prohibitive.

Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Re: Re: The future

Do you really want a discussion on this? Here is the section in the entirety:

USC 17 Section 512
subsection H

(i) Conditions for Eligibility.? (1) Accommodation of technology.? The limitations on liability established by this section shall apply to a service provider only if the service provider?
(A) has adopted and reasonably implemented, and informs subscribers and account holders of the service provider?s system or network of, a policy that provides for the termination in appropriate circumstances of subscribers and account holders of the service provider?s system or network who are repeat infringers; and
(B) accommodates and does not interfere with standard technical measures.
(2) Definition.? As used in this subsection, the term ?standard technical measures? means technical measures that are used by copyright owners to identify or protect copyrighted works and?
(A) have been developed pursuant to a broad consensus of copyright owners and service providers in an open, fair, voluntary, multi-industry standards process;
(B) are available to any person on reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms; and
(C) do not impose substantial costs on service providers or substantial burdens on their systems or networks.

So, yes, there has to be a policy, and it has to be reasonable. I doubt most that an ordinary reasonable person would consider cutting someone’s internet access off based on unproven accusations as reasonable.

Let’s look at the definitions. The one about a broad consensus is interesting. Are a few ISPs (5? 6?) and a few lobbying organizations a broad consensus? I’d like to see you try to support that. And what about those words about “open, fair, voluntary” – since these 6 strikes proposals were anything but open, and I highly doubt fair or voluntary.

How about the requirements of the “standard technical measures” being available to any person on reasonable and nondiscrimintory terms? Many have been asking how the infringement detection system would work for the years that various strikes proposals have been under way. No information has been forthcoming.

By my count, this law is already on a 3rd strike.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: The future

(B) accommodates and does not interfere with standard technical measures.
2) Definition.? As used in this subsection, the term ?standard technical measures? means technical measures that are used by copyright owners to identify or protect copyrighted works and?

Could using a VPN an interference with technical measures if implemented by the open WIFI owner?

Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 The future

Could using a VPN an interference with technical measures if implemented by the open WIFI owner?

An answer to that question from the copyright maximalist camp is a big Hobson’s choice.

If the answer is yes, then the open wifi provider is a service provider. As long as they can meet the other requirements, then they’ve got safe harbors against being held liable for their user’s infringement.

If the answer is no, then they can implement the VPN to hide their users from the copyright holders.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 The future

Those are restrictions on the ISPs concerning maintaining Safe Harbors. That says that the ISP can’t employ a system that interferes with standard technical measures. It has nothing to do with the end user using a VPN that interferes with “standard technical measures”.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 The future

A VPN does not interfere with standard technical measures. The IP layers is not encrypted. All the standard technical measures to monitor network performance and enable routing are fully in place.

It does interfere with extraordinary technical measures, such as deep packet inspection, though. Those measures should by illegal anyway, but that’s a whole other discussion.

Ed C. says:

Right…so small businesses should effectively check that every packet crossing their network is properly licensed, just to be sure patrons or employees don’t transfer unlicensed copies. Of course, for such a scheme to actually work, local cafes that offer wifi would have to become copyright gestapo, where baristas demand the receipts or copyright notices for every file transferred and TOS for every site visited. Sounds crazy? That’s what would actually be required for the average person to prove their innocence under copyright law!

Or, the cafe would have to pay up a lot more money to get the exact same connection, except approved for business use, just to be exempt from such responsibility. Is this how the publishers got the ISPs to go along with this: they agreed to be copyright cops, so that in return they get to coerce the small business “freeloaders” to pay up for business class connections that don’t offer anything they really needed in the first place?

Nice to see the free market is still live and well.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: What about the Fortune 500?

Silly person, laws are for the peons, not the nobility.

Were I a betting person I’d be willing to put up everything I own on the bet that there will be an ‘unofficial’ list of companies/IP addresses that will be considered untouchable, no matter how many accusations are made against them.

After all if such a system were actually applied equally and fairly, then you’d have governmental agencies, the offices of the *AA’s, and countless other large companies losing their connections within a matter of months(at most), and they just hate being exposed as the hypocrites they are.

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Re: What about the Fortune 500?

You know, when this six strikes goes into effect, we should find a Fortune 500 company and accuse them 6 times just to see what happens.

Nothing will happen. Accusations against a large powerful organization that don’t come from a name the ISP immediately recognizes as another large powerful organization will be ignored.

Beta (profile) says:

adaptor plug

I see a new business opportunity. The Cafe doesn’t dare offer open WiFi for fear of losing internet access. But the Cafe can make a deal with a third party to offer it. The third party is a company that exists only to do so, and if it gets banished from the internet, its CEO (and only employee) dissolves the company with a few keystrokes, transfers ownership of the hardware to one of the other companies waiting on the shelf, opens a new ISP account and is right back in business. (With redundant hardware, the operator might be able to avoid downtime entirely.) Such companies might be burdensome for the ISPs; the dumb ISPs will refuse to deal with them, the smart ISPs will accept them as customers (and maybe try to charge them extra).

Next step: the gatekeepers go after the smart ISPs and/or the third parties. Then begins an utterly pointless dance, when the ISPs must make gestures of looking for things they don’t want to find (Nelson’s telescope, anyone?) and a new ecology of not-illegal-but-not-safe business springs up.

Net effect: extra work is done at a net loss to society, the law is degraded, freedom is associated with criminality, open WiFi is harder to find and the coffee costs more.

anonymouse says:


The more these people comment the more they help everyone realise that copyright is so bloated that it just cannot operate in the modern world, There is absolutely no reason that the multi trillion dollar internet industry should listen to some stupid crazy little person in there tiny little office spouting out rubbish about something they know nothing about, The fact that copyright is destroying lives and forcing thousands upon thousands of businesses to close down is something the government needs to look at very closely, the industry implementing these laws needs to be restricted to working off of the internet, there is just no place for them here and they are not welcome. The internet was created to share and copyright is basically irrelevant, we on the internet will allow them to sell their ideas and content only if they leave everyone alone to do what is human nature and share everything. If they are not happy with this they must go work in macdonalds.

Anonymous Coward says:

Just another escalation

This is just an example of yet another escalation. It is very easy for both residences and small businesses to deal with. Sign up for a VPN account and put the tunnel credentials into the wireless router, encrypt the entire stream and exit using a shared IP address. Any service such as BTGuard will work using this method with the added advantage of avoiding the accusations and the yearly fee is negligible for the business. This will simply drive the adoption of encrypted connections which will both stymie QOS for the ISP’s as well as these belated attempts from the content industry, as well as providing more private/secure communications to customers of the free WiFi.

Anonymous Coward says:

regardless of whether the wifi in question is open to all within the immediate area to use or not, someone is paying for the original connection under some sort of contract. why then are ISPs, that are obviously going to be losing revenue because a different contract will be used when up for renewal, still bending over backwards to help the entertainment industries carry on making money, (at no cost to themselves) whilst losing revenue from their own business? is it just me or is this a one-sided plan only?

That One Guy (profile) says:

To all those who see nothing wrong with the 6-strikes system:

You are an arsonist.
You are an arsonist.
You are an arsonist.
You are an arsonist.
You are an arsonist.
You are an arsonist.

Congratulations, using the very logic you seem to cherish so much, where an accusation of guilt is the same as evidence of guilt, you are now all legally considered arsonists, and are deserving of being treated as such, jail time included.

If you filthy criminals would like to contest these charges, you merely have to pay $50 per accusation to my frie- I mean a totally neutral third party, and show up in a court of said third party’s choosing, which may require several hours of driving, and will require taking several hours of time out of your schedules per accusation.

The available defenses you are allowed to raise are limited, and you will be informed of them at the time of the trial.

Keep in mind that you must pay the fee, and present your defense per accusation, and given there is absolutely no penalty for a false accusation(there doesn’t need to be one, as such a thing could of course never happen), expect to be seeing the inside of a court-room on a regular basis from now on to keep out of jail.

Hopefully I’ve made my point, but it not, it’s not like I care what arguments you might present on this subject in the future, given you’re all arsonists, and therefor criminals, anyway.

Miton Freewater says:

Re: To all those who see nothing wrong with the 6-strikes system:

“Congratulations, using the very logic you seem to cherish so much, where an accusation of guilt is the same as evidence of guilt, you are now all legally considered arsonists”

You are very wrong in one thing – the six strikes system has nothing to do with the law and legally determines nothing.

It’s an agreement between corporations to act outside the law to bully customers into spending more money. And that’s true whether you get cut off or sued or neither.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 To all those who see nothing wrong with the 6-strikes system:

On Forbes responses languish in a collapsed form and if your good they get “called out” (put on full on display) by the author of the story. Its kinda like the reverse of here.

First time posting there I hit it out of the park (the wall of text post on page 2 of the comments).
But then I was writing about 6 strikes in October… I might have an unfair advantage having spent much time digging into this.

Milton Freewater says:

See? This case isn't about the MPAA and RIAA at all

“Six strikes” is a scheme in which access providers collude with rightsholders to use the fictional crime of “copyright theft” to force companies and people to purchase expensive upgrades.

The collusion is what’s offensive. Why is the CCI marketing wireless upgrades?

More and more, this smells like antitrust.

Karim says:

Oh yeah...

Mick Mansick is just too intellectually dishonest to admit that public cafes with open Wifi account for at least 50% of the lost sales problem, as identified by Righthaven Study #BS-12.

Just because a man stands accused, does not make him innocent. That’s for him to prove, and real non-pirates have nothing to hide. You are just so scared because you know you’re all guilty. Of *course* a guilty person will resist a perfectly reasonable plan like this. No system is perfect, there will always be collateral.
But in the end, who is more important, Justin Beaver or that random medical worker guy who doesn’t know what a Blit-torrent sounds like?

Next you will all be denying that Google want a hand in the coffee market. Well done trying to hide your true agenda, the disruption of Big Coffee by Big Search.

You sicken me, all you pirates. And I bet you all have crappy haircuts.

Operation PRAWN is already under way. Nothing can stop it. Not even you pirates or the Anonymouse.

J. Fallaschill
D.E.R.P Enterprises Ltd.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Oh yeah...

Too bad you can’t do the same. Still sore about that SOPA shutdown and all. Gloating about Six Strikes, til it gets shut down. It’s a vicious cycle with you and yours.

And at the end of the day piracy will continue on and not even be phased by actions such as this. The only people inconvenienced, as usual, are law abiding citizens and paying customers of ISPs. And like usual, you and yours are biting the hand that feeds. And it’s going to come back to bite you in the ass.

silverscarcat says:

For those who think the Six Strikes plan is good...

Ask yourself this…

How much of the world is connected today?

DO you do any online shopping? Any ATM transactions? Do you play games via 360, PS3, DS, Vita or Wii?

If you said yes to any of these questions, you might want to realize that this is a BAD thing and shouldn’t be used.

For more information, please read this article by John Cheese.

Anonymous Coward says:

It will just simply lead to businesses implementing content filtering. OpenDNS does this very well.

THe only problem is that in order to block illegal BitTorrent downloads, the collateral damage there is that you also block Skype. I have two routers, one public, and one private. On the public one, I block all UDP ports 1024 and above, which stops BitTorrent, but also blocks Skype if my smartphone just happens to be using that router.

If businesses decide to go the route of blocking BitTorrent, they will also block Skype as well, and there is no way around that,so Skype might suffer because of this.

Of course, I am on a small indepdent ISP that allows people to offer open WiFi, if they wish.

Qyiet (profile) says:

Cafe's arn't the only ones

I’ve had to deal with this.

My parents are partially retired (one is one isn’t), and a fair portion of their income comes from rental properties that they have invested in over time.

They run short term rentals (a few weeks to a few months) of fully furnished properties. As such you need to provide utilities: Power, phone and internet. I live in NZ so we have a 3 strike law in place already, and it holds the account holder responsible for any infringement by the users.

Their guests are often international visitors to whom internet access is incredibly important. However there is no way that said guests are able to get an internet account setup for the short time they are staying.

The liability this poses on the account owner and the costs associated are insane. This should be a matter of ‘get a router, get an account’. But instead small business owners are looking at hiring an IT professional, doing complicated setups with expensive routers (filtering won’t do the job here), and running VPN pipes overseas just so that your guests can check their mail.

This is all just working around the law, not working within it. There IS no way for my parents to provide internet to their guests without exposing themselves to significant liability.


Qyiet (profile) says:

Re: Re: Cafe's arn't the only ones

You know who I blame? The assholes who don’t obey the law.

In NZ if you use the internet to do something illegal apart from copyright infringement (lets say child porn) you are held responsible for your actions, not the account holder. This is the way it should be: if you break the law, you are responsible.

So I don’t hold ‘the assholes who don’t obey the law’ responsible. They will always exist. I hold the media execs that can’t be bothered tracking down the actual lawbreakers responsible, and the politicians that re-wrote the law on their request.
I’m more disgusted by the politicians to be honest, throwing away basic principles of law, and adding overhead costs to the entire business sector on the say-so of vested interests like this is sickening.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Cafe's arn't the only ones

Yes of course, that makes perfect sense, everyone knows that punishing everyone for the actions of the few is a perfectly acceptable and reasonable response.

That must be why everyone in a city gets a fine every time someone speeds or litters, because only punishing the ones actually committing the crime wouldn’t be nearly as profitable or easy. /s

I can’t help but think you’d be yelling ‘injustice!’ if someone committed a crime in one of your rental houses, and you were convicted right along with them as an accomplice merely because you owned the property, even though you seem to have no problem with the idea here.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Cafe's arn't the only ones

Yes of course, that makes perfect sense, everyone knows that punishing everyone for the actions of the few is a perfectly acceptable and reasonable response.

It is the standard tactic of oppressive totalitarian regimes, who are afraid that if they let up they will be out of power.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Cafe's arn't the only ones

You’ve probably broken more laws than either of those two trade groups combined.

Seriously, do you children know how silly you look pretending the MPAA and RIAA are the big, evil boogeyman? Everyone knows you just pull that BS out of your ass to rationalize your theft.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Cafe's arn't the only ones

I’ve broken more laws than both of them combined, huh?

Well, I certainly didn’t bribe politicians with campaign contributions and then threaten to stop giving them money if they didn’t keep making laws that go my way. I certainly didn’t have the DoJ take down webblogs on my say so only for the DoJ to have to give it back in a year because I couldn’t produce evidence.

I certainly didn’t try to stop the VCR from coming into being with lies.

The most I do is jaywalk.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Cafe's arn't the only ones

It’s not tin-hattery at all. It’s simply observing the major media company’s actions over my entire lifetime. In private, media company executives such as Miramax’s CEO are quite plain about this. The greatest threat to them is not piracy and they know it. It’s loss of control over the distribution channel. That is the battle they are fighting.

Anonymous Coward says:

I have 10 or so locked down routers around me, each one of these are WPS, as easy to crack as WEP; they do this while everyone is buying insecure routers.

I say this, i will crack every router and download and pirate on others internet. Sure its messed up, people will innocently get there internet shut off, but someone needs to point out the absurdity to all this; the only way corporations pay attention is if they are losing money

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

For the trolls...

Your going on and on how this is ok, and we shouldn’t have been “stealing”.

I have a long list of IP addresses owned 100% by the cartels running this program, that clearly shows them “stealing”.
It is just as good as the list being provided by Reuters Thompson/MarkMonitor/Dtecnet, why are they still allowed to use the internet?

Maybe before they decide they can assign blame to account holders for the actions of 3rd parties they should clean their own house first.

Ms. Lesser needs to publish the review of Stroz’s work as promised. The fact these are going out with a system with no independent verification of its abilities should be the basis for a nice class action lawsuit.
I think that State AG’s need to ask why any public funds or rights of ways are provided to companies who are acting as Judge, Jury, and Executioner for the cartels on “evidence” that can not stand up in court.

Ms. Lesser will say whatever it takes to get the goals of CCI shoved down the throats of society, that is what she is paid to do. No amount of education, experince, etc will trump the simple fact that she is paid to extol the virtues of a system no matter what. Think of it as being a professional liar. If you doubt that, her statement about how Stroz having been a paid RIAA lobbyist had no bearing on them being able to be impartial reviewer should clear that right up.

The country needs to pick, either we accept the oligarchs are now in control or we remind them this is a free nation with laws made by the people not corporations.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: For the trolls...

I never said that, what I specifically said is the people pushing for this are in violation of this law themselves.
If you want people to embrace the law it has to apply evenly.

I’ll take your whining as you concede this point.
As soon as there are lawsuits among the cartel members over the obvious “stealing” going on between them I’ll entertain them getting to do it to others.

Did you have anything else to add to your lacking statement or were you hoping that just misrepresenting what I said would be enough to derail me?

Josh Taylor says:

It’s not too late to get rid of your internet and trash your computer, go outside and enjoy nature, read a real paperback book. The Internet is dead anyway.

So why would MPAA/RIAA not stop there? They’ll just put surveillance cameras in your house and send you six copyright strikes in your mailbox for singing a copyrighted lyrics without the authorization of the content owner. After six strikes, They would take your brain out of your head, put it in a jar, and seal it in a frozen vault deep underground, and isolated from the outside world. And don’t forget that MPAA/RIAA are planning introduce laws to make it mandatory to have DRM chips implanted in your brain making sure you’re uncreative, unproductive, and force you against your will to buy their products.

Matthew Cline (profile) says:

On collateral damage

For those of you who agree with Lesser that that’s acceptable collateral damage: let’s say that there was some way to completely eliminate piracy from the Internet. In achieving that, what would be an acceptable level of collateral damage? Or, to put it another way, how high would the collateral damage have to be before you’d consider the cure to be worse than the disease?

Anonymous Coward says:

One thing about wholesale blocking UDP ports 1024 and up to shut down BitTorrent, if wifi hotspots choose to go this route, will be the collateral damage there. On the OpenWifi hostpot I have in my home, becuase I am right smack dab next to a major thoroughfare in my city, I have caught hell because people wanting to watch the US figure skating championships cannot get IceNetwork streaming to work.

I discovered that the wholsale blocking of all UDP ports, 1024 and up, to shut down BitTorrent, also causes IceNetwork streaming not to work, becuase their streams are using UDP ports somewhere in that range.

I do think that a lot of Wifi hotspots will go this route, rather than shut down completely, but the collateral damage in shutting down BitTorrent will be more than anyone could imagine.

I know for sure that IceNetwork, as well as the Skype telephone service, will be affected by this, and lord knows what else.

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