Data On 'Six Strikes' Suggests Little Real Impact
from the because-of-course dept
Academic research has already shown pretty clearly that so called “graduated response” programs, in which ISPs send out notices concerning alleged infringement under a varying number of “strikes,” don’t actually work, but a failure to be effective has never stopped the legacy entertainment industry from pursuing useless policies and programs. Earlier this week, the Center for Copyright Information (CCI), which administers the Copyright Alert System (CAS), better known as the “six strikes” program, finally released some data about the program. While CCI quickly declared it a success, a quick look at the data suggests a rather dismal failure in terms of actually mitigating any behavior.
The proponents of the program insist that mere notices (i.e., “education”) would lead people to suddenly stop their unauthorized usage ways, but that doesn’t seem to be the case at all.
…the repeat warning percentage of 30% is quite high, especially when one takes into account that people who received their first alert during the last month had little time to generate a second one. In addition, the detection rate is relatively low, not to mention subscribers’ use of anonymizing tools.
It appears that U.S. pirates are relatively persistent. In France, for example, only 9% of all the warned copyright infringers received two warnings, and that was after two full years. Also, only 0.029% of the French got a third strike.
While these “strikes” programs have their differences, the high number of second warnings in the U.S. stands out.
In other words, the data certainly suggests the deterrent effect of the program isn’t particularly powerful. Furthermore, it appears that there’s a rather significant error rate. After the 3rd and 4th alert, people can challenge the claims, and there were 47 successful challenges (out of 265 total challenges). Most of the successful challenges involved people claiming that others were using their account, but it certainly highlights the problem with these programs, when you are declared guilty first, and can then “pay” to challenge, you’d hope there wouldn’t be so many “errors” in the program. Either way, given the fact that these programs really appear to have little overall impact on the end user, it’s not surprising that so few challenge them in the first place.