back to article Texas ISP slams music biz for trying to turn it into a 'copyright cop'

An ISP based in Texas has complained to a judge that the music industry to trying to turn internet providers into the "copyright police." "This case is an attempt by the US recording industry to make Internet service providers its de facto copyright enforcement agents," reads the latest filing [PDF] in an ongoing court case …

"Government tries to enforce new fiat currency where a written dollar sign on a piece of paper counts as legal tender. Is furious that everyone writes dollar signs on paper without permission and is baffled why nobody will do anything about it."

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Sue the office supply store. All of those pens are responsible for this!

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the music industry argues Grande benefits financially from selling faster speed internet connections to copyright infringers. "The greater the bandwidth its subscribers require for pirating content, the more money Grande receives."

This could become a "case" for certain ISP's to hold back on upgrading users to higher connection speeds.

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Sshhhhhhh...

... don't give them ideas!

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"56kb/s should be enough for anyone?"

I'm honestly surprised the plaintiffs haven't tried to get a friendly student to collect evidence for them. On the other hand, if they suborn a student who then does something illegal at their behest, where does that leave them?

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What exactly would the "something illegal" be? If it's downloading copyrighted material without the copyright holders consent it isn't illegal. There could be something about unwarranted search and seizure though.

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illegal

I noticed that the complaint used the word theft, I'm waiting for some smart lawyer to ask the copyright holder how making a copy of a song permanently deprived them of that song.

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Re: illegal

John G Imrie

In America theft is merely taking some thing that does not belong to you . Even if you intended to give it back.

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"the music industry argues Grande benefits financially from selling faster speed internet connections to copyright infringers. "The greater the bandwidth its subscribers require for pirating content, the more money Grande receives.""

Because obviously downloading music with file sizes generally in the 3-5MB range is the only reason anyone could ever want a fast internet connection. Nothing to do with streaming gigabytes of HDTV, or downloading games that are starting to top 100GB, and the idea of teenagers away from home for the first time downloading any amount of porn is simply ludicrous. No, the demand for faster internet these days is driven entirely by the occasional mp3 download of things they couldn't find on Spotify or Youtube.

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Re: illegal

In America theft is merely taking some thing that does not belong to you . Even if you intended to give it back.

As in taking something and depriving the owner of it. Copyright violation is not theft, copyright violation is copyright violation. This does not make it any more or less acceptable.

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Re: illegal

A copyright violation is equivalent to stealing a Policeman’s helmet.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ALZZx1xmAzg

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Re: illegal

"In America theft is merely taking some thing that does not belong to you "

So copyright infringement is not theft in America either then as you don't take / deprive anyone of anything.

As per:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeTybKL1pM4

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Don't be silly

You need higher bandwidth for Netflix not downloading 8 MB .mp3 files.

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Re: illegal

"I noticed that the complaint used the word theft, I'm waiting for some smart lawyer to ask the copyright holder how making a copy of a song permanently deprived them of that song."

The theft is of the revenues from a legitimate transaction. Kind of like how organized criminals get nailed for tax evasion.

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Re: illegal

"As in taking something and depriving the owner of it. Copyright violation is not theft, copyright violation is copyright violation."

Copyright is the right to determine who can legally own a copy of something... It's kinda right there in the name. Copyright, in the U.S., is a property right, and property rights are defensible in court, even if the property in question is not physically removed (e.g., trespass).

Further, appropriating the fruits of someone else's labor without their consent constitutes "theft of services", or doesn't the U.K. have that one?

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Re: illegal

"As in taking something and depriving the owner of it" no just taking it no need to prove intent to permanently deprive the owner . If take a car with just the intent to joy ride it's theft. Even if you bring it back.

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Did anyone proof-read this article? It's full of errors, too many for me to be bothered to list here.

As for the case, I hope Grande prevails.

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DJV
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If you go to the bottom of the article there is a link that says "Tips and corrections".

HOW ABOUT LEARNING HOW TO USE IT!

Sheesh!

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Wow!

BECAUSE I FELT IT NEEDED TO BE POINTED OUT PUBLICLY!

Did you get a degree in stating the bleedin'-obvious?

Sheesh!

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Flame

Dear Music Industry

ODFO

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Re: Dear Music Industry

I'd say, come back with court approved evidence that a subscriber is copying and we'll talk.

Either that, or you employ 1 person to deal with the requests and each request has to go through due dilligence.

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Music files are small

"the music industry argues Grande benefits financially from selling faster speed internet connections to copyright infringers."

You don't need a fast connection to download music files, especially when you torrent them - relatively small files that can be downloaded in the background. Its video streaming that needs the bandwidth.

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Re: Music files are small

@fishman

Your're letting the facts get in the way of a good legal argument.

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Re: Music files are small

You're letting the facts get in the way of a good legal argument.

FTFY :/

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Re: Music files are small

They probably started using this argument when the enforcement began in the mid 2000s - it was true back when many people were still upgrading from dialup to first gen DSL/cable.

Unfortunately for them, technology has changed and when people upgrade today they're going from "more than fast enough to download music" to "way more than fast enough to download music".

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Of course the likelihood that thousands of university students are using BitTorrent to share files that everyone has a legitimate right to own is virtually zero.

Actually, the likelihood of that is nearly 100%. BitTorrent, like the Internet itself, is a tool for sharing files. It makes no value judgement on what the files are. Could be Linux distro's, public domain movies and video (yes there is such a thing), the lecturers themselves could distribute video and audio recordings of their lectures to their students via BitTorrent.

However, the chances that that is solely what is shared is virtually zero.

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From the article...

"... a system developed by Rightscorp that "identifies actual infringements and the perpetrators of these infringements (by IP address, port number, time, and date)*."

The system monitors BitTorrent and, according to the music industry, "has the capability to acquire entire files from the infringing host computers."..."

So...Rightscorp run up a BT client and note down the IP addresses...

* My emphasis because as we all know here, no one ever uses say a VPN or their neighbours insecure WiFi or spoofs IP addresses...no siree! IP addresses are ALL you need for proof positive.

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Childcatcher

Re: From the article...

The insinuation here is that students on the Grande networks within campus are sharing between each other, so the IP address is probably the nefarious students. Probably. Not, as you say, proof positive :)

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Anonymous Coward

ip-echelon.com are idiots

As someone that runs a Tor exit, I get regular missives from ip-echelon.com, telling me that I need to deal with copyright violating users.

As a result, I have an SMTP-time block rule telling them to sod off -- they never reply to mails, despite claiming to have a ticketing system.

I seriously doubt that anyone has ever succeeded in sharing a movie (their repeated claim) via my 5Mbit/s Tor exit, so would agree that there is no proper effort to establish infringement by these dodgy lawyers.

What is presumably actually going on is that the client is advertising an allegedly infringing file via Tor, but the infringement (if there is any) is going on via a non-Tor transport. That being the case, their claim of the infringement as being related to my Tor exit is drivel.

They just assume that if a client is advertising a file, it must a) have a copy of the file, and b) be willing to share it, c) have enough bandwidth to actually share it, and d) have at some point done so.

They might as well assume that all Internet users are infringing copyright.

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Trollface

They might as well assume that all Internet users are infringing copyright.

You mean they don't?

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Anonymous Coward

I'm infringing right now

And I'm loving it.

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Re: They might as well assume that all Internet users are infringing copyright.

Depends on whether you need intent to violate copyright. Technically if you're visiting sites where they've used images without the permission of the copyright holder, your system is going to download them without the owner's permission to store it in cache and so potentially could be considered copyright infringement

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Re: They might as well assume that all Internet users are infringing copyright.

<quote>... your system is going to download them without the owner's permission to store it in cache and so potentially could be considered copyright infringement.</quote>

A very good reason to clear the cache on exit.

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Infringing files

I'm actually considering setting up a group of torrents named after this weeks top 40, is there still such a thing?, selling records containing a sound track of me reading a poem I wrote and wait for the illegal requests to block me come into my ISP.

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Re: Infringing files

Copyright no... trademark infringement instead.. yes.

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Re: Infringing files

I'm sure that I read about a researcher writing a BT client that claims to have popular files (but only a few blocks in the middle IIRC), and if anyone asks for those blocks, they hand out a block of NULs (or some such).

Inevitably, they got a load of take-down notices claiming infringement, despite there having been no (or almost no) attempts to grab the supposedly available blocks.

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Pint

Re: Infringing files

Sgt tried, "...trademark infringement instead.. >yes<."

You spelled "no" incorrectly.

In general, the Titles of songs (or books, movies, etc.) cannot be copyrighted nor trademarked. I believe that the reason(s) for this is inherently obvious.

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Re: Infringing files

" setting up a group of torrents named after this weeks top 40, is there still such a thing?, selling records containing a sound track of me reading a poem I wrote "

This has been done, the results of such trolling are relatively funny and the music cartels haven't modified their tactics in response.

It's worth noting that in order to _prove_ that copyright materials are being circulated in a swarm, the accusers must actually participate in them rather than just monitor the advertisments and that means uploading as well as downloading - being employed by the cartels means they're authorised to do so, which starts raising questions along the lines of "Prenda Law?"

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Re: Infringing files

"Copyright no... trademark infringement instead.. yes."

No, I revived a notice for a 1.5k text file that happened to have a name close to a Madonna song. It's all bots and no one looks at the output.

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Sympathy for the Devi... Recording Industry

"The dinosaurs will slowly die

And I do believe no one will cry

I'm just fucking glad I'm gonna be

There to watch the fall"

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Personally, I love how Grande dissected Rightscorp's tool

And clearly demonstrated that Rightscorp are nothing but a bunch of tools in the first place.

Their tool doesn't do a single thing it purports to do.

And of course, the music industry loves it, because they don't have a clue either.

Hoping for and looking forward to a Grande win.

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Anonymous Coward

Why do they ignore the German study that shows pirates tend to have much larger paid for media collections than non-pirates?

I pirated two albums this week and will be buying the physical copies of one this weekend since it is worth paying for. The other, not so much... Without pirating them the music industry would have made zero sales since i wouldn't know that these albums were any good.

No piracy = no music sales from me since i don't own a radio

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Because the law firms have persuaded them that the study is wrong so that they can continue to charge them for the service of sending notices. Just look how much Prenda Law was making with this kind of setup

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Pint

AC noted, "...since I don't own a radio."

Gasp...

The average (of you and I) number of radios owned then is still getting close to 100.

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No piracy = no music sales from me since i don't own a radio

Goodness. If I had to rely on the radio to inspire my music purchases then all I'd be ordering is AutoTuned crap.

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Anonymous Coward

RE: Bongo

I don't watch much TV, so there's very little opportunity to hear new music generally, except Youtube...but then you generally look for what you think you'll like or hear it randomly.

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FAIL

Arrogance

The music industry have brought this on themselves. They should have thought about it 20 years ago when the demand first materialised. Instead they tried to stifle it, and have failed at every step of the way since, all the time further alienating the listeners. Had they worked out a system for on-line sales at a reasonable price they would have annihilated the organised infringers, as (contrary to their statements) the majority of listeners like to stay within the law.

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Re: Arrogance

Yes. Within reason a consumer will take the easy route to getting what they want. For a long time it's been easier to download tracks illegally rather than legally. The price gouging of consumers for the download editions of music really doesn't help either and neither do all the various reports about how the artist receives almost bugger all from the purchase and the record companies get the largest amount. At least days many more artists have their own record company which does help alleviate this, but only for them.

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Re: Arrogance

Piracy is simple market economics.

To use some Pseudocode:

If $price > $PerceivedValue then $piracy++

If $price <= $PerceivedValue then $piracy--

If they want to reduce piracy, make the price match, or be less than Perceived Value.

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Re: Arrogance

But how do they do that when it's hard to beat FREE?

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