back to article Japanese ISPs agree three strikes-style anti-piracy regime

Japanese ISPs have agreed to disconnect filesharers who persistently use popular peer to peer program WinNY to pirate music, films, and software. WinNY is based on WinMX, and has been reckoned to be the most widely-used filesharing application in Japan. Now under pressure from government and rights holders, the country's four …


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  1. Jonathan


    First, the usual - piracy is bad and I dont agree with it.

    But, its funny that the corporate powers are pushing for stricter consequences, when, given how they are fond of illegal actions, we should be the ones pushing for harsher consequences for corporate crime. These guys lie, cheat and extort, and get measy million dollar fines - they need prison sentences and billion dollar fines before they realize it goes both ways.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That'll be WinNY done for then

    Any bets on what the new protocol being used in Japan will be?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    About time, now maybe they'll move off winny and onto perfect dark.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Haw, haw!

    "Daily Yomiuri Online reports that rights holders will alert ISPs when they detect their customers' IP addresses participating in copyright-infringing WinNY networks."

    I can see the board meetings now - next step will be rights holders making a list of every IP address connected with anything they remotely disagree with, and firing off three letters in short succession to the connected ISPs.

    Nothing like having people with a vested interest, no oversight, a history of incorrectness, and dubious morals in complete and total control of who has internet connections in an entire country!

  5. Anonymous Coward


    Blit tollents?

    By the way, can't Lord Triesman sue the Japanese for stealing his intelectual property?

    Mines the one with the Sushi.

  6. Nix

    Illegal Surveillance to End Crime Everywhere

    What a super idea; lets stop illegal piracy by using surveillance and wiretapping. Nevermind the fact that it's a crime to monitor someone's internet connection or attempt to connect to their computer uninvited, the important thing is that through vicious corporate sponsored cyber-vigilantism we can work together to maintain artificially high media pricing and industry wide oligopolies.

    Why don't we just cut out the middle-man and ask China to run our ISPs, that way we can forget about disconnecting users and just go straight to savage baton-beatings.

  7. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Illegal Surveillance to End Crime Everywhere


    This is not wiretapping. By joining a public filesharing network (at least vanilla BitTorrent and WinNY) you expose your IP address to all other members of that network, including rights holder enforcement reps.

    - Chris

  8. Jonathan

    @Chris Williams

    Perhaps so, but the network technology itself is not illegal - the content is.

    I can use BitTorrent to download game demos and free software, just as others can use it for piracy. And World of Warcraft uses torrents for patches.

    I'm aware that although torrents can be legally used, in reality that probably only happens 1% of the time. The point is, you cant assume that everyone who uses torrents is a pirate - unless the RIAA/MPAA have found some way of convicting people as pirates just because they have the means to do so. They would need to intercept your packets to discover what content you are after or trying to share - which might qualify as illegal interception.

    Oh no - I have a DVD writer at home, I better turn myself in before the record industry discovers that I can use it for piracy.

  9. Mectron

    This is a non sense

    The RIAA/MPAA (and international crime partners) have NO LEGAL RIGHTS to have someone's internet connection cut without a COURT ORDER and a proof (a screen capture or a log file IS NO PROOF as it can be easly manipulated and with it's long crminal record the MPAARIAA cannot be thrusted).

    nows let's hope that the first fews peoples who will have been illegally cut from the net will sue the ISP for doing the bidding of the Digital Mafia (MPAA./RIAA).

    Imagine a world where all you have to do is choosing someone at random and acuse that personne of a crime(whitout any proof) to sent him to jail? This is excacly what the most dangerous crminal gangs in the world today (MPAA/RIAA) wants.

  10. JohnA

    IP spoofing

    I can't wait until some bright spark spoofs the ip addresses of the rights holders and the isp's boards of directors.

  11. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: @Chris Williams


    They do not have to intercept packets, or assume that everyone who uses BitTorrent is a pirate. If your IP address is part of an infringing BitTorrent swarm, it is easy to detect publicly. What's changing is that if the ISPs are cooperating, the rights holder need only report your IP address to them and they will send the warning. There's a bullet point explanation here:

    No packet inspection required - there is no court involvement. You'll find that ISP terms and conditions forbid copyright infringement - it's just that until recently there was no prospect of it being enforced.

    - Chris

  12. Tony Barnes

    What happens when you're "struck out"

    So 3 strikes down, you've lost your connection, what then? Do you have to pay for the whole contract? Can you sign up with another ISP?

    Depending on the answer to those questions, there may be the issue of you getting thrown off your connection, paying for the privilege, and then no-longer able to go online, potentially from a mistake that the RIAA don't have to justify???

    That's alarming IMO

  13. Leslie Greenhalgh

    IP Address Can't be relied upon

    "If your IP address is part of an infringing BitTorrent swarm, it is easy to detect publicly. What's changing is that if the ISPs are cooperating, the rights holder need only report your IP address to them and they will send the warning. There's a bullet point explanation here:"

    Surely the system on which the swarm is hosted need only to insert a few random yet sensible IP addresses into the swarm for this method to be invalidated?

  14. yeah, right.

    @ JohnA

    You can do that? I thought this inter-tube thingy was really secure and you could always tell who did what and with whom. My aunt's hairdresser's 2nd cousin twice removed (but he came back) says that it's all really secure and stuff.

    Folks - this article is about them doing this in Japan. Not the USA. So would those crying out about court orders and American laws and shit like that kindly note that no, US law does not apply in Japan or anywhere else. Much as Americans would like their laws to apply everywhere, except when it's convenient for them not to be.

    Japan is not completely a "rule of law" country. It's more of a "rule of convenience for those in power" type of country. It's amazing what corporations, the police, and their governments get away with on the "rights" front. Mainly, it seems, due to a under-informed population and a well trained (from pre-school on up) habit of conforming and obeying authority.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "it's just that until recently there was no prospect of it being enforced."

    Because when you run a business that barely makes any money (so little money you have to sell off customer data to spyware firms) disconnecting paying customers without proof or appeal is always a winner for your business... Especially after some wrongly disconnected customers get angry and sue you for disconnecting them.

    Even if its successful, this will spell bad news for the ISP's. Without file sharing why would I want that high bandwidth line again?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @That'll be WinNY done for then

    Perfect Dark -

    Yeah yeah wiki - but English language info on perfect dark is sketchy even though the guy that makes it recently released an English language version.

  17. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: @Chris

    Yep, absolutely it's bad news for ISPs. The threatened alternative - legislation - is worse, however.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    as an aside

    Almost no one in Japan uses WiNny anymore - they mostly use Share.

  19. Jamie


    If a company (MPAA, RIAA, or others) control the knowledge (internet) they will control the world.

    What was once thought of as science fiction is slowly becoming science fact.

    Long live Guy Fawkes.

  20. Nix

    @Chris Williams

    Participating in a public network does not constitute an invitation to connect to my computer or inspect/intercept traffic originating or destined for it.

    To put it in context: I don't have to lock my front door for you to be guilty of tresspassing if I catch you snooping around inside my home.

  21. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: @Chris Williams

    They're not connecting to your computer, or "looking inside" it. They are connecting to a BitTorrent swarm that you are participating in.

    Your analogy needs tweaking: in the context of a public filesharing network nobody needs to snoop in your house. All the enforcers do is spot you in the street and note it down.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    In regards to a bittorrent tracker all one needs to do is connect to the torrent tracker of interest and list every IP Address as they're all sharing that file (open your torrent tool and select "hosts" and you will see everyone else in your swarm no need to do anything bad). Then go to the ISP's and say "hai gais we got dis list of sharers, please be whoopin them now."

    It's a bit like back in the good old days getting the membership lists for Shin Fein(re Irish Republicans), or Union members (re socialists). Going down to the social or such like.

    Now with something like perfect dark...

  23. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  24. Nix

    @Chris Williams

    That makes absolutely no sense though; You're saying that my being part of a tracker list constitutes evidence of copyright infringement. If Japanese ISPs, the RIAA or any other group decides to connect to that same tracker (ostensibly to look for infringers), would not they then too, be guilty by that same logic?

    If anyone can just log into a torrent tracker and call the local Police to report a dozen or so local 'infringers' while themselves maintaining total impunity, how can you even be sure those same people you're turning in aren't themselves doing the same thing?

  25. Joe Cooper

    Also also

    The legal usage of torrents usually amounts to a company (like Blizzard) attempting to increase their profits by dumping their server demand onto (paying) customers.

    Obviously if torrents were a problem for customers they would simply switch to something else so for WoW players it's really not a worry. The only real benefactor is Blizzard's bottom line.

    So the legal-use defence basically amounts to saying that Torrents are good or should be protected because it makes a given corporation (like Blizzard) more profitable.

    Since the amount of profits gained by legal P2P doesn't hold a candle to profits lost, going with that defence is, to put it lightly, choosing the wrong battle.

    Here's a clue: If ya'll are gonna rant about evil corporations, don't push for P2P by saying "it makes corporations more profitable" as it's primary merit.

  26. heystoopid
    Paris Hilton


    Sadly for every action there is a reaction !

    This not so bright decision will now effectively accelerate the development of an end to end fully encrypted data stream variation of file sharing masking sending and receiving IP addresses and also create an alternate Dark Net user groups very difficult to penetrate !

    Stupid is , stupid does

  27. Tim Bates

    And those who "pirate" then buy?

    I download TV shows, movies, etc to see if they are any good. If I enjoy it, I (or someone in my family) buy it. If not, it gets deleted.

    Same with the odd game I download (usually when the demo is either hopelessly broken or crippled, or doesn't exist).

    So, who's losing there? Well, I'm sure the studio or distributor that first shows any sign of making threats. I know I'd stop buying anything from a company that threatened to sue or disconnect me.

  28. michael

    better anaolgy for what they are doing

    you go to a shady place and say

    "hello I am x and I am looking for y" where y is illagle

    some pepol in the room say "hello x here is some y"

    you stay there

    later a new person walks into the room says "hello I am z and I am looking for some y" you chime in with over pepol saying "hello z here is some y"

    then a perosn in the corner who has not said anything takes down your names and pictures and sends them to the police who arrest you later

  29. Anonymous Coward

    Robin Hood

    "" Japan is not completely a "rule of law" country. It's more of a "rule of convenience for those in power" type of country. It's amazing what corporations, the police, and their governments get away with on the "rights" front""

    i thought thats how all Western "Democracies" worked.

    one rule for the rich and powerful, another for the citizen?

    as for detectign right from wrong, surely all an ISP has to do is target the top 5-10% of traffic users on their network, i suspect that this will have a stong correlation to heaver torrents/file sharing abusers?

    admittedly there are those "torrent snipers" (or is that leachers)who will just come on grab one or two files, films or apps and then dissapear into the darkness!? but without rising up the bandwidth league table?

    a freind of mine recalls the pre web days of peer2peer.

    youd meet Nigel (like in the ads- how he laughed) down the pub he would have a cd with all the latest apps and gamez, prehacked and ready to run! not only de this firend no have to wait days or weks for it to down load, it would be the right version, complete with extras and work!

    and yes, heaven forbid..... someway down the line after "evaluating" the software he would often buy said "Official" products to encorage fuirther prodcution and investment

  30. Sulehir

    An alternative

    Surely everyone could just use onion routing like TOR, bam suddenly my IP says I'm living in Germany or wherever else i want. I give this ruling about 2 weeks if it comes into effect at all.

  31. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  32. paul bell

    we can still do something about this

    if you've really had enough of this, the means to put a stop to it are at hand!

    simple so without music and videos for a few months - just stop buying music & video cd/dvd for six months, i mean really stop buying them. i'm sure that once they loose all their revenue they'll find a better way to market the stuff and get off the backs of filesharers.

    the same technique will probably work with airport security hassles - no chance for the people to make the government stop some of the insane security nonsense at airports but if everyone made a concentrated effort to avoid flying the airlines would pressure the feds to back off - three months of greatly reduced revenue should do it!

  33. Mark
    IT Angle

    @Chris Williams

    "They're not connecting to your computer, or "looking inside" it. They are connecting to a BitTorrent swarm that you are participating in."

    Can we have some consistency here, please?

    When someone attaches to an unsecured wifi, this is considered illegal access. Even though

    a) not illegal

    b) not access

    at least according to your view of it:

    a) has to be access to be illegal

    b) they aren't looking at your computer, they're just connecting to a network you're participating in

    For copipresse and similar "news" aggregators, Google's caching of "their" content is illegal because they want to be asked SPECIFICALLY if Google can access it.

    Yes, the law is fooked up. But talking out of both sides of their mouth isn't helping win any converts to the idea "aw, the poor little mites are being attacked".

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