The new anti-piracy system about to happen has snuck by a lot of people. This system will hit customers of Comcast, Time Warner, AT&T, and Cablevision Monday – that’s tomorrow.
Why is this a big deal? Well, your Internet speeds could start to slow down drastically. Why? If you are suspected of acting against anti-piracy laws, and are with one of the providers listed above, your punishment might be an Internet connection that slows to a crawl.
How will these providers determine who is and who isn’t a pirate? Who passed this law? How can this happen? What should you do? All of these questions will be answered, and what is already known is listed below.
Make sure to follow the anti-piracy laws that are currently in place, or you just may find yourself paying for a fast connection that can be legally slowed down to a snail’s pace. Here are the details that you really need to know if you live in the United States.
The Copyright Alert System
You’ll soon be hearing a lot about the CAS – or the Copyright Alert System. Here’s how the system works. Copyright owners will be monitoring the activity of the five major Internet providers listed above. When someone uses a content sharing website (like Pirate’s Bay), an ISP address will be identified. The Internet provider in question will then send a warning to any customer who is presumed to be sharing content illegally. If that first warning doesn’t work, two things will happen.
The first is an additional warning that comes in the form of a contract. Users must sign the contract stating that they understand what illegal sharing is. Further, customers must acknowledge receipt of the first warning letters – an “educational” video must also be watched and understood.
If that warning doesn’t work, Internet speeds might be reduced – regardless of the price that a customer might be paying for high-speed access. Users cannot be put in jail or arrested or fined at this juncture, but I’m guessing that measure isn’t too far off.
Protesting A Complaint
Let’s say that you aren’t downloading music or other media illegally, and you have no idea why your Internet provider is slowing down your network. You can file an independent complaint with the CAS.
The CAS claims that they will not share your personal information (and so does your Internet service provider). However, battling the CAS and an Internet service provider and trying to prove that you’ve done nothing wrong seems a bit backwards. After all, citizens of the United States are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, right?
In any case, the new CAS measures go into effect tomorrow. So, if you currently share files illegally whether intentional or not, and are contracted with one of the service providers listed above, be ready for a few warnings and some slower speeds. Again, it doesn’t matter how much you are paying for high speeds, if you are deemed an offender your Internet connection will slow down.
However, the CAS promises that speeds will be reinstated as soon as an offender has learned his lesson. Needless to say, it will be interesting to see how Internet users react to the new CAS laws – especially since most people have no idea that these new regulations are about to happen.