This week saw a new series of anti-piracy measures implemented by multiple major Internet service providers, or ISPs, all across the United States. Backed by the MPAA and RIAA, the new procedures see users warned any time that their Internet provider gets word of copyright infringement taking place on an account. As users continue to commit copyright infringement and receive more “strikes”, the consequences can become more severe.
It’s been reported that Verizon will slow down users’ connections to almost dial-up speeds for several days, while TWC will temporarily block Internet access; AT&T will reportedly cut off access to popular websites. Comcast looks to be taking a slightly different tack, where the company will hijack users’ browsers, replacing any website that customers try to visit with a page about copyright infringement and the notices that the customer has received.
The above image shows off the sort of message users will get after just one strike, with the pop-up appearing in their web browsers.
Similarly, once five or six strikes are reached, Comcast will completely shut down web browsing on the user’s specific connection. The company says that the technology has been successfully implemented for the last several years, being used to notify customers of infected machines spewing malware and spam back onto the Internet. Where before you could regain access by taking care of the infection, this new system will require a trip to the principal’s office.
Comcast has said that customers who continuously violate copyright under the new setup will be required to chat with one of the company’s “Customer Security Assurance” professionals. What they’ll have to do to regain their connection is still unknown, though Comcast (and to a lesser extent, the other four ISPs currently involved) has sworn that outright termination would never be one of the potential punishments under the new system.