ISPs testing technology to intercept illegal music downloads

By Matthew
Aug 21, 2009
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  1. It wasn't long ago that Kevin Bermeister was in trouble with the law, coming out of pocket with $150 million for his involvement with the infamous peer-to-peer file sharing program, Kazaa. Internet brigands used the software to pirate music and other media before its demise in 2006. Kazaa has since risen from its grave with a paid structure and Bermeister too has turned over a new leaf, recently introducing a technology to prevent the theft of music online.

    Read the whole story
  2. KG363

    KG363 TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 524   +9

    This is so awful. If the government searches my house, I have nothing to hide, but that doesn't mean I would let them. Its a matter of principle to give people privacy. And many who download, wouldn't buy the song/game/movie if they couldn't DL it.
  3. To be honest, this seems like the first idea to me that may actually be succesfull. If there is anything that is important to consumers, it's time.

    Yeah, I think this may actually work.
  4. I'm no expert, but wouldn't this become easy to circumvent?

    As I believe most music is in the mp3 format.

    Can one not just pack it say winrar or whatever...

    Simplistic i know, but you get my point
  5. M1r

    M1r Newcomer, in training Posts: 42

    x2 the comment above. They would only target formats in which they are sure to contain music [e.g MP3/WMA/AAC]. Anyone can easily archive the music into a rar file then upload it. In my opinion, the idea has lots of holes...easy to overcome.
  6. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 6,050   +84 Staff Member

    @Guest: I can't comment on how difficult it would be to work around the technology, but the idea here is that by making the package seem convenient, people won't want to work around it. The original article goes on to add that, that Bermeister doesn't believe it's so much the "free factor" that draws people into stealing music - but the fact that it's so easy.
    Whether or not that's true is beyond me, but I'd wager that most people are using Limewire for their music because it doesn't impact their pocket - not because they don't want to input their credit card information into iTunes. In such a case, this model would either fall or be tweaked so it was even more intrusive.
  7. NunjaBusiness

    NunjaBusiness Newcomer, in training Posts: 49

    This idea is poised for spectacular failure.
    First off, serious downloaders are downloading archives (try blocking that)
    and second, when people start getting surprise $500 charges from their ISPs for songs they downloaded, the courts will be full very quickly.
  8. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 6,050   +84 Staff Member

    Maybe at first, but I believe the idea is to package it as a set subscription fee when they go wide spectrum with it. Accumulated fees probably wouldn't be an issue at that point.
  9. This looks like tons of lawsuits to me. My wife buys LPs. cassettes, and tapes and converts them to digital format. She painstakingly edits out the clicks, pops, hum, and other distractions she thinks she finds in the music (sigh). We now buy multiple copies of albums (and incidentally CDs) so she can share the music with my daughter in another state. We, literally, have 4 or 5 legal copies of the same songs.

    I truly look forward to receiving a rerouted notice about "copyrighted" music. I think I will be able to walk the 20 miles to Federal court (without touching the ground) on the backs of the lawyers wanting in on the class action suit and violation of privacy law. With any luck at all, we could even send the interceptors to Federal prison for interstate violations. Pity we can only get the music industry surrogates.

    js
  10. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,392   +16

    While I can see this working in Australia as they have officials censoring the internet to there standards (or trying). I am a bit skeptical to how this would work in the US. This seems to be a huge privacy concern for one, and as many have pointed out with the vague information they've given this seems rather easy to circumvent as well. While I understand Kevins point that easy access is a motivator in downloading that isn't the only reason.
  11. tengeta

    tengeta TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 632

    I tell you what, next time that thug walks into the convenience store to rob it, why not just put a hand on his gun and offer him a more civil activity to do instead?
    Then enjoy as you get shot in the face.
    This won't literally backfire like that, but it will be damn close. This might make 30% of the people want to pay, but it likely made the other 70% so offended that they will stop at nothing to steal it after that.
     
  12. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,282   +24

    Meh. This will hardly stop anything.

    The best hackers/crackers do not work for ISPs or the RIAA\MPAA. There is always a way around these things, and it will be found sooner rather than later.
  13. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,332   +381

    "This might make 30% of the people want to pay, but it likely made the other 70% so offended that they will stop at nothing to steal it after that."
    And that's the inherent problem with online theft regardless of music, games or movies. The feeling of "entitlement" that these abusers show. All you have to do is look at the laundry-list of utterly lame explanations they offer, i.e."the song sucks anyway," " I would have never bought it," "the artist makes plenty of money without my one download," yadda, yadda, yadda. Just 100% "it's all about me" entitlement attitude.
    Not sure if this packet sniffer software will fly here in the U.S. as it has in Australia, but I think electronic surveillance is just one type of mechanism to prevent theft. Somehow, the prevailing attitude of entitlement needs to be addressed also. Good luck coming up with that project....
  14. Brewskie

    Brewskie Newcomer, in training Posts: 17

    I upload some of my stuff to my own web site. For my own personal backup. If my ISP tried this on me I would have them in front of a judge ...they would not win.
  15. Darkshadoe

    Darkshadoe TechSpot Maniac Posts: 529   +97

    No software is foolproof. I can't wait to start reading the about the lawsuits where someone tried downloading some free software program (like Open Office or the such) and they get charged by their ISP because this program mistakes it for an illegal music download.
    ISPs will love this because it gives them another reason to add more hidden charges to your internet bill. You'll get hit with the price of the song, some kind of delivery charge and taxes. A $.99 song will end up being $3-4 dollars by the time the your ISP gets done with you.
    I have the best music delivery system in the world. I get all the music I want and I'm not breaking any laws. It's called...a radio
  16. Does this mean I would be best downloading my tracks around a mates house? or say on a relatives internet connection? let them have the bill lol or does it now work like that?
  17. Darkshadoe

    Darkshadoe TechSpot Maniac Posts: 529   +97

    I would imagine you would definately be able to play "screw your neighbor" with this technology. Good point.
  18. JDoors

    JDoors Newcomer, in training Posts: 62

    Looks like it satisfies the needs of nearly one third of Kazaa's customers, the other two-thirds can do what they wish (continue to look for access to stolen property, for example -- though some are probably just not able to, or comfortable with, paying for online music). If you compare this 30% "click-through" rate with other paid content online, it's quite a success.
    If by using the site you "agree" to have your downloads scanned, I don't see a legal problem with it. My downloads (and e-mail) are ALREADY scanned (for malware) and intercepted when there's a problem, then I'm given a choice as to what to do about it. If THAT were a pay-as-you-go option (free malware scan, but pay-per-resolution) I dont' think there'd be a problem with that either (business opportunity guys!).
  19. As a musician for 32 years, I say to those who download my music without paying for it: You belong in jail.
  20. So what happens when i download an 80s giga pack off of my favorite tracker? Theres around 5000 songs on there, At 4 dollars a pop thats 20,0000 dollars! I dont have that kind of money lying around! Send me to jail. Music companies get no money, jail system gets a new happy to learn new tricks inmate, 3 squares and no rent in a low security "facility". Tax payer gets the bill.

    What a lot of nonsense!! If i had a job where i was continually robbed, id change my job. People will still make music and realease it on to the net because they love the music and not the money as most of todays greedy "Manufactured bands" do,

    I hope they send out a 200 dollar bill to everyone as soon as this software is realeased, And watch the shizzle hit the fan! Fat cat muso bastards think they can control when we have a **** these days...
  21. I used to be a big prince fan, Until he took one of his own fans to court for sharing a video of him at a concert ( which she attended ) on his own fan site..

    Now i will never buy anything prince related ever again.

    Get over yourselves entertainment industry please. If your job sucks so bad and people treat you so badly get a diffrent one!
  22. JudaZ

    JudaZ TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 294

    ...*lol* yeah good luck with that ISP who dares to try . It does not take time to cirumvent .. I can do that right now .. Encrypt the traffic .. .the problem solved. If the ISP what to use massive computer power to decrypt highly incrypted traffic instead of delivering high speed and preformance to their custokmers..the failure will be theirs .
    After all, you have to decrypt ALL traffic to be able to find out if I'm sending mp3's
    .. then you have to dechipher if its an "illegal" music file or not.
    But before you even do that, you will have to get the courts approval to decrypt information that you maybe can determain is torrent traffic because of the nature of the traffic..but you cant be sure the client is not just downloading drivers from Asus site, the latest Linux distro of choice .. or corpoprate secrets that you have no leagal right what so ever to even think about decrypting.
    ...good night and good luck .... you have no chance in hell of doing this....so give it up..just give it up.
  23. JudaZ

    JudaZ TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 294

    besides Bermeister and Kazaa couldnt even stop 1000's apon 1000's of vierus files posing as music in thoer system....what do they know about filtering traffic?
  24. Put out decent music and we'll be happy to pay for it. People download shared music because "free" is what it's worth.
  25. I can buy 100 blank cds for a tenner.
    I can get free studio quality recording software.
    I could knock a studio quality album together in an hour on my own.
    I can distribute it, And advertise it for free.

    Why the hell would i pay 12 pounds for an album when its completely obvious you are ripping me off...
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