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Pirates get six strikes

Entertainment Content Protection Summit 2012

Digital pirates trying to sail off with entertainment-content booty will soon be sunk — at least, if the Center for Copyright Information has anything to say about it.

The organization, with the participation of five Internet service providers — AT&T, Cablevision Systems, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Verizon — and the MPAA, the RIAA and the Obama administration has come up with an alert system they hope will make people think twice about putting their cyber mitts on copyrighted content.

Violators will face a six-strike system in which they are initially given education about illegally accessing copyrighted materials, then must acknowledge that they’ve illegally accessed copyrighted content and, finally, would have to go through mitigation with the American Arbitration Assn.

For those who remember the hefty judgments levied against those who illegally shared music files, this system might not seem all that forceful. Defendants in those cases regularly left the courtroom owing the RIAA sums over $100,000, though these judgments were frequently reduced later to just a few thousand.

“We’re really hoping that those days are over and that we can use this initiative to meet people where they are,” says Jill Lesser, executive director of the Center for Copyright Information. “There’s a whole generation that grew up assuming music was free, so we think educating people about copyright will help change behavior.”

Initially the alerts were supposed to be working by the end of 2012 but complications related to superstorm Sandy slowed things. Lesser says the system will be up and running soon, however.

Torrentfreak also reported that Verizon and Time Warner Cable announced in a panel discussion hosted by the New York Chapter of the Internet Society they would notify users by email or pop-ups that they’d illegally accessed copyrighted content. Verizon said they would also go as far as slowing the download speeds of repeat offenders. Still, users would not have their accounts canceled.

Walt Disney Studios, Paramount, Sony Pictures, Fox, Universal and Warner Bros. are all participating in the initiative, along with Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment and EMI Music North America.

HIGHLIGHTS

9:20 a.m. Going After the Money: Converting Potential Customers. Richard Atkinson , corporate director, worldwide anti-piracy, Adobe.

10 a.m Keynote: A Conversation with former Sen. Chris Dodd , chairman and CEO, MPAA

11 a.m. Exclusive Content Protection 2012 Research from Carnegie Mellon. Michael Smith , professor of information technology and marketing, Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz College and Tepper School of Business.

12:15 p.m. Keynote: National Security and the Unsettled Internet. James Cartwrigh t, Harold Brown chair in defense policy studies, Center for Strategic and Intl. Studies

2 p.m. Panel: Technology Strategies for Protecting Content and Growing the Home Entertainment Business Speakers: Jackie Hayes , senior VP & deputy general counsel, legal and business affairs, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment; Bill Mandel , VP, technology & digital platforms, Universal Pictures; Mitch Singer , chief digital strategy officer, Sony Pictures Entertainment. Moderator: Brad Hunt , president, Digital Media Directions

4 p.m. Panel: Deloitte Presentation of State of Media Democracy and Follow-on Survey: Devices, Consumption, and the Digital Landscape 2012. Speakers: Deloitte’s John Sprouse , director, technology, Media and Telecommunications; Peter Papaioannou , senior manager, media & entertainment; David Melnick , security, privacy and data protection principal; Hanish Patel , senior manager.

5 p.m. Protecting Your Company’s Most Valuable Asset – You! Greg Ferency , director, Intl. Tactical Officers Training Assn.; Shelley Klingerman, president, Stiletto Agency

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