Piracy warning letters deal close to completion, lacks penalty for infringing
Internet service providers (ISPs) in the United Kingdom are close to an agreement with parts of the entertainment industry, which will attempt to fight piracy in the country. The Voluntary Copyright Alert Program (Vcap), stemming from the Digital Economy Act of 2010, will see BT, Talk Talk, Virgin Media, and Sky sending warning letters to customers identified as possible infringers, though it appears that, unlike the Six Strikes system used by the Center for Copyright Infromation in the US, the scheme may not penalize infringers at all.
UK demands Pirate Bay be screened
The UK's High Court decided in favor of ordering The Pirate Bay blockeD on Monday. Internet providers in the country must prevent their users from getting usual access to the site. The measure followed a November call from the music industry's Britsh Phonographic Industry to voluntarily block the site.
UK shows online music growing fast
The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) published data showing the rapid rise of digital music on Monday while simultaneously making its familiar complaints about the perceived effect of piracy. Downloads from iTunes and similar stores grew a fast 24 percent in 2011 over 2010 to 26.6 million. As in past years, the tally wasn't yet fast enough overcome the decline of the CD market, which dropped 13 percent to 86.2 million and led to an ultimate six percent drop in album sales overall versus last year.
RIAA staff cuts deepen
The recent budget cuts that have the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) cutting its staff are more pronounced than initially expected, says a Friday Hypebot report. Due to an increased number of people purchasing digital songs online, the RIAA's role of suing individuals for illegal file sharing is reduced, with the music labels that fund the organization cutting the budget significantly.
MP3 Compatible logo
A new logo meant to promote legal music download sites and emphasize the fact the files contained on the sites can be played on any digital audio player has been backed by seven of Britain's largest music download sites, according to a Tuesday BBC report. Designed by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), the logo will mean customers can play the purchased files on PCs, Macs and portable music players. The logo will appear on online music stores from HMV, Woolworths, 7digital, Digitalstores, Play.com, Tescodigital and Tunertribe. Also, BPI, the British record industry's trade association is backing the idea, adding that the logo means artists are being paid for their work.
Virgin Piracy Filter Trial
Virgin Media today said it will be the first Internet provider to experiment with actively combat pirated content distributed across its network. The UK broadband firm has agreed to a test project that will scan for illegal copies of music and other media across the service. The monitoring will follow a three-strike rule that will see users receive a letter for a first violation; a second violation will result in a temporary suspension of Internet access, while a third will force the customer to cancel their service altogether.