3 Count: Hear Me Now?

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1: Verizon Tests Sending RIAA Copyright Notices

First off today, Verizon, the United States’ second largest phone provider, has, according to sources, begun working with the RIAA to send out infringement notices to users who are accused of illegally sharing files. The notices, which will likely be similar to ones already passed on by AT&T and Cox, are sent by the record labels to the provider and are passed on by the company, in order to keep the customer information private.

This follows a similar deal from Disney in 2005 but, in that case, it was an exchange where Comcast received the rights to stream some 12 of Disney’s channels over its broadband network.

There is no word, as of yet, as to how many notices the RIAA plans to send and how, or if, it will follow up with those who do not comply with their notices. The test, however, began yesterday and marks a significant turn for Verizon, who had been known as one of the least cooperative ISPs in the RIAAs campaign to recruit their help in fighting piracy.

2: Pre-Release Music Piracy: Further Arrests, Exec Loses Job

Next up today, Torrentfreak has an update on the DV8 case. DV8 was a famous “scene” group of music pirates who were known for obtaining albums before they had been released and leaking them to the larger file sharing networks. Earlier this year, they were the subject of a police investigation and many of its members, including its alleged leader, were arrested.

The leader kept having his hearing pushed back, reportedly because investigators needed more time to build a case. He, however, has now been formally charged with “defrauding the music industry” though a related conspiracy charge appears to have been dropped.

Also, two more alleged members of the group have been arrested, including a writer at a music publication and, perhaps most surprisingly, an executive at a music company. Neither has been charged yet but the writer had his home raided some two weeks ago and the executive has, reportedly, been let go from his job.

All in all, it is just another chapter in the ongoing saga that is the DV8 piracy group.

3: Illegal Movie Download Forces Shutdown of Free Wi-Fi

Finally today, Coshocton County in Ohia has disconnect part of its municipal wifi after accusations that it was used to illegally download a movie. The county, as part of its larger wifi efforts, had provided free wifi on the block surrounding the county courthouse. However, after being notified by Sony pictures that someone had used the connection to download a movie, the county disconnected the service.

“It’s unfortunate that one person ruins it for those who use the service legitimately,” said Commissioner Gary Fisher.

The country had said that it had considered installing filtering technology to block illegal sites and certain services, but simply found the price tag, an estimated $2,000 for the equipment plus a $900 annual fee too much for the cash-strapped government.


That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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