European Union: It's Okay to Cut Off Pirates' Internet, After All



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This would give ISP an unbelievable amount of power... they can shut down your friends internet just because they "thought" he was a pirate. this will probably allow ISP's to control whoever they want on the network.

Piracy is an Unstoppable Force



If my son is pirating software without my knowledge (hypothetically - he's only 2), and he gets cut off for a year, does that mean that I can't have internet in my home any more?

- Jox





If this means that PC game pirating starts to end, then we may see a revival in PC gaming. In all honesty, I hope everyone adopts this policy, like the USA, so I no longer have to deal with awful ports for some of my games. While there are issues to this, like whats presented below, something has to be done to end piracy. It's just an awful, selfish thing to do.



I doubt that 14% will keep pirating if they're actually serious about cutting off the lifeblood of every pirate. The casual downloaders, especially those with families will probably take that as a sign to find something else to do. What will be left will be the hardcore. They can try to hack Wifi networks if they want to, but in that case the crime of WiFi hacking in most countries is handled as a felony crime with serious fines and jail time. It's easy to hack a WiFi connection but it's hard to get away with it because you're not hacking strangers networks in far away places, but more likely the guy next door, meaning you won't have to go far to find the perpetrator.Even then, try downloading an 8 gig movie from a one bar WiFi G signal...

Good for the EU. I am tired of playing by the rules, paying my way, and bearing the brunt of all the crap that criminals bring on from their behavior. At least this puts some kind of consequence in place. 



You don't know much about WiFi then, do you?

I've gotten full signal strength from over a kilometer away, using cheap materials. And I'm a rank amateur at it. The world record for a full signal is 304 kilometers, though I'll admit that won't be happening in any city I can imagine.

A simple add on antenna is enough to grab a signal from almost any reasonably ranged line of sight source, and from many sites not visible, depending on the configuration of the signal, terrain, etc. Plus, you aren't limited to one connection, you can signal hop and make it even more impossible to track you, since in most places now there are multiple wifi spots within range of a simple Cantanna.

All this law will accomplish is punish ISPs and Legitimate users for the actions of a few and the greed of even fewer. Piracy, if it is determined to be a crime, should be dealt with in court. NOT by sending a letter to an ISP.

Let me be absolutely clear here, I'm not arguing that piracy is right... or wrong. I have no care for the legality of it, or the morality. The only 'ity' I care about here is REALITY. The reality of the situation is this... There are no pirates. There are only petty thieves and pickpockets. Piracy in modern parlance is a term that Studios invented to make their problem sound grand and important. They're selling you and everyone else a bill of sale that this 'scourge' can be wiped out A La Piracy of old. It can NOT.

You can not now, nor EVER, stop petty thievery. It's just NOT possible. You do what you can, arrest those you catch, but in the end it's just a token gesture. Do you see any multi-billion dollar 'War on Pickpockets' announced in the news? No. Why? Because it would be a WASTE of MONEY. It's also severely Un-Glamorous. Hence the term 'pirates'.

But by any other name, the money is still going down the same sinkhole. The EU is going to start crippling the ISPs and soaking tax payers for more cash, all for nothing more than a few glitzy headlines when the first few 'pirates' get cut off. Headlines the politicos will pay for in blood when they chop the first innocent person's net connection because he was hacked. Then we'll see how long this law stays in effect. It's only there now because some politicians took some bribes, how long do you expect it to last when it starts destroying careers?

Anti Piracy measures don't work. They will NEVER work. What they do is make products more expensive, and thus more likely to be pirated.

As for you 'playing by the rules'. Bullsh%t. Don't even TRY to tell me you've never recorded a song off the radio, or taped a show off TV. If there's a single person on the planet who hasn't they must be living in a place with no radio, tv, or electricity. There is no difference between the common and ACCEPTED practices of using a VCR and the vast majority of so called piracy. Now, don't get me wrong... people who sell pirated materials, well that was WAY illegal a long time ago and should damn well remain so. But getting TV episodes off the net is the same thing as Tivo-ing them, or recording them off the TV. Same for most movies, although I do get the outrage over stuff that's not even in theatres yet and such.

I don't listen to much music, myself, but same story. You can record high quality tracks from any number of sources... why is downloading an MP3 a crime??

It's insane. I can get a copy of a movie, if not legally then at least in ways no court would touch, using a DVD-R hooked up to my TV but not a DVD-R hooked up to my computer?




Ok, 14% of net users are pirates... I'm guessing that's an under estimate, but let's go with that for the moment. So they kill 14% of the net users in a given country, chopping the ISP's income by 14%, cause I don't know about you guys but I'm sure as hell not paying for service I'm not getting. The next move is the pirates, and let's face it pirates are known to be adaptable, it's what makes them dangerous.

So, let's do a little bit of role playing. I'm a pirate, and I just lost my net for a year. Ho Humm, what do I do? Settle for network TV and reading before bedtime for the next 12 months? Ehhh... you know what, I think I'll leech WiFi from my more law abiding neighbors. Cracking security on those is mostly a joke NOW, imagine how easy it'll be after a few disenfranchised hackers turn their attention to it after losing their net connection.

So, within a short period, ISPs lost 14% of their income... yet almost none of the bandwidth costs. Then the requests start coming in to cut off the 'new' pirates that are cropping up. Are they REALLY going to start dropping people off the net for a year for the crime of having their wifi hacked?? Is the EU so desperate for a return to the good old days of Castles, Moats, and dead cows on catapults that they want to destroy the profitability of their ISPs in order to bring about the start of a new Dark Age?

Does this really make sense to ANYONE, I mean... even a Government Bureaucrat should be able to figure this out. Well, no, obviously one of those can't... still, any human being ought to have brain power enough.



How would they not lose bandwidth costs? Anywhere from 40-60% of internet traffic is BitTorrent, and assuming that half (a VERY conservative estimate) is used for privacy, that's still a reduction of 20-30% of traffic by kicking 14% of users. Hell, look at what happened in Sweden when they passed that anti-sharing anything crap. They had a 33% drop in internet traffic from an estimated 8% of users. In all actuality, cracking down on pirates might actually improve ISP profits. The problem is, BitTorrent is without a doubt, one of the most useful legitimate file distribution methods we have, and well, to the anti-pirates, BitTorrent = Piracy.



You didn't read what I posted.

Yeah, Sweden experienced a massive drop in bandwidth use... for a DAY to a WEEK. I think closer to a day, but I haven't checked. It was merely a halo effect of fear induced paranoia that predictably wore off in no time.

The same thing would happen here as users were knocked off the net... until they adapted and started hacking into wifi hotspots for their bandwidth. Then the bandwidth use would climb almost back to where it was, possibly higher depending on a few factors (unlikely, though.) The difference? The ISPs wouldn't be getting paid anything more for the 'new' bandwidth being soaked up by previously quiet users.

Shortly after that, the first innocent user would be kicked off the internet, resulting in a HUGE politically farce. At which point the government in question has massive amounts of egg on their face and we get to enjoy a real fun media circus.



If by "hack" you mean "connect to their neighbors open and unsecure network", then you're probably right. An open and unsecure connection is unexcusible by any standards. Having one is just asking for trouble. I have yet to hear of an ISP banning someone outright, usually they start with a letter. If someone gets a letter warning them that they're going to get shut off, I'd be willing to bet that the leaky networks problem would be fixed in no time. It'd be easier if router manufacturers all start having signal encryption on by default.

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