ControlArising out of this blindness there have been many stupid attempts to control the Internet in favour of the media industry, mainly the recording labels and the movie studios. These bodies are unbelievably complex in the way the do business, the artists that they promote have a very bad deal, most money goes to the companies. They have a vitriolic campaign to fight what they call "pirates". Let's get it clear people that download free media files are not pirates, pirates steal things, downloaders copy them. This is known as infringing the rights of the holders, most often the studios themselves, not the artists who have signed away their creative rights to these Goliath's.
Let's make it clear, infringement of copyright is a civil offence, NOT a criminal one.
A JudgementSo what has happened now? Well some stupid judge has succumbed to the whining of the studios and ruled that the delivery channel of the downloads, the ISPs, are responsible for the traffic they are carrying. In other words BT, the UKs largest ISP, has to recognise the files going across their network as copyright media, and has to block them using the software setup to control pornography which has been used for several years to protect children. The way they are to ID media files is now by waiting until the rights owners file a court order, but the way they block them is pure censorship with no legal ruling. That is they block anyone's access to a web site where downloaders can link to the infringing files.
But really who is committing the offence here? Not the web site, not BT, but the person copying the file without paying the rights holder. So studios are missing their true target, and the judge is going along with it.
Infringement has to have penalties, but these have to imposed by rights holders through the courts directly on the offenders, not to the detriment of everyone, not through blanket censorship.
Blame?The studios have only themselves to blame for this haemorrhaging of their copyright media. They should change their business model. It is not at all surprising that people want and will find and copy movies when they are released first in the USA, first to the cinemas, first to DVD, before being made available immediately on iTunes (or any other service). As soon as the movie comes out in cinemas and gets rave reviews everyone will want it now, not 6 months later.
iTunes has already proved that there is a pent-up demand for streamed movies to the TV in the home. So you can pay-by-view and not have to drag yourself out to a smelly, cold cinema and pay the local council to park your car, and pay excessive prices.
The march of technology is unpreventable, just blocking web sites will force everyone underground, where they cannot be found, they will use file vaults protected by encryption and the infringement will go on.
Take it or leave it Studios, your business model is pissed, and it about time you did something about it. Open up the delivery chain, studio to consumer, remove the middle man and get your prices down.