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US-based ISP MediaCom has announced a three-strike rule for Digital Pirates which will result in a lifetime ban from its network.
Online Piracy makes up a significant portion of internet traffic with some research pointing to more than 22% of bandwidth used online for the transmission of copyrighted material. From music, TV-series, Movies and software, online piracy is rough.
Organisations like MegaUpload and PirateBay have made it their business to help facilitate the searching and finding of copyrighted material as regular search engines, like Google, are put under increasing pressure to censure words like “torrent” and “megaupload”.
A joint initiative by interested parties and various large ISPs in the USA have adopted a “six-strike” policy that would aim to curb illegal downloads. While some commentary has labelled the move as “unfair” MediaCom has decided to initiate a stricter 3-strike policy with an eventual life-time ban.
At the first incident a person is sent a notice warning them of downloading pirated material and their ISP account is flagged. A second infraction results in paperwork that needs to be completed by the customer before their account is re-activated.
After a third infraction the account is permanently terminated and the person is added to a blacklist, meaning that they will never be allowed to open a MediaCom account again. Information about the third infraction is then sent to the copyright holder who has the legal right to pursue the pirate for compensation in a court of law.
Even inn emerging market countries like South Africa, ISPs are known to warn clients against infringing on piracy laws, often with a warning email or a phone call but this may have more to do with over-use and going against what is seen as the ISPs “Acceptable User Policy” for traffic use.
Attempts were made to contact the major South African ISPs MWEB, Afrihost and WebAfrica for comment about a possible introduction of the 6-strike rule in South Africa. Afrihost linked us to this site in response.
Meanwhile Naspers-owned ISP, MWEB tweeted the following:
@tonyseifart Afternoon Tony, we are not aware of that at the moment. It should be publicised if it does take effect in South Africa.
— MWEB Guy (@MWEBGuy) September 27, 2012