Five huge brand-name ISPs are banding together in an effort to slow down and possibly even cut off internet access to people accused of copyright infringement.
After agreeing on a deal almost three years in the making, AT&T, Cablevision Systems, Comcast, Time Warner, and Verizon announced yesterday morning that they would be monitoring their customers’ internet traffic for instances of copyright violation. The effort is called the PROTECT IP Act.
It will operate on a six-strike system. After that, they initiate the wonderfully Orwellian-sounding “mitigation measures,” which could include bringing a subscriber’s internet speeds to a crawl and redirecting a subscriber’s service to a “educational” page about infringement.
The arrangement has the full backing of the Recording Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America, but 90 lawyers have determined it to be unconstitutional. They’ve written an open letter to Congress along with several other professors and IP experts, which appears below.
We’ll be following along to see what happens.
Here’s the letter from all those legal experts: