File Sharing and Eircom

From Slashdot:

“One of the biggest broadband providers in Ireland will make the country the first in the world (according to broadsheet newspaper, the Irish Times) to introduce the ‘three strikes’ rule. ‘EIRCOM WILL from today begin a process that will lead to cutting off the broadband service of customers found to be repeatedly sharing music online illegally. Ireland is the first country in the world where a system of graduated response is being put in place. Under the pilot scheme, Eircom customers who illegally share copyrighted music will get three warnings before having their broadband service cut off for a year.’ … The mechanism by which it operates was challenged in the courts by the Data Protection Commissioner. Apparently, IP addresses do not constitute ‘personal information.’ Personally, I use filesharing all the time, but I use it to download large open source Linux ISOs. How will Eircom legally differentiate between that content, and the content that some ragamuffin may be downloading illegally, without infringing privacy laws?”

My thoughts on this one are quite simple.

This kind of crap is just the start of things to come.   In the mean time, I am just glad I am not forced to use Eircom as a broadband provider.   (I use the word broadband loosly)

I don’t use Peer 2 Peer file sharing, as frankly it is an open gateway to getting spyware and viruses.   That said, I don’t believe for one moment that Eircom have the right to decide what I can and cannot use the web to lookup.

Last time I checked, I did not live in China.

/Rant over


  2 Replies to “File Sharing and Eircom”

  1. May 25, 2010 at 3:46 am

    I bet Eircom have some as yet undisclosed vested interests. I wouldn’t be entirely surprised if they launch some sort of music and film service subscription soon. Plus there’s a cost associated with P2P users that max their lines all the time. That’s all rate limited anyway, so I think there has to be another reason. Pressure from IRMA etc too but it’s always been ISP’s position that they solely provide raw data and not get involved in content. UPC’s position has always been the norm in the past.

    It’s a shame that P2P has gotten such a bad name because as a concept it’s a great way to distribute popular data without a single point of failure (such as a solitary server to get overloaded with demand).
    With checksums to ensure untampered original reputable company sources of legit content, it could be great. Linux ISOs seem to be about the only non-dubious thing it is used for which which is a shame.

    Not many people care about the implications of this, many Eircom users are not technically proficient nor have any interest in net neutrality etc.

    This isn’t a new thing however! Bet a lot of people have forgotten when Esatclear (aka BT, aka IOL..etc) without any warning booted off their “Surf No Limits” customers because there were in fact limits (undisclosed and unpublicised). So this isn’t particularly new, this has been done before.

    Of course none of this will have much impact on music/video piracy. It’ll just go back underground like the early days.

  2. Ryan Challis
    June 8, 2010 at 7:56 am

    They say “if found sharing music illegally”. What about if you use the p2p software to download the music and not share the file? Would that still count?

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