Industry groups announced a new partnership today designed to provide information to consumers on copyright violations – including notices when their Internet account is being used to view or distribute infringing content.

The Copyright Alert System is a joint project by some Internet Access Providers and some content providers. It will set up a Center for Copyright Information and a website for best practices: www.copyrightinformation.org. If consumers fail to respond to alerts that their computer is being used to download copyright-protected material, Internet providers will take further steps.

The following statement can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:

“This shows that the private sector can credibly address problems without government interference in Internet architecture, such as the PROTECT IP Act.  At the very least, policy makers should wait and see how this and other private sector solutions work before irrevocably committing us to government regulation of the Internet.

“This industry based solution comes as the Senate proposes plans for the government to keep blacklists and mandate that thousands of tech and telecommunications companies patrol the Internet and even erase search results and links to content. These government regulations would have unprecedented collateral damage on the infrastructure of the Internet.”

“It remains to be seen whether Internet service providers can properly balance their customers’ right to broadband access and privacy with the economic interests of rights holders. Serious questions about how the ISPs will use their power in this area remain, but this initiative shows there are private sector options to be explored before the government takes steps to control the Internet.”

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