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Copyright Alert System Ends

30 Jan, 2017 By: Erik Gruenwedel

An anti-piracy program backed by the Motion Picture Association of America, Recording Industry Association of America and Internet Service Providers AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Verizon has quietly ceased operation after nearly four years.

The Copyright Alert System (CAS) was operated by the Center for Copyright Information since 2013 — two years after the industry alliance formed with a mandate to directly educate consumers suspected of downloading pirated content from peer-to-peer streaming networks.

“After four years of extensive consumer education and engagement, the CAS will conclude its work. The program demonstrated that real progress is possible when content creators, Internet innovators and consumer advocates come together in a collaborative and consensus-driven process,” CCI wrote in a Jan. 27 statement.

The group was formed after online copyright infringement of music, movies and TV shows reached crucial mass with advancements in consumer technology. CCI said the alerts succeeded in educating people about the availability of legal content, as well as about issues associated with online infringement.

The alerts, which varied by ISP and infringing activity, ranged from onscreen warnings to deliberate Internet speed throttling.

“The CAS is proof positive that industry leaders and consumer advocates can work together in an educationally focused way to build voluntary programs that can make a real impact,” Jim Kohlenberger, executive director of CCI, wrote in a blog post.

With the rise in video streaming, illegal downloads of copyrighted content have reportedly declined. That said, the CCI hinted the program could return.

“We want to thank everyone who put in the hard work to develop this program and make it a success, including past and present members of our advisory board. The parties remain committed to voluntary and cooperative efforts to address these issues.”

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