Comcast developing alternative anti-piracy initiative
August 6, 2013
By Colin Mann
Comcast Corporation, owner of the largest cable network in the US, as well as NBCUniversal, is developing an new approach to fighting content piracy in the US, reports Variety, suggesting that the initiative is seeking to convert illegal downloads into legal transaction opportunities.
The entertainment trade publication suggests that the company has begun preliminary discussions with both film and TV studios and other leading Internet service providers about using technology, that would provide offending users with transactional opportunities to access legal versions of copyright-infringing videos as they’re being downloaded.
Any consumer illegally downloading a film or movie from a peer-to-peer system would be quickly pushed a pop-up message with links to purchase or rent the same content, whether the title in question exists on the VoD library of a participating distributor’s own broadband network or on a third-party seller like Amazon.
Such an approach would be an alternative to the Copyright Alert System (CAS), a voluntary initiative many leading programmers and distributors such as Comcast have been participating in since February. Other CAS participants include AT&T, Verizon, Time Warner Cable and Cablevision, as well as all studios affiliated with the MPAA.
Under the so-called CAS ‘six strikes’ process, consumers whose accounts have been used to share copyrighted content over P2P networks illegally (or without authority) receive Alerts that are meant to educate rather than punish, and direct them to legal alternatives. The MPAA also May 2013 launched www.WheretoWatch.org, a new website to serve as a resource for audiences to access movies and TV shows seamlessly and legally.