Nick Mould writes for the University of Southampton’s Wessex Scene on the effectiveness of the UK government’s plans to to target online piracy:
Despite the withdrawal of the widely-denounced SOPA and PIPA bills, the war against free p2p sharing of copyrighted content is still being waged. Last month, the UK high court ruled that five of the country’s main ISPs block the torrent hosting website The Pirate Bay.
Earlier this year the FBI successfully shut down the widely-used file hosting website Megaupload, taking its founders to court over copyright infringement. In the near future we can also expect the enforcement of the Digital Economy Act, currently undergoing revisions by the European Commission, which will seek to penalise infringing web users by potentially terminating their internet access. Additional web surveillance legislation was announced in the Queens’ recent parliamentary speech, the scope of which will presumably include online pirates.
Ultimately such measures are doomed to failure, simply because technology will always be strides ahead of the law. Not only did The Pirate Bay receive 12 million extra visitors on the day the blockade was reported (any publicity is good publicity) but methods to surpass the block through proxy servers and VPN providers were widely spread. Additionally, the rhetoric used to justify these attempts at curbing illegal downloads is thoroughly misguided and out of touch with the habits of modern-day consumers.
Full article here.