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It is no secret that piracy is a big problem for the media corporations and the internet service providers around the world.  We are all aware of the cascading lawsuits from the Recording Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America filing for reparations.  Recently, BitTorrent tracker ThePirateBay.org made news with their trial and conviction in Sweden.  And yet, piracy lives on.

A few days ago, The BBC reported that “[o]nly 33% of those receiving a letter from their ISP would stop pirating content.”  This means that their internet service provider knows that they are partaking in illegal activities, they have warned them to stop, and 66% seem to not care.  This information comes from a survey of over 1,500 internet users conducted by the UK government.

But that isn’t all that the survey findings suggested.  According to The BBC, “The survey also found that there could be a lucrative market for ISPs if they did changed their flat rates for prices based on usage … The suggestion is that if ISPs develop content services of their own and tier their access there are ready and willing customers for it.”  This type of ‘tiered service plan or ‘prices based on usage’ has already been tried in the United States, and received and angry uproar from consumers.

Consumers can only hope that this doesn’t carry through—or their wallets are going to take a hit.  We’re in a rough situation right now.  ISPs are being pressured to stop the piracy while still answering to their customers.  Whoever said that music piracy never hurt anyone may have just been proven wrong.


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