DIGITAL ECONOMY BILL: EXAMPLE INFRINGEMENT NOTIFICATIONS

(Please note: the below examples are provided for illustrative purposes only.)

EXAMPLE: LEVEL 1 INFRINGEMENT NOTIFICATION
Account number: Dear <subscriber> COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT REPORT We’re writing to you about a copyright infringement report we have received from <rights holder> which alleges that copyrighted [music/film/books/computer games] have been unlawfully shared using a computer linked to your Internet account with us. Please allow us to explain: • • • • • why copyright is important, what information has been found, and how, where lawful online content can be found, what steps you can take to make sure this does not happen again, and what happens next?

Many files that can be saved on your computer (like music and videos) are protected by copyright. In most cases it's unlawful to download or share such files without the permission of the copyright owner – for example, the record company or film studio that released them. Otherwise it’s a ‘copyright infringement’, and that’s not something which is either sustainable for the creators and publishers of the material, or something which we, as your Internet Service Provider, allow under our terms and conditions. It is something that, if continued without any regard for warnings and advice, could even lead to legal action being taken against the person responsible. Why is copyright important? The fact that more and more songs, films and other media are created, distributed and consumed digitally means that the creative industries in this country are facing a number of challenges. Of course, it’s essential that new, exciting ways are devised to ensure that people can access this material through legitimate channels, but unfortunately it is also true that much of the creative work that we all want and enjoy is shared unlawfully on the Internet. That is not a sustainable situation, as the income that comes from legitimate sales is needed by creative industries not only to provide the products we all enjoy, but also to support and develop new talent.

Copyright is the way in which those who create or invest in the creation of content such as music, film, books, games and television earn a living. The protection of copyright is important for the future viability of the UK’s creative industries. There has always been infringement, of course, but never has it been so widespread. We want to ensure that the creative industries in this country continue to be strong, innovative and the source of continued employment and income for those working in the sector. What has been found in relation to your account, and how Copyright owners carry out checks online to see what of their material is being shared on file-sharing networks – because they are the owner of the copyright they will know whether such sharing is not permitted by them, and, if so, anything detected will be unlawful. They will download enough of the material to identify beyond doubt what the file is, and carefully note the time and date. They will also record the IP address (every time a machine is used to connect to the Internet a unique identifying number, called an IP Address, is allocated) associated with the material offered for download. Although that will not enable them to connect the file with a named subscriber, it does enable us as your Internet provider to identify which subscriber’s connection was being used for that purpose at that precise time. In this case <rights holder> has identified that on <date> at <time> your Internet connection was used to download <copyright material> – further details of the evidence for this identification are set out at the end of this letter. We understand you may be concerned about this, especially if you have no knowledge of how this happened. One possible answer is that other people in your household have used your computer and/or Internet connection, and they might have shared these files with others by using unauthorised peer-topeer file-sharing networks. Peer-to-peer file-sharing is a useful and completely legitimate technology, but unfortunately it also lends itself to activity such as unlawfully sharing media files. It is also possible that your connection was used without your knowledge by somebody outside your household (practical advice on how to avoid this happening in the future is included below). Where online content can be found There is a wealth of material that can now be found and enjoyed entirely legitimately, from millions of music tracks on online music stores to streaming services that are either supported by advertising or subscription (or both), and services such as the BBC iPlayer that lets people watch programmes they have missed. You may be interested in the following links [sponsored links] What you can do to ensure this does not happen again It’s important that you take some simple, practical steps to make sure that this sort of thing doesn’t happen again – for example, removing file-sharing software from your computer, perhaps speaking to other members of the

household and explaining that infringing copyright is wrong, and could lead to further action being taken. If you haven’t already done so you should also secure any wireless router that you have since it is possible that somebody outside your household has piggybacked on your connection. We encourage all our customers to use appropriate security solutions to safeguard their computers whilst online, and therefore we recommend that you use [proprietary security suite, link]. Using these free tools can also help to prevent the spread of computer viruses which are sometimes disguised as illegal music files. Other ways that you can protect yourself from inadvertent infringement are available from the “Get Safe Online” website (http://www.getsafeonline.org/) – supported by the Government and the communications regulator Ofcom – lists three companies who provide filters and software which can block or filter content and who can also block the use of P2P programmes: • • • Cybersitter Net Nanny Cyberpatrol

What happens next? We hope this will be the only occasion that we’ll need to write to you about a copyright infringement report associated with your account. Please note that we have not shared any of your personal details with the copyright owner or anyone else. However, if you have any questions about this process then please contact our Internet security help point via [link] or call [ISP help line]. If you wish to formally dispute the allegations in this letter, then please feel free to utilise the [free] independent appeals process that has been set up in order to ensure that everybody has a chance to make their case, which can be accessed through contacting [Independent Appeals Body name and contact details] Yours sincerely Internet Service Provider Details of evidence
• • • • •

Timestamp of report: <> Copyright material details: <> Username (if applicable): <> IP Address: <> Protocol Used: <>

EXAMPLE: LEVEL 2 INFRINGEMENT NOTIFICATION
Account number: Dear <subscriber> COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT REPORT We last wrote to you on <date> about a copyright infringement report received from <rights holder> in relation to your Internet account, and explained that online copyright infringements were unlawful and damaging to the creative industries. We also suggested ways in which you could ensure that no further allegations of infringement were associated with your account. Unfortunately we have received a further copyright infringement report from a copyright owner that has been associated with your Internet connection. [This is in addition to reports about your Internet connection received from other copyright owners.] What has been found in relation to your account? <rights holder> has identified that on <date> at <time> your internet connection was used to download <copyright material> – further details of the evidence for this identification as set out at the end of this letter. What happens next? We would remind you that infringing copyright is forbidden under the terms and conditions of your contract with us. We must also warn you that [any] further allegations of infringement from any copyright owner may lead to you being included on a serious infringement list. Should the copyright owner then successfully apply to the courts, your name and address could be revealed to them. Until such an order is obtained we will not share any of your personal details with the copyright owner or anyone else. However, we would suggest that you immediately put in place the steps we recommended in our previous letter to protect your connection from unauthorised use, check your computer, and remove any file-sharing software that may have been used to infringe copyright – our earlier advice is reproduced for your convenience at the end of this letter. If you have any questions about this process then please contact our Internet security help point via [link] or call [ISP help line]. If you wish to formally dispute any of the allegations in this or our previous letter, then please feel free to use the [free] independent appeals process that has been set up in order to ensure that everybody has a chance to make their case, which can be accessed through contacting [name and contact details of the Independent Appeals Body] by [ days after date of notification]

Yours sincerely Internet Service Supplier Details of evidence
• • • • •

Timestamp of report: <> Copyright material details: <> Username (if applicable): <> IP Address: <> Protocol Used: <>

What you can do to ensure this does not happen again It is important that you take some simple, practical steps to make sure that this sort of thing doesn’t happen again – for example, removing file-sharing software from your computer, perhaps speaking to other members of the household and explaining that infringing copyright is wrong, and could lead to further action being taken. If you haven’t already done so you should also secure any wireless router that you have since it is possible that somebody outside your household has piggybacked on your connection. We encourage all our customers to use appropriate security solutions to safeguard their computers whilst online, and therefore we recommend that you use [proprietary security suite, link]. Using these free tools can also help to prevent the spread of computer viruses which are sometimes disguised as illegal music files. Other ways that you can protect yourself from inadvertent infringement are available from the “Get Safe Online” website (http://www.getsafeonline.org/) – supported by HMG and Ofcom – that lists three companies who provide filters and software which can block or filter content and who can also block the use of P2P programmes: • • • Cybersitter Net Nanny Cyberpatrol

Why is copyright important? The fact that more and more songs, films and other media are created, distributed and consumed digitally means that the creative industries in this country are facing a number of challenges. Of course, it’s essential that new, exciting ways are devised to ensure that people can access this material through legitimate channels, but unfortunately it is also true that much of the creative work that we all want and enjoy is shared unlawfully on the Internet. That is not a sustainable situation, as the income that comes from legitimate

sales is needed by creative industries not only to provide the products we all enjoy, but also to support and develop new talent. . Copyright is the way in which those who create or invest in the creation of content such as music, film, books, games and television earn a living. The protection of copyright is important for the future viability of the UK’s creative industries. There has always been infringement, of course, but never has it been so widespread. We want to ensure that the creative industries in this country continue to be strong, innovative and the source of continued employment and income for those working in the sector. Where online content can be found There is a wealth of material that can now be found and enjoyed entirely legitimately, from millions of music tracks on online music stores to streaming services that are either supported by advertising or subscription (or both), and services such as the BBC iPlayer that lets people watch programmes they have missed. You may be interested in the following links [sponsored links]

EXAMPLE: LEVEL 3 INFRINGEMENT NOTIFICATION
Account number: Dear <subscriber.. COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT REPORT We wrote to you on <date> and <date> about reports alleging copyright infringement we had received from <rights holder>. We explained that online copyright infringement was unlawful and damaging to the creative industries, and suggested ways in which you could ensure that no further allegations of infringement were associated with your account. Unfortunately we have now received a further copyright infringement report that has been associated with your Internet connection. We are therefore adding your details to the serious infringement list held for <rights holder> and, should the copyright owner successfully apply to the courts, your name and address will be revealed to them. This does not preclude action taken in relation to reports received relating to your internet connection from other copyrights owners. What has been found in relation to your account? <rights holder> has identified that on <date> at ,time> your internet connection was used to download <copyright material> – further details of the evidence for this identification are set out at the end of this letter. What happens next? We would remind you that infringing copyright is forbidden under the terms and conditions of your contract with us. Since this is the [nth] copyright infringement report received from <rights holder> identified with your account we are adding your details to the serious infringement list held for <rights holder> and, should the copyright owner successfully apply to the courts, your name and address will be revealed to them. Until such an order is obtained we will not share any of your personal details with the copyright owner or anyone else. Even at this stage it would still be wise for you to take the steps we recommended in our two earlier letters to protect your connection from unauthorised use, and to check your computer and remove any file-sharing software that may have been used to infringe copyright. This may help to ensure that, should technical measures such as bandwidth capping or temporary account suspension be introduced by the Government and the number and nature of the copyright infringement reports received are taken into account, you do not become a candidate for such measures to be imposed. If you have any questions about this process then please contact our Internet security help point via [link] or call [ISP help line].

If you wish to formally dispute any of the allegations in this or our previous letters to you, and the decision to add you to the copyright infringement list, then please use the [free] independent appeals process by [X days after the date of the notification]. This has been set up in order to ensure that everybody has a chance to make their case, and can be accessed through contacting [name and contact details of the Independent Appeals Body]. Yours sincerely Internet Service Provider Details of evidence
• • • • •

Timestamp of report: <> Track(s) details: <> Username (if applicable): <> IP Address: <> Protocol Used: <>

What you can do to ensure this does not happen again It is important that you take some simple, practical steps to make sure that this sort of thing doesn’t happen again – for example, removing file-sharing software from your computer, perhaps speaking to other members of the household and explaining that infringing copyright is wrong, and could lead to further action being taken. If you haven’t already done so you should also secure any wireless router that you have since it is possible that somebody outside your household has piggybacked on your connection. We encourage all our customers to use appropriate security solutions to safeguard their computers whilst online, and therefore we recommend that you use [proprietary security suite, link]. Using these free tools can also help to prevent the spread of computer viruses which are sometimes disguised as illegal music files. Other ways that you can protect yourself from inadvertent infringement are available from the “Get Safe Online” website (http://www.getsafeonline.org/) – supported by HMG and Ofcom – that lists three companies who provide filters and software which can block or filter content and who can also block the use of peer to peer programmes: • • • Cybersitter Net Nanny Cyberpatrol

Why is copyright important?

The fact that more and more songs, films and other media are created, distributed and consumed digitally means that the creative industries in this country are facing a number of challenges. Of course, it’s essential that new, exciting ways are devised to ensure that people can access this material through legitimate channels, but unfortunately it is also true that much of the creative work that we all want and enjoy is shared unlawfully on the Internet. That is not a sustainable situation, as the income that comes from legitimate sales is needed by creative industries not only to provide the products we all enjoy, but also to support and develop new talent. . Copyright is the way in which those who create or invest in the creation of content such as music, film, books, games and television earn a living. The protection of copyright is important for the future viability of the UK’s creative industries. There has always been infringement, of course, but never has it been so widespread. We want to ensure that the creative industries in this country continue to be strong, innovative and the source of continued employment and income for those working in the sector. Where online content can be found There is a wealth of material that can now be found and enjoyed entirely legitimately, from millions of music tracks on online music stores to streaming services that are either supported by advertising or subscription (or both), and services such as the BBC iPlayer that lets people watch programmes they have missed. You may be interested in the following links [sponsored links]

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