The Program is Expected to Double in Size in the Second Year of Operation, with Increased Public Awareness Efforts to be Added
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Wednesday, May 28, 2014) – The Center for Copyright Information (CCI) released a report today on the Copyright Alert System (CAS), which for the first time since the system’s launch included specific information about the size of the program. Specifically, the report showed that 1.3 million Alerts were sent out in the initial 10 months of the program, most in the initial educational phases. Only 265 challenges were filed, with no findings of false positives. CCI also noted that the CAS is expected to double in size in the second year of operation and CCI will begin an online awareness campaign to increase public awareness of the system.
The CAS, the first voluntary, successful collaboration between entertainment and technology companies in the U.S. aimed at reducing copyright infringement over peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, is a tiered notice and response system that works in a fair and consumer-friendly manner while encouraging consumers to embrace the growing number of affordable authorized sources of films, music, and television programming content available online and from a variety of different services and formats. The CAS was developed by the CCI, a coalition representing the nation’s premier owners of copyrighted entertainment content and five of the largest Internet service providers (ISPs) – with input from consumer advocacy groups – and the program’s participants include these larger organizations as well as hundreds of representatives of the independent music and film sectors. For more information about the CAS, please visit prod.copyrightinformation.org.
CCI’s report, “Phase One and Beyond,” was written with the help of CCI’s members, Advisory Board and technology experts, and includes information about the size of the CAS, the breakdown of Alerts sent at each level of the system, data about the independent review process and consumer research about the program. Other highlights from the report include:
- The beginning period of launch, “ramp up” and operation for the CAS has been – and continues to be – smooth and successful. The multi-year consensus-building effort among rights holders, content owners, ISPs and consumer representatives has resulted in a fair, user-friendly program with built-in consumer protections that protects the ethos of the Internet
- The CAS sent more than 1.3 million Copyright Alerts to account holders across America and the program is slated to at least double the number of notices sent and processed in size in the coming year.
- The vast majority of the Copyright Alerts delivered to account holders – more than 70% – occurred at the initial educational stages, with less than 3% of the Alerts sent occurring at the final mitigation stage.
- The program operated, as designed, in a way that protected consumer privacy, with content owners generating notices of alleged copyright infringement through the use of publicly available IP address data – and ISPs delivering Alerts to account holders without sharing their personally identifiable information with content owners or otherwise jeopardizing their privacy.
- The “easy-to-access” independent review process that is managed by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) enabled account holders to challenge Alerts they believed were sent in error, and account holders filed only 265 requests for review with AAA based on the more than 1.3 million Alerts generated during 2013. In fact, during the 10 month review period, account holders requested independent review of a mere 0.27% of qualifying Mitigation Alerts (and that volume represents, in turn, just 0.02% of all Alerts sent to participating ISPs’ account holders). Of the review cases filed, there was not one single case in which an invalid notice – or false positive – was identified. Indeed there were only 47 successful challenges in 2013, and the vast majority of those were based on an “unauthorized use of account” defense, indicating that the account holder had made a satisfactory case that someone other than the account holder or a known (authorized) person was using the account in question to engage in impermissible P2P filing sharing of copyrighted content.
For the complete report, please visit:
CCI noted that an important indicator of the ultimate success of the CAS would depend on whether consumers respond to an education-based program. Recent research commissioned by CCI suggests that consumers are indeed responding. The majority of users surveyed reported that they would stop engaging in copyright infringement immediately upon receiving an Alert and most (62%) believe that it is never acceptable to engage in infringing activity. However, sixty-five percent of the respondents agree that it would be helpful if more resources were available that make clear what content sources and online activities are and are not legal. In light of this research and our observations about the CAS, CCI also announced the beginning of awareness raising activities including launching an online advertising campaign about the existence of the program – and both Alerts and the CCI’s web resources will continue to direct consumers to the innovative sources of legal and licensed music, movie and TV content.
Jill Lesser, Executive Director of CCI, put the report in context:
“We are encouraged by the initial data from the Copyright Alert System’s first 10 months suggesting that the program has the potential to move the needle in deterring copyright infringement. Our initial research into consumer attitudes – along with what we have seen in our own data – shows that consumers do respond to this kind of educational system that alerts them to infringing activity on their account and helps them find the content they want easily and legally.”
CCI Board Co-Chair Steve Marks of RIAA commented on the accomplishments of the initial “ramp up” phase of the CAS:
“We are proud of the program’s accomplishments and delighted by our successful partnership with the ISP community. This report confirms that the CAS is working – it’s reliable, respectful of consumers, and an effective way to let them know about all the legitimate alternatives in the marketplace. We look forward to exploring other ways we can work with our ISP partners to enhance the consumer experience in the digital world.”
CCI Board co-chair Tom Dailey of Verizon spoke on the importance of partnership in today’s announcement:
“Today’s announcement is another positive development in this process. It serves as a reminder of the potential of partnerships – particularly voluntary partnerships such as ours – to reach consumers, provide them with useful information and foster safe and legal behavior.”
Jerry Berman, member of the CCI Advisory Board, shared the significance of the newly announced data from a consumer perspective:
“The CCI’s members committed to implement the Copyright Alert System in a way that respects Internet users. The analysis released today confirms that the program did just that. The CAS’s early data suggests that consumer privacy has been respected and the appeal process, key to the system’s fairness, is working and that users are taking advantage of it when they feel that it is warranted. I am looking forward to seeing the program reach more users in its next phase.”
About The Center for Copyright Information
The Center for Copyright Information (CCI) was formed to educate consumers about the importance of copyright protection and to offer information about online copyright infringement. Our goal is to alleviate confusion and help Internet users find legal ways to enjoy the digital content they love. Our members include artists and content creators like the members of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) as well as independent filmmakers and record producers represented by the Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) and the American Association of Independent Music (A2IM), and 5 major Internet service providers – AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Verizon. Our leadership also includes an Advisory Board made up of consumer advocates, privacy specialists and technology policy experts.