AT&T Inc. (T) Launching New Anti-Piracy Campaign

AT&T Inc.AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) has been an internet service provider that has been at the forefront of efforts to combat online piracy, having been a prominent member of the Center for Copyright Information, which was created to inform online users of copyright law regarding downloaded images, content and videos. Now, though, it seems that AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is looking to become the first ISP to develop a “six-strikes” anti-piracy system.

A recent post mentions the outline and framework of this anti-piracy campaign that AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is introducing. The concept involves educating alleged pirates, as CCI believes that many people don’t realize they are pirating copyrighted material, and this system would give users plenty of opportunities to correct their behavior before facing any consequences. This process is called the Copyright Alert System.

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) apparently wrote in a document, “In an effort to assist content owners with combating on-line piracy, AT&T will be sending alert e-mails to customers who are identified as having been downloading copyrighted content without authorization from the copyright owner. The reports are made by the content owners and are of IP-addresses that are associated with copyright-infringing activities.” In this program, AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) indicates that it will educate users of piracy laws for each of the first time occurrences of downloading copyrighted material, then on the “sixth strike” would the company impose any “penalties” – which may include access to specific sites or the the Internet itslef being blocked, though users could have the block lifted if they complete an anti-piracy course.

No further details about this AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) program or when it will actually launch have not been clarified yet, but AT&T Inc. (T) says it reserves the right to provide information on repeat offenders to content providers for possible prosecution. How will investors in AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) stock – including billionaire fund manager Ray Dalio of Bridgewater Associates – approach this new initiative? Is six strikes enough? Too many? Will this is any significant way help ISPs in general?