Trade body the BPI has today urged major ISPs to block three more sites that it believes to be illegally sharing music. A request letter has been sent to BT, Sky, Virgin, O2 and TalkTalk with an aim of taking action before the end of December.
The three targets are ‘Fenopy’, ‘H33t’ and ‘Kickass Torrents’, sites which may not be as high profile as the Pirate Bay but still shared over 1 million unique visitors last month according to figures from Nielsen. The Gen can’t be sure how they worked out that ‘Kick Ass Torrents’ could potentially be illegitimate- it's quite an enigmatic name for a file-sharing site!
A spokesperson for the BPI told the BBC in this report: “Like The Pirate Bay, these websites are profiting illegally from distributing music that isn't theirs, without permission and without paying a penny to the musicians, writers and producers who created it” The statement continued: "It is plain wrong. The existence of these sites damages the growth of Britain's burgeoning digital music sector."
Of course, this follows a Pirate Bay block earlier in the year ordered by the High Court, albeit one that the operators of the file-sharing site have since referred to as having little impact on its traffic. The argument about the effectiveness of such blocks goes on, with the American Assembly issuing a study this month indicating that those engaging in illegal file sharing in the US and Germany also spend 30% more on music, outlined in this report from Music Week.
Jim Killock of the Open Rights Group issued a response saying: "Web blocking is an extreme response. If courts are being asked to block websites they need to be taking into consideration the rights of users and any legitimate usage of those sites. It isn't clear whether a conversation between a judge, ISPs and rights holders is going to sufficiently represent the needs of users".