People downloading copyrighted material online in the UK can except getting letters from their government in UK's latest attempt to crack down on piracy

The United Kingdom has been planning on reaching out to pirates for years. Now the four biggest ISPs have come to an agreement with music and movie industries to begin sending letters to pirates starting 17th of January. BT, Virgin Media, TalkTalk and Sky will be emailing pirates educational letters in attempt to prevent copyright infringements.

According to BBC the emails will inform broadband users their connection has been used to share copyrighted material. Like in many other countries law firms in the UK have already been sending pirates letters for years accusing them of downloading content free. The letters have threatened court action unless a one-off fee of about £800 was paid. Now the government backed project called “Get it Right” will monitor any peer to peer downloads for illegal downloads.

2,5 million letters per year

According to TorrentFreak the copyright holders and ISPs have agreed to cap the warning letters to 2,5 million per year. It is however to get multiple warnings should you continue using BitTorrent after your first “educational letter”.

Critics have said the project will not have a desired effect on piracy since in the UK many have already shifted to direct download and streaming services instead of peer to peer downloading. The Get it Right project will not be monitoring streaming services such as Kodi according to BBC.

What’s in the letters?

The notices are meant to educate ISP clients of legal alternatives instead of downloading material illegally. With the educational letters it is hoped to highlight the value of the British creative industries as well as reduce online piracy.

ISP Monitoring

To make these educational letters possible the ISPs in the UK will monitor their client’s web traffic should the connection be unprotected. Clients using a VPN however can’t be monitored by the traditional means since all the traffic is encrypted by VPN. As a result the desired effect of the educational letters will probably reduce even more.

Sources:

BBC: Net providers to begin sending ‘pirate’ emails
TorrentFreak: UK ‘Piracy Warnings’ Are Coming This Month; Here’s How it Works