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Movie Studios Sending Warnings to Stop Illegal Downloading Via Internet Providers

Geek Tip: Beware of the Dreaded Illegal Download Letter

Lifehacker reports that a reader recently got a letter from her ISP provider, warning her that Paramount/Dreamworks was aware of her illegal downloading via BitTorrent. And while they weren't suing her, nor was her internet being cut off, the letter from Cablevision was a warning.

This particular reader had downloaded over 30 movies when she received the letter and has stopped downloading and implored Lifehacker as to what's next.

Many commenters reported getting the letter for downloading copyrighted material and not having been disconnected or sued, and therefore felt it was a mere scare tactic (that worked quite well, I might add). On the other hand, a Sugar co-worker tells me that her friend got a warning letter and has been disconnected ever since (including being black-balled in other locations, too). Whatever your downloading habits, just be aware that this could happen to you, too! Be careful, geeks.


Join The Conversation
Thomas3481925 Thomas3481925 4 years
yes i got one of those letters to wireless network and all had to turn it off so i don't get another but they mention exactly what was downloaded and it traces to your isp ..... key thing here is make sure you do not have an open network password protect it ..... don't be foolish its not a scare tactic its real they are cracking down now but in most cases they do give you warning and time to stop doing it. if you ignore it they will take action. they cant crack down right away on everyone. they would go out of business so many people do it. so yes it is to scare you at first to stop but they will take action if you don't. BITtorrent and torrent downloads are the easiest to trace and track even if you use tracers or tracker deflection softrware. I know currently IRC AND IRQ tools currently cannot be traced but the sites used to make it easy for those downloads can be deflected or blocked depending your ISP policy ... check into protect yourselves dont take this likely.
prizmuz prizmuz 8 years
so what if we download adult contents using bit torents, are this illgal as well?
springfieldrocks springfieldrocks 9 years
i don't download things, just buy since i get an uber discount at my retail side job, but you should definitely be using bit torrent (or another actual torrent software - there are many!) and should definitely google and download "Peer Guardian" to make sure that you're not attempting to download copyrighted content directly from the people who are watching for this sort of thing... i don't condone downloading copyrighted content for free. at all. but if you're going to, please follow the above suggestions :)
Hellc0ke Hellc0ke 9 years
btw, no one gave me any stinkin letter, they just disconnected my service about an hour or 2 after i watched the movie.
Hellc0ke Hellc0ke 9 years
ATTENTION EVERYONE OK, so im posting this because this seems to be the only resource that ive found so far about this. today i just called cox communications for the second time about my interent service being disconnected for downloading movies, drillbit taylor this time they said. it was a paramount/dreamworks picture as was the other movie i dloaded before and the same thing happened, now the guy said that they have a 3 strike policy about this, i told him (now i lied about this obviously) that i just came back from vacation and i have wireless internet that isnt secured (or passworded) because cox can look into your network and see what is being downloaded specifically by bittorrent now, but they cant see who is doing it, so technically someone can connect to my wireless internet from the neighbors house and dload movies or whatever and I STILL GET BLAMED FOR IT. isnt that fucked? so now i have one more strike left. and im thinking not to dload anymore paramount pictures, but i am trying to find a way i can use a firewall or my router to block them from seeing what i dload. if anyone has any information or questions on this please contact me at
ikitty13 ikitty13 9 years
This is scary! But some people can't afford to buy CD's and DVD's all the time. I bet in a few years it will be completely impossible to download anything you aren't supposed to.
jjlyn jjlyn 9 years
what if you don't download but you just watch them on viewers online?
tglynn tglynn 9 years
My brother was "issued" one of these from comcast, he's continued to download, and hasn't seen any further action since.
angelfromlsu angelfromlsu 9 years
They don't care that you download....they only care if you share(Straight from Cox Communications tech). Use usenet and only download. Much faster too! And use a mac so you don't get viruses.
said8me said8me 9 years
bittorrent is better than the others because it takes a little bit from every where (bit by bit), as opposed to taking a large file from one single host. harder to track where you get it from, but still makes you guilty of illegal things when caught. these letters from ISPs are not "made up." they know exactly what you got, and if you are let off with just a warning, consider yourself lucky. regardless, downloading things is stupid (unless you *really* know what you are doing). a lot of what's out there now comes with viruses, or programs that open back doors to your computers so hackers can take advantage of your machine. limewire is NOTORIOUS for this. dont be cheap. go buy that CD, movie, etc. it beats having your cable/internet/phone taken away.
freegracefrom freegracefrom 9 years
We've gotten one of these letters from Comcast. :/
angelinemarie angelinemarie 9 years
cottonpoots cottonpoots 9 years
...and here I was thinking that it was only illegal if you distributed/sold it. I guess not! :(
DreaAST DreaAST 9 years
i have never heard of bittorrent. i might have to check it out. i usually use limewire.
jendudley jendudley 9 years
I love bittorrent and all of it's copycats. Much better than limewire, kazaa and all those others. Curious.
Matdredalia Matdredalia 9 years
What I'm wondering is if these letters are legitimate or not. For example, what if the ISP is simply assuming illegal content is being downloaded via Bit Torrent, even if the downloader is simply downloading legitimate Bit Torrent content? Anyone can send out a letter claiming that two of the biggest movie production studios in the country "know you're downloading" as a shot in the dark and probably be right if that person actually is downloading. What I'm curious to know is how many people have received these letters and haven't actually downloaded anything illegal? Ya' know, like that 70-some year old woman who was accused of downloading hundreds of R&B and Rap songs via Kazaa about 4 years ago.
darlingnicki22 darlingnicki22 9 years
7bits 7bits 9 years
Okay thought police
CurvatudeBlog CurvatudeBlog 9 years
have people not learned from the cases that are out there... big brother and his cousin are watching to see if you are taking crumbs out of their pockets..
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