BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin Media will not share piracy database

The final draft of an anti-piracy report states that UK ISPs are only responsible for sending “educational letters” to users who download illegal files, not that they must share customer data with the UK music industry.

Share

The final draft of an anti-piracy report states that UK ISPs are only responsible for sending “educational letters” to users who download illegal files, not that they must share customer data with the UK music industry.

UK ISPs and the music bodies have been in discussions to crack down on illegal downloading for over a decade. BPI UK Music and Music Publisher's Association previously requested access to a database of known illegal downloaders, opening the possibility of further legal action against individuals as well as letters threatening punitive action to be sent by the providers.

But the Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme (VCAP) final draft states that Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin Media have only agreed to send "educational" letters to customers believed to be downloading illegally, the BBC claims.

None of the ISPs would confirm whether an agreement had been reached.

A TalkTalk spokesperson said: "We continue to be involved in discussions about voluntary measures that both address illegal file-sharing that also protect our customers' best interests."

Virgin Media said it is “engaged in conversations with rights holders and other broadband providers about a proposed Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme”.

A spokesperson for BPI said: “Content creators and ISPs have, with the support of government, been working in partnership to develop a joint awareness programme that would support the growth of legal digital entertainment services, reduce illegal downloading and create the best possible customer experience online. Discussions are ongoing and no agreement has been reached - reports that an announcement is imminent are wide of the mark. We will comment further if and when an agreement is in place."

One of the largest sports file-sharing sites shut down in April, following threats of 10-year jail terms from UK police.

"Recommended For You"

Shareholders slam Facebook over 'incongruent' PAC contributions on gay rights, online piracy Microsoft must hand over customer data held in Dublin to US government