10 August 2009

The Curious Case of Karoo

Remember Karoo? They were the strange ISP in Hull that was going to put in place a *one* strike and you're out scheme for *alleged* copyright infringement. Then they changed their minds. Now it looks like they've thought about this some more:

“We will no longer suspend a customer’s service unless we receive a court order from a copyright owner taking legal action. As a result it is the responsibility of the legal system, not Karoo, to ensure the accuracy of the information provided by the copyright owners.”

I predict that this will happen increasingly, as ISPs realise the implications of what the content industries are demanding with their "three strikes and you're out" insanity. They would clearly be on very dodgy legal ground if they carried out this threat based on mere accusations. Yahoo for Karoo.

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Crosbie Fitch said...

Were they also haemorrhaging customers perchance?

Or did they look deep into their moral conscience and realise that perhaps the individual's liberty comes before the corporation's monopoly?

Glyn Moody said...

I don't think they were losing customers, because they have a literal monopoly on Hull: no rival ISPs to turn to. More likely their lawyers started thinking...

Crosbie Fitch said...

Yup, ISPs as monopoly providers will get away with anything. Unfortunately, that tends to prompt calls for regulation (qv net neutrality) instead of competition.

It is possible it wasn't even Karoo's lawyers, but the cartel's, realising that perhaps they should be careful what they wish for - in case some naive ISP grants those wishes instead of haggling to the expected compromise.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be terribly surprised if this caused the end of their monopoly eventually.

BT own the cables in the rest of the UK but it didn't stop competition, once a mechanism had been figured out.

Glyn Moody said...

Yes, maybe it's that thought that prompted them to backtrack.