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High Court Forces Big UK Broadband ISPs to Block 13 More Piracy Sites

Tuesday, November 1st, 2016 (4:06 pm) - Score 3,122

The Motion Picture Association of Europe (MPA) has once again convinced the High Court to force all of the United Kingdom’s largest broadband ISPs to block access to 13 extra websites, which were all found to facilitate Internet copyright infringement (piracy).

As usual the MPA first attempted make a voluntarily request for BT, Virgin Media, O2, Sky Broadband, TalkTalk and EE to block the sites, which is traditionally refused because ISPs won’t impose such a block without legal grounds to do so.

Failing that they launched an injunction against the providers, which succeeded in harnessing Section 97A of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act (CDPA) in order to force the ISPs into imposing a court ordered block.

The latest list includes a number of popular, albeit unlawful, video streaming websites (plus any mirrors or proxies of the same site that may be created in the future). The blocks are likely to be introduced over the next few weeks.

The 13 New Website Blocks

So far well over 100 websites have been blocked by this approach and that’s not even counting the many proxies or mirrors that frequently crop up. But blocking like this isn’t cheap and Wiggin LLP last year revealed that an unopposed application tends to cost around £14,000 per site. On top of that the additional admin required to maintain the block and keep ISPs up-to-date with related IP changes and new URLs (Proxy Servers) comes to around £3,600 per site per year.

At the same time ISPs also incur on-going costs as part of their work to introduce the blocks. EE previously suggested that a “near four figure sum” was involved with each update, while Sky hinted at a “mid three figure sum” and then roughly half that for future updates. Similarly Virgin Media pegged their own annual costs at a “low five figure sum“.

Meanwhile those looking to access such sites can easily circumvent the restrictions by using all sorts of different approaches, such as DNS changes, HTTPS, Proxy Servers or Virtual Private Network (VPN) connections etc. Credits to Torrentfreak for spotting this update.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
7 Responses
  1. Jazzy says:

    Really don’t know why they bother. You can d/l hotspot shield in two minutes and see what you want

  2. Naims says:

    We don’t condone Internet copyright infringement (piracy) and work with our wholesaler to keep our customers informed of any agency detected copyright breaches. But surely, despite their complaints about the cost, it is in the interest of the named entertainment led ISP’s to block such sites (to the less IT savvy) as these companies sell access to the very material the named websites offer for free.

  3. cyclope says:

    Well the majority of those listed want people to register a free account with them,before they allow you to download or watch anything , worst of all they want details of your cc , mmmm my scam detector says avoid

  4. tom says:

    none of this stops piracy but helps bolster censorship, all the time there are court cases going through that results in domain names being forcibly blacklisted by ISP’s will just allow for greater ability to forcibly block other URLS.

    It only starts with the following 2 excuses:
    Child Porn

    neither of which have ever been stopped by blocking URLS & never will because none of this is tackling the actual problem at hand all it does is allow those in power to control more of your life.

    Even the very people who created the internet & website think this form of censorship is bad & counter productive

    2 minutes & you can rename any of the sites, 2 days and you have a potential 20 alias domains on different IP’s.

    Why play whack-a-mole when you should be eradicating the very mole you whack?

  5. hmmm says:

    fail fail

  6. Rei Lejiokia says:

    £14,000 to block a website?


  7. 123 movies to it watching this site why are you blocking everybody watching this site we also need some for our requirement we have long day at work we need some to relax and watch do not matter restrict take the laptop away from children

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