[ppml] Policy Proposal 2007-8: Transfer Policy Clarifications

David E. Smith dave at mvn.net
Fri Mar 9 19:34:12 EST 2007

Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
> Last I knew, malicious attacks over the network are illegal.  If a hosting
> authority was in charge of an IP block that an attack was originating
> from and they refused to disclose who launched the attack, (if in the US)
> the FBI would file charges against them.  You bet I'd see them in court
> just like any victim of any other kind of crime would see the perp in court.
If the FBI or another LEO of competent jurisdiction shows up with a 
court order, I'll delightfully turn over the requested information. If 
you (in the sense of "some other network operator," not you personally) 
ask nicely, I may or may not provide you with information. If you start 
making demands, I'll just get cranky.

To the best of my knowledge, I'm not under any /legal/ obligation to 
publicly identify all my customers to the world. I'm under obligation 
from ARIN to identify a few (the dozen or so that have eight or more IP 
addresses allocated to them), but that's pretty much it.
> This is in fact exactly why the Motion Picture and Sound Association offers
> ISP's immunity for prosecution in exchange for the ISP signing a contract
> that allows them to get information about the ISP's customers who are downloading
> or uploading pirated music.  No ISP would sign such a thing if they didn't
> have liability under the law.
Not necessarily.

The RIAA has a history of making lawsuits with unreasonable demands 
(suing college students for millions of dollars), then settling 
out-of-court under slightly more reasonable terms. It's not too much of 
a stretch to say the MPAA might possibly use similar tactics with ISPs. 
They probably have a bigger budget, and better lawyers, than many ISPs. 
I don't have any proof of this, having never been on the business end of 
one of these suits, but it's quite plausible.

David Smith
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