Another three major broadband providers have now received letters from the Motion Picture Association asking the providers to block access to Newzbin2. That this has happened is of no great surprise as this had been flagged as the most likely action after the recent court judgments against BT requiring them to block access to Newzbin.
The BBC News article indicates that Sky and Virgin Media are going to insist on a court order before implementing any blocking, and the third TalkTalk is considering its response. While in all likelihood a court order will be granted, the open nature of this means that providers cannot be accused of blocking by the backdoor. Back room agreements to block sites is something that many people are worrying may actually happen, and then those with the power and influence can control what people see, hear and read via the internet.
Alas while the UK is looking to move against internet piracy, the Treasury has closed a VAT loop-hole that while leveling the field for UK based retailers, may simply result in e-commerce sites delivering from another location outside the EU, or the prices of those goods affected will rise. The price of CD, DVD and Blu-Ray content has been falling, with films particularly only holding their launch price for a short time, before being available for £5 to £10, this low price point along with the rise of Digital Copy versions was a way to help reduce piracy.
The content providers themselves need to look very closely at their pricing policies too, and the restrictions they place in terms of what content is available. To have digital content costing more than a physical copy that someone can format shift at home seems like madness, also at this time there is no legal online source of movies that we are aware of that exceeds meets or exceeds the quality of Blu-Ray. Most HD movies you can rent or buy are HD in the sense they are better quality than the standard material, but watching side by side with the Blu-Ray you often can think you are watching an upscaled DVD playing. The record labels and music industry str not the sole culprit, sometimes the percentage cut taken by app/media stores is behind these price anomalies.