There is an interesting study out by the University of Washington’s Computer Science department revealing flaws in the detection of copyright infringers online. In the study, it was found that enforcement agencies sometimes used merely the fact that an IP address was seen in connection with a certain file online in implicating a user, without verification that the owner of the IP address did actually download anything, or that the owner of the IP is even a person. With IP spoofing tactics, they managed, hilariously, to get three printers in the CS department to receive DMCA takedown complaints from the MPAA. Is this result likely to get noticed in the next wave of countersuits against the RIAA and MPAA? Probably. Are universities going to change their policies because of this? No comment.
See the official page for the paper, an FAQ, and more details.
(Image courtesy of the Washington University CS Department.)