Digital policing

Digital policing refers to the rules and regulations that control the distribution of digital media.
The digital media includes games, movies, music,tv-shows and applications.

With the help of peer to peer file sharing through the internet, there are countless numbers of programs and websites which let users download and stream digital media for free. This is why the implementation of digital policies has become so vital. Anti piracy rules have been implemented to prevent violating intellectual property rights.

Examples of monitoring organizations which are set up to enforce the anti piracy rules include:

Recording Industry Association of America
Motion Picture Association of America

Who does digital media theft affect the most?

"It’s commonly known as “piracy,” but that’s too benign of a term to adequately describe the toll that music theft takes on the enormous cast of industry players working behind the scenes to bring music to your ears. That cast includes songwriters, recording artists, audio engineers, computer technicians, talent scouts and marketing specialists, producers, publishers and countless others"

How do these organizations track people?

They have legal experts verify the files being shared are illegal, verify that they came from a given IP address. They then have enough evidence to get a subpoena delivered to your ISP, your ISP looks through their logs and gives them your information. They serve you. The RIAA's latest acts are SOPA and PIPA which are a controversy of their own.

There are various types of media theft that occur, the most common being:

Camcorder theft --> Pirated movies which are taped from a recording device in a cinema
Peer to peer theft -->Digital files shared amongst users on the internet
Streaming theft -->Allows users to view unauthorized copyrighted motion picture and TV content on demand

This article talks about how social networking platforms like Myspace music has played a revolutionary effect in downloading music illegally. 95% of music downloads are done illegally which impacts the music industry in a negative way.
This article illustrates the consequences of illegal downloading and what happens when someone gets caught.

Main social and ethical issues:

intellectual property
digital citizenship
lower incomes