The six-strike copyright system was leaked and talked about at length for many months, delayed once, and eventually launched back in February of this year. With it comes a series of warnings and eventual punishment on the behalf of many big-name ISPs for those caught pirating. Now sources have come forward to the folks over at Variety claiming that Comcast is working on an alternative system.
According to these sources, the new system that Comcast is reportedly developing won't be replacing the Copyright Alert System and the six-strike policies, but will instead provide a "complementary" offering that Comcast is hoping other ISPs will adopt. In addition, the service provider is said to be in talks with movie and TV studios for partnerships that would be implemented in the system.
Under the alternative system, a subscriber who is pirating content will be given a pop-up instead with links to legitimate (that is, legal) services where the content can either be rented or bought. The pop-up can offer the content from a participating partner or some other service, though no specific distributors or services were named.
What isn't clear is whether this pop-up message disables the subscriber's ability to access the pirating website, or if it is in addition to it. Also not specified is how this alternative system will "complement" the six-strikes system, and whether one will be given more preference than the other or if they'll be a fairly even mix.
The six-strikes policy has received quite a bit of criticism and backlash, with the system working by issuing strikes against pirates. The exact method of enforcement varies based on the ISP, but focuses on issuing warnings, followed by educational materials against pirating, ultimately followed by connection throttling for those who continue to illegally download.