Well, this was unexpected. After CCI had been working since late 2011 to get its ambitious anti-piracy alert system off the ground, it looked like the program was finally going to launch this year. Things rarely ever work out as planned, however, and the alert system has been delayed once again.
Due to unexpected factors largely stemming from Hurricane Sandy which have seriously affected our final testing schedules, CCI anticipates that the participating ISPs will begin sending alerts under the Copyright Alert System in the early part of 2013, rather than by the end of the year.
Our goal has always been to implement the program in a manner that educates consumers about copyright and peer-to-peer networks, encourages the use of legal alternatives, safeguards customer privacy, and provides an easy-to-use independent review program for consumers to challenge alerts they believe they’ve received in error.
We need to be sure that all of our “I”s are dotted and “T”s crossed before any company begins sending alerts, and we know that those who are following our progress will agree.
The delay was unexpected, but it shouldn't change anything in the long run. ISPs will start sending warnings in early 2013, and casual file sharers will be encouraged to use legal alternatives. Repeat offenders will be targeted with more drastic measures such as throttled speeds and blocked Web sites, but the CCI has already said that they're not going after "serial pirates" who will get around the alert system by using VPNs and related technologies.
For now, however, we wait. The CCI is only saying early 2013 without providing a firm date. There's a possibility that it could be delayed again if any of the ISPs get cold feet. More ISPs could also join in the fun between now and launch.[h/t: BBC]