An article in Ars Technica points to a recent increase in copyright infringement notices being sent to universities. While the Record Industry Association of America (RIAA) claims that it has not changed its procedures, it did note that record labels are constantly improving their ability to detect peer-to-peer traffic used to exchange music files (among many other things).
According to the article,
George Washington University has received 123 notices in the past week, compared to the usual five to ten.
"We have seen a large up-tick as well," Brian Rust, who works in the Office of the CIO at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, told Ars. "I'm told it started when we received a new batch of six pre-settlement letters two weeks ago. Since then, the instance of cease and desist letters has greatly increased as well."
The increased number of notices means more work for IT staff who now have to dig through DHCP logs and identify students for RIAA. Other groups within the universities are also obviously affected:
One result of the increase in notices is an increased workload for university IT staff. "For my coworkers, the increase is immense," University of Wisconsin-Madison University Housing network systems administrator Marc Bourgeois told Ars. "For the people at the university that communicate with copyright holders, I'd imagine the increase in workload has been somewhat daunting."
As much as I hate to admit it, it sounds like it's time to join the ranks of Ohio State and simply block P2P traffic on campus altogether. While legitimate uses are an obvious casualty, university IT should be devoting time and resources to supporting students and faculty rather than a draconian industry group.