Down-loaders beware top U.S. ISP’s to literally slow down piracy

Wanting to catch the new “Transformers :Dark of the Moon,” but short on cash? Did you miss the latest episode of “Falling Skies?” Well you might want to avoid trying to download them from the Internet as your Internet service provider could be now be tracking what illegal corners of the Web you wander into.

After years of negotiations, the MPAA, RIAA and some of the country’s largest Internet service providers have agreed on a new approach to help identifying customers suspected of digital copyright infringement and a way to send them warnings about their misdoings.

Americans who illegally download songs, TV shows, and movies will now receive warnings to stop, failure to do so could result in reduced Internet speeds. The new process will issue a series of six warnings, each with a progressively harsher consequences if the initial cautions were ignored.

It is estimated that digital piracy costs the United States economy $16 billion in lost revenue each year, and both the MPAA and RIAA have been eager for an efficient way to deal with the problem.

It seems this latest agreement is a sensible approach to the problem of online content theft and should respect the privacy and rights of individual users.

While downloading the latest movie or missed TV show sounds easy, there is now one more deterrent in place to help keep copyrighted material safe and the normal user out of trouble.

Tech advice:

Our reader, Sue, wrote in asking “I have a slot for my SD card in my computer, but I haven’t been able to figure out how to view those pictures or put them in my picture file. I have Windows 7.”

Sue, since I don’t know what computer you have I am going to give you a few things to check.

The first is to make sure that the drivers for the card reader are properly installed. To check this you need to go to your Device Manager which can be found under the Control Panel and then under Hardware & Sound. When you launch Device Manager check to see if there are any yellow triangles, these represent a driver issue and must be resolved before that device can function properly.

If there is a triangle then you will need to install the correct driver for your card reader. This can normally be found on your computer manufacturer’s support website. Most manufactures allow you to download all the drivers you need from their support website. This is especially handy if your computer originally had Windows XP or Vista and Windows 7 was installed as an upgrade. Not all drivers work with Windows 7 and need to be upgraded.

Once you check and/or repair your card reader you should be able to insert the SD card and Windows 7 will launch a window asking you what to do with the files it finds.

If the card reader is listed as properly working in the Device Manager there are a few other things to do.

First make sure when you insert the SD card that you can not see it listed in Windows Explorer under the Computer on the left. By default the Computer, which is a listing of drives attached to the computer, is collapsed. You need to click on it to expand and see all your drives; such as the hard drive, DVD drive, and attached drives like the SD card. The SD card will be listed as a removable device and should be assigned a drive letter. If you can see this then your card is working and simply click on that drive to see the contents.

Windows 7 would normally pop up a menu asking what to do when the card is inserted but that feature could of been turned off by mistake, making it seem that when the SD card was inserted that nothing happened.

The last thing to do is if your card reader takes more than SD cards to try a different card and see what results you get. It is possible that the card reader built into computer has a faulty SD card slot. If that is the case you can get a new multi-card reader that connects through a USB port or use the USB cable that came with you camera or digital device to connect to the computer and get your files off of.

Remember you can reach me at jcarrick@pioneergroup.com. Feel free to ask any questions you may have or if there are any products or software you would like me to review.

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