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Piracy The Internet Verizon Your Rights Online

How Verizon's 'Six Strikes' Plan Works 505

Posted by Soulskill
from the that-is-not-how-strikes-work dept.
An anonymous reader writes "With the 'six-strikes' anti-piracy plan set to begin in the U.S. soon, TorrentFreak has gotten its hands on a document showing how Verizon in particular will be dealing with copyright-infringing users. For your first and second strike, Verizon will email you and leave you a voicemail informing you that your account is involved in copyright infringement. For your third and fourth strikes, the ISP will automatically redirect your browser to a page that requires you to acknowledge receiving the alerts. They'll also play a video about the dangers of infringement. For your fifth and sixth strikes, they give you three options: massively throttle your connection for a few days, wait two weeks and then throttle your connection, or file an appeal with an arbitration service for $35. TorrentFreak points out that the MPAA and RIAA can obtain the connection information of repeat infringers, with which they can then take legal action."
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How Verizon's 'Six Strikes' Plan Works

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  • by sofar (317980) on Friday January 11, 2013 @07:47PM (#42563337) Homepage

    If everyone runs their WIFI AP's open.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Why would that be the case? I read in an european country (Germany?) customers are responsible for the traffic on their network. You have to secure your network to have any hope of a "it wasn't me" defense working.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Catbeller (118204)

        So, everyone has to sit outside, start naked, their hands in front of them where the police can see them, and speak clearly into the cameras forever... or they are guilty.

        No.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Lotana (842533)

          Wow! What a pure example of a strawman argument. Disgraceful that it got modded interesting.

          How does the requirement to be responsible for securing their own network brought about your fantasy of an extreme police state?

      • by xenobyte (446878) on Saturday January 12, 2013 @05:46AM (#42566193)

        In another European country - Denmark - the courts have rules that you're NOT responsible for traffic that cannot be proved to originate within the household if you run an open Wifi AP,

    • by Wesley Felter (138342) <wesley@felter.org> on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:20PM (#42563623) Homepage

      You're allowed to use the open wifi defense one time. (And you have to pay $35 to defend yourself, which pirates are too cheap to do.) After that it's assumed that you learned how to secure it.

      • by Mitreya (579078) <mitreyaNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday January 11, 2013 @09:06PM (#42563987)

        And you have to pay $35 to defend yourself, which pirates are too cheap to do.

        And I am absolutely certain that if you should be accused falsely/by accident, then someone will refund your money and compensate your time spent defending yourself.

        Otherwise, there is no reason for Verizon to send warnings only to infringers. Occasional random $35 extra payment with no downsides/costs is a great revenue source!

        • And I am absolutely certain that if you should be accused falsely/by accident, then someone will refund your money and compensate your time spent defending yourself.

          Sample size of 1: I defended myself in a lawsuit recently, or rather my lawyer defended me. The plaintiff claimed to have spent a little less than 1/2 of what I did on legal fees, yet their lawyer in more than two years produced absolutely nothing of value towards their case and they were presented with all of the evidence that they were wrong

        • by girlintraining (1395911) on Saturday January 12, 2013 @01:51AM (#42565489)

          Occasional random $35 extra payment with no downsides/costs is a great revenue source!

          It's nice how our legal system has the concept of innocent until proven guilty, but when we abolished class action lawsuits we allowed corporations to reverse that. Now you have to pay for the priviledge of being found innocent in a secret court with arbitrary rules you will not be told about until it starts, for which you are entitled to no counsel, and which has no appeal process outside of itself (the appeals are done by the same people who took the case to begin with). Arbitration should be illegal between corporations and individuals: It's like two foxes and a chicken deciding who's for dinner.

          • It's nice how our legal system has the concept of innocent until proven guilty

            Actually "innocent until proven guilty" (or: beyond reasonable doubt) is only for criminal cases.
            In civil cases, like these, it's "preponderance of the evidence" which means they only have to show that it's more probable than not that you did it.

            The sad truth is that a civil case can screw up your life more easily than a criminal case, financially speaking. But at least you don't rot in jail while awaiting trial.

      • by niko9 (315647)

        I have Verizon DSL with and open AP at my coffee shop for customers. What then?

    • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@NOsPAM.gmail.com> on Friday January 11, 2013 @10:28PM (#42564577) Journal

      Yep until the feds kick down your door and hogtie you because some guy across the street is downloading kiddy porn. Sorry I don't have time to look it up but I remember a case in FLA where a guy spent 6 months in jail and over $100,000 in legal fees to clear his name because his laptop was infected and somebody used it as a CP proxy,so all you would be doing is painting a giant bullseye.

      In the end the great once free and open internet will simply come to a close, to be replaced by a corporate run mix of social media and the home shopping network. The governments of the world hate the fact that people can air their dirty laundry (see Assange for an example of how much they hate that shit) and the corps aren't happy unless they can squeeze every single cent out of every property so they will just work together and shut it down. After all what good is high speed if you can't actually use it?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 11, 2013 @07:49PM (#42563349)

    Can I place copyright infringements with Verizon to get people blocked? We all know that the MPAA and RIAA use their internet connections for infringement, so it should be no problem for us to throttle their access.

    Somehow I bet that only a select anointed few will be allowed to make these evidence-free complaints against the rest of us.

    • by schnell (163007) <me&schnell,net> on Friday January 11, 2013 @11:26PM (#42564847) Homepage

      Can I place copyright infringements with Verizon to get people blocked?

      Sure. 10 seconds of Googling found this [verizonbusiness.com] link. BTW if you want to report someone for child pornography, go here [verizonbusiness.com].

      Anyone can report anyone else, that's how it works... so if you have actual evidence that "we all know that the MPAA and RIAA use their internet connections for infringement" then you can report it and give them a taste of their own medicine and we all win. Looking forward to it!

  • What's a strike? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jaymz666 (34050) on Friday January 11, 2013 @07:53PM (#42563389)

    Is a strike an accusation of copyright infringement? Or does it need to be proven?

    • by Catbeller (118204) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:28PM (#42563701) Homepage

      No proof. No evidence. No names, just you gone. No penalties for lying - and who would you penalize? Some third party security company that won't name themselves?

      What they've always wanted.

      • by Mitreya (579078) <mitreyaNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday January 11, 2013 @09:09PM (#42564007)

        No proof. No evidence. No names, just you gone. No penalties for lying

        The latter is the biggest concern

        I don't know if Verizon would even want you "gone". $35 fee every so often is nice extra revenue (maybe higher fines for repeat offenders?). I don't think that any of that money will be going to the copyright owner, even in the legitimate infringement cases.

      • There is evidence though. This entire system is based around catching people using BitTorrent to pirate copyrighted works. That means the copyright owner (or their enforcement agent) has an IP record of the perpetrator participating in the swarm, and because this is a two-way data transfer that IP address cannot be forged or otherwise faked. Consequently the only way your IP address is going to show up in a swarm as transferring data is if your connection is being used to participate in that swarm; that's v

        • by nabsltd (1313397)

          There is evidence though. This entire system is based around catching people using BitTorrent to pirate copyrighted works. That means the copyright owner (or their enforcement agent) has an IP record of the perpetrator participating in the swarm, and because this is a two-way data transfer that IP address cannot be forged or otherwise faked.

          Um...cannot be forged or faked? Really? Here's what you see as typical "evidence":

          173.194.73.106, Sat Jan 12 01:29:42 EST 2013, Taken 2 Extended Cut BluRay 720p DTS x264-3Li.torrent

          There, I just "proved" that Google infringed copyright. Unless the machine doing the monitoring has downloaded significant amounts of the torrent from that single IP, and kept that data segregated from data downloaded from all other IPs in the swarm, then there isn't even the beginning of proof that anyone at the listed IP eve

    • by bhlowe (1803290)
      Hollywood won't be interested in prosecuting as long as 95% of the population is unable or unwilling to pirate. Problem solved...
    • The entertainment industry bought this law specifically to make it guilt by accusation. No trial, no rights. It's an attempt to build the digital middle ages where there are the privileged few and the unwashed masses who must both serve and pay.
  • by decora (1710862) on Friday January 11, 2013 @07:54PM (#42563393) Journal

    why you would use torrent freak when there is Amazon, Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, and dozens of other ways to get video online.

    unless you are trying to find some hard to find video -- (like Aleksandr Ptushko's 1972 Russian fantasy film, Ruslan and Ludmila?.. oh wait, thats on fucking youtube for free) -- what is the point of "avoiding paying for" transformers 3 or harry potter? I mean can you not afford the massive 4 dollar price or whatever that they charge you to watch this stuff online? Is 5 bucks going to break you?

    • by dadelbunts (1727498) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:00PM (#42563433)
      Because i dont always have the bandwith to stream movies when i want, as other people use the internet as well. Because i like having media that i can enjoy when i dont have internet, when im not at home. Because 5 dollars for every movie or episode of a show id like to watch will break me.
      • by LordLimecat (1103839) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:28PM (#42563703)

        Because 5 dollars for every movie or episode of a show id like to watch will break me.

        In other words, based on some undisclosed justification, you are entitled to all-you-can-eat entertainment.

        Care to share what that reason is? Are you also entitled to free internet, free Office software, free MS SQL CALs, free vSphere enterprise licenses?

      • WTF is wrong with you people?

        I agree with all the "I don't want it if it comes with DRM, commercials, poor resolution and buffering delays" and "All the content is barley watchable crap anyway" comments. Except that I actually mean it. If you say that and then you pirate it, you obviously do want it and are willing to steal it. If you say that and then pay for it but bitch about it on the internet, you actually do want it and are willing to put up with the DRM and commercials. I'm not. I won't steal. I won'

    • by stanlyb (1839382)
      I have a "royal card". It shows that i watched close to 100 movies per year. For this amount of money, i do expect a free pass to watch them online, offline, anytime, anyformat and anywhere. Don't you think so? Oh, and yes, there are only 10% worth watching, so i should be payed for watching the crap these guys are producing.
    • Game of Thrones, Weeds, Dexter, etc

      Any TV programming that requires $30 / month for access to maybe 2 titles per month.

      No, they are not available on streaming services ala carte.

      I've tried Netflix. I get maybe 2 titles I care about and the rest is crap or available on cable to DVR.

      Time shifting when a DVR only has a few receivers.

      Watching shows you missed but have paid for access. Prior seasons of something if only you had happened upon it the year before (reruns can be hit or miss)

      Just a few uses for torre

    • What about HBO content (or similar offerings for that matter)?

      http://theoatmeal.com/comics/game_of_thrones [theoatmeal.com]
    • Maybe you just want to watch the film instead of battling with the DRM that all the legit formats have...

    • by martin-boundary (547041) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:09PM (#42563527)

      why you would use torrent freak when there is Amazon, Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, and dozens of other ways to get video online.

      Sorry, but ads and drm are showstoppers. I much prefer pirated content, as it is packaged nicely with attention to the details I care about: good file size and codec, no extraneous content, easily archivable, and no buffering delays.

    • by Catbeller (118204) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:11PM (#42563547) Homepage

      Because the world should not be a police state run for the express purpose of making sure someone isn't reading a book or watching a movie or listening to a song without permission. We did not build this world for that. The "copyright" crimes hurt no one. The police state... that is the ultimate evil, the last evil, the evil that eats all the freedoms we could ever have, because without the right, the ability to read, or think, or speak without Secret Father, Yahweh of the Internet, taking down your name and activity in the Great Book for use in any sort of case anyone might want to build against you, at any time, for any reason... without privacy, you are a fool and a prisoner and a joke of a human being, a toy for the tyrants that are here now and their successors, who will not be looking for your records of watching movies, but for seditious or anti-corporate, anti-authoritarian thought of any sort. Without that, no government, no corrupt cop, no black-hearted corporation or combination of all three will ever face a threat that they won't have warning of. Programs will monitor everything Johnny reads, watches, says, or hell, someday even thinks, and they will at their earliest ability set flags for those who watch so they can nip rebellion in the blood. Ask Occupy. They were monitored before they even existed.

      With total awareness comes the total police state. The last one.

    • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:14PM (#42563573)

      why you would use torrent freak when there is Amazon, Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, and dozens of other ways to get video online.

      Torrent freak is a news website. I expect you meant bittorrent - or more generally piracy in any form.

      I've got two problems with all those "legitimate" sources:

      1) Privacy - I believe it is fundamentally unfair to require that a person's viewing habits be tracked in a profile in a database somewhere that he has no control over or even the right to see the contents of -- especially when combined with all of the other cyber-stalking that corporations do nowadays. Bittorrent at least only identifies you down to an IP address and other forms of piracy are even less trackable.

      2) Copyright Business Model - I belive people do deserve to get creative works for free (both cost-free and freedom to tinker-free). That doesn't mean I think the creators need to work for free, I just think that a policy of digital scarcity neuters the potential of the internet to benefit humanity as a whole. We need to be working towards methods of compensation that do not rely on distribution fees, but as long as digital scarcity is a money-maker for the entrenched interests there is little incentive to explore alternatives. I don't think any individual pirate is going to make a difference in that regard, but in aggregate it can.

      • We need to be working towards methods of compensation that do not rely on distribution fees, but as long as digital scarcity is a money-maker for the entrenched interests there is little incentive to explore alternatives.

        It is very unlikely that you will ever come up with a system that is better than, "Those who enjoy/use the work, pay for it."

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:16PM (#42563593)

      If I pay for it, I expect it to be DRM-free. If the pirates can figure out how to publish a quality product, I'm sure the real distributors can do so as well.

      My home media distribution injects weather/sports/gcal alert tickers into video streams that get sent all over the house. I've put quite a bit of time and effort and money into building a nifty system. I'm perfectly willing to pay for my content, but if you demand I use HDCP and disable useful features that my family has enjoyed for years, then you can go fuck yourself.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      why you would use torrent freak when there is Amazon, Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, and dozens of other ways to get video online.

      1. because it does not work on linux
      2. because you are not allowed to save the media
      3. because some of them do not allow movies licensed under CC
      4. because not everyone is entitled to a credit card

      it is like saying you can only walk when green light is on. problem is that red is constantly put into your eyes. this is how fucked up this system is.

    • by Nexzus (673421) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:27PM (#42563695)

      I want to watch my local NHL team, the Vancouver Canucks, online through the NHL's own streaming service, NHL GameCenter, as I don't have cable. I am perfectly willing and able to pay the approximately $20 per month to do this. I want to pay the NHL to consume their content.

      However, the NHL has imposed geo-IP lockouts for local games, meaning I can't watch my local team play on the service I'm paying for. There's two ways around this - use a VPN/proxy (which is expressly forbidden in the GC ToC [nhl.com]) or watch an illegal stream.

    • by Catbeller (118204) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:31PM (#42563731) Homepage

      Is your collective Puritan hatred of freeloaders really worth turning the entire internet into a police state?

      Yup.

    • There are indeed dozens of ways to get video online. So in order to find out which service your video of choice uses, you simply need to search each provider, setup an account with each one, know which film and tv distributors use which service, then make sure you are within the correct window of time (lots of tv shows implement a 30 day waiting period before allowing their content onto online services, movies can vary even more), make sure your device or OS is compatible with their system, determine if th
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 11, 2013 @10:27PM (#42564573)

      Because i have adopted a very corporate attitude about it all. Which means i'm going to rip off everyone i can, in any way i can, until they stop me. Then i'm going to do the absolute minimum to get around it. And continue doing it anyway.

      It's what i was taught to do. Fuck anyone who doesn't like it. They are free to vote with their wallet and not do business with me.

      Maybe i need to take one more page from the corporate handbook. Create a shell corporation to buy my isp connection with. When i get that last strike, dissolve the company and create a new one doing the exact same thing.

      Corporations are people. But my corporation is kind of a dickhead guy.

    • A legit question, and one that deserves an honest answer. I like to think of myself as a moral pirate. I try to buy books, music, and movies from artists I respect, when I can afford it. When not, or when it's something where I don't feel the artist(s) or creator(s) particularly needs my money (an entirely subjective and problematic scale, I know) I pirate it.

      I feel justified, able to sleep at night, because Big Media (music, movies, TV, books, etc) have failed to hold up their end of the copyright bargin

  • by Catbeller (118204) on Friday January 11, 2013 @07:58PM (#42563419) Homepage

    Deep packet inspection, volume of data, targets and returned IP addresses... will a securely tunneled and encrypted connection to a proxy service thwart this monitoring - or will they simply use such as indirect evidence of torrenting, since the standards of such evidence are set by the MPAA/RIAA?

    As for commercial proxies - how probable is it that such services are more-or-less instantly compromised - as in a visit from FBI agents conscripted to work for movie companies ? Whom do you trust to manage connections?

    How does one pay for such connections, if the act of using a credit card automatically locks down your identity? Does the use of pre-paid money cards such as Vanilla work (if you buy them from someone who doesn't care much about taking your real name down)? I understand that many say they do not, but other posters have mentioned that one merely has to provide Vanilla a zip code on the registration page to make them usable to pay online services.

    I'd do all the above just to watch Netflix. I'm that much of a bastard. We managed to use the postal system and phones for over a hundred years without a spy system reading our every word and listening to every call, and I don't see why we need to start now. Especially now that ATT is about to shut off the old phone system and go completely IP, which means the old laws mean nothing.

    And for the generation who never knew privacy, I preemptively say: yes, it matters. It is sad you may never care or even understand why it does. Your are happy goldfish, exhibits in a zoo. Think about who is outside your bowl, watching. You've spent your lives being told to be afraid of strange adults and white vans - yet you let actual, secret versions of those kinds of people follow your every move and listen to your lives? Think about it. The creeps you've been told to fear your entire lives aren't really real, for the most part. The creeps who are locking down human existence, building the last and only secret police the world will ever need - they are real and they are here and you need to fight them.

    • by mark-t (151149)

      And for the generation who never knew privacy...

      Which generation would that be, exacty?

      • by Catbeller (118204) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:20PM (#42563625) Homepage

        The current one. And the next one.

        Schools are basically jails, and train kids to accept prison conditions - look at it objectively. Tracking devices in the phones. Recorded calls, recorded messages, emails. Soon, tracking built into the computers in cars, unkillable. Ebooks recorded, times, dates. Anything that flows in packets, recorded. Your movements, recorded, even if you ditch a phone and a car, 'cause cameras will watch you - and listen, too. The cameras and trackers and mics are shrinking, and with zero societal will to stop it, will be everywhere.

        Yes, this generation. It starts in the schools, the acceptance of strip searches, phone tracking, drug searches, notebooks with cameras that watch the student... come on, the new crop of adults have been in jail since they were born, figuratively, and have been trained to accept it.

        The next generation? Just keep exponentially increasing the surveillance, and the acceptance. Police states are not, historically speaking, unwelcome. People trade freedom for safety all the time, always have, if they are scared properly. The few who become bullied and targeted by the people behind the cameras and trackers are not interesting to people. "They" are by definition criminals, anyway.

        I ain't afraid of evil bastards half as much as I am afraid of a population that doesn't understand what freedom actually means, and what they give up to be "safe". They has been zero effective backpush against this era, and it will get worse.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by czth (454384)

          Jails for some, yes - but they were designed to prepare people for working in factories.

          But factory work isn't that much in demand any more - creative work is [sethgodin.com].

  • Little weasels... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anachragnome (1008495) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:01PM (#42563443)

    Little weasels...

    I noticed that there is no mention of a complete disconnection--leaving the door open for continued billing even though you have an almost useless connection for two weeks. Me thinks Verizon is afraid they will start losing customers permanently if they disconnect them, even for a short time. There is no discussion of a 7th strike, or an 8th...what happens then? You get another two weeks of shit connection. Will they charge you less? Doubtful.

    Make their fears a reality.

    The solution is to drop them the moment they throttle you...and never come back...and NEVER COME BACK. Trust me--when they start seeing ANY loss of revenue, they will rethink this. Verizon is obligated, by law, to act in the best interest of their shareholders--how long do you think shareholders will put up with lost revenue?

    • by mark-t (151149)
      It's a fairly safe bet that there won't be enough people doing what you describe to really make a significant difference.
      • Re:Little weasels... (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Anachragnome (1008495) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:24PM (#42563659)

        "It's a fairly safe bet that there won't be enough people doing what you describe to really make a significant difference."

        Nice to see some optimism.

        A lot of people said that about SOPA and PIPA, as well. I am willing to bet your opinion on the matter might change if you were to try streaming Netflix over a 256k connection...and knowing that it isn't getting better for two weeks (also realizing that you are still paying full price to Netflix, but not able to access it for two weeks). And then realizing that they are essentially increasing your cost of internet access anywhere from 1000% to 20000% (depending on your previous connection speed). How long do you think you could sit through that before you'd had enough?
         

    • Re:Little weasels... (Score:5, Informative)

      by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:38PM (#42563789)

      I noticed that there is no mention of a complete disconnection--leaving the door open for continued billing even though you have an almost useless connection for two weeks. Me thinks Verizon is afraid they will start losing customers permanently if they disconnect them, even for a short time. There is no discussion of a 7th strike, or an 8th...what happens then? You get another two weeks of shit connection.

      For fuck's sake, stop jerking you knee and take 2 minutes to read TFA dumb ass or, if you did, learn how to read.

      It's a 2/3 *day* slowdown after strikes #5/6:

      Alert 5 and 6:

      “You can: Agree to an immediate temporary (2 or 3 day) reduction in the speed of your Internet access service to 256kbps (a little faster than typical dial-up speed); Agree to the same temporary (2 or 3 day) speed reduction but delay it for a period of 14 days;

      And after strike #6:

      If more infringements are found after the sixth alert “nothing” will happen. The user will receive no more alerts and can continue using his or her Internet connection at full speed.

      However – and this is not mentioned by Verizon – the MPAA and RIAA may obtain the IP-addresses of such repeat infringers in order to take legal action against them. While the ISPs will not voluntarily share the name and address linked to the IP-address, they can obtain a subpoena to demand this information from the provider.

  • Does most of YouTube qualify?

  • by hguorbray (967940) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:07PM (#42563513)
    wait until the ISPs that are also content owners or carriers get in on this (ie. comcast and AT&T)

    there won't be a Chinese wall in the world big enough to keep the isp departments from ratting you out to their big content departments and to the MAFIAA

    and they will probably use this to crack down on Linux .iso s and other homegrown or otherwise free legitimate content and then homogenous corporate media will have won....

    -I'm just sayin'
  • If, say, six Verizon employees cut-and-paste web images into corporate PowerPoints, will Verizon go by the book and shut itself down?

  • by PopeRatzo (965947) on Friday January 11, 2013 @08:23PM (#42563657) Homepage Journal

    I have a "One Strike" plan. If an ISP threatens to interfere with my use of the Internet without illegal activity on my part having been proven under due process, then I will never, ever do business with them.

    The list of corporations to whom I pay no mind continues to grow, apace.

    • by skywire (469351) *

      And you will never, ever use the internet without going to a library or a friend's house.

  • Common carrier (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SuperMog2002 (702837) on Friday January 11, 2013 @09:00PM (#42563937)
    This does mean they're giving up their common carrer status and are now legally liable for any criminal activities their network is used for, right? Right?
  • by Nyder (754090) on Friday January 11, 2013 @09:18PM (#42564067) Journal

    for my torrents and i already use encyrption on my usenet. BTGuard is quite slow, but I'm apparently safe. Thinking of maybe going VPN instead of BTGuard, but I need to find one that is fast, and doesn't keep records.

    So I'm paying an extra $6 a month to be safe, seems fine to me.

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