EPIC strongly opposes any limitation of free speech and free access to the Internet. However, free speech does not include the right to any other person's free speech, including their intellectual property. EPIC absolutely supports the right of copyright holders to ownership of their intellectual property. File sharing is an infringement of copyright.

Legislation has been and will be proposed to combat intellectual property infringement. Recent efforts have been unsuccessful, primarily due to the unclear or overbroad language of the proposed legislation.

To obtain EPIC's support, any proposed legislation must:

  • Define "piracy" and "pirate" as they pertain to copyright infringement;
  • Define "file sharing" as it pertains to circumventing copyright protection;
  • Extend the definition of "copyright infringement" to be identified as "theft;"
  • Focus legal remedies, whether fines or more serious penalties, on large scale pirates, whether they profit from their activity or not;
  • Clearly exempt from such legislation any infringement which is not directed at sharing a whole work in its original form, such as quotes in a review, covers displayed for promotional purposes, links to a violating site or quotes included in a comment on a blog or website, YouTube videos, etc., or other use which does not fit under the definition of "file sharing." Satire should also be exempt.
  • Extend copyright protection laws to clearly include under the definition of "infringement" the copying of digital files containing intellectual property, such as eBooks;
  • Provide for due process, such as requiring a court order before legal action is taken;
  • Require ISPs, advertising sites, payment facilitators, etc., to:
    • Clearly define the method for filing a DMCA notice;
    • Provide an accessible method for doing so;
    • Allow anyone to make a DMCA violation report, not just the copyright holder himself.
  • Provide a penalty for "nuisance" DMCA reports:
    • These would be numerous reports which are proven to be inaccurate to limit the burden on legitimate businesses, social media, etc.
  • Set clear compliance timelines
    • Outline the sites' responsibilities in responding to DMCA notices
      • take down the links
      • give two warnings to violator
      • ban violator on third unique complaint
      • report violator to appropriate law enforcement authorities
  • Remove Safe Harbor protection from sites which do not comply
    • Fines for non-compliant sites
  • Strengthen penalties against vendors/distributors who, upon having their vending site suspended or removed, reopen under another name or domain.
  • Institute a method of tracing masked IP addresses
    • US-based sites which are masking IP addresses to hide their location in order to commit IP theft should be prosecuted for fraud, in addition to any other prosecution.
  • Strengthen laws against hacking to stop violators from using innocent people to cover their crimes.

Send a letter like the following to make your claim:

VIA eMail at ISPHosting[at]isp.com

Re: Copyright Claim

To the ISP Hosting Company:

I am the copyright owner of the eBooks being infringed at:



This letter is official notification under the provisions of Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA") to effect removal of the above-reported infringements. I request that you immediately issue a cancellation message as specified in RFC 1036 for the specified postings and prevent the infringer, who is identified by its Web address, from posting the infringing material to your servers in the future. Please be advised that law requires you, as a service provider, to "expeditiously remove or disable access to" the infringing material upon receiving this notice. Noncompliance may result in a loss of immunity for liability under the DMCA.

I have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of here is not authorized by me, the copyright holder, or the law. The information provided here is accurate to the best of my knowledge. I swear under penalty of perjury that I am the copyright holder.

Please send me at the address noted below a prompt response indicating the actions you have taken to resolve this matter.


/s/ Emily Dickinson

Email: hardworkingauthor[at]mybooks.com

After the ISP receives the notice, it should remove the infringing materials.

Infringements are much too common these days. Fortunately, there are tools to fight them. The DMCA takedown notice is one of the more powerful ones.

This letter was adapted from one written by Attorney Carolyn E. Wright, a/k/a the "Photo Attorney®," a licensed attorney dedicated to the legal needs of photographers. Get more information at Carolyn's website, www.photoattorney.com, or in Carolyn's book, The Photographer's Legal Guide.

NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only. If you have legal concerns or need legal advice, be sure to consult with an attorney.

An informative blog on the subject of DMCA take down notices by a lawyer specializing in representing photographers:


When you find your work being infringed, the first step is to find out whom to contact.



Both these places will let you search for the ownership records, including the registrar of the domain and the administrative contact. You will also see the names of the servers where the domain is hosted.

Notwithstanding our sample DMCA notice, hosting companies vary widely in the "acceptable format" for DMCA take down notices, as well as how they will receive them, i.e. eMail, USPS, fax, certified mail, etc. In addition, specific instructions for each hosting company can be difficult to find, but using their preferred formats will facilitate getting your material taken down or blocked. As we locate this information, we will link directly so you can more easily make your complaint.

Go Daddy

Host Gator

Others will be listed as we obtain them.

Caution! Making false DMCA notices can result in you being sued. Make sure you have your facts straight.