A few years back, the entertainment industry used its unique charms (read: money) to glamour several members of Congress into supporting the Stop Online Piracy Act, one of the few pieces of legislation to draw almost universal disdain from everyone other than the industry that backed it, as it would have exacerbated the shoot-first-maybe-investigate-later model already in place thanks to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Thankfully, some Congressional aides actually look at the Internet and sensed the public backlash wasn’t worth the campaign donations that their bosses were still going to get anyway, and SOPA failed. Now the industry says it wants to combat piracy by winning over consumers instead of arresting teenagers. [More]
For decades, we’ve all been sitting through FBI warnings before our movies. Those warnings tell us that sharing media is very wrong, piracy is bad, and we will all get into trouble for doing it. So the operators of file-sharing torrent sites know they might end up on risky legal ground. But what they might not expect is to have their websites removed from the internet for them before they even know they’re being sued.
The Google Glass face computer is such a new invention and there are so few out in the wild that etiquette and rules haven’t quite caught up yet. Now that any random member of the American public with $1,500 and a tolerance for being stared at can buy the device, rules are cropping up. Like at Alamo Drafthouse, a small chain of movie theaters that has now banned the devices from its theaters. [More]
When there’s a $775 million broadcasting investment on the line, you better believe that a network like NBC is going to go after video pirates just like Peter Pan and his gang in Neverland. In this case, Neverland was the Winter Olympics in Sochi, an event that NBC says it protected its rights by busting 45,000 instances of illegally posted videos or pirated streams. [More]
Recording artist Prince wants some of his fans to give him $22 million. Emphasis on the “some” — just the 22 people his piracy lawsuit accuses of bootlegging his live performances and publishing them on the Internet. [More]
UPDATE: A spokesman for AMC Theatres responded to Consumerist’s request for comment, saying the company takes movie theft “very seriously,” which is why the feds got involved. [More]
The Motion Picture Association of America has released new best practices guidelines for movie theater operators who want to crack down on that worst of crimes — the shaky-cam pirated movie. To that end, the MPAA is suggesting a zero-tolerance policy, not just for people caught trying to record a motion picture, but for anyone who dares to take out their cellphone to take a photo during a screening. [More]
Plenty of people tuned into AMC last night to watch the finale of Breaking Bad (Spoiler Alert: Jesse and Walter have been living under a transparent dome the whole time!). And hundreds of thousands more around the globe chose to get their hands on the episode via less-than-legitimate methods, even in countries where it is incredibly easy to get the show on the cheap. [More]
The recently launched Copyright Alert System — a joint venture between big-time content creators and the major Internet service providers — is supposed to trigger a series of alerts and warnings when a subscriber of a participating ISP appears to be illegally sharing copyrighted content. But some who put CAS to the test say they were able to share several items without being flagged. [More]
Pardon us, U.S. House of Representatives — is that… is that mud on your face? Don’t worry, you’re not the only government group to get caught allegedly downloading pirated content from the Internets. A new report claims that someone or multiple someones in the offices of the U.S. House of Representatives have been catching up on TV and movies by illegally downloading content recently. [More]
While there may be various scheming parties vying for the Iron Throne in King’s Landing, HBO’s Game of Thrones is the undisputed champ in the rankings of the 2012’s most-pirated TV shows. [More]
We’ve written quite a bit recently about strong-arm tactics used by lawyers representing the porn industry to squeeze settlements out of alleged file sharers who would rather pay up than have their names publicly linked to downloaded porn. One attorney who has made millions from this practice says he is fully aware that everyone hates him. [More]
Google is making some tweaks in how its search engine runs in order to crack down on any sites that could possibly be promoting or hosting pirated entertainment content. As for why, well, there are a few prevailing thoughts. Perhaps it’s because the entertainment industry wouldn’t get off Google’s back for letting users find free movies and music on the Internet or maybe Google just wants to impress the cool kids of Hollywood so it doesn’t get sued.
Nathan didn’t know who it was replacing Redbox DVDs with ripped and burned copies in his city, but he approved. Kinda. He like pirated copies better, without all of the un-skippable trailers and other nonsense that studios cram on DVDs. “I don’t know who this vigilante is, but I’m thankful for him,” he wrote. Only there was no vigilante stealing discs from Redbox en masse. This Sony DVD-R with the movie title written in felt-tip pen is an official, legal copy of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”
While lawmakers and Hollywood execs try to come up with ways to combat piracy in ham-fisted, knee-jerk ways that punish everyone, the CEO of Rovio Mobile — better known as the company that makes Angry Birds — has joined his voice to more sensible suits who see online piracy as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Wikipedia prides itself on being neutral… so why is it taking itself down to protest something political? According to their official explanation of the protest decision, the members of the Wikimedia Foundation feel that “although Wikipedia’s articles are neutral, its existence is not.”
Although the White House this weekend expressed “serious reservations” about elements of the pending anti-piracy bills SOPA and PIPA, and House leaders have said they will not conduct hearings on their bill any time soon, the legislation is far from dead. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said this weekend that he hopes to open debate on the Senate’s version later this month. And House sponsor Lamar Smith said he will continue work on that chamber’s version. Internet protests planned for tomorrow, in which some of the web’s largest sites will go offline for 24 hours, are expected to go ahead as scheduled.
While sailing the seven seas of legally questionable file sharing, freeloaders apparently cast their treasure nets for the likes of Thor, Glee, Kung Fu Panda 2 and Green Lantern. Those titles were reportedly among the most searched-for BitTorrent phrases in 2011.