By Rob Scott
June 19, 2013
Researchers at Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute are working on a new ebook DRM system called SiDiM that would change individual words of a story in an effort to combat piracy. The system would swap out text to essentially create individualized copies of an ebook that could then be tracked by the original owner. A subsidiary of the German book publisher’s association, interested in possible alternatives to the traditional lock-down approach of DRM, has joined Fraunhofer in its testing. Continue reading Researchers Testing Text-Based DRM System for Ebooks
Within 24 hours of Sunday’s revival of “Arrested Development,” episodes had reportedly been downloaded more than 100,000 times by file sharers looking to watch season 4 without paying. Copies were made available on various torrent sites shortly after Netflix released all 15 episodes. While the numbers do not compare to downloads of popular shows such as HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and AMC’s “Mad Men,” they still represent a potential issue for Netflix. Continue reading File Sharers Download New Episodes of Arrested Development
Fox, NBC, ABC and Allbritton Communications have filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Washington against Aereokiller, to block the streaming startup from expanding its service to the nation’s capital. Founded by FilmOn’s Alki David, Aereokiller gets its name from Barry Diller-backed Aereo. Last week we reported that David agreed to change his company name in order to settle a trademark infringement lawsuit filed by Aereo. Continue reading Broadcast Networks Hope to Stop Aereokiller DC Expansion
“Downloaded” is a new documentary that examines the rise and fall of music file-sharing service Napster. The film tells the story of Napster co-founders Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker while providing details of the service’s launch in 1998 through its eventual 2011 acquisition by Rhapsody. It examines the downloading generation, resulting changes to the music industry, piracy and legal arguments, and the impact of services such as Spotify and iTunes. Continue reading Napster Documentary: The Music, the Battle, the Revolution
BitTorrent announced the BitTorrent Bundle earlier this week, a new format that provides access to free content in addition to a gateway to other material. It offers content creators a new means of distributing and monetizing their work outside the confines of traditional methods. BitTorrent continues its efforts to transform the file-sharing software into a legitimate platform for movies and music. Continue reading BitTorrent Bundle Provides New Options for Content Creators
Adobe’s flagship Creative Suite has evolved into Adobe Creative Cloud, with new features and a switch to a subscription-only model. Instead of individual Adobe apps being available for a flat rate, users will pay a monthly subscription to access all the products. Last year, the company introduced its Creative Cloud subscription service, through which users could access one product each month for $29.99 or all the products within Creative Suite 6 for $49.99. More than 500,000 premium members signed up in the first nine months, on top of 2 million free members. Continue reading Adobe Intros Subscription-Only Model with Creative Cloud
Greenheart Games pulled a switch on gamers this week by providing a crippled version of a game on BitTorrent. The illegal version of “Game Dev Tycoon” will stop at a certain point, indicating that the product has been pirated. While this strategy was initiated as an experiment to draw attention to software piracy, and not to seek out and prosecute offenders, it has raised some interesting and complex legal issues. Continue reading Developer Conducts P2P Experiment: Piracy or Entrapment?
HBO’s “Game of Thrones” is the most pirated show on television. How does the cable network feel about that? Not bad, actually. The show’s second season recently experienced record-setting DVD sales for the network, even as it was 2012’s most illegally downloaded show. According to HBO programming president Michael Lombardo, this is viewed as a positive, especially since it doesn’t seem to adversely affect sales. Continue reading Game of Thrones: Most Pirated Show Remains Lucrative
The Pirate Bay, which has been using bandwidth provided to the site by Sweden’s Pirate Party, is no longer in Sweden, according to Torrent Freak. Following threats of legal action from a local anti-piracy group Rights Alliance in its home country, the pirating site packed up and left last week, handing over responsibilities to pirate parties in Norway and Spain. Continue reading The Pirate Bay Moves Out of Sweden Under Legal Threat
February 28, 2013
According to numbers from global information company The NPD Group, illegal music file sharing declined in 2012, quite significantly when compared to peer-to-peer sharing’s height in 2005. This year the number of consumers using P2P services to download music declined by 17 percent compared to one year earlier. In 2005, a total of 33 million people used these services, while 21 million used P2P in 2012. Continue reading Annual Music Study Shows Illegal Activity Decline in 2012
By Rob Scott
February 11, 2013
Filmmaker Simon Klose released his documentary on the founders of The Pirate Bay last week. “TPB AFK: The Pirate Bay Away From Keyboard” follows the founders over a four year period of time, through their ongoing legal struggles, technical issues and battles with large corporations. In an interview with The Verge, Klose shares his thoughts about online piracy, file-sharing, Kim Dotcom, politics and international copyright laws. Continue reading Pirate Bay Documentary Filmmaker on Politics of File-Sharing
By Rob Scott
January 29, 2013
Time Warner Inc. has selected Kevin Tsujihara as the new chief executive of Warner Bros. Entertainment. As president of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group since 2005, Tsujihara has been responsible for the studio’s home video, digital distribution, video game and anti-piracy efforts. The selection was made by Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes and Barry Meyer, chairman of Warner Bros. Entertainment. Continue reading Digital Future: Tsujihara Named Chief Exec of Warner Bros.
January 6, 2013
Jeramiah Perkins of the IMAGiNE Group was handed a record prison term for illegal file-sharing. The 40-year old Perkins, who is the reported leader of the in-theater camcording gang, was ordered to serve a 60-month prison term. The sentence surpasses that of IMAGiNE co-defendant Gregory Cherwonik of New York, who received 40 months in November. “In all, five IMAGiNE members have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit copyright infringement for operating what prosecutors described as the world’s most prolific piracy release group between 2009 and 2011,” reports Wired. Continue reading Convicted File Sharer Recieves Record 5-Year Prison Term
By Karla Robinson
December 14, 2012
Movie theater personnel in the Asia-Pacific region can now quickly report illegal video recording to the Motion Picture Association with a new app available for tablets and smartphones.
“Using the mobile app, called MAD4 — abbreviated from ‘Make A Difference’ — theater managers and their teams will be able to type in information about camcording incidents through an online reporting platform,” explains The Hollywood Reporter. “The data will then be available to MPA officials for follow-up action or investigation.”
The MPA announced the new app this week at the CineAsia trade fair in Hong Kong. Also included in the app are training videos and resources to express the impact of piracy on the film industry and inform employees what to do when they witness illegal recording.
“We have been given to understand that more than 90 percent of newly released movies that appear illegally on the Internet and on the streets around the world originate from illegal copies being made in cinemas,” Ashish Saksena, CEO of Indian exhibitor Big Cinemas. “The MAD4 application is a great new tool ensuring that all staff will know what needs to be done to prevent illegal recordings being made in cinemas.”
By Karla Robinson
December 10, 2012
MPAA Chairman and CEO Chris Dodd is calling for Hollywood and Silicon Valley to join together against piracy. Dodd spoke at the Content Protection Summit in Los Angeles and criticized the idea that piracy debate is just a two-sided choice between free speech or copyright protection.
“Hollywood and Silicon Valley have more in common than most people realize or are willing to acknowledge,” he said. “Not only does Hollywood work closely with Silicon Valley to create and promote films; Hollywood film and television creators are tech companies.”
“They celebrate innovation through the world’s most cutting-edge content, and they embrace technology as imperative to the success of the creators in their community,” he added.
With the Protect IP Act and Stop Online Piracy Act, Hollywood and Silicon Valley were pitted against each other, but Dodd emphasized the need “to present a united front to deal with preventing theft of intellectual property,” Variety reports. He did not, however, advocate for any new legislation.
“We can have it both ways,” he said. “We can have an Internet that works for everyone. And in order to continue providing the world’s greatest content, we must protect the rights of our creators so they can produce for their audiences and also profit from their work.”