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  5. Andy Chatterley says digital piracy presents missed opportunities for record labels, marketers and industry analysts. In an article published on Music Business Worldwide, the CEO of MUSO, an organisation that monitors copyright piracy globally, suggests that the music industry is not taking advantage of pirate websites. Chatterley believes the industry should be using information found on pirate platforms about demand, data and trends. “We can actually use this data to create real measurable value,” he says. This follows statistics gathered by MUSO that suggest music piracy is still a worldwide problem, despite a recent report that shows a decline in digital music piracy among young people in Europe. There is also a misconception that fans have stopped pirating music, or that streaming services have led to less piracy, but Chatterley says this is not the case. Previously, torrents were the backbone of piracy. MUSO’s data reveals that today only 6.7% of all music streaming is done through torrents. On the other hand, unlicensed streaming makes up 33.6% and stream-ripping sites 31.3%. And although torrents accounted for 6.7% of the piracy market, a closer look at music titles on torrent sites reveals alarming information. “In just the single month of July 2019, Ed Sheeran’s album Divide had over 612 000 downloads on torrent sites,” Chatterley says. “Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo had 280 000 and Lady Gaga’s debut The Fame Monster had over 202 000.” "Three albums, picked at random, being illegally downloaded over a million times a month. Based on a typical iTunes or Amazon download retail price, this represents approximately $10m of lost revenue for the music business and its retailers." Chatterley added: “You don’t visit piracy sites to casually browse; you visit because you’re a fan and want a specific release or title. There is insight into geographic content trends and city-level demand; data that is of vital importance for marketing, touring and wider release strategies.” “With approximately 3.5 billion people connected to the Internet globally, and only around 10% of them paying for subscriptions to music streaming services, there is an enormous opportunity in converting more people to paid subscribers. Piracy is an obvious place to find them."
  6. As sites like Facebook continue to crack down on illegal links to pirated content, pirates have scrambled to find new hosts for their torrents. Their latest target may be the publishing platform and one of the internet’s most popular destinations, Medium. Scammers have been found to be abusing Medium to distribute bootlegged copies of the latest movies such as Joker and Terminator: Dark Fate. Along with links to the video files, the posts try to hit as many search keywords as possible. Originally spotted by TorrentFreak, most of the sources are not genuine either and lead visitors to supposedly dubious registration pages, which, of course, also demand credit card details. Medium has policies in place to take down posts that violate copyrights and complies with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). “When we discover bad actors, both through manual and automatic detection, they are assessed in terms of our policies and rules against those behaviors, and removed from Medium,” said a Medium spokesperson when reached out by TorrentFreak. However, when we looked up for a torrent link for Joker, we were still able to view these articles, suggesting Medium hasn’t pulled them off yet. A simple search on Google’s Transparency tool reveals pirates have been exploiting Medium’s reach for well over a couple of years. The search engine giant has received hundreds of takedown requests from production houses and record labels such as Fox and Nuclear Blast Records. Google often automatically penalizes websites if they’ve been met with too many takedown notices in a short period. Therefore, these activities could end up affecting Medium and its in-house publications’ rank on the search engine unless Google rules it as an exception.
  7. A group of 23 law professors are warning that a recent recommendation from a Colorado magistrate judge opens the door to unprecedented piracy liability risks. In addition to threatening Charter and other Internet providers, customers could be faced with privacy-invasive monitoring and permanent disconnections. In March several major music companies sued Charter Communications, one of the largest Internet providers in the US with 22 million subscribers. Helped by the RIAA, Capitol Records, Warner Bros, Sony Music, and others accused Charter of deliberately turning a blind eye to its pirating subscribers. Among other things, they argued that the ISP failed to terminate or otherwise take meaningful action against the accounts of repeat infringers, even though it was well aware of them. As such, it is liable for both contributory infringement and vicarious liability, the music companies claim. The ISP disagreed and filed a motion at a Colorado federal court, asking it to dismiss the vicarious liability claims. Charter argues that it doesn’t directly profit from copyright-infringing subscribers, nor does it have the ability to control them. Previously, other Internet providers have been successful in getting vicarious infringement claims dropped, but Charter’s case appears to go in the other direction. Last month Magistrate Judge Michael Hegarty recommended the court to deny the motion to dismiss. According to the Judge, Charter’s “failure to stop or take other action in response to notices of infringement is a draw to current and prospective subscribers to purchase and use Defendant’s internet service to ‘pirate’ Plaintiffs’ copyrighted works.” Charter objected to this recommendation and hopes that the court will not accept it. The company fears that this will subject the company, and pretty much all other ISPs, to a wide range of piracy liability claims. They are not alone in this assessment. Yesterday, a group of 23 copyright law professors submitted an amicus curiae brief in support of the company. According to the legal scholars from prominent institutions including Harvard and Stanford, the recommendation would set a dangerous precedent. The copyright professors point out that, based on the complaint, it can’t be concluded that Charter enjoyed direct financial benefits from the alleged infringements, as vicarious liability prescribes. Vicarious liability requires ISPs’ actions to serve as a “draw” to potential infringers. However, the professors argue that this isn’t the case here. Instead, the potential to use Charter to pirate should be seen as an “added benefit.” The draw, in this case, is access to the entire Internet, with the potential to pirate being an added benefit. “Access to this universe of content and services is the draw for subscribers, and the use by some subscribers of some portion of that service to download infringing material can only plausibly be seen as an added benefit of the service. “This is especially true with ISPs, like Charter, because subscribers pay the same flat monthly rate for a particular level of service irrespective of whether, or how often, they infringe,” the professors add. The Judge’s recommendation fails to properly make this distinction according to the professors. Neither does it show the necessary causal link between infringements and the financial benefit. As a result, it would expose Charter and other ISPs to “unprecedented risks of liability.” The fact that Charter advertises “blazing-fast” speeds that allow users to download “just about anything” efficiently is not relevant either. According to the professors, these features are valued by all Internet users whether they engage in infringement or not. “The Recommendation’s misapplication of the direct financial benefit analysis would cause considerable harm to other ISPs, consumers, and the public,” they write. Blazing-fast https://torrentfreak.com/images/Charter-Spectrum.jpg The immediate threat to ISPs is more lawsuits where dozens of millions of dollars in damages are at stake. If the recommendation stands, providers would have a hard time defending them. In addition, many would have to change their piracy policies, which could hurt consumer privacy. In order to avoid vicarious liability claims, Charter and others would have to be more active against potential repeat infringers. This could lead to more Internet terminations and possible monitoring of legitimate users, the professors warn. “Consumers, whether they personally engage in infringing conduct or not, could be subject to wholesale termination of their Internet access based on unproven allegations of infringement occurring at the IP address through which they connect to the Internet. “Moreover, ISPs could be forced to engage in privacy-invasive monitoring of their subscribers’ Internet activity,” they add. The brief explains that ISPs that don’t host any content should pass all Internet traffic along in a neutral manner. These companies should not be forced to become copyright enforcers based on mere allegations. Based on the above, the copyright law professors urge the court not to adopt the Magistrate Judge’s recommendations. First, however, the court must decide whether it will accept the brief and add it to the record. Given what’s at stake, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see submissions from more third-parties on this matter in the coming days. — A copy of the professors’ amicus curiae brief, which has yet to be accepted, is available here (pdf). Source: Torrentfreak.com
  8. US internet service provider Charter Communications has told a court that if it is held liable for vicarious infringement simply because it advertised its high net speeds, the floodgates will be opened for a flurry of copyright claims against all internet providers. Charter is one of the ISPs fighting a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by the Recording Industry Association Of America. These legal battles follow the landmark ruling in the BMG v Cox Communications case, in which a court decided that Cox could not rely on safe harbour protection under US copyright law because it had a deliberately shoddy system for dealing with repeat infringers. That meant Cox could be held liable for its users unlicensed distribution of BMG’s songs. The RIAA is now suing Cox, Charter and Grande Communications, and although all three ISPs have fought back, things have mainly been going in the labels’ favour as all three cases have worked their way through the motions. One element of those cases is whether the ISPs should be held liable for vicarious as well as contributory infringement. If so, the labels could secure higher damages. Grande successfully had the vicarious infringement claim dismissed from its case and Charter is trying to do likewise. But last month a magistrate judge who had considered the dispute recommended allowing both infringement claims to continue, for now at least. One of the things you need to demonstrate to prove vicarious infringement is that the ISP received a direct benefit from the infringing activity. The labels have argued that the net firms do benefit from the piracy they enable because users who regularly access music from piracy platforms and file-sharing networks are more likely to be attracted to the premium high bandwidth products companies like Charter sell. They then noted how Charter had promoted its “blazing-fast speeds” that allow users to “download just about anything instantly”. However, in a legal filing last week, Charter sought to convince the federal judge that his colleague’s conclusion on this matter was simply wrong. It noted: “By relaxing the direct financial benefit prong to something far more attenuated than what is required, the [magistrate judge] threatens to open the floodgates for massive liability against ISPs for merely advertising and making available high speed internet to the general public”. It then added: “Plaintiffs’ complaint is bereft of any specific allegations that users were drawn to Charter’s services to infringe plaintiffs’ copyrights, as opposed to efficiently access the internet, including to access music generally, which of course, users can do lawfully. This renders any financial benefit from any alleged infringement incidental, not direct, and thus insufficient as a matter of law to satisfy the financial benefit prong of vicarious liability”. It remains to be seen how the federal judge in the case rules next and, indeed, whether any floodgates are indeed opened as a result.
  9. Pirated video streams of televised National Football League games are widespread on and on ‘s YouTube service, CNBC has found. Using technology from these internet giants, thousands of football fans were able to watch long segments of many contests free of charge during the league‘s Week 13 schedule of games last Thursday and Sunday. Dozens of these video streams, pirated from CBS and NBC broadcasts, featured ads from well-known national brands interspersed with game action. This online activity comes as the league struggles with declining ratings that have been blamed variously on player protests during the national anthem and revelations about former players suffering from a brain disease caused by concussions. Yet this illegal distribution of NFL content may also be crimping the league‘s viewer numbers. The NFL strictly controls television and online video rights to its games. In particular, games played by teams that are not in a local TV market are often not televised except on DirecTV, and only for subscribers who pay extra for a package called “Sunday Ticket.” That package starts at $55 per month. If pirated versions of these games are available online users might ignore the DirecTV package, or skip locally televised games that they might otherwise watch. It also means that advertisers are reaching audience members that they did not pay for. Facebook is prepared to spend more than $1 billion for the rights to future sports content, but as of now Amazon is the only large technology company with a streaming deal for football. for the rights to stream 10 Thursday Night Football games this year.
  10. A fake 'copyright agent' who instructed a 15-year-old Thai girl to make cartoon character krathong floats and then tried to extort her for alleged copyright infringement is watching his plan backfire spectacularly. Not only is a warrant out for his arrest but the publicity generated by the scam has massively boosted demand for the girl's products, which help finance her education. Loi Krathong is an annual festival celebrated in Thailand and some neighboring countries during which ‘krathong’ (decorated baskets) are floated on a river. Krathong float (credit) https://torrentfreak.com/images/krathongs.jpg These beautiful items are often made by locals looking to generate relatively small sums to help support their families and in some cases fund their education. Sadly, there are others who see the creations as an opportunity to generate cash for themselves in an entirely more sinister fashion. According to local media reports, earlier this month a 15-year-old girl known as ‘Orm’ or ‘Orn’ (we’ll settle on the former) was contacted on Facebook by a stranger who placed an order for 136 krathong floats. The order carried specific instructions for them to be adorned with faces of cartoon characters owned by Japanese company San-X. When Orm took 30 completed floats to a local mall, at the request of a supposed “copyright agent” she was reportedly arrested by police for ‘copyright infringement’. She was told to pay a fine of 50,000 baht, around US$1,650, a figure that was later negotiated down to 5,000 baht, US$1,650, by her grandfather, a former policeman. “After receiving the order, I made krathong baskets from 8am to 1.30am the next day so that I could fill the order, only to be arrested,” Orm said. “Normally I do not make any basket with a copyrighted character. This customer stressed they wanted copyrighted characters. After being arrested I cried all night because I have never faced such legal action before.” The action against the teenager provoked outcry in the community after the chief of a local police station said it had worked with the ‘copyright agent’ on the sting operation, Bangkok Post reported. However, all was not what it seemed. TAC Consumer PLC, which represents San-X, issued a statement stating that it had not participated in the operation against the teenager and had assigned one of its lawyers to the case. But worse was to come. After news of the scandal spread, other victims of the scam came forward, saying they too had been arrested and settled for even larger amounts having borrowed the money from family members. They identified the ‘copyright agent’ as the same man who targeted the teenager. When news reached local TV, a reporter helped to track down the ‘copyright agent’, who was discovered to be a local motorcycle taxi driver called ‘Nan’ whose wife sells meatballs in the area. Yesterday, as pressure mounted against local police, a commander announced that after 40 similar complaints were filed against the ‘copyright agent’, they would be seeking arrest warrants by the end of the week. While that news will be celebrated in its own right, the knock-on effect of all the publicity is doing wonders for Orm’s work. After making 360 floats to sell during the Loy Krathong festival, people queued up to buy them. They sold out in an hour, making herself around 8,110 baht in profit, around US$267.00. She told local media she was “delighted” by the response having sold just 30 in previous years. Half of the money will go towards her school fees and the rest will go to her family to help with household expenses. Source: Torrentfreak.com
  11. Gen X, Gen Z and millennials are all buying into the vinyl hype, as sales increase steadily. In a time when most music is almost free and at your fingertips, however, will LPs play long enough to bring the music industry back in tune? Vinyl sales have been surging in the last few years, as CD sales stay flat and digital downloads decrease. In the United Kingdom, data from 2016 reveals that vinyl LP sales revenue surpassed that of digital downloads. And in the United States, LP sales are on par with the sales of CDs. In an era when so much music is at our fingertips through streaming services for under $10 a month, who is spending their hard-earned cash on vinyl? Streaming is currently the primary and cheapest way to buy music. According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) database, paid subscription streaming services such as Spotify dominated music sales revenue in the U.S. in 2018, accounting for almost 50 per cent of revenue. But cassettes, CDs and digital downloads have all held that position in the past. Teens of the 1980s (now aged approximately 45 to 54) and the ‘90s (now aged approximately 35 to 44) were the two largest age demographics buying vinyl in 2018, accounting for 24 and 21 per cent respectively of new vinyl sales in the U.S., according to 2018 data from the RIAA. Vinyl’s lasting influence Sales data shows that cassettes first surpassed vinyl LP sales in the U.S. in 1983. Then CDs surpassed cassette sales in 1991. At that point, vinyl LPs disappeared from most music stores, remaining only a DJ specialty. They accounted for only 0.8 per cent of total music sales. Tim Ford, vice-president of purchasing at Sunrise Records, says he recalls feeling forced to buy CDs in the ’90s because they were cheaper than vinyl and more widely available for him as a broke teenager. Now, Ford and many other ’80s and ’90s kids are working adults with disposable incomes. Ford says 35-to-40-year-olds want music from their generation like their parents had. These consumers are used to the concept of owning music, but now they want vinyl, because they think it’s better quality, and they have the money for it. Michael Greaves is another example of this type of vinyl consumer; he was a DJ in the ’90s and has a collection of 1,200 CDs — many of which he bought eight for a penny. Now he works full-time as a music administrator and is an avid vinyl collector. Greaves says he buys vinyl because “with vinyl you get a warmth you don’t get with CDs.” There’s just something about the crackle of a vinyl record that makes people feel at home. Owning a physical Copy No artist is forced to put his or her music on streaming services and not every artist even has the legal right to do so. The popular albums of the ‘80s and ‘90s that aren’t being widely reissued are going for hundreds of dollars on resale sites. A mint-condition vinyl LP of De La Soul’s 1989 album 3 Feet High and Rising, for instance, is selling for more than $360 on Discogs. That album isn’t being widely reissued and is now unavailable on paid subscription streaming services such as Tidal, which is said to be because of artist and label disputes. The initial excitement about streaming services seems to have worn off since Spotify launched in Sweden in 2008. Consumers are now seeing flaws in streaming, one of them being that we can never be fully assured of access to their favourite songs without owning a physical copy of them. Andrew Winistorfer, editorial director at Vinyl Me, Please, a record-of-the-month club, says that young people today accept that you don’t own music. CD sales were at their height at the same time that music piracy became popular and almost destroyed the music industry. However, the young today still account for part of the new surge in vinyl sales. Winistorfer explains that vinyl is “the cooler way to have … a physical manifestation of this music that you like.” Willing to pay RIAA data shows that 25-to-34-year-olds and 18-to-24-year-olds accounted for 19 and 16 per cent respectively of U.S. new vinyl sales in 2018. This is valuable to artists who are not being paid what they’d like to be on streaming services. For artists, selling other merchandise has become increasingly important. Luckily for them, some fans are willing to pay for exclusive merchandise and experiences on crowdfunding platforms. A 2013 Indiegogo campaign for the Canadian band Protest The Hero raised nearly $450,000 to fund an album and 1,299 copies of the signed, limited-edition vinyl LP were claimed as rewards. Katy Perry has a vinyl record coming out soon. It’s a record-first release but her truest “Katy Cats” will surely snatch up those 4,000 copies quickly to be able to hold a piece of their favourite artist in their hands. Consumers have less control than they might think over what music they can access. What will happen if one day your favourite artist doesn’t have the resources, desire or legal right to keep your favourite songs up on a streaming service? What if you simply want to hold the music you love in your hands? Teens of the 80s and 90s would probably tell you to buy the album — on vinyl.
  12. Netflix, HBO Max & other streaming services working on features like periodic account password resets to crackdown password sharing Netflix has already begun facing heated competition from Disney Plus, HBO Max and other upcoming streaming services. But one issue that could potentially affect the revenue of all companies in the streaming business is the illegitimate password sharing and ways to crack down such practices are already in discussion. The production company has addressed the issue of password sharing and stated that they continue to monitor it. Moreover, the company also hopes to find a consumer-friendly way to face it and openly revealed that there were no big plans at the moment to overcome that hurdle. But that could change in the near or far future. A new report from Bloomberg's Gerry Smith reveals that companies like Netflix and HBO are already working on ways to stop users from sharing passwords among friends and families. Moreover, as Business Insider points out - potential new features already are being discussed to battle online piracy by Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE). For those unaware, ACE is an industry alliance with Amazon, Netflix, HBO and Disney serving as the members. A few of the tactics currently discussed so far include: periodic account password resets and sending codes via message to access the account. ACE also seems to be contemplating restricting access to services based on a subscribers' geographical location. This feature would deny access to a user trying to use his account from a media device like Roku if the address he's situated in is not the same as the location listed in the account. However, that won't apply for mobile devices. The biggest feature that could possibly put an end to password sharing is fingerprint recognition. Users could face situations in future which requires them to place their fingerprint to access the account. Though the use of the lock has been discussed it's unknown if companies would go ahead with introducing such tactics. Introducing a fingerprint recognition wouldn't necessarily be a single feature since users would obviously be provided with other secondary options in case the scanning feature faces errors. But that may not resolve the issue or could rather worsen and affect the company's revenue. It must be noted that media conglomerates are being cautious in approaching this issue since it could easily lead to viewers abandoning services. Netflix, HBO and ACE didn't respond back when Business Insider reached out for a comment.
  13. A recent case of the City of London Magistrate’s Court has become the first in the United Kingdom to definitively rule that the sale of illegal streaming devices constitutes a breach of copyright law. Illegal streaming devices / illicit set-top boxes, or just “ISDs”, are media-players (often in the form of set-top boxes) that have been pre-configured to provide access to streaming websites. Generally, such access will be in the form of hyperlinks, which then take users to platforms where they can freely access films, TV shows and live sports broadcasts that would otherwise require paid subscriptions. Needless to say, such websites host these copyrighted works without the authorisation of the copyright owner, and many have been closed in recent years under increasing legal scrutiny. However, the application of the law to the retailers of these devices, who are removed from the hosting of the websites themselves, had been less than clear. The UK case comes just over two years after a similar, landmark ruling by the European Court of Justice, demonstrating the readiness of the courts to intervene in order to protect the legitimate rights of copyright owners and suggesting a similar crackdown may be on Australia’s horizons. Premier League v Al-Silawi On 3 October 2019, Mr Ammar Al-Silawi, a 39-year-old man with a shopfront on Edgware Road in London, was sentenced to 300 hours of unpaid community service – the maximum criminal sentence available for conviction on two charges of copyright infringement and two charges of fraud. The trial had been heard on 12 September and was brought by the Premier League, the top tier football league in England, whose live sports broadcasts had been allegedly accessed through ISDs sold by Mr Al-Silawi. The trial came about following an investigation in July conducted by the Premier League, the Federation Against Copyright Theft (also known as FACT) and UK law enforcement agencies. As part of the investigation, FACT delivered Cease and Desist Notices to individuals, at 16 locations across the UK, who had been allegedly supplying unauthorised access to sports streaming content. Despite being served with such a notice, Mr Al-Silawi had continued to sell the devices in question – a factor which later contributed to the Court’s hard-line ruling against him. This case and the investigation that preceded it are indicative of the growing determination of copyright owners to tackle infringement at a grassroots level. It confirms that small-time sellers of such devices, who may once have felt safe from legal action in the shadow of larger players, are also culpable in the eyes of the law. Mr Al-Silawi was found guilty of copyright infringement under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (UK). As this provision is reflected in both the Berne Convention and its various domestic counterparts, the case is an important bellwether in terms of how similar situations may be treated internationally. Stichting Brein v Jack Fredewreik Wullems This decision[1] comes off the back of similar case heard in the European Court of Justice in 2017, in which the Court ruled that the sale of ISDs constituted a breach of Article 3(1) of the EU Information Society Directive.[2] This case was brought by Stichting Brein, a Dutch foundation that advocates for the protection of authors’ copyright rights, against Mr Wullems, who was found to have sold modified mediaplayers online (including on his own website, www.filmspeler.nl). He had programmed the devices with add-ons that would direct the user to illegal streaming websites, marketing the devices as a way of accessing protected works for free: The main issue here, as in the case above, was whether or not the retail of these devices constituted communication of the copyrighted works to the public, this time as restricted under Article 3. The Court had previously held[4] that providing clickable links on a website that would take users to protected works did constitute an act of communication. In this instance, it extended that principle to the sale of ISDs which had been specifically programmed to facilitate unauthorised access to copyrighted materials. Consequences for pirates at home According to Creative Content Australia, in 2018 over 1 in 5 Australians were using an illegal pirated app on their media-players.[6] As of yet, the retailers of such devices haven’t been brought before the Australian courts. However, in April 2018 the Federal Court of Australia cracked down on websites offering illegal TV subscription services like those accessed on ISDs. The Court granted Village Roadshow and six Hollywood studios an injunction to block 16 sites that allowed unlawful streaming of channels such as Disney, Fox HD and various English Premier League football channels.[7] The ruling was made under section 115A of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth), which was amended in 2016 to facilitate the blocking of online locations whose primary purpose (and more recently, primary effect) is copyright infringement. Similar to the UK Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, Section 31(1) of Australian copyright legislation sets out the copyright owner’s exclusive right to communicate their work to the public. The infringement of copyright, including by authorising another person to do any act comprised in the copyright, is prohibited under section 36. Given the increasing focus on tackling internet piracy, it seems likely that local retailers of ISDs in Australia could soon be under fire.
  14. Big tech urges US government to push back on safe harbour reform abroad Trade organisations for America’s tech sector have had a good old moan about the new European Copyright Directive, and other similar copyright reforms elsewhere in the world, in new submissions to the US Trade Representative. While the copyright industries have been busy calling on the US government to urge other countries to crackdown on an assortment of piracy sites – via the USTR’s annual notorious markets report – groups representing the likes of Google, Facebook and Twitter want the opposite. The tech lobby outfits would much prefer it if the US government put pressure on foreign governments to ensure that new copyright laws don’t put too many new obligations onto their members. Submissions by both the Computer & Communications Industry Association and the Internet Association as part of the USTR’s review of barriers to US exports are particularly critical of the new European Copyright Directive. That, of course, increases the liabilities of user-upload platforms which host copyright infringing material as a result of the much talked about safe harbour reform, lobbied for by the music industry and contained in article seventeen of the final directive. “The recent EU Copyright Directive”, the CCIA reckons, “poses an immediate threat to internet services and the obligations set out in the final text depart significantly from global norms. Laws made pursuant to the directive will deter internet service exports into the EU market due to significant costs of compliance”. In its submission, the Internet Association argues that EU safe harbour reform puts European copyright law out of kilter with US copyright law. “The EU’s Copyright Directive directly conflicts with US law”, it argues, “and requires a broad range of US consumer and enterprise firms to install filtering technologies, pay European organisations for activities that are entirely lawful under the US copyright framework, and face direct liability for third party content”. Beyond the US, the tech giant repping groups also criticise copyright rules or reforms in other countries like Australia, Brazil, India and Ukraine. The copyright safe harbour in Australia has always been narrower than the US and Europe, and plans to expand it were put on hold pending the outcome of the then in development European directive. The Internet Association adds: “If the US does not stand up for the US copyright framework abroad, then US innovators and exporters will suffer, and other countries will increasingly misuse copyright to limit market entry”. The European directive is, of course, still be being implemented across the EU. It remains to be seen quite what impact it has on user-upload platforms. Throughout the lobbying process the music industry accused the tech sector of hyperbole and, sometimes, outright lying when it argued that the new liabilities would force platforms offline. Meanwhile, the music industry is hoping to export the EU safe harbour reforms to other countries, not least the US. We always knew that efforts to reform the American safe harbour would result in an even fiercer push back from big tech, and these new submissions confirm that is still definitely the case.
  15. ACE is at it again, seizing the domains of two popular Latin IPTV pirating service platforms. The platforms were offering thousands of channels and popular TV series for a few dollars per month. The global piracy scene is nowadays taking more blows than what it can cover, but it remains strong. ACE (Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment) continues its fight against pirating platforms, and we are reporting their little or bigger wins on a daily basis. This time, they have brought down IPTVBox.plus and PlanetaTVonlineHD.com. The websites are now redirecting to the ACE website, as it happens when a domain is seized by them. This means that both of the popular pirating IPTV platforms have reached the end of the road, and it’s implausible that we will see them recover or move to a new domain. When ACE targets a platform, they do so methodically, and usually, arrange the arrest of the operators too. IPTVBox.plus was mainly serving the Brazilian audience, offering 1000 standard definition channels for as low as $4.5 per month. The service also offered a more premium choice called “the master package”, which included 13000 SD, HD, and FullHD channels for $9.7 per month. The PlanetaTVonlineHD.com was also a glorified and renown platform in the piracy scene, which has been around since 2015. This service streamed popular shows like The Walking Dead, Prison Break, and the Game of Thrones, so naturally, it enjoyed a pretty sizable supporting community. All of this is added on top of the recent closure of the Openload, Streamango, and StreamCherry file-hosting platforms, the shutting down of the Kodik, Moonwalk, and HDGO CDNs (content delivery networks), and the seizure of the VstreamTV.com, MaxTVLive.com, MyIQXTV.com, and JailbrokenBlackBox.com IPTV service platforms. If that sounds like a lot, remember, this is only what ACE managed to achieve in less than a month, and that’s pretty impressive. While big players always faced legal trouble, piracy in general never had to deal with a pressing environment of this magnitude, so ACE is really making the difference. That said, pirates are trying to find alternatives that are still operational or new platforms that pop up as replacements. As a website, we do not promote piracy, so we can’t directly provide you with URLs to pirated content. However, it is true that ACE still has much work to do, as there are at least 30 major streaming platforms still serving those in need. With all that is going on right now, we can say that the disruption for piracy is real. ACE has caused a disturbance, and is definitely playing a pivotal role in proactive prevention through discouragement. Let’s wait and see what they have up their sleeve for next week.
  16. For over a decade now, digital piracy has been affecting myriad content industries, and none has been more affected than the recording industry. After Napster and its like devastated incomes and normalized piracy, the advent of legal streaming sites like Spotify and Deezer appeared to solve the problem. Or did they? There seems to be a commonly held misconception within the music industry circles that nobody pirates music anymore. Well, the data says otherwise. It’s possible that what people are really saying is that since they started using said legal streaming services, they stopped downloading music illegally. Yet music piracy – like all digital piracy – has changed shape as technologies have developed. Ten years ago, torrents were the mainstay but, as of August 2019, MUSO’s data shows that torrents now only account for just 6.7% of all music piracy worldwide. Meanwhile, unlicensed streaming makes up 33.6% and stream-ripping sites 31.3%. [These figures refer to the total number of music-related piracy visits MUSO saw within the month.] Still, despite torrenting representing only 6.7% of the market, exclusively looking more closely at music titles on torrent sites unearths some eye-watering numbers. Sure, the latest Billie Eilish or Post Malone release would understandably see a spike in piracy levels in 2019, but what about older releases and back catalog? In just the single month of July 2019, Ed Sheeran album Divide (originally released two years ago) had over 612K downloads, Kanye’s The Life of Pablo (2016) had 280k and Lady Gaga’s debut The Fame Monster (2009) had over 202k. Three albums, picked at random, being illegally downloaded over a million times a month. Based on a typical iTunes or Amazon download retail price, this represents approximately $10m of lost revenue for the music business and its retailers. Again, just three albums, from torrents alone, picked at random, in a single month. And if recent back catalogs are still being plundered on torrent sites, heritage acts are not immune, either. It might have been released way back in 1973, but Dark Side of the Moon is still a perennial favourite – to the tune of 131k illegal downloads in July on torrent services. And while Sir Paul McCartney is not exactly short of a few dollars, he probably still won’t be delighted to learn that Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was downloaded over 182k times via torrents in the same 31 days. It doesn’t take a forensic accountant to understand the scale of the related financial losses to rights owners, publishers and artists from this level of digital piracy. It has decimated the living of so many content creators and suppressed – if not directly reduced – wages in these sectors. One could argue that each illegal download is a sale lost, and moreover from an individual who has yet to subscribe to a paid streaming service. Without this subscription, digital revenue growth for the recording industry is hindered, and any real trickle down to creators negligible. More established names can absorb these losses – but for many, it is making it nigh on impossible to survive making work that pays any kind of decent living. So what can be done? We can no longer just write off piracy as ‘breakage’. By understanding demand, data, trends and behaviours we can manage it effectively, and a actually use it to create real measurable value. I’ve long argued that piracy is, by its very nature, a high-intent activity. You don’t visit piracy sites to casually browse: you visit because you’re a fan and want a specific release or title. There is insight into geographic content trends and city-level demand; data that is of vital importance for marketing, touring and wider release strategies. It’s also worth bearing in mind that as subscriptions to music services inevitably slow down – as we have started to see in Scandinavia – this too-long-ignored audience will become highly sought after. Here is an active music fan who may not already be subscribing to a streaming platform; that’s gold for digital advertisers and driving up paid subscriber numbers. With approximately 3.5bn people connected to the internet globally, and only around 10% of them paying for subscriptions to music streaming services, there is an enormous opportunity in converting more people to paid subscribers. Piracy is an obvious place to find them. Anti-piracy and content protection technologies are as crucial as they have ever been in stemming the illegal distribution of content but coupled with a data-led understanding of what, how and why people illegally download music they can garner significant insights and create value, growth and revenue.
  17. The top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent are in again. 'Dora and the Lost City of Gold' tops the chart this week, followed by ‘Joker'. 'Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw' completes the top three. This week we have three newcomers in our chart. Dora and the Lost City of Gold is the most downloaded movie. The data for our weekly download chart is estimated by TorrentFreak, and is for informational and educational reference only. All the movies in the list are Web-DL/Webrip/HDRip/BDrip/DVDrip unless stated otherwise. RSS feed for the articles of the recent weekly movie download charts. This week’s most downloaded movies are: Movie RankRank last weekMovie nameIMDb Rating / Trailer Most downloaded movies via torrents 1(…)Dora and the Lost City of Gold6.0 / trailer 2(10)Joker (Subbed HDRip)8.8 / trailer 3(1)Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw6.7 / trailer 4(…)Primal4.8 / trailer 5(2)The Lion King7.1 / trailer 6(3)The King7.4 / trailer 7(5)Toy Story 48.1 / trailer 8(4)Spider-Man: Far from Home7.8 / trailer 9(8)The Peanut Butter Falcon7.9 / trailer 10(…)Danger Close7.4 / trailer Source: Torrentfreak.com
  18. CrazyHour All torrents are FREE and triple upload credit! starts in 1:31:12
  19. Connectivity issues due to server overload.
  20. Google Translation: FREELEECH on the site! Free download until 2019.11.17 Take advantage, the system does not count the download volume! A great opportunity to improve your ratio - pay attention to your seeding commitment!
  21. Google Translation: Hit & Run Re-active! In recent times, many people have stopped seeding after downloading releases. Accordingly, as of 11.11.2019, we have activated Hit & Run system on our website again. 5 Warnings and You will be removed from the Site. Thank you for your understanding. Sincerely, TurkNOVA Management
  22. Google Translation: Donations "By donating, you will secure your download and keep the site up to date." »Link to donation page« We remind users of the opportunity to donate. The best option would always be to be able to pay for the server for a longer period of time. We also want to remind users that the site is built for users, so users can be heavily involved in the development of the site. Link to donation page We are grateful for every donation!
  23. Google Translation: FREELEECH! Time left: 15h 52m 14s
  24. CrazyHour All torrents free and triple upload credit! starts in 1:57:39
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