News Posts matching "RIAA"

Return to Keyword Browsing

New Japanese Law Jails Illegal Downloaders for 2 Years

Japan passed a new legislation that could imprison illegal downloaders for two years. The country is combating illegal downloads as its local entertainment industry struggles. Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAA's counterpart from across the Pacific) and its affiliates estimate Illegal downloads outnumbering legal downloads 10:1, with a 16% decline in legal downloads just last year.

The new law makes Japan the toughest state against piracy. Before it, Japanese laws, like most others', targeted uploaders of copyrighted content/software with up to 10 years in prison, and 10 million JPY (US $128,300) in fines. The new law allows the police to penalize mere downloaders with a 2-year jail term and 2 million JPY ($25,680) in fines.Source: Torrent Freak

Pirate Bay Unveils "Portable Site", RIAA/MPAA's Worst Nightmare Weighs 90 Megabytes

This is arguably every copyright enforcement group's worst nightmare, The Pirate Bay, which calls itself "the most resilient bit-torrent site in the galaxy", unveiled what is known as its "portable version", meaning, when taken down by an enforcement agency, any person, in any part of the world can restore the site, because it now weighs just 90 megabytes. That's right, the 90 MB copy of the site itself contains all its HTML, script and static images, and Magnet Links to over 1,643,194 torrents spread across all its categories.

A little earlier this year, The Pirate Bay transitioned from being a host for .torrent files to a host for magnet:// links. This transition means that each torrent consisted of a typically 50 KB .torrent file, is now reduced to a <1 KB Magnet link in the resource. The copy of the site itself is there for anyone to copy. Enforcement agencies' worst nightmare indeed weighs just 90 MB.

Sources: The Verge, TorrentFreak Shuttered: One Month 'Black March' Media Boycott Slated For March 1st

Yesterday, the website of MegaUpload was shuttered for good by the US Department of Justice over copyright infringement aka 'piracy' and various criminal charges (see the domain seizure graphic). This was done regardless of the many non-infringing files that people were also using it for, so for anyone that had their only copy of a file on the site, this is very bad news. It's also arguably even worse news for the site's operators, as they have been arrested and face extradition from New Zealand to the USA for criminal trial, all their assets seized, including all the domain names and computing infrastructure to run them, plus many personal belongings of very high value, such as fancy cars like Maseratis and Rolls-Royces and huge 100 inch TVs to name just a few.

However, this story, isn't really about this and we have linked to reports below which cover this in great detail (hot beverage recommended). MegaUpload was one of the biggest file sharing sites out there and in fact, one of the biggest sites out there, period. This means, that an awful lot of people all around the world have very much noticed its sudden demise (especially those with their only copy of a file, because they didn't bother to back it up, tsk) and are met with that highly unwelcome Department of Justice graphic, instead. Hence, the chances of an almighty backlash against this shutdown not happening are slim to none. In fact, Anonymous have already hit the websites of the DOJ, RIAA, MPAA & HADOPI (French three strikes) and others in retaliation, with likely much more to come, which is good or bad, depending on one's point of view and how effective one believes it will be.

SOPA/PIPA Internet Protests Go Viral, Hit Home

The protests to the widely condemned SOPA & PIPA "antipiracy" censorship bills have been a resounding success. They have gone viral with many, many websites blacking out and putting up protest pages, with big players taking part such as Wikipedia, Google, EFF, Reddit, Craigslist, Techdirt (greyed out) and many more taking part. Unsurprisingly, the bills' backers have not shown any sign of backing down (yet) but were prompted to make statements "wondering what all the fuss is about" to play down the damage done to their play for power, since they have recently made changes to them, such as removing the DNS blocking provisions - for now. Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) senior vice president of communications Jonathan Lamy called the protests 'stunts': "It's a dangerous and troubling development when the platforms that serve as gateways to information intentionally skew the facts to incite their users and arm them with misinformation. It's time for the stunts to end and those who claim to care about rogue website theft to back up their rhetoric and work with us on meaningful solutions." This is the same RIAA that sued their own customers with extortionate "settlement" letters remember.

An Open Letter to the Gaming Community from CD Projekt RED

A month ago, we reported that CD Projekt RED, makers of The Witcher 2 had claimed that they could identify '100% of pirates' and had started an RIAA-style 'settlement letter' shakedown (extortion) tactic in Germany. Well, unsurprisingly, this hasn't gone down too well with their customers and the outcry has been loud and strong, especially on, where their forums have been full of posts from disgruntled customers. Well, it looks like the pressure has gotten too much for them and they have backpedalled furiously on this decision and issued an open letter, published on In it, they state that they want people to continue to have faith in them and stressed how they're still totally against 'piracy' of their products and appealed for gamers to refrain from engaging in it:
In early December, an article was published about a law firm acting on behalf of CD Projekt RED, contacting individuals who had downloaded The Witcher 2 illegally and seeking financial compensation for copyright infringement. The news about our decision to combat piracy directly, instead of with DRM, spread quickly and with it came a number of concerns from the community. Repeatedly, gamers just like you have said that our methods might wrongly accuse people who have never violated our copyright and expressed serious concern about our actions.

Big Dollars Not Enough? SOPA Support Continues To Wither Away

The draconian internet censorship bill, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) being lobbied for by wealthy big media corporations (mostly fronted by the RIAA/MPAA, News Corporation and the like) and currently being debated in Congress is still losing support wherever one turns. A week ago, we reported that GoDaddy initially supported it, but soon changed its mind as it immediately began to haemorrhage customers. Now, it turns out that many video games companies are also coming out against it and with no pressure against them required.

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) is the game industry's trade association and stands firmly behind the much-despised bill, which means that the gaming industry as a whole is deemed to support SOPA. However, while some members openly support it, others just won't say so publically and some of its members actively do not support it, having made official statements to this effect. Here are just three of them:

Hurt Locker Copyright Extortion Racket In Tatters, Plaintiffs' Hypocrisy

Voltage Pictures, producers of movie Hurt Locker attempted to use a reverse class action tactic to extort hundreds of millions in 'settlement' claims aka extortion demands over alleged 'losses' due to 'piracy' – something that has never and can never, be quantified and proved. However, their attempt has failed miserably – plus read on for how Voltage Pictures did a little content 'theft' of their very own to make the movie.

The idea was to use the services of the US Copyright Group (USCG) to extract personal subscriber information from ISP's via subpoenas and then send demand letters averaging US $2,000 to hapless victims, with the hope of racking in a grand total of around US $94 million - way more than the film ever made, about US $12.6 million.
The USCG quickly unloaded lawsuit claims against 47K members of the unwitting American public, even as Voltage Picture spewed a stream of vitriol suggesting that the children and families of file sharers would hopefully "end up in jail".
explained DailyTech, putting it very well. Yes, let's get the kiddies in the name of corporate copyright and profit...

European Court of Justice Ruling Prohibits P2P Filtering by ISPs

The European Court of Justice, the highest court in the European Union, ruled that P2P filters installed by ISPs violate the European Directive on electronic commerce as well as fundamental rights. The full ruling can be accessed here. This comes as a major blow to stingy ISPs who conserve and shed bandwidth in the name of checking peer-to-peer (P2P) traffic, by somehow deeming that all P2P traffic consists of unlawful sharing of copyrighted content and software.

The ruling is part of a case filed by SABAM (Belgium's equivalent of RIAA), which sued ISP Scarlet for not filtering P2P traffic, and in the process, facilitating copyright infringement. A Brussels Lower Court then ordered Scarlet to install a filtering system to monitor the internet traffic of its subscribers. In response Scarlet appealed against the verdict in the European Court of Justice. Scarlet argued that a filtering system would be incompatible with the Directive on electronic commerce and with fundamental rights. The European Court of Justice ruled in agreement with Scarlet.

RIAA Drops Charges Against AllofMP3

A Russian music downloading site/store used to sell music and did not give any money to the actual recording studios artists. And so, the RIAA sued. AllofMP3 changed their ways, was declared legal, and the smug RIAA gave AllofMP3 a pat on the back and sent it on its merry way. What's the news story here? The news story is in what AllofMP3 left behind. When AllofMP3 went on the long journey to becoming legal, what made it illegal spread around to several websites and shady music stores. And so, while the RIAA can claim victory over one site, they really haven't accomplished much at all, other than making software pirates more determined than ever before.Source: Torrent Freak

RIAA Wants ISPs to Force Client-Side Filtering to Eliminate Piracy

Apparently, the RIAA doesn't feel like ISPs blocking piracy server-side is quite enough. The RIAA wants ISPS to begin implementing client-side filtering. This would work by forcing the end-user to install a program that monitors their every move, to ensure that nothing is illegal. It is very unlikely that such a move will actually come into play, because it is a massive violation of privacy and a huge breach of user rights. The RIAA feels that it would all be worth it, because it would let users that wouldn't otherwise know they're getting in a lot of trouble pirating stuff that they are, indeed, pirating.Source:

RIAA Does Not See Need for ISP Filtering

It's not news that Comcast secretly monitors all web traffic for possible illegal activity and shuts down anything that sets off their alarms. However, there has lately been a move to push this ISP filtering one step further, and making it mandatory for all ISPs. Thankfully, the RIAA, known throughout America for taking ridiculous measures to prevent piracy, really does not see the need for the proposed solution. All the RIAA asks instead is that ISPs, instead of monitoring and filtering everything that comes their way, merely respond to the RIAA's demands to shut down certain servers and users, when necessary.Source:

Woman Fined $222,000 for Music Sharing

Jammie Thomas, a single mother from Minnesota, has been ordered to pay $222,000 in damages after being found guilty of illegally sharing music over the internet. Thomas was found to have shared over 1,700 files via Kazaa under the username Tereastarr, of which 24 were named in court. As a result she was ordered to pay $9,250 for each of the 24 songs, which totalled to $222,000. Thomas’ defence attorney argued that there was no proof she was behind the keyboard sharing the songs, and forensic scientists were unable to find any evidence on her hard drive because it has been recently replaced. However, based on the fact that Thomas used the nickname Tereastarr for a number of internet services and that the sharing had been traced to her modem’s MAC address the jury found her guilty of the charges. At the end of the case RIAA attorney Richard Gabriels said “This is what can happen if you don’t settle.”Source: DailyTech

RIAA Says Lawsuits Ain't The Answer

The Recording Industry Association after having generated a lot of negative PR with its latest lawsuit campaign against music piracy had the following to say in a recent interview with TG Daily through Jonathan Lamy their spokesman.
Litigation tends to generate more heat, friction, and headlines. What is the most important anti-piracy strategy is aggressive licensing and offering great legal alternatives. That is what our member companies obviously do and our job is to complement that, which is the most important thing to do to win over fans.
According to RIAA provided statistics the number of households involved in illegal downloading of music this March were 7.8 million against 6.9 million in April 2003.Source: TGDaily

Blow To Music Industry's Fight Against File-Sharing

While subpoenas and ex parte discovery have worked well for the RIAA in its legal fight against suspected file-sharers, the music industry in Europe looks to be facing a tougher battle. Today, an advocate general for the European Court of Justice, the highest court in the EU, released an opinion saying that ISPs are not required to disclose information that could identify subscribers in civil copyright infringement cases. The court in most cases shall stick with the advocate general's opinion although there is a slim to none chance that they may not. The originsal case involved Promusicae, a Spanish music industry association a lot like RIAA, and Spanish ISP Telefonica.

Judge Deals Another Blow To RIAA's War Against On-Campus Filesharing

Late last week, the RIAA was dealt another setback in its battle against copyright infringement on college campuses in the US. A federal judge denied the record labels' motion to conduct ex parte discovery to determine the identities of seven students at the College of William and Mary, making the task of identifying those targeted by the record labels much more time-consuming.

RIAA launches website to allow music copyright violators to pay without going to court

RIAA launches website for music copyright violators to pay without going to court

People who are caught by the RIAA usually have to pay a substantial amount of money to record companies. And so, the RIAA has decided to make a little website dedicated to helping the average pirate through the process of getting caught. is dedicated to doing three things. The first thing they do is post a list of questions convicted pirates might ask, and proper answers to them. The second thing the RIAA posts on their website is options/details on how to reduce the convict's fine, and even settle out of court. The third thing that the RIAA does is link to a website detailing the advantages of downloading legal music, which also hosts a list of legitimate music downloading services.Source: The Inquirer

RIAA suing Russian “pirate outfit” for $1.6 trillion

The Recording Industry Association of America has announced that it is set to sue Russian music firm Mediaservices for $1.6 trillion. Mediaservices also owns and and is accused of selling music illegally. Apparently the RIAA want $150,000 for each of the 11 million pirated songs. A spokesperson for claimed that the suit is unjustified because the company doesn’t operate in New York and obeys Russian Copyright laws – it even pays some of its profit to the Russian equivalent of the RIAA, the Russian Organisation for Multimedia, which the RIAA argues has no right to exist. It has been no secret that the RIAA has been unhappy with Mediaservices, but this is the first real action they’ve taken.Source: The Inquirer

Music industry will not fine mother for the piracy of her kids.

Various record companies have dumped their case against Patti Santangelo, who was accused of pirating and redistributing over 1000 songs. The music industry did so after Santangelo pleaded that she should not be responsible for her children's piracy. Santangelo's 20 year old daughter and 16 year old son have each confessed to the piracy of the contraband. The lead counsel says that it is still possible for record companies to sue the two children who actually did the pirating.Source: The Inquirer
Return to Keyword Browsing