11/27/2011

Google Now Censors The Pirate Bay, isoHunt, 4Shared and More

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google has expanded its search blacklist to include many of the top file-sharing sites on the Internet, including The Pirate Bay. The changes were quietly processed and appear to be broader than previous additions. Google’s blacklist prevents the names of sites appearing in their Instant and Autocomplete search services, while the pages themselves remain indexed.

1/24/2011

Pirate Bay Crew Instill More Fear Into The Music Industry

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

For years The Pirate Bay has been a thorn in the side of the music industry, but things could be about to take a turn for the worse. Over the past days rumors of a new project titled “The Music Bay” have been circling, and now a Pirate Bay insider has just confirmed to TorrentFreak that the major record labels have good reason to be afraid, very afraid.

music bayA few years ago the Pirate Bay crew registered a domain name that until now hasn’t been very active, themusicbay.org. At the time it was registered there were plans to create the most efficient music sharing system ever built, but these were put aside as other projects needed more urgent attention.

In recent days, however, rumors started to grow that The Music Bay domain might be put to use after all. It is currently setup to serve ads for The Pirate Bay website, but this spring it could be hosting a special surprise for the music industry.

11/26/2010

The Pirate Bay Appeal Verdict: Guilty Again

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

The verdict against three people associated with The Pirate Bay just been announced. The Swedish Appeal Court found Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij and Carl Lundström guilty of “contributory copyright infringement” and handed down prison sentences ranging from 4 to 10 months plus damages of more than $6.5 million in total.

pirate bayIn April last year the Stockholm Court sentenced the ‘The Pirate Bay Four’ to one year in prison and a fine of $905,000 each. The defendants immediately announced that they would appeal the decision and the case went before the Appeal Court two months ago.

Today, Friday November 26, the Swedish Appeal Court announced its decision. Compared to the District Court ruling, the court has decreased the prison sentences for the three defendants, but increased the damages that have to be paid to the entertainment industries.

10/3/2010

Apple Approves a BitTorrent App for iPhone

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A BitTorrent app called IS Drive has appeared in Apple’s App Store for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, despite the company’s past refusal to approve BitTorrent apps because they could be used for Internet piracy.

The app is intended as a tool for managing ImageShack (ImageShack)’s torrent download service, but it can be adapted to manage downloads from other torrent sites like IsoHunt and Mininova.

8/10/2010

TorrentReactor Buys and Renames Russian Town

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

TorrentReactor, listed among the five most popular torrent sites on the Internet, has surprised friends and foes by acquiring a small town in central Russia. The town formerly known as Gar has reportedly been bought for the equivalent of $148,000 and was quickly renamed after the Russian-based torrent site.

3/17/2010

Pirate Bay legal action dropped in Norway

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Copyright holders have given up legal efforts to force Norwegian ISP Telenor to block filesharing site The Pirate Bay, one of the parties to the case said.

The copyright holders, led by Norway’s performing rights society TONO and by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry Norway (IFPI Norge) Norway have lost two rounds in the Norwegian court system, and have now decided against appealing the case to Norway’s supreme court, the organisations said.

The goal was to see if it under Norwegian law is possible to order an ISP to block access to The Pirate Bay, and two clear court decisions have now said that is not the case, according to TONO. Spending more resources on the case would at this point be a waste, according to IFPI.

2/9/2010

Analyst at UGA arrested For Extortion Of File Shareres

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

UGA police arrested the 37-year-old security analyst Monday on a felony extortion charge for trying to shake down a student who downloaded music in return for not turning her in to the UGA Office of Judicial Programs, according to university police.

UGA immediately fired him, police said.

Dehelean, who worked for UGA’s Enterprise Information Technology Services, called the student Jan. 25 to let her know that she’d been caught downloading copyrighted material - a violation of university policy - and “offered to make the situation go away in exchange for money,” UGA police Chief Jimmy Williamson said.

“All he was doing was (offering) to keep the information from going to Judicial Programs,” Williamson said, which could have leveled sanctions on the student ranging from a reprimand and suspension of computer privileges to probation.

The student told Dehelean she didn’t have the money and she told an official in her academic area, who in turn notified police.

2/2/2010

Survey: Only 1% of Torrents non-infringing

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

99 per cent of files accessed through a Torrent network are unlicensed copyright material, according to a survey by an American undergraduate.

Only 10 of the 1021 files in the survey could be distributed over the Mainline network without infringing copyright. The ten works licensed for distribution included two Linux distros, game pack add-ons and trial software. Only 1 of the 145 pornographic files was considered non-infringing, student Sauhard Sahi found.

1/23/2010

Judge slashes “monstrous” P2P award by 97% to $54,000

Filed under: — Aviran

Judge Michael Davis is the senior federal jurist in Minnesota. He presides over the gleaming 15th floor courtroom where, earlier this year, P2P user Jammie Thomas-Rasset was slapped with $1.92 million in damages for sharing 24 songs. Davis made no comment on the amount of the award and showed no emotion as it was read out.

But now we know how he rely feels about the jury’s work in that case: it led to a “monstrous and shocking” damage award that veered into “the realm of gross injustice.”

Davis used his power of remittitur today to slash the damage award by 97.2 percent, from $1.92 million down to $54,000—and he suggested that even this lower amount was too high.

12/10/2009

Google and MS sued over links to RapidShare

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Mini music label Blue Destiny Records has sued both Google and Microsoft for allegedly “facilitating and enabling” the illegal distribution of copyrighted songs.

Filed on Monday with a US federal court in Northern Florida, the suit is an attempt to choke off the distribution of Blue Destiny tunes on the Germany-based file-sharing service RapidShare. It accuses RapidShare of knowingly running “a distribution center for unlawful copies of copyrighted works,” while claiming that Google and Microsoft are propping the company up.

According to the suit, RapidShare benefits from ad relationships with the two search giants. “RapidShare generates revenue by selling subscriptions for its high-speed download services, and through advertising dollars generated by its advertising partnerships with Google and Microsoft,” the suit reads. “RapidShare’s business success is accomplished only with the knowing assistance of these two top search engines - Google and Microsoft’s Bing.”

But the overarching claim is that RapidShare is able to “achieve consistent prominent ranking in search engine results that direct users to websites where illegal ‘free’ copies of [Blue Destiny’s] recordings may be stolen.” US copyright law exempts companies from liability if they’re merely linking to infringing content - but only if they’re unaware of the infringement and don’t receive financial benefit.

The suits insists that Google and Microsoft benefit financially because they generate ad revenue from search results. And both companies have received DMCA takedown notices requesting removal of the links in question.

12/8/2009

Student ordered to destroy downloaded music files

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A graduate student who must pay four record labels a combined $675,000 in damages for downloading and sharing songs online has been ordered to destroy his illegal music files - but a judge declined to force him to stop promoting the activity that got him in trouble.

Joel Tenenbaum, a Boston University student from Providence, R.I., was ordered Monday to refrain from future copyright violations and to destroy copies of recordings he downloaded without authorization.

Record companies wanted U.S. District Judge Nancy Gertner to go further. They claimed Tenenbaum has been encouraging people to visit a Swedish Web site where they can illegally download the songs he was sued for sharing.

Tenenbaum said he had nothing to do with the Web site, and Gertner said she would not attempt to silence Tenenbaum’s criticism of the recording industry and copyright laws.

11/20/2009

UK’s Terrifying Anti-Piracy Plans Leak

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Tomorrow morning Lord Mandelson will present the Digital Economy Bill to the public, which among other things is aimed at reducing illicit file-sharing. According to parts of the bill that leaked today, the legislation could lead to jail terms for file-sharers and unprecedented power for the entertainment industries.

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