Hollywood Continues To Kill Innovation, Simply By Hinting At Criminal Prosecution Of Cyberlockers

from the sickening dept

We noted right after the US government shut down Megaupload, that it was creating massive chilling effects on all sorts of online cloud businesses — leading some to already turn off useful services that consumers and businesses relied on.

It appears that process is continuing. Last week, Paramount’s VP of “Content Protection,” Alfred Perry, made a ridiculous and childish presentation in which he effectively put criminal targets on the backs of five companies, and suggested that they were all no different than Megaupload, and that the government was coming for them next:

I find it amusing, by the way, that they’ve dropped RapidShare from the list. The company, which does offer the same basic services and gets a ton of traffic, has actually been one of the only cyberlockers who has hit back against Hollywood where it counts: with Washington DC lobbyists. RapidShare, of course, has also been found legal by multiple courts, because it follows the basic precepts of the DMCA and takes down infringing content when it discovers it. But the thing is, many (if not most) of the other sites on this list do the same thing.

The end result, however, is that the five sites on the list have been forced to go on the defensive hoping to avoid criminal prosecution with the federal government twisting everything they do to present it in the worst possible light.

MediaFire fired back at Perry, pointing out that the company is a large legitimate company run by reputable entrepreneurs, and one that has always worked with the MPAA and RIAA to stop the spread of infringing content. Similarly, PutLocker has fired back, telling TorrentFreak that Perry’s comments were defamatory:

In any other industry, a person making this type of statement could be sued for libel. Funny how that works,” PutLocker Operations Officer Adrian Petroff told TorrentFreak.

“PutLocker takes a strong stand against copyright infringement and in the past year and a half we have taken down hundreds of thousands of infringing files and blocked the accounts of hundreds of repeat offenders,” adds Petroff. “PutLocker always cooperates with copyright holders and law enforcement agencies at home and abroad to uphold the rights of content producers and distributors alike.”

But the chilling effects here are very, very real. Two of the other five sites on the target list have now effectively made themselves useless for sharing legitimate files worldwide — one of the key use cases for cyberlockers. FileServe and Wupload have turned themselves into pure backup services, rather than file sharing services, to avoid the risk of criminal prosecution.

Now, critics of these sites will rejoice in these two sites shutting down a useful feature. They’ll insist that this proves either that they’re “winning” the battle, or that these sites are somehow admitting that they were facilitating infringement. But that’s a dangerous misreading of the situation. Were these sites used to infringe? Absolutely. But so was the VCR. So was radio. So were photocopying machines. So were DVRs. So were computers. The fact is that innovation leads to breaking down the old rules by enabling something new and useful.

And that’s the real key here. Perry and the rest of the Hollywood legacy “content protection” crew freak out about 41 billion page views. What they ignore is that the reason there were 41 billion page views was because these sites were offering something useful that people wanted. But Perry isn’t in the business of recognizing what the market wants. His very job title makes it clear that his job is holding back the tide. It’s about “content protection” in a world where content can’t be protected. If Paramount were run by execs who actually had vision and understood innovation, they’d see 41 billion pageviews and their eyes would light up at the massive opportunity. Just imagine what you could do with 41 billion pageviews? And, if you were a company like Paramount and could offer your content up legally, you’d have a huge head start over the cyberlockers. If anything is criminal here, it’s the incredible shortsightedness of Paramount’s execs, to spit in the face of consumers and a massive business opportunity for themselves.

Even worse, they’re doing so by simply declaring innovative websites guilty of criminal charges, despite no actual charges being filed, no trial, no evidence and no chance for these companies to make their case. From a legal standpoint, this is despicable. It’s standard operating procedures for a flailing, out of touch, anti-visionary company, however. It’s just too bad that the world is letting a company like Paramount (and its parent company, Viacom) get away with such practices.

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Companies: deposit files, fileserve, mediafire, megaupload, paramount, putlocker, rapidshare, wupload

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Comments on “Hollywood Continues To Kill Innovation, Simply By Hinting At Criminal Prosecution Of Cyberlockers”

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pixelpusher220 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Your quote is off slightly...


Wanted to show my wife the original War Games movie. We have Netflix streaming. Hmmm, not available?

1 hr later it was downloaded via torrent.

I would gladly have gotten it through legal channels, but it simply isn’t available in the most convenient matter. As a product producer, if you’re answer is ‘tough you get it how I want’, you have failed in your job.

weneedhelp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Your quote is off slightly...

Are you fucking stupid. No need for an answer. If the “owner” has not set up any way for a user to obtain their content and receive payment then STFU if PPL get it elsewhere.

“the original War Games movie” “something of value” – That can be debated elsewhere.

If the industry was not so afraid of the god awful pie-rates, then you would have a central location, or a few services, to have access to everything ever recorded.

If you cant give the people what they want, when they want it, someone else will. Its basic customer service.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Your quote is off slightly...

“If you cant give the people what they want, when they want it, someone else will. Its basic customer service.”

Just gotta avoid being shut down by those who have a vested interest in keeping competion down, before they become to widespread and become a ‘legit’ competitor, with rights

mischab1 says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Your quote is off slightly...

Except he didn’t take something of value he copied it.

If light is valuable because it’s dark outside and I light my candle from yours, I haven’t taken your light. Even if we didn’t have matches and it took you 3 hours of rubbing sticks together to create your light, it still isn’t immoral. I might pay you for your effort, but there is nothing wrong with me turning around and shareing my light with others.

Silence8 says:

Re: Re: Re: Your quote is off slightly...

So, because it wasn’t available instantly, exactly when you wanted to watch it, on a service that you are paying for, that justifies pirating it? Talk about the “I want it NOW Daddy!!!” society.

It’s conveniently available on Amazon instant.

and on Hulu

Also, you’re a lazy Googler. 😉

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Your quote is off slightly...

In his defence, he didn’t state where he lives. If he’s not in the US, those sources are blocked to him. Apart from the YouTube video, which is almost certainly a pirated copy unless MGM have suddenly taken to streaming their back catalogue for free without regional restrictions (highly unlikely) – i.e. just as infringing as the downloaded copy.

Even if he is able to access the other options, the fact is that for whatever reason, MGM have opted not to licence a 30 year old movie to Netflix, the #1 source for many people to view content. This seems rather silly, and another symptom of the internal problems the industry has that lose them money every day.

Jeremy Lyman (profile) says:

Re: Re: Your quote is off slightly...

Yes, people aren’t going out looking for infringing content, they’re just in the market for content. In fact, it seems like they really don’t care about forged moral outrage aging mega-corps use to validate the increasingly unfair made-up property laws being thrust into their living rooms.

“No flag, no country! You can’t have one. That’s the rules… that… I’ve just made up”

The Infamous Joe (profile) says:

Re: Re:

I couldn’t imagine trying to download anything of a significant size via a File Locker. It takes long enough downloading a 300MB android rom.

File lockers are the least of their concerns. They also have a pretty significant legitimate use.

It should be no surprise, but I think they’ve come up with a very poor strategy when it comes to “eliminating piracy”.

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

That is one thing that had puzzled me. I can’t imagine downloading a full HD movie from these places. They are generally slow and make you jump through some hoops.

What they are good for though is the smaller files like android roms and other tools. As a result I spent an entire weekend cursing ICE because every time I thought I found the files I needed for my phone I ended up being shown that damn ICE page at megaupload.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“infringing content”

And you have actual, verifiable, solid evidence that MOST of the content was not infringing and MOST of the page views were ONLY about non-infringing content.

Or did you just accept the unproven assertions of those who have an agenda? Yeah, don’t bother answering that, we already know. Douche.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Interesting that you just broke your own legs with your reply. None of us can provide factual and evidence based that most of the content is or isn’t infringing. And I’m fairly sure that we don’t agree on the scale of “most of the content” if I tell you that 10% of the content in the cyberlockers is infringing is that a lot for you? What about 49%? Is this enough to exempt said services from any accusation? Or 49% could be labeled as “most of the content”?

I visit TPB regularly and about 70% of the time I download legit torrents there, 20% I download copies of content I own and 10% of the time I download infringing content. So by my standards most of TPB is composed of non-infringing magnets. So obviously TPB is safe from such lawsuits, right?

It’s so cute when you trolls shoot your own feet and look at us smiling as if you won the debate…

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

And you have actual, verifiable, solid evidence that MOST of the content was not infringing and MOST of the page views were ONLY about non-infringing content.

The actual standard — which you ignore — is whether or not the services have substantial noninfringing *uses*. And it’s clear that they do.

That you seek to stifle innovation because it can ALSO be used to infringe is downright scary and an insult to innovation.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

What do you consider substantial? 5% of the users? 2%? Occasional legal use?

I can think of non-infringing uses for all sorts of illegal products and services. Does that suddenly make them legal? Nope.

The technology that some of these sites use has non-infringing use, of course. Storing digital data goes way back. But we don’t tend to focus on a narrow part of the technical operation of things to look to see how they are actually used.

It’s the way the world works. You don’t just get to narrowly focus in one area and ignore the system or the results.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

What do you consider substantial? 5% of the users? 2%? Occasional legal use?

Why don’t we go with what the Supreme Court says about this:

From Sony Corp. v. Universal City Studios – 464 U.S. 417 (1984):

“Accordingly, the sale of copying equipment, like the sale of other articles of commerce, does not constitute contributory infringement if the product is widely used for legitimate, unobjectionable purposes. Indeed, it need merely be capable of substantial noninfringing uses.

Arthur (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:


So unproven assertions of guilt are a reason to shut down a site. Unproven assertions of the MAGNITUDE of the problem are a reason to over-react and “accidentally” stomp on free speech. Your own presumptions are SO good you feel that insulting me is an appropriate response.

I think your response is a good example why your position is dangerous for all who support innocent until PROVEN guilty and for all who defend free speech.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

It would be interesting to have some sort of insight into the ratio of persons who actually upload to such lockers and how may use them merely for download. Of those who actually upload, it would also be interesting to have some feel for the percent of those whose files are downloaded the most and what those files comprise.

AB says:

Re: Re: Re:

As a graphic designer I used to upload my files mainly for backup. At that time most clients didn’t know how to use such things so it was still easiest to send them a CD or paper sample. I ended up giving up on it though after all the legal bs started. I decided the risk was just too high, and now that we have seen what happened to Mugaupload’s customers it looks like I was right.

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

That is impossible to even get an accurate figure on. See I could easily upload a song that I purchased to the site. Then later I download it to my phone over 3g and again to my laptop while at a coffee shop. I just uploaded it from one IP and downloaded from two different ones. There is no way to tell that it was me all 3 times unless they force you to login all the time. Forcing that though makes them useless for people using them to distribute things like android roms.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

You aren’t. I use Mediafire to also backup my legitimate software purchases. As well as store various freeware/shareware that I routinely use in my IT profession, all conveniently zipped into one file that I can download and access from wherever.

Of course, according to the trolls/IP extremists on this site, there is no legitimate use whatsoever for sites like Mediafire.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a couple of school papers I need to get off of there before it’s shut down entirely and I lose access to them. Yep, school papers and software backups. NO INFRINGING CONTENT WHATSOEVER. And I’m obviously not alone in this.

Cowardly Anonymous says:

Re: Re:

Let’s see, the only times I’ve used mediafire that I can think of were exchanging user levels and mods for games. Modst of the creators of these kinds of games never have a problem with this, and some provide modding APIs and world builders to make it easier.

Free access to free supplementary user-generated content counts for a good number of those page views. Open source projects probably count for a significant portion too.

Of course, both of these help the independent competition to copyright industries. It really makes you wonder if this style of use is the real target. Hopefully we will get some indication of the real data to come out of the Megaupload case.

Silence8 says:

Re: Re: Re:

And Guns don’t kill people, people…. Oh wait.

Almost every useful tool, can be used in a dastardly way.

Pencil = writing, or stabbing
Baseball Bat = baseball, or beating someone to death
Car = driving to work, or getaway vehicle
Google = innocent search terms, or infringing search terms
File Lockers = safe secure backup, or infringing content host

AB says:

Re: "In any other industry..."

Because the industries in question are ‘above the law’ owing to massive lobbying and bribery. They are also known to use unethical methods to silence critics. We call them the mafiaa for a reason – they use almost exactly the same tactics as the old fashioned mafia (just think of law suits as complicated baseball bats). And just like their namesake it’s all ‘technically’ legal. At least on the surface.

Anonymous Coward says:

‘in any other industry, a person making this type of statement could be sued for libel.’

so why aren’t Putlocker suing then? why isn’t the US government doing something useful, like stopping pricks like Perry from being allowed to issue this kind of threat, with no proof, that means less tax revenue if the site closes? why is the US government showing that it isn’t interested in doing what is right, it’s only interested in helping who pays lobbying fees to it?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

They aren’t suing because they know that, in the end, there is plenty of infringing stuff on their sites. They know if it came down to an argument in a court of law, they would lose every time.

The statements aren’t libelous, rather than speak of a truth that everyone seems desperate to ignore.

Cowardly Anonymous says:

Re: Re: Re:

Except they are covered by the safe-harbor clauses in the DMCA, so they have nothing to worry about from that angle.

The statements are libelous because they suggest that these lockers don’t comply with the take-down services.

I think the real reason they can’t sue is that they can’t show any harm done to them by being labeled this way, as the file-sharing public has long since stopped caring whether the service they use also carries infringing files (if they ever cared at all).

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

I think you are confusing “cloud” storage (which is effectively the storage of data in a non-specific storage system) with a file locker.

Uploading and downloading of files has been around since long before the internet. There is no real innovation here. Cloud computing (as in data backup) isn’t truly relevant or hurt by shutting down file locker sites. Remember, if it’s backup storage you are looking for, the current Wupload service is exactly right.

So again, I have to ask: What innovation is being stopped?

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

So again, I have to ask: What innovation is being stopped?

I am not real familiar with any of these sites in this article, but Mega was innovative in one important way that the studios and record labels absolutely hated.

A musician or a independent film maker could upload their work to Mega and were paid a portion of the onsite advertising based on number of downloads (IE: eyes on the download page). The legacy players really, really hated this because it meant that an artist could profit from their work without signing a crippling distribution deal with them.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“A musician or a independent film maker could upload their work to Mega and were paid a portion of the onsite advertising based on number of downloads (IE: eyes on the download page).”

Yeah, pretty much the sort of deals that Youtube has been offering for ages. No innovation here.

Try again!

Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Ummm! You aren’t expected to download a YouTube video. In the case of MegaUpload, the download is part of the payoff. This is giving ownership of a copy of a song/video/file for a little bit of ad revenue. If you want the content from YouTube you are expected to watch it over, and over, and over through the YouTube portal.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Wow, for all the “high tech” people on here, it’s amazing nobody knows how to capture a flash video.

last time I looked, Itunes pays a commission on every sale as well.

Innovation isn’t what Mega was all about. You might wish it was, in the same manner that people here go on and on about the legit uses of bit torrent, but it’s pretty much a given: most of the users, most of the traffic was about pirating.

You guys need to learn to accept reality. It’s way better once you take off your rose colored glasses and get a real view of the world.

Tim K (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Funny, cause last time I checked, the content owner was not selling their content on Mega, but were giving it away for free, yet still being paid for it, that’s a big difference from a cut of a iTunes sale. And yes, you can download videos from youtube, but that is not legal, and is not built into youtube, and the content owner doesn’t get paid when you download it from youtube. Again, where is all this data you have that you can so clearly and easily say that most traffic was pirating? Why is it that it wasn’t just the users who liked mega, but actual content creators? I mean if they didn’t innovate at all and were so bad, why would the creators care about it?

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

“You might wish it was, in the same manner that people here go on and on about the legit uses of bit torrent, but it’s pretty much a given: most of the users, most of the traffic was about pirating.”


Here’s the song again…

“Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong! Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong! You’re wrong! You’re wrong! You’re wrooooooooooooooonnnnnnnngggg!”

Say what you THINK, but when I used Megaupload, it was to upload files from one computer that were too large to go through email (school assignments and the like), or download OLD video games that would NEVER get put out in America.

Sometimes I’d download other games, but, again, they were games that weren’t licensed. Look up Sengoku Rance, okay? Just TRY and find a legit copy online somewhere. Go ahead, I’ll wait. (Pro-tip: You will never find a legit copy anywhere.)

I downloaded that through Megaupload.

If I buy something, scan it, and decide to upload it to Megaupload, that’s my choice. If I decide to share it, that’s also my choice. Whatever happens after that is none of my concern.

“You guys need to learn to accept reality. It’s way better once you take off your rose colored glasses and get a real view of the world.”

Wow, I… I didn’t know you were talking about yourself there.

Here’s the thing that maybe you should remember…

You know the whole Prohibition era? You know, when alcohol was illegal to drink and cops busted places up that had it?

Did it stop alcohol from being consumed? No.

Did it stop people from making alcohol? No.

Did crime go down like we were promised? Hell no!

Just because it’s illegal doesn’t mean people won’t do it. In fact, it being illegal might make it MORE tempting to do than if it was legal.

Alcohol’s legal now, does that mean that everyone over the age of 21 drinks alcohol all the time?

No, of course not. Some don’t drink at all.

Same with cigarettes. Does everyone over the age of 18 smoke?

Of course not. It’s legal, but that doesn’t mean that they smoke that.

Oh, and you say “most of the usage was piracy”.

Prove it.

Give me… 10 different, NON-MPAA/RIAA sources that say that Megaupload or Bit torrent’s ONLY use is piracy.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Well, if you define innovation by patents, then it’s defined as: “in the cloud” (sort of like “on the internet” before it, but they had to come up with a new catchphrase so they could claim new monopolies on the new innovations).

The old monopolies are obviously pissed that they didn’t come up with this new “cloud” thing… that’s one of the reasons they’re so much mud flinging.

pixelpusher220 (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Filelocker sites. A new way to distribute files globally.

By claiming that file lockers are ‘evil, bad and kill puppies’ it makes it hard for people to decide to start up new technology that *could* be used to infringe.

Phones *could* be used for harassment, so we obviously should label phone companies as aiding and abetting harassment right?

Cowardly Anonymous says:

Re: Re:

They took the concept of a download mirror and provided a method to generate mirrors based on user request, through the use of a file uploaded by the user to generate the downloadable file hosted on the new mirror.

Because of the large aggregation of mirrors, they were able to devise a new model of business based on advertising surrounding a mirror.

They provided means to directly connect creators and file-sharers in a way that benefited the creators.

The three pieces above may not seem like much, but innovation doesn’t happen in leaps. Each innovator contributes a small amount and eventually what you have looks nothing like what came before.

Example, engine:
-Direct force
-Lever and wedge
-Rotating spiral wedge, hand crank
-Gears and shafts
-Water/wind wheel

Example, internet:
-Local networks
-Link based networks
-Packet switching

Example, file-sharing:
– Lockers
– ???

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Ah, back to this bullshit again… a service not only has to be useful but also innovative in hitherto unimagined ways to stop you idiots from masturbating over shutting it down.

OK, let’s accept that it wasn’t innovative. it was a useful, perhaps even vital, service for independent authors and artists to get their work out there without high bandwidth costs, and they even got paid as part of the process. Your opinion of its innovative nature is irrelevant.

Face it, this is just another round in your endless game of whack-a-mole, and people are starting to see that you’re not only full of crap, but you don’t care whose rights you trample in the process – including the very people you claim to be trying to protect.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“and people are starting to see that you’re not only full of crap, but you don’t care whose rights you trample in the process – including the very people you claim to be trying to protect.”

Are we not people now?
If we are, then “people are starting to see that you’re not only full of crap” aswell…….whos right, and who’s full of crap…….. unlike the people fighting for inovation, you are unaware or refuse to consider and thus admit that you migt be as biased, something we would gladly admit too, if we feel that the think worth fighting for is…….worth fighting for

I freely admit that BOTH sides are biased, question is, for what cause are YOU being biased FOR?

And because you dont GET IT, does’nt automatically mean it doesn’t exist, inovation IS real, if it were’nt we’d all still be living in caves

And just so you know, in case you, just..might..not..be aware, you have an major arrogance problem, and alot of the people here will argue anything you say, just on principle

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.”

TLDR version: what in the hell are you blathering on about?

AB says:

I guess that means movie theaters better shut down too because ‘pirates’ might smuggle video recorders in and then make billions of dollars freely sharing crappy recordings of the backs of their fellow viewers heads with billions of other people who would otherwise never have watched th- no, that’s wrong, I meant to say people who might like it and go see it for thems- no, that’s not right either, ok, perhaps they’ll share it with people who can’t afford to… um… well anyway they’re sharing it with SOMEONE and that’s definitely some sort of horrible war crime. Think of the children!

Ed C. says:

It's never been about the customers

The sad truth is that big media has never really been about the customers, or the talent. It’s about using their money and clout to own media, just so they can control who gets to see it and how. They don’t make money by making content. They can’t! These middlemen don’t have a creative bone in them. They make their money by selling their services, such as reproduction, distribution and advertising, to those who really create the content. For instance, the MPAA studios constantly took movie trailers down from free sites like YouTube. Why would movie productions pay them billions annually to use their mandatory promotional services if they could simply get them from a third party for free? It’s the same reason why they don’t want anyone else to replace their reproduction and distribution services either. At least not without paying them wads of cash first.

You see, it’s all really about forcing creators and their fans to keep paying the publishers, whether they want to or not.

Not Completely Buying This says:

Re: It's never been about the customers

and I’m a customer.. and so are you, most likely. To say that they have not a creative bone in them, just makes me want to stop reading this post. When all the dust clears and there is finally some concessions made by the ‘big media’, we will all be meeting in the middle somewhere, where there will be tons and tons more noncreative bones. But consumers will still consume what producers produce. That’s just the way it is.

GMG-Galactic says:

Oh, the plaintive wails of evolution in progress!

Welcome to the third millennium. Thanks for stopping by.

And now the “news”:

The species Hollywoodrot is dying – one can tell by the plaintive wails and squeals the obtuse and obsolete beasts emit.

Society bids good riddance to such primitive and obsolete garbage of the last millennium and will mark its overstuffed graveyard as a dire warning to future generations about experiments gone woefully awry.

And in the fourth millennium, CURRENT ways will considered primitive and obsolete.

Et le cercle est complet.

Evolution works at all levels. Nobody said the process was pretty.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re:

I sympathize with the Americans (not all of them but a good portion). They are imprisoned in a retarded bipartisan system ruled by the lobbying (ie: the corporations) and there are quite a few of them fighting to get out of this destructive circle. I did think Obama would bring change but when he appointed the ppl for the key positions in the US Govt I immediately realized he was just the same and that the big corporations would keep ruling. The bright side is that they are walking towards disaster. The bad side is that they are gonna drag every1 with them.

Cowardly Anonymous says:

Re: Re: Re:

Eh, we aren’t passed the point of no return quite yet. Drastic measures need to be taken, but for now those measures can still be entirely legal and non-destructive.

1) Vote out anyone who ignores the people on a large petition or e-mail campaign from their constituents and make it widely known why.

2) Petition every branch of the government, from village to federal level, for full transparency. The only things they should be allowed to keep secret: names of people, shift schedules, precise locations. Even total military power currently in a given nation should be a matter of public record if we are not at war with that nation. Each compliant governmental body, even the small ones, should be held up as an example. Set the bar high enough that they can’t weasel out of things without massive backlash.

3) Generate a constitutional amendment that sets out a review process designed to stop any law that could lead to abuse of circumvention of the spirit of the bill of rights. Provide penalties for sponsoring such a bill, such as forfeiture of wages or expulsion from congress (dependent on severity). Make the Congress scared of even flirting with messing with our rights.

4) Focus on education, allow teachers to take the lead on the discussion and push for creativity and critical thinking over subject matter. Generate a populace that will not be so easily duped in the future.

5) Detailed clean up of outdated laws. Provide a means to continue this into the future, preferably through forced expiration dates on laws, without a renewal policy (must draft it again). This keeps Congress busy maintaining so they don’t over-regulate and ensures periodic review of each law.

6) Vigilance. Eventually, every system starts to break down.

Ed C. says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

4) Focus on education, allow teachers to take the lead on the discussion and push for creativity and critical thinking over subject matter. Generate a populace that will not be so easily duped in the future.

This one should be at the top of the list. Without an informed and engaged populous, none of the rest of that list is sustainable. Call me cynical, but I think some factions in government are railing against education for that very reason.

Anonymous Coward says:


The US government insists that the court has no real jurisdiction over the server issue. In a filing made late yesterday, the government argued that the EFF had highlighted an “unfortunate” situation, but one not before the court (even Megaupload’s terms of service warned users not to count on the site as a sole repository for files). As for the MPAA, it hasn’t even filed a civil lawsuit yet, and courts should not rule on “speculative matters affecting civil lawsuits that have not yet been filed (and may not be filed at all).” As for Carpathia’s request for cash, the government suggests it doesn’t deserve any. After all, it’s free to wipe and re-lease the servers; the government already has its forensic evidence. The entire dispute is merely a “private contractual matter.”


Funny how the government change its mind and apparently doesn’t even bother to be consistent at all.

John Nemesh (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Hey, have you seen those new TVs that record off air content and let you record them to Blu-Ray discs that you can take over to your friends house and watch? No? Probably because they exist only in Japan, the MPAA didnt like the technology, and because of this, Japan is the ONLY country where they are legally sold! Same with stand alone BD recorders (Consumer electronics, not just computer drives). Innovation RETARDED by corporate greed, once again!

AB says:

Re: Re:

BAN FIRE! BAN ELECTRICITY! BAN ALL FORMS OF ENERGY!! 100% OF ALL ENERGY IS USED FOR THE PURPOSE OF COPYING!!! (Seriously – there is no such thing as an ‘original’ motion, growing things use energy to replicate their cells, all forms of radiation are simply copies of each other. In fact all forms of mater are really just modified copies of other matter.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

What people are willing to pay on locker sites is really such a drop in the bucket as to be meaningless.

150 million in 5 years for Mega isn’t enough money to justify the efforts. Remember:

“The odds were definitely in The Hunger Games favor this weekend: the big screen adaptation of the immensely popular young adult novel opened to an enormous $152.5 million, which ranks third all-time behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 ($169.2 million) and The Dark Knight ($158.4 million). ” (boxofficemojo.com)

There isn’t enough money to be made there at this point to make it worth trying.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

No, because the 150 million they earned represents probably billons of dollars of sales that didn’t happen. Had the consumers paid for the content legally, rather than paying fat ass Kim for access to the pirated version, there would be a major change.

The reason it’s not a valid business model is that in order to compete, they would have to price at a Kim price. That wouldn’t be very useful to the bottom line.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

No, because the 150 million they earned represents probably billons of dollars of sales that didn’t happen.

Bullshit. That’s the old “lost sale fallacy”. Not every download would have been a sale. Odds are that very few would have been.

The reason it’s not a valid business model is that in order to compete, they would have to price at a Kim price. That wouldn’t be very useful to the bottom line.

Oh boo fucking hoo. Just because you overvalue your content doesn’t mean the market does. Get on board with the rest of the world. Streamline, reduce overhead, downsize and work smarter – just like every other industry, besides the entertainment sector, has had to do in these tough economic times.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Sadly it’s difficult to discern whether or not Hollywood could actually survive off the revenue they’d bring in by making file lockers their primary method of distribution.

Unfortunately the MPAA members have become victim to rogue “pirate” accountants who have creatively siphoned off all the profits in the books. The direct result of this is that only a very select few movies have actually made any money in the last couple decades.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

The inovation here, would be creating a site or apps to access servers, WORLDWIDE, with no restrictions.

If you have the best programmers money can buy, and able to create something that theoritically can be viewed on ALL computers(windows, macs, linux), on all phones (android, apple, blackberry), that alone, would give them a major customer base………..and then add the laptops, netbooks, tablets, consoles and any other internet capable device…….can you imagine the immense customer base they can have access to

For example, sure a LOW priced subcription service for easy access and ALL media in one spot, might not be appealing to content providers……if they dont see the bigger picture

$5 a month x 150million


$5 a month x every internet capable device

the low subcription cost would almost be to tempting not to go for it, IF its what we’ve been asking for

Maybe their scared that, they know they’d have to consede to competitors doing the same thing, once its been shown to work, and having to give up rights to media, or giving media to direct competitors who have the potential to do a better job, running the risk of loosing alot of their control, or worst still, making them obsolete if and when artists start dealing with said competitor directly, ala Megaupload

BigKeithO (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

I can’t find a current figure, Cisco estimates 10 billion devices by 2016.

I think a better metric would be total internet users. You aren’t going to convince people to buy a subscrption for each of their devices. It’ll be one account for all of their devices.

In February 2012 there was an estimated 2,459,646,518 internet users worldwide.

An Anonymous Nerd (user link) says:

What if the files are NOT copyrighted stuff

of course they do not care, in fact, the problem to them it it is piracy if you say they suck or are wrong (or what they call Promoting Piracy), they can’t make money off your fan stuff, hell even if you put music in your videos, music that you legally bought it off iTunes, still “Piracy” and then say “You have to follow the disclaimer and royalty policy” even though YOU DID WORD BY WORD, and you know whats more sick, even with the censorship they try to give the illusion that “Your rights have not been repealed at all!” just to laugh in your face.

Anonymous Coward says:

IP extremists don’t only care about stopping infringement, they want to ban all venues competition period. Outside teh Internet, through government established broadcasting and cableco monopolies and through a one sided penalty structure that deters restaurants and other venues from hosting independent performers (without paying some parasite third party a licensing fee) and that even deters bakeries from allowing children to draw custom images on birthday cakes, this is exactly what they have managed to accomplish. and they want to do nothing less than turn the Internet into the same plutocracy they have turned everything outside the Internet into.

Nobody needs these parasite thugs, their need is only artificial. It’s only through government established monopolized content distribution channels that they have managed to gain such a market dominance, otherwise others will create and distribute content without them, which is exactly what they don’t want.

Anonymous Coward says:

and their image is a tacit admission that they can’t have anyone viewing content that they’re not receiving monopoly rents on.

Most of those views, the overwhelming majority, are likely not infringing. These content distribution platforms follow DMCA takedown requests as did Megaupload.

The problem isn’t infringement, it’s that people are viewing content that these monopolists aren’t getting paid for. Content created and distributed by others in such a way that these selfish monopolists don’t have control over and don’t have IP privileges over. This isn’t just about infringement, that’s just a pretext, this is about monopolizing the information distribution market completely. If you want to create and distribute content you must sign your IP privileges over to them or else you won’t have any means to distribute your content. This is exactly what they want and it’s exactly what they have managed to accomplish, through self serving laws, outside of the Internet.

We must abolish government established broadcasting and cableco monopolies, we must shorten copy protection lengths, reduce infringement penalties, create safe harbors that carefully ensures that restaurants, bakeries, and other venues that host independent performers and content absolutely can not be held liable for the infringement of independent performers and content creators (ie: children making custom drawings on their birthday cakes), and we must substantially increase the penalties for bogus infringement claims and for nefarious attempts to wrongfully hold third parties, like restaurants that host independent performers, liable for the actions of others (or for attempts to get settlement money out of them with the threat of initiating an expensive lawsuit).

This is unacceptable, we need to put substantially more pressure on our government to act in the public interest and not just in its own revolving door, corporate campaign contributory, interests. We need to protest, like other countries we should be on the streets in millions protesting the stupid plutocratic nature of our anti-competitive laws.

TDR says:

In reference to the MAFIAA, I’ll just quote the unforgettable Arnold J. Rimmer:

“It’s like a blind, old, incontinent sheepdog that’s had its day. You just take it out to the barn with a double-barreled shotgun and blow the mother away.”

And then there’s Lister (well, technically, Inquisitor-Lister):

“Get outta this one, smeghead.”

Paraphrasing the Cat:

“That’s it! They’re deader than corduroy!”

And last, but not least, Kryten:

“I would like to take this opportunity to tell you that you are the most obnoxious, trumped-up, farty little smeghead it has ever been my misfortune to encounter!”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Yep, so when they name the things on the list that are costing them their profits, they can now add

– Those who refuse to buy from our company because of our stance on the internet

I wonder how we could calculate how much profit loss due to protest………mmmmmm, i know, ill do what they do, and throw out a number, 95%

Content providers lose 95% profit due to protest

Just like them, totally trustworthy situations AND figures

On a serious note, i have joined this middleman protest

Anonymous Coward says:


The reason these people don’t see 41 billion page views as potential profits is that the publishers are not actually fighting piracy. They’re fighting independent artists.

They are very aware that the Internet can be the biggest boost to have ever happened to music and movies. But no matter how many times you tell publishers that they should embrace the Internet, the Internet will kill the publishers by allowing artists to easily self-publish their work.

It’s as simple as that. The Internet is in fact deadly to publishers. There is no good business model that let’s publishers make money thanks to the Internet – the best business models that the Internet enables all involve artists publishing their work on their own and getting rid of the middle-man.

The publishers are really at war with file-sharing technology. They try to kill legitimate file-sharing technologies so that indie artists can’t use them to self-publish.
They also go after downloaders once in a while so as to intimidate people out of downloading anything at all – it’s hard to tell which songs are legal to download for free and which ones aren’t, therefore most people won’t take the risk of downloading an illegal song by mistake if they fear lawsuits and Internet disconnections enough.

It’s NOT about piracy. It’s about killing indie artists.

Matt says:

I had never downloaded a torrent in my life.. until the Content Industry tried to push through laws like SOPA, PIPA, ACTA ect. Now I never intend to pay for content again.

The fact they tried to pay the Government to push this through is absurd and they all should be under investigation right now. Chris Dodd is a F wit for the way he talks about internet users like we are children.

EVERY industry and company in the world needs to constantly evolve to stay alive. Hollywood are stuck witha business model and supply chain that is 50 years out of date, and somehow belive they should be exempt from change because they pay politicians to look after their interests.

Until Hollywood come up with a system where content is available much cheaper, instantly around the globe, and downloadable in a format where it can be shared among devices easily, they do not deserve to make any money from me.

tsunku says:

content protection? no, more like content censorship. it’s not as much the fact that one of thier ‘properties’ might be on these sites as it is that indie movie makers use these sites to distribute their films which the mpaa has cleverly kept them from having any other distribution method. so since these film makers have the audacity to not become members of the mpaa, the mpaa has no choice but make sure they have no way for ppl to see their films.

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