Disney+ Titles Disappear Without Warning, Bringing Confusion To The Streaming Wars

from the here-today,-gone-tomorrow dept

While there’s little doubt that cheaper, more flexible streaming TV options are a definite step up from overpriced cable TV channel bundles, we’ve noted for a while how there’s a problem in the sector it hasn’t spent much time thinking about. As companies rush to lock down your favorite content via exclusives, users are increasingly being forced to hunt and peck among rotating catalogs to find the content they’re looking for. Want to watch Star Trek? You’ll need to subscribe to CBS All Access. Want to watch The Office? You’ll need to subscribe to Comcast’s streaming service. Friends? You’ll need AT&T.

The one two punch of ever shifting licensing deals and exclusives, shared among more than a dozen different services, risks over-complicating finding the content users are looking for. Push this particular idea too far in that direction, and consumers are going to simply pirate — an ironic outcome to a decade spent trying to migrate pirates to legit streaming alternatives.

Case in point: Disney has done amazing work driving new users to its Disney+ streaming service with low(ish) price point and exclusive programs like The Mandalorian. But users this week began noticing that movies that were on the service just last month are already falling out of rotation, without users being notified that they were disappearing:

“…as 2020 began, some Disney Plus users noticed that a few films had gone missing from the streaming library.

Dr. Dolittle, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Home Alone and Home Alone 2, and The Sandlot are no longer streamable on Disney Plus. All these titles disappeared without warning, and so far, Disney has not commented on the titles.

Many fans are surprised by films dropping off the service, particularly since Disney hasn?t issued press releases about the changes. Where companies like HBO and Netflix put out monthly bulletins of everything coming to and leaving their streaming services each month, so viewers can plan their last-minute binges, Disney has only emphasized new arrivals, not departures.

To be clear this isn’t the end of the world, but it does create a level of consumer annoyance that, if driven at too large of a scale, could drive users back to pirating content. Eventually the industry needs to work in collaboration to make it easier to subscribe and unsubscribe from numerous services, track which services you’re subscribed to, clearly notify users when content licenses expire, and make it easier to search across multiple platforms to find particularly content.

Ignore the lessons of the past (that piracy is a competitor and a meaningful metric of potential customer dissatisfaction), and the sector is going to relive it. At which point you can easily see the industry blaming everything but its itself (“we gave you everything and you still pirated you ungrateful wretch”) for customers who drift back to piracy.

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Companies: disney

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Comments on “Disney+ Titles Disappear Without Warning, Bringing Confusion To The Streaming Wars”

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Samuel Abram (profile) says:

This makes no sense for Disney

This doesn’t make a lick of sense. At least with say, the Office leaving Netflix or a movie such as the Firm leaving Hulu, Neither Hulu nor Netflix own those two particular pieces of content so it makes sense for them to leave seeing as their lease expired. With Disney+, it makes no sense whatsoever because Disney owns the property to begin with. What reason does Disney have to remove them when there are far more negatives associated with removing content they own than keeping it up? Could somebody please explain it to me?

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Samuel Abram (profile) says:

Re: This makes no sense for Disney

It could be the case that Disney is using its "Vault" business model (i.e. purposefully holding back content and then releasing it later to high sales), but that made sense in the age of physical media and not when quick piracy is a competitor.

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Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"It could be the case that Disney is using its "Vault" business model (i.e. purposefully holding back content and then releasing it later to high sales), but that made sense in the age of physical media…"

Unfortunately the control freaks at Disney still think the Disney Vault makes sense. It never did, given how many it drove to piracy.

I’m thinking the good trolls at Disney have drunk the kool-aid and accepted the hype that "piracy is dead" because reasons and thus it is now possible to go right back to the good old days of physical media and movie theatres.

I used to say that there will come a time when the internet has become so screwed by greedy copyright cult corporations and legal snares the only ones to still have decent service will be the pirates. Disney’s certainly always put the extra hours in to make that vision a reality…

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Talmyr says:

Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

The ‘Vault’ still makes some sense to Disney, in the sense that you want people to keep coming back, so rotate stuff out… except for all the people you lose by doing that.

Plus, there is probably way more Disney than anyone can realistically watch, so chances are they figure it won’t hurt to ‘retire’ some for a while. Then they can bring it back with a fanfare…

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Bruce C. says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

Vault model: When distributing DVDs/blu-rays it kind of makes sense as long as the discs are ones that are actually popular with multiple generations. Other titles haven’t aged so well.

Disney seems to think demand for a small selection of older titles can be used to drive demand for the streaming service, but a subscription isn’t the same at all. Unless they expect people to subscribe for access to particular titles and then cancel their subscriptions. Which is bass-ackwards from the better profit model of a set it and forget it subscription.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 This makes no sense for Disney

but a subscription isn’t the same at all

Exactly. A friend of mine once said to me, "why do I need to buy CDs anymore when I can just subscribe to a music streaming service and listen to whatever I want whenever I want."

Well, you can’t if they rotate what’s available in their library.

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Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"As I said, the "Disney Vault" business model doesn’t make sense in the age of rampant piracy and, moreso, devalues their own product."

It never really made sense. Disney has always been considered a veritable Iran of Copyright (remember when they went after every comic artist using anthropomorphic birds and mice?) and many of their marketing decisions reflect a desire of control rather than a desire to actually make money. Disney and Sony both stand out as the core members of this Church of Holy Copyright – just that disney’s window dressing is a lot fluffier than Sony’s.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

When you are producing content in batches, like DVDs, once you have sold out, it makes sense to wait for demand to build up before pressing a new batch, as there is a minimum number of sales for the pressing to be profitable. When you are dealing with digital copies, it costs so little to keep a copy available that it makes no sense to remove a film from a service even if they have been no views for several years.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

there is a minimum number of sales for the pressing to be profitable

The costs are minimal. A glass master costs a couple of thousand dollars, but that already exists and can be reused. Even a small run of 1000 discs with packaging won’t be much more than $2/unit (and the cost can be passed along). This excuse doesn’t work at Disney’s scale.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 This makes no sense for Disney

You are ignoring all the costs involved in getting those discs to the customer via a retail outlet. Also, unless you are doing direct sales, 1000 discs are no where near enough to send 1 to every possible outlet. A band selling DVDs at their gigs could find that level of production useful, but the possible profits would not pay for all the management and legal time involved inside a large bureaucracy, or the management and stocking time at a retail outlets.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 This makes no sense for Disney

You are ignoring all the costs involved in getting those discs to the customer via a retail outlet.

The existence of dollar stores makes me think this could be done for less than a dollar per unit.

1000 discs are no where near enough to send 1 to every possible outlet.

That’s the point. If some obscure band can get prices like that, Disney can get their costs even lower. With their well-known name they can get people to pay an extra $5 or $10 for "classic" re-releases, and they should have little trouble selling a box of discs to every Walmart. They just don’t want to; not because it would be unprofitable, but because they think the artificial scarcity will benefit them more.

If the old Disney movies went out of copyright, other companies would be racing to press the discs.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 This makes no sense for Disney

You keep looking at the wrong part of the costs. A band can decide to get a DVD made, whilst having a pint after a band practice, have one of them send a copy of the masters o the pressing plant the next day, and once the receive their box of DVDs, all they have to do is put some in the van when they set out for a gig, and have a roady sell them to fans.

They will have sold out their run of DVDs before Disney have managed to hold the meeting to decide whether the rerun is worthwhile, never mind run the bureaucratic processes involved in getting a copy of the master to the pressing plant, and organizing the distribution from the plant to the distribution warehouses, along with the advertising campaign to drive the sales.. Disney only think in terms large scale distribution, and that requires large volumes, and lots of management time, actual production costs are small part of their costs. Because of this Disney will have a high sales volume as a minimum for a repressing of a DVD.

If Disney films were out of copyright, there are companies that would be producing copies, but they would be companies with much smaller overheads than Disney, as in companies with a turnover that would not pay the salary of one Disney executive.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 This makes no sense for Disney

If Disney films were out of copyright, there are companies that would be producing copies, but they would be companies with much smaller overheads than Disney, as in companies with a turnover that would not pay the salary of one Disney executive.

If Disney’s unable to compete, why should that be society’s problem? If beaurocracy prevents them from releasing the material, they shouldn’t be allowed to keep copyright on it. I guarantee you they’d solve all these beaurocratic and logistical hurdles really quickly if that were the deal.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 This makes no sense for Disney

"The existence of dollar stores makes me think this could be done for less than a dollar per unit."

The existence of this comment makes me think you don’t understand how that end of the market sources its stock.

"If some obscure band can get prices like that, Disney can get their costs even lower"

At the same quality, with the logistics and additional costs (storage, transport, breakages, etc) involved with wide distribution, along with the end of life costs of dealing with unsold stock? Unlikely.

I’d read a few things about scale distribution if I were you, things change somewhat with the kinds of numbers Disney deal with vs. your garage band.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 This makes no sense for Disney

The existence of this comment makes me think you don’t understand how that end of the market sources its stock.

That’s not the point. The point is that "minimum number of sales for the pressing to be profitable" can in no way justify the Disney vault strategy, and never could. If companies can profitably sell cheap plastics for $1 in large quantities, there’s certainly a higher but reasonable price at which Disney could sell any non-obscure vaulted title profitably.

Let’s say $60/disc, with a run of 10,000, exclusively sold online and shipped via USPS domestic mail. There’s no way that would be unprofitable, even if the amount of profit is a trifle by Disney’s standards.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 This makes no sense for Disney

"If companies can profitably sell cheap plastics for $1 in large quantities"

FFS, that’s my point. You’re missing the point where they often buy excess stock AT A LOSS to the original retailer/manufacturer. Of course they’re able to offer stock cheaply if they’re buying it for less than it cost to make and distribute it in the first place.

"Let’s say $60/disc"

Why would people suddenly start paying that much now? That’s over 3 times the current price of a new Disney disc.

"There’s no way that would be unprofitable"

There is if nobody wants to pay the idiotic markup you just demanded.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 This makes no sense for Disn

You’re missing the point where they often buy excess stock AT A LOSS to the original retailer/manufacturer.

Bullshit. There are things my local dollar stores have been selling for decades at 50¢/unit. That’s not surplus, it’s manufactured specifically and repeatedly for them.

There is if nobody wants to pay the idiotic markup you just demanded.

I’m demanding nothing. I marvel that people will drop hundreds of dollars a day to take their kids to Disney World, but they do—in large numbers. When something’s rare and desirable, there are always parents willing to buy it for their kids. Lots are willing to buy $60 presents, although you’re missing that this is an exageration—it will not literally take a doubling or tripling of sale price to bring a smaller-than-usual disc run out of the red.

Disney has never used actual costs to justify their vault strategy, because it’s not a valid justification—and, anyway, they’ve never felt a need to justify it at all.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 This makes no sense for

"That’s not surplus, it’s manufactured specifically and repeatedly for them."

Some things yes, some things no. Things like batches of DVDs of movies that used to sell full price in major retailers, almost certainly not.

"I marvel that people will drop hundreds of dollars a day to take their kids to Disney World, but they do—in large numbers"

Yes, including myself this year in fact, travelling halfway across the world to take my niece and nephew there as a once in a lifetime experience. Worth every penny since they’re unlikely to get that experience again before adulthood and not something that can be easily replicated at home.

That doesn’t mean you can sell them a $10 DVD at $60 just because you decided to ask for a ridiculous markup.

urza9814 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 This makes no sense for Disn

Really? The dollar stores near me mostly carry the same stock year-round. And there are seasonal products that I’ve only ever seen at that particular chain, but they’re been at multiple locations at least four years in a row. So are you telling me the same companies are making the same mistakes and selling the same overstock at a loss month after month, year after year? You’d think they’d eventually lower their production a bit if that was the case.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"When you are producing content in batches, like DVDs, once you have sold out, it makes sense to wait for demand to build up before pressing a new batch, as there is a minimum number of sales for the pressing to be profitable."

Except that was never Disney’s deal. There are a number of market calculations available on the cost-benefit of continually making and selling new content which pans uot solidly in favor of consistently churning out new movies…but for that to work they need a clean playing field where they don’t need to compete with their own olden goldies for the household budgets.

And it also allows them to simply remaster their old movies and re-sell them at new price. How many here have five different editions of "Snow White" by now?

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rangda (profile) says:

Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"Unless the whole plan is to annoy would-be-paying customers with artificial scarcity, anyway"

In the era of tape and shiny disc sales, that was exactly the plan. Tell everyone it’s going away, get a rush of sales, hold it back for a bit, release a new "special" edition, get another rush of sales.

But in the era of streaming this seems more like a variant on the underpant gnomes business model:

  1. vault titles to prevent streaming.
  2. profit
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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"But in the era of streaming this seems more like a variant on the underpant gnomes business model…"

Not just in the era of streaming. A lot of corporations operate with the underpant gnome business model, but it’s pretty telling that major media companies almost always place 99% of their efforts in that particular bracket. They always have.

It’s similarly pretty telling that the reason Netflix ate so much of the market is because they came onto the scene of media without putting ANY stock in the underpant gnome business model, always putting a clear focus on HOW to achieve their profits.

All too often Disney, Sony, and other major entertainment companies operate from what I can only term a religious belief in marketing schemes relying exclusively on keeping people from simply pressing "ctrl-C".

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: This makes no sense for Disney

But in the era of streaming this seems more like a variant on the underpant gnomes business model:

Except that it appears to work. Disney has no shortage of profit, nor of subscribers to their streaming service. Even if everyone hates the vault model, it’s a stretch to say it reduces profit. Where’s the evidence?

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: This makes no sense for Disney

"This doesn’t make a lick of sense"

Corporate licencing rarely does.

From what I understand, Disney had pre-existing agreements for other providers to have the titles that dated to before they planned to launch Disney+. Then, rather than leave money on the table for content such as Home Alone over the launch and Christmas period, they opted to stream them until they had to give up streaming rights and then remove them when they had to. The above may or may not be accurate, but it fits with the short term gain at the expense of the long term that’s typical of these things.

It’s utterly idiotic from a consumer point of view, but realistically what do Disney have to really lose here? Nobody’s subscribing to Disney+ solely for the titles that left, and when the crunch comes and the market collapses because people only want to subscribe to the same couple of services, Disney+ is likely to have a top spot on that list.

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9Blu says:

Re: This makes no sense for Disney

I know for at least some of these films it’s due to existing license deals, and the films will return when those deals expire. Disney already talked about it, so I’m surprised this article or the one it’s based on didn’t mention it.

‘A Disney+ spokesperson confirmed to Gizmodo that, "a small number of titles had left the platform over issues relating to legacy deals. However, all of those titles that have left will return to the service as soon as those licenses expire."’

https://comicbook.com/2020/01/02/disney-plus-home-alone-sandlot-removed-reveals-why-more-were/

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crade (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: The answer I was looking for

I love how Disney acts like it’s some force of nature that’s out of their hands when actually what happened is they chose to sell the exclusive rights to stream these to someone else instead of putting it on their own service they knew was coming.

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crade (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 The answer I was looking for

Fair enough. I don’t know who knew they were going to create their own streaming service when. I still feel like they are playing victim to their own actions whether they decided to do the service and then signed up to a bunch of long term agreements or signed up to a bunch of long term agreements and then decided to do a streaming service.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 The answer I was looking for

We’re talking about an organization that spent years and millions of dollars conflating copyright and trademark law to keep a cartoon from the 1920s out of everyone else’s hands.

Disney’s at the point where Katy Perry is – even when they’re in the right, I think I’d give myself spinal bifida trying to eke out a modicum of sympathy for them hoisting themselves on their own petard…

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nerdrage (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 The answer I was looking for

Well it’s out of their hands once they sign on the dotted line.

Disney should have made the jump to streaming years ago. It’s been obvious for years that Netflix would destroy cable and broadcast. But corporations find it hard to shed a business that is making money today just because they know that it’s going to crash and burn tomorrow and they need to put those resources towards planning for the future.

Disney jumped to streaming at pretty much the last possible moment but maybe they planned it that way. They’re like a fighter pilot who knows his plane has been hit and is doomed. But it’s still gliding along, looking from the outside like it could be salvaged. He’ll wait till the last possible moment to eject just so he doesn’t look like a panicky coward.

Disney has shareholders to answer to, and some of those shareholders even now are bitching about how Disney is undermining profitable businesses by plowing resources into this newfangled streaming jazz that cannibalizes cable and broadcast but isn’t as profitable per person (and never will be, the days are gone when everyone had to subsidize ESPN with their cable subscription despite half of them not watching sports.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: This makes no sense for Disney

Welcome to the "Disney Digital Vault" where all your favorites go to die for a few years, until Disney can squeeze top dollar out of them again for the next generation…

It will happen, and they will claim it’s to ‘help’ consumers when we all know it’s just trying to create artificial scarcity to increase the marginal profit margin available. Forget that they already recovered their cost 100X over during the initial release and showings, they expect to be able to keep bleeding the customers until they have nothing left to give.

Don’t give these bloodsuckers anything, no matter how ‘entertaining’ you may think their creations (stolen copyright on most, since they can’t be bothered to pay for the things they appropriate, but expect everyone else to pay for their appropriated culture…)

Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Using the Magic Eight Ball to select programming.

I had a thought the other day, about someone setting up a sort of TV guide type service where one could look up what they wanted to watch and find out how to get that service (maybe someone like IMBD could link to them). The article above shows how difficult it would be to maintain any kind of accurate listing (who would want THAT headache?). Hell, not even the sites providing the streams seem to be able to keep an accurate listing as without any kind of hint about why changes are made there is no predicting what the lists will be tomorrow.

Storage is so cheap these days, it doesn’t seem like technical difficulties would be the issue, even if some property only got one viewing per year, the fact that that property was available might get someone to subscribe to your service. Or many someones. There might be some convoluted scheme involving scarcity that these folks are playing with, but it appears they are going to piss viewers off (with the attendant revenue issues) more than reap benefits from artificial scarcity.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Using the Magic Eight Ball to select programming.

There’s an app, at least on the iPhone, I would assume Android also called "JustWatch". You can enter the name of whatever you’re looking for and it’ll show you where you can buy it, rent it, or Stream it. It seems to work pretty good for things I’m entering into it.

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Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Using the Magic Eight Ball to select programming.

"Considering that the app leads people to buy, stream or rent, I don’t think the copyright holders or licensees even have an incentive to litigate seeing as there’s no harm being shown."

You realize you’re talking about the industry which has repeatedly, in the past, spent hundreds of millions to fight phenomena which would have made them money?

At the end of the day the copyright cult is all about control.

The closest analogy I can think of is how the catholic church fought tooth and nail to keep bible interpretation in the hands of ordained priests because the core goal was control rather than how many people actually ended up believing in christianity.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Using the Magic Eight Ball to select program

"Great points. I forgot that the MPA and the RIAA are the same type of industries that want to strangle the formats that will then make them money."

Not just them, unfortunately. We’ve all seen, over the years, numerous copyright cult corporations throwing millions of dollars down a black hole in litigation and lobbying to fight off massive opportunities for them. I keep having this vision of a confused redneck running down main street firing a shotgun at the guys running after him screaming "Stand still and take my money!!!" as if he was running from the zombie uprising.

" Me stupid."

For forgetting that these corporations – run by mature adults able to tie their own shoelaces – often act as if they were clinically insane or mentally disabled? No. That’s not "stupid". 🙂

nerdrage (profile) says:

Re: Using the Magic Eight Ball to select programming.

Try justwatch.com.

It doesn’t subscribe to services for you but it lets you see where everything is.

What people seem to want is some kind of meta-service, one place to subscribe to stuff. Amazon is building that. You can subscribe to HBO and some other services via Amazon. Of course you’ll pay full freight (after teaser deals expire).

What people really want are customized payment plans so they don’t pay full freight to all services at once. For starters, Amazon could set up auto-churn so you can schedule the beginning and end dates of services across all the ones they offer. Same thing any of us can do, but easier.

The problem is: Amazon has to do deals with Disney, Netflix, Apple etc to be able to offer their services; and has to convince them that automated starting and stopping is in their interest. Which it isn’t. The big services know they can get subscribers without offering such deals. They want the opposite, to keep subscribers coming back and not even looking at the competition.

crade (profile) says:

I think "Amazing Work" is a bit of a stretch.. When it was released after months of beta testing it still couldn’t even resume your shows or tell you which episodes you had watched.. Didn’t work at all for tons of people, still doesn’t work on Linux and worst of all… No Muppet Show..

"and exclusive programs like The Mandalorian" is maybe less of a stretch but I would say instead "and the exclusive program: The Mandalorian"

I predicted Disney would screw this up because they overvalue their content and doing something like throwing the doors open so you can watch whatever you want just isn’t in their DNA but I did not predict that they would screw up the service itself so badly.. I mean they already had Hulu running for a long time, it’s pretty embarrassing I should think.

Disney also specifically made the claim that they were not going to do the rotating stock thing when promoting the service.

So anyway stop hoarding The Muppet Show and you will have my 7$

crade (profile) says:

Re: Re: Muppets

If it’s cost prohibitive to allow people to see the Muppet show and other beloved shows I certainly wouldn’t blame music for it. Having music in shows is nice and creates no problem for releasing anything. If the horrible state of copyright law makes it cost prohibitive to release shows that have music in them it’s victim blaming to point the finger at the music.

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That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Something something decades screaming about piracy, we think they finally got a glimmer of a hint seeing piracy drop as they made it easier for people to get the content legally….
They some dipshit said this whole vault thing worked well last time, some other dipshit decided that people would pay to add more streaming services (I mean really, its just like cable!!! They’ll pay more for HBO, ShowTime, etc etc WE’LL BE RICH!!!!!!)

Rather than offer 1 or 2 really good streaming platforms (iTunes?) each of them is going to build their own (UltraViolet now with 17 more websites you have to log into first to verify your access rights) and expect consumers to pay a premium price…

They aren’t very bright are they…

Hey, this golden egg is awesome.
But I bet if we cut the goose open, we could get a second golden egg, and we wouldn’t have to wait for tomorrow.
Frankly, I can’t see any downsides to this plan, and I suggest we implement it immediately.
Gentlemen, sharpen your axes.

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AlexisR200 says:

The result of allowing a company to silo in their content.

Honestly this is bad for the consumer. Disney leads the charge with anticompetitive practices with their refusal to licence their content all while swallowing more companies.

Honestly Copyright protection is so powerful, cheap and broken that companies might end up getting away with recreating cable channel’s BS on the internet and resume their gouging. How long before we also get bombarded with ads on subscription services just like cable?

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McGyver (profile) says:

Re: The result of allowing a company to silo in their content.

I pretty much figured that once Netflix became successful and the way was paved for streaming services, everyone would start to mimic the gouging model cable was famous for…
Why make a reasonable income licensing affordable content when you can hoard everything including old crap and keep it all wing-wangs for yourself?
Give it a few years and streaming services will all be trashy reality shows and paranormal/Bigfoot/aliens/hunt for lost nazi gold shows and anything remotely worth watching will be locked into a deluxe package.
The beauty of history is if you miss it the first time, you can experience it all over again when it repeats itself.

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bob says:

Re: The result of allowing a company to silo in their content.

Hulu already does ads at the beginning of some shows, even for paying customers. Unless you pay even more money.

I don’t get the logic, If I’m streaming the content I am not suddenly going to start watching it on cable just because of their dumb unskipable ad.

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nerdrage (profile) says:

just things settling into place

This is just part of the process of Disney wrangling back their licenses from their licensors.

http://www.darkhorizons.com/disney-rep-explains-rotating-film-slate/

Global streaming means no more licensors – why bother with middlemen when you go direct to the customer? But Disney isn’t global yet, and the process of getting there will be messy.

"Eventually the industry needs to work in collaboration to make it easier to subscribe and unsubscribe from numerous services, track which services you’re subscribed to, clearly notify users when content licenses expire, and make it easier to search across multiple platforms to find particularly content."

The industry will work on that collaboration through mergers & acquisitions. Independent corporations don’t cooperate with others; they are set up to continually try to kill and eat competitors. Fox and Hulu now cooperate nicely with Disney because Disney killed and ate them.

More mergers are on the way. Apple is probably going to buy MGM soon and somebody is going to buy ViacomCBS. This whole industry will probably crunch down to four or so global behemoths, so the confusing and annoying range of competitors will become more tolerable.

As for finding where content is, try this: justwatch.com

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Ninja (profile) says:

I’m not confused, when it’s not on Netflix I go without. Or pirate. I started pirating again last year after 4 years without downloading a single movie/series. Because of this kind of stupidity.

As for the usual copyright morons around here, I couldn’t care less about your rants of how much of a criminal I am when the big copyright holders engage in all sorts of fuckery like this.

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Agammamon says:

an ironic outcome to a decade spent trying to migrate pirates to legit streaming alternatives.

A decade spent successfully migrating pirates to legit streaming alternatives.

And they’re going to throw it all away because some mid-level execs need bullet points for their evaluations so they come up with these ‘great ideas’ for squeezing a tiny little bit more short-term income.

tp (profile) says:

Finding legal content is not the problem

It is responsibility of end users to find authorised vendor of copyrighted works, and paying the requested amount of money before consuming the work.

This basically means that end users need to do "more work" to find legal alternative to find the real author of the copyrighted work. Giving your money to scammers who have large pirate collections is not acceptable, instead you need to read the copyright notices, and find authorised vendor who can provide you with legal copy of the material.

Proper authors cannot reach all the users on the planet. There’s always pirate vendors available too, and author’s works can often be lost in the flood of pirate material. But this is why it’s every end user’s responsibility to find authorised vendor for all the consumed material and reject the scammers who provide pirate or counterfeit products.

Depending on the amount of scammers in the market, the end user’s job of finding needle in the heystack can be slightly more difficult.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

Since when has Disney paid the authors and actors their fair share of the profits, rather than using Hollywood accounting to keep the money themselves? In some respects, the legacy publishing industry is one of the oldest collection of scammers going.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

Since when has Disney paid the authors and actors their fair share of the profits,

obviously end users can evaluate themselves who is trustworthy entities in the market. If end user accidentally chooses a scammer to obtain the work from, the end user takes a risk of copyright infringement lawsuit. So the choices need to be made carefully to pass the money to the right vendor.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Finding legal content is not the problem

Buying from Disney is not Infringement, but neither does it do much to put money in the pockets of the actual creators.

Well, if your author can reach that area of the world by distributing their permissions to the chosen vendors, then author is getting his fair share of the profits.

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Finding legal content is not the problem

"then author is getting his fair share of the profits"

The fantasy world you live in where studios ripping off artists isn’t famous enough to have its own popular nickname is interesting. However, can you keep the conversation to this reality?

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

Our favourite moron has returned! Made any useless pieces of software nobody can work out how to use over the holidays? Any "perfect" pieces of software that have no reason for anybody to even consider paying for them?

"Giving your money to scammers who have large pirate collections is not acceptable"

Nobody’s doing that, numbnuts. If they can’t find a convenient way to pay for the products they’re trying to get hold of, they’ll get it for free.

"Proper authors cannot reach all the users on the planet"

I love the fact that this is your comment in a conversation about bloody Disney.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

Made any useless pieces of software nobody can work out how to use over the holidays?

I know it’s harsh to compete against vendors like disney, when the competition has global distribution network worth billions of dollars to distribute their products, and I need to rely on random messages in techdirt.

Any "perfect" pieces of software that have no reason for anybody to even consider paying for them?

It’s currently not possible to pay for them, given that I haven’t implemented monetising feature. I considered the actually useful product to be more important than trying to fetch money from end users. (well, if you find my itch.io page, it’s possible to send money)

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

"I know it’s harsh to compete against vendors like disney"

They are not a competitor to your product, yet you still come in here to regularly complain about how you’ve failed.

"I need to rely on random messages in techdirt."

Well, you don’t but at least you’ve stopped spending huge amounts of money on a type of marketing that would never work in a million years.

"It’s currently not possible to pay for them"

Then you lose nothing if someone decided to pirate them.

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Samuel Abram (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Finding legal content is not the problem

I have copy-protection provided by the web technologies/web servers available, so pirating might not be possibe anyway.

Every single piece of content available is piratable due to The Analog Hole. There’s never been a pirate-proof DRM mechanism. Never has, never will be. DRM failing is as inevitable as death and taxes.

Samuel Abram (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

My content is interactive, with user input required. Good luck with your analog hole and recording equipment. When interactive content is available, it provides more value than a mere recording.

Only if it has an online component with multiplayer capabilities and servers from the developers themselves can you be kicked off if you break the DRM. Still, the DRM could be broken.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Finding legal content is not the problem

State how you lose money from a product that is not for sale.

flood of pirated products replaces shelfspace from legal products. End users never bother to look at my product since they’re busy watching pirated hollywood movies, and thus I need to compete not only against local content, but also a flood of pirated high quality global content.

this happens also when someone elses product is pirated, even though you’re only allowed to sue for copyright infringement of your own product.

Basically there isn’t any way to stop the flood of someone elses pirated products, because the system doesnt let us sue if our own product isn’t the product being pirated.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

Why don’t you just admit your product is not competitive, and figure out why and fix it. Piracy is not the problem you think it is, and competition is the name of the game in a free market.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Finding legal content is not

Last I checked Disney+ doesn’t have 2 million content items available. Hell, the article is about them having even fewer items available. Yet it’s touted as an answer to Netflix.

You figure the rest out, I’m not doing your Meshpage homework for you.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

As we’ve told you on multiple occasions, that’s not how competition works. Competition is “like against like”. Yes, they all have to compete for your time, but any attempts to block an unlike “competitor” is unlikely—at best—to have any observable impact whatsoever on your success because there is unlikely to be any substantial overlap between those who pirate movies and those who would have any interest in your product or anything like your product.

Also, of course you can’t sue over copyright infringement of someone else’s work. That’s copyright 101. No legal system has ever allowed such a thing. The legal system is flawed, but only allowing people to sue over copyright infringement of works that they themselves own the copyright to is not one of them, and to allow otherwise goes against the most basic principles of copyright and legal standing and would be a perversion of justice and equity.

Finally, of course you’ll have to compete against high-quality global content, but not if it’s in a completely unrelated market. Disney movies—pirates or otherwise—do not compete with your product at all. Let’s pretend that the general copyright maximalist claim—that every pirated copy is a lost sale—is valid. That would necessarily mean that every copy that gets pirated would otherwise make money for the copyright-holder. So if you successfully end piracy in any manner, those people pirating Disney movies won’t go for your product; they’ll spend their time with the legitimate copies instead, almost certainly spending the same time on Disney movies whether they pirate them or get them legitimately. (Of course, this is not the case, but it’s still the case that someone who would otherwise pirate a Disney movie is more likely to legitimately purchase or stream that movie or pirate or legitimately watch some other movie instead if prevented rather than look up your software.)

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Finding legal content is not the

Disney movies—pirates or otherwise—do not compete with your product at all.

This isn’t true. When disney does awesome animations, it places some strict expectations of how good quality animation systems should implement. When children are watching nice animations, and when my tool that is designed for children to use, cannot fullfil the quality requirements they see in disney movies, the tool might be rejected by the children. In this way, disney movies are substituting the market for my animation tool.

If these are legal copies of disney movies, this all is valid competition. Then it just depends whether children consider good quality animation more important than the ability to create their own animated films.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Finding legal content is not

You still aren’t competing with Disney movies. At most, you’re competing with Disney’s animation tools. And even then it’s not true competition because Disney doesn’t sell its animation tools, like, at all, and all animation is done using proprietary tools. So it’s still not the same market. Competition is not the only way different companies/products affect each other; it’s just the largest one.

Also, your success doesn’t depend on whether or not the competition is “valid” or not. If all the people who pirated Disney movies started buying them legitimately instead, that would have precisely 0 effect on your bottom line, even by your argument. As far as your product is concerned, whether the competition is pirated or not is irrelevant for you. You will see no actual changes to your success if every pirate stopped pirating Disney movies. There are legal and moral differences, to be sure, but none of that actually affects you from a practical perspective.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

As far as your product is concerned, whether the competition is pirated or not is irrelevant for you.

This isnt true. Legal software distribution has overheads like money collection and shelf placement which isn’t an issue with pirated software. Also people consider more carefully whether they actually need the product, whenever they need to part with their money to obtain the product. Piracy messes up with this equation badly, because it fills the demand gaps without compensating the authors. It’s only those demand gaps in the marketplace which makes people buy the product with their own money.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

I have news for you, a child could not compete with Pixar when it come to animation,

That’s no reason to deny the opportunity to let the children create animations.

And we can provide good enough tooling that the children’s work will be as good as what pixar can do. It’s just a small challenge to genius that we are. Just need to keep costs down so that it is affordable to the children and their families.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

"That’s no reason to deny the opportunity to let the children create animations."

Nobody’s denying them any opportunity. It’s just that you’re uninformed enough to think that the only things standing between the average 8 year old and the teams of hundreds or thousands who work on the average Pixar movie is the age range of the interface.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

How to miss the point, it not the software that is the problem, but rather the number of person hours needed to create a 3d models, rigged ready for animation. About the only way of doing that is to provide a library of pre-rigged characters, ready for using in an animated movie. After that, there is the need for writing the script, working up a storyboard, plotting character movements etc.

The time investment for even a short animation is more than most children have the patience for, and for the few children that do, there is Blender along with lots of video tutorials, and a very supportive community to help the newcomer.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

In other words: the only thing he’s even considering is the time rendering the end product. In order to make his point he has to both ignore the other 99% of work that goes into an animation and pretend that the work of the hundreds or thousands of people who work on a Pixar movie can easily be replaced by a small child so long as his software is written the right way.

Whatever he needs to tell himself, I suppose…

"there is Blender"

Oh, that’s come up before. He just whined about how he doesn’t like their user interface (while coming up with bad excuses as to why that product has such a long history and strong community compared to the nothing on his platform).

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

as those animations are created by teams of people, as it can take months to model and animate a single character.

This is mainly because pixar made mistakes when buiding their animation frameworks. For example, we solve those problems using the following techniques:
1) input data amount needs to be small enough that they can be inputted using computer keyboard
2) there must be feature called "composability", i.e. when you combine different features, all combinations need to work automatically, without any extra input data.
3) there must be short descriptive names for all features
4) there must be large number of features, but they all need to follow common pattern that allows their usage via simple controls
5) operations performed on the data must be fast enough that ordinary computer hardware can handle the operations with sufficient performance, so that render farms are not required

With these techniques, we expect that our system can outperform pixar’s tooling when children are using the system.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Finding

Why IBM PCs?

These tablets or phones do not have necessary things for the tooling to work, i.e. mouse and keyboard.

Basically it’s a tradeoff because some children do not have access to pc’s, when their schools are using tablets. But availability of GPU’s, mouse, keyboard and other inputting devices are just superior in pc hardware.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Finding

How do you render an animation after you’ve dropped all the heavy rendering work?

It uses opengl. Basically you first have url to .obj, .stl, .mtl, .glb files coming from external sources, and then it gets loaded to a mesh. Then mesh can be rendered using any number of materials. Then movement is handled using opengl matrix stack. Then window is added which handles the event loop with all the key bindings and mouse positions etc. Basically it uses the GPU to blit triangles to the screen. That operation is fast even on crappy laptops.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Find

That’s an interesting collection of buzzwords, but it still doesn’t explain how you think you’re going to get the performance of a dedicated render farm in a crappy laptop, unless you’re just depending on magically outperforming the hardware. Which, I know is a wet dream of some software people, but at some point you do have to accept that the hardware is at least as important as your code when performing hardware-intensive processes.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

It looks like you have fallen into the trap that many software developers have fallen into, and that is a belief that an Interface can replace the learning of relevant skills and practices needed to achieve a creative goal. There is even a minimum level of knowledge needed to be able to understand what the items in an interface actually do, and how they are used to solve a problem.

For example, how many kids would know what composability means, and how do you make that accessible to them?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

Exactly. The reasons why these interfaces might be too complex for a small child is frankly because adult professionals in the animation field will wish to make choices that a small child would not. He seems to think that all he needs to do is lay the crayons out in the right order, but hasn’t considered what happens when the budding artist wishes to use something other than crayons.

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

"flood of pirated products replaces shelfspace from legal products"

You’re online. Why is there "shelf space"

"End users never bother to look at my product since they’re busy watching pirated hollywood movies"

Sure. It’s not because your products in a completely different marketplace are shit and you can’t market worth a damn. It must be because people are pirating movies.

Your weak excuses for your failure are always amusing. I’ll be over here >> consuming my legally purchased content while I laugh at your delusions.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Finding legal content is not the problem

He’s already admitted once (in a spirited defense of Malibu Media) that he’s a professional troll. It’s not hard to imagine that he legitimately thinks that pandering to a website, which antidirt regularly screams as having a dying reader base, is a legitimate marketing strategy that he thinks the government should reward him with effort points. Because if he tried this in actual programming forums he’d have his ass laughed all the way to the North Pole…

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Rocky says:

Re: Ass backwards...

I would have thought that if you have a product that people are interested in you would make it easy for them get it.

If a customers has to go out of their way to find something, they wont. It’s simple basic economics and human nature that people will go for the easier and cheaper route almost every time. Those who don’t understand this will blame everyone else for their poor business-decisions, and if they have enough power and money they will lobby for laws that forces customers to buy their products in one way or another.

I wouldn’t put a cent into a company that embraces your view of how customers should act.

Also, can you define proper author? And by that, I also think you need to define what an improper author is.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Ass backwards...

I would have thought that if you have a product that people are interested in you would make it easy for them get it.

It might not be possible to create both excellent product that people want to consume and also awesome distribution network that reaches millions of users around the globe. Only very few vendors have resources to build something big like that. Everyone else needs to limit the scope of market that they can handle.

Thus if you want good product and good reachability, you might find that there doesnt exist vendors that can implement both of them.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Ass backwards...

It might not be possible to create both excellent product that people want to consume and also awesome distribution network that reaches millions of users around the globe.

You do not get the power of the Internet for distribution, and just how fast word will spread about an awesome product.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Ass backwards...

"It might not be possible to create both excellent product that people want to consume and also awesome distribution network that reaches millions of users around the globe."

Oh, stop. You realize that in factual reality we have websites which exploded from a single page showing silly cat pictures to a network with dozens of employees within a year all thanks to the internet being really great at marketing anything a sufficient amount of people find interesting?

If you’ve put your product online and it still isn’t popular enough to instantly grow you a fan base sufficient to carry you then your problem is that your product isn’t a competitive offer. End of story.

You are essentially putting the blame on invisible fairies cursing you for your lack of business success.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Ass backwards...

That the way it goes with any form of creative work, a few works gain traction and explode, somewhat more get enough of a fanbase to allow the creator to go full time with their creativity, and the rest will never be anything more than a hobby. That said, most authors who obtained a publishing contract had to keep the day job, and most musicians have made more from live performances that any record contract, while most actors are amateurs performing in local venues.

Working a day job to support ones creativity is the norm, and getting rich from it is a lottery win.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Ass backwards...

"We also have 2 billion other websites that didn’t succeed in making a dent to the user population."

Welcome to how the real world has always worked, in every area of the market.

You want to be an artist, successful brain surgeon, nobel prize winner, astronaut, etc? Your odds are pretty slim and it’s guaranteed you’ll have to work ten times as hard as anyone else with a high risk of still ending up doing a desk job in an office somewhere.

You want to be an office clerk? Congratulations, odds are very good you get to be one.

Many are Called. Few are Chosen. This is the way success has always worked.

The copyright cult has been trying to sell the view that mediocrity has market value. That the mediocre artist doesn’t have to take a desk job or flip burgers. That you don’t need a great deal of both luck and genius to make it big with a new invention.
But that’s not how the world works and it never did. The existence of "piracy" only serves to reveal that truth.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

"It is responsibility of end users to find authorised vendor of copyrighted works, and paying the requested amount of money before consuming the work."

…and since the point of being an online consumer is to avoid doing the grunt work yourself to begin with, we’re right back at square one again. In case you’re wondering that would be a lot of years ago when the music industry started screaming in outrage over the lazy consumers making swaptapes rather than go out and buy a dozen albums because they liked a single song on each of them.

"This basically means that end users need to do "more work" to find legal alternative…"

…or save themselves a lot of hassle by firing up the VPN and torrent client and get everything they wanted instantly. See how that goes?

"There’s always pirate vendors available too, and author’s works can often be lost in the flood of pirate material."

In fact, whatever the end user desires can most often be found in one and the same convenient location without either having to pay or getting scammed. Which, incidentally, is why scammers trying to "sell" copies of licensed material have always been a fringe market – 99% of the pirates just go directly to their chosen torrent site instead.

"But this is why it’s every end user’s responsibility to find authorised vendor for all the consumed material and reject the scammers who provide pirate or counterfeit products."

According to the copyright cult, yes. Most pirates carefully consider the fact that copies of information aren’t scarcity items and then heartily reject the bullshit of Queen Anne’s Statutes. Copyright was a shit idea back in the 13th century when it was the catholic church using it to maintain narrative control and it is still a shit idea today.

In an era where it is possible to own a computer and have a mass communications network available, it is all up to the authors and gatekeepers to build platforms which attract the customer. That hasn’t changed since the days of the mom-and-pop store.

The end consumer, frankly, doesn’t have any responsibility to find the thousands of outlets which may or may not carry what he wants. All he has to do is to make the judgment whether he is sufficiently interested in <whatever> to waste hours and days looking for it…
…or whether it can all be solved within fifteen minutes of firing up the VPN and uTorrent client.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

can most often be found in one and the same convenient location without either having to pay

This is a major failure in your part. One location cannot provide large amount of content. Copyright laws require license negotiations before offering the product to the public, and any single location cannot do thousands of license negotiations and obtain necessary funds to properly license large amount of content. Creating content is expensive enough operation that the cost needs to be divided to large number of shopping locations. Thus single centralized location that contains all the content is not possible under copyright laws.

Only pirates that are not paying authors at all can do centralized location. The system is such that the authors can fetch their compensation in a single 300k cenralized money block simply by sueing the pirates.

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

One location cannot provide large amount of content. Copyright laws require license negotiations before offering the product to the public,

Tell that to the Libraries of the world, and see what response you get. Note also, with physical copies, shops do not negotiate licenses, they just order the content they think they can sell. Further a site may not be a copyright holder, and simply offer a distribution service, like YouTube does, and that also eliminates complex license negotiations.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

One location cannot provide large amount of content. […] any single location cannot do thousands of license negotiations and obtain necessary funds to properly license large amount of content. […] Thus single centralized location that contains all the content is not possible under copyright laws.

Only pirates that are not paying authors at all can do centralized location.

The existence of Google, Netflix, Amazon, YouTube, Steam, GOG, Hulu, Amazon Prime, DeviantArt, Google Books, etc., not to mention libraries (as in brick-and-mortar libraries or virtual libraries), proves you wrong. They can and do exist without piracy. You give no evidence to disprove that from copyright law itself. And companies like Google, Netflix, and Amazon do have more than enough funds to negotiate thousands of licenses.

Copyright laws require license negotiations before offering the product to the public…

Not if it’s a physical copy, fair use, in the public domain, the copyright is also owned by the distributor (like how Valve owns Portal and distributes it on its own platform), uses a nonnegotiable standard contract for distribution, or uses a license like Creative Commons. Also, libraries generally don’t have to negotiate any licenses at all. And again, that fact wouldn’t make it completely impossible to do, and it’s done all the time.

Creating content is expensive enough operation that the cost needs to be divided to large number of shopping locations.

You’re misunderstanding something here. The creator may license their creation(s) to a large number of distributors, but that doesn’t prevent the existence of a single location that has a large number of copyrighted works from multiple creators available legitimately. Distribution rights are rarely licensed exclusively to a single licensee.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Finding legal content is not the problem

"This is a major failure in your part. One location cannot provide large amount of content. Copyright laws require license negotiations before offering the product to the public, and any single location cannot do thousands of license negotiations and obtain necessary funds to properly license large amount of content."

Let me introduce you to any torrent index page. Like it or not the reality that you need to address is that the user convenience you must meet to remain competitive IS going to match up against the various pirate index pages and the increasingly popular DHT-driven alternatives.

If copyright law presents such a barrier that you can’t gather everything the consumer wants in one place, then piracy remains the answer.

"Thus single centralized location that contains all the content is not possible under copyright laws."

Then we are facing the current and past issue of copyright law still screwing the consumer, the copyright holders, and the authors alike because the result will be what the cartoon in the OP so clearly shows. We’ve known how this works for about 20 years and until humans stop being human that’s how it will continue to work.

"The system is such that the authors can fetch their compensation in a single 300k cenralized money block simply by sueing the pirates."

Something they more or less stopped trying to do in the last twenty years because they found that the costs of doing that were massive and resulted in no gain and at most a few embarrassing lawsuits aimed at senior citizens, dead people, and laser printers.

Now, in the real world where cause and effects apply rather than the intricacies of if-pigs-had-wings legislative theory you will, in reality, face the unassailable fact that unless corporations get their shit together to the point where they CAN get everything the consumer wants on one page, the main distributor of media will once again be the venerable pirate bay and it’s successors.

While we’re at it, I should point out that today you don’t even need the index page, since quite a lot of torrent clients can now establish the network and search function without any single point of failure involved at all.

So you can’t, in reality, sue the pirates. Even when back in the day the MPAA and RIAA burned money like mad on lawsuits it was still given that a pirate was less likely to get sued than being hit by lightning. It isn’t even a method of intimidation anymore. Just a loss leader and bad PR.

Nor can you sue the intermediates since, with clients like tribler, they aren’t in the position to know what has been transmitted, between which people, or be able to block what looks like an encrypted webpage request to an unknown addressee.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Finding legal content is not the problem

Nor can you sue the intermediates since, with clients like tribler, they aren’t in the position to know what has been transmitted,

It’s very simple to sue the people. You launch the client, watch these pirate product names appear to the screen, you store the screenshot of the pirate products for courts to examine, and once you have the evidence stored, you can start procedings against the authors of the client and maintainers of the support infrastructure that allows this.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Finding legal content is not the problem

IP addresses aren’t people, and clients don’t track anything else for stuff like that.

usually the name of the author of the client software is well known, even if they have taken steps to hide the person’s identity. ISP’s are also tracking people who setup servers etc.

Pirate sites don’t usually sell pirated content or track users or anything.

Usually the users are not the right target for copyright infringement lawsuit. The lawsuit ought to be done to the technology providers that enable the infringing activity, and maintainers of piracy servers etc. While they will just move the servers to different country and hide their tracks, the whack a mole game can be played endlessly.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Finding legal content is not the

The client is only liable if they know about specific cases of infringement and do nothing about them.

Whoever builds a client that is able to display pirated content in the software’s user interface is automatically liable for any copyright infringements. It is enough that the user interface has ability to display such content.

This doesnt require knowledge of any instances of infringement. Software authors need to build enough safety features to prevent copyright infringement happening using the software.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Finding legal content is not

I’ve asked you this before, but show me the part of copyright law that mandates this. Intermediary liability has a “knowledge” requirement. (Unless the intermediary explicitly solicits or promotes infringement or it is incapable of any substantial noninfringing use, but neither of those are applicable to this situation.) No safety measures are mandated by copyright law. I’ve already explained this in another thread (with evidence) and you were unable to refute my claims. I’m not going to get into this again in this thread.

The fact is that your claims about liability for copyright infringement aren’t supported by the law.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

but show me the part of copyright law that mandates this.

Copyright law explicitly has sections about DISPLAY, PERFORM, DISTIBUTE operations which are marked explicitly as copyright owner’s exclusive operations.

This "DISPLAY" part is what I’m talking about, i.e. when pirated products are being displayed in your product catalog etc, then you’re liable for copyright damages because of violation to the DISPLAY bit.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

It’d mean that television manufacturers were liable for lawsuits because someone played a pirate cassette tape.

How does this "someone" have access to pirated material if they all are law-abiding citizens? Obviously if you buy a television set and you can watch pirated movie-streams from the tv’s menus, obviously the tv manufacturer will be sued.

either way tv’s menus having pirated material is clear example of this DISPLAY bit being broken.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

If you have a device and a compatible cord that lets the device connect to a TV, and you have a TV that can accept signals from that cord, then the TV will accept literally any signal the device sends to it over that cord. Furthermore, in most cases, neither the device nor the cord are manufactured or designed by the same people as the TV (especially since the ports that connect to the TV are pretty standardized but the other end isn’t). The TV doesn’t know the difference between pirated content and unpirated content. It can’t even tell the difference between an optical disc, a cable box, a satellite receiver, a laptop, a PC, and a video game console. TVs just display whatever images are sent to them.

And for the record, a pirated cassette copy can be made completely without the help of a TV.

This isn’t about the TV having pirated content built-in. It’s about a user using the TV to watch pirated content from an outside source, like a videocassette player.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Finding

It can’t even tell the difference between an optical disc, a cable box, a satellite receiver, a laptop, a PC, and a video game console.

you can just sue one of the manufacturers of these devices, if those are sending pirated content to your tv.

step1: identify the source of pirated material
step2: sue the technology providers
step3: collect ransom money
step4: laugh all the way to the bank

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Find

Well, first of all, unless you own the copyright to the original, you don’t have standing.

Second, it’s not the technology’s fault that someone used it in an unlawful manner. So long as it has substantial lawful uses, the technology providers have no liability whatsoever unless they explicitly encourage or solicit copyright infringement.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:14 Re:

unless you own the copyright to the original, you don’t have standing.

While you cannot sue for copyright infringement, pirate vendors can be sued for unfair competition. Using illegal practises (like copyright infringement) to compete in the marketplace and replace legal vendors is clear basis for unfair competition claim.

the technology providers have no liability

If we just frame this as product safety issue, companies cannot dismiss damage claims where product is so unsafe to use that it makes tv’s show pirated content (which is known to be illegal to dislpay on your tv)

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:15 Re:

While you cannot sue for copyright infringement, pirate vendors can be sued for unfair competition

Except that 1. that’s not a legal statute, and 2. Thanks to the efforts of copyright enforcers like Strike 3 Holdings, judges have now ruled that you actually need to own the copyright to something before you can sue for it. So nice job fucking up your own meal ticket, genius.

If we just frame this as product safety issue, companies cannot dismiss damage claims where product is so unsafe to use that it makes tv’s show pirated content

This might have worked… if copyright infringement had anything to do with product safety. Displaying possibly pirated material is not a safety violation, because if it did TV and computer screens would flat out not exist.

The malware angle is also funny as hell each time you guys try it because it suggests that all pirated software is out to malware your stuff, when it makes no fucking sense for a pirate distributor to bundle their less legitimate software with things that make it harder for users to use… On the other hand, plenty of games and software, purchased legitimately, often come bundled with antipiracy measures that fuck up the user’s system like the Sony rootkit, so the way things are now you’re more likely to get a product safety issue from the legal product instead of the pirated one. Again, nice going, genius.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:15 Re:

"If we just frame this as product safety issue, companies cannot dismiss damage claims where product is so unsafe to use that it makes tv’s show pirated content (which is known to be illegal to dislpay on your tv)"

You truly need to look up the reason WHY none of the thousands of lawyers employed by the copyright cult has suggested this in modern times.

The answer is that the supreme court has multiple times handed down extremely clear-cut precedents and rulings which allow both the TV and VCR to exist – and by direct analogy, any other technology capable of copying data.

So none of your suggestions work, in a legal case, which is just fine because trying to implement any of them would render it impossible to manufacture cars, power tools, and crowbars.

You’ve also delivered an argument which would make ANY gun manufacturer illegal. I do so hope the copyright cult eventually tries to follow your suggestion. The NRA isn’t as nice as us pirates.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Find

"you can just sue one of the manufacturers of these devices, if those are sending pirated content to your tv."

It has been tried. SCOTUS said "HELL NO!".

Which is why the VCR is still perfectly legal, along with any other dual use technology intended to copy data.

This is the way your hypothesis looks, in reality;

step1: identify the source of pirated material
step2: sue the technology providers
step 3: have the lawyers quote multiple supreme court decisions and the judge toss your case out of court
step 4: end up with a solid loss and still having to pay your lawyers.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

"This "DISPLAY" part is what I’m talking about, i.e. when pirated products are being displayed in your product catalog etc, then you’re liable for copyright damages because of violation to the DISPLAY bit."

…which doesn’t even, by law, cover torrent index pages – especially not the ones restricting themselves to magnet links. Let alone clients.

It would cover an online retailer if they had pirated products in their showcase window and it sunk Kazaa since it expressly used piracy as advertising for it’s client.

Since no one is dumb enough to do the equivalent of putting up ads equivalent to "Screwdrivers and hammers for all your burglary needs" these days the statute you quote doesn’t apply.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Finding legal content is not

Whoever builds a client that is able to display pirated content in the software’s user interface is automatically liable for any copyright infringements.

Are you saying that every application that can display images, texts, movies and/or play sounds can be held liable for infringement, because distinguishing between licensed and infringing content on the basis of file type, content or source is not possible.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

Are you saying that every application that can display images, texts, movies and/or play sounds can be held liable for infringement

In principle all applications should limit the content in such way that only licensed content can be displayed in the user interface. Usually the image content is like icons and thumbnails which are coming from inside application installation, and cannot be changed by users or 3rd parties. Thus such content is already implementing techniques against infringements because lack of content-change feature.

Web browsers obviously try to do something different. They allow web site designers to change the content items. But there is warnings in the web server side, i.e. pushing your content to web server is considered dangerous operation because licensing need to be checked before uploading content to web server.

But it’s clearly software developers who implement the client software that can control when each displayed item is possible to change by users, 3rd parties, network, databases etc, and thus it’s software developer’s responsibility that infringing content is not available in the software’s user interface.

Movies are difficult aspect. Its extreamly dangerous to build software that can display or manipulate movies. The reason is that the data amounts are huge, and thus its possible that the software handles data streams that took millions of dollars to create. Any manipulation of such content is dangerous copyright-wise, and authors of projects like ffmpeg or mplayer are taking huge copyright risks when they publish such software on the internet.

Basically images and texts are saved from difficult copyright analysis only because creation of them is relatively cheap and there exists millions of pieces available on the internet, so actual damages of copyright issues when handling images and text are relatively small.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

Uh, what? Absolutely none of that is true. No website or software does any of that, nor could they given the enormous upload traffic many of them receive. Manipulation of data or content-change does not affect copyright infringement to make it more dangerous; on the contrary, a full, exact copy is generally considered worse than a modified copy thanks to things like fair use. And images and text are absolutely not easier to do copyright analysis. I literally just finished taking a class about handling third-party content and copyright in software, and you have it completely wrong. You clearly know nothing about what you’re talking about.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

Manipulation of data or content-change does not affect copyright infringement to make it more dangerous;

This information is coming from Richard Stallman himself:
"software that allows changing which font file to use, will have to deal with all the possible licenses that exists in the font files that are being used with the software"

This deals directly with the content-change feature, in this instance font files that libfreetype library allows you to use in your software.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Find

"Nope, we call them animations because we’re not using the standard mpeg technology, but instead we have our own tech that isn’t yet flexible enough to play movie clips."

Have you secured that program against the possibility that ANY user will be able to create a version of, say, "Steamboat Willie"? Or any other copyrighted character?

Because if not you just argued that your tool is illegal.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

"This information is coming from Richard Stallman himself:
"software that allows changing which font file to use, will have to deal with all the possible licenses that exists in the font files that are being used with the software""

And in practice no magic exists which will allow enforcement of that. Stallman was stating a legal requirement, not accidentally revealing that copyright enforcement can work because tech experts are all in on a massive coverup conspiracy, which you seem to be implying.

So we’re once again back to you claiming you’re a software programmer who apparently hasn’t a single fucking clue how a computer works.

You guys still getting paid for astroturfing or are you just expected to show obedience to the faith, troll?

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Finding legal content is not

"Whoever builds a client that is able to display pirated content in the software’s user interface is automatically liable for any copyright infringements."

…right.

I’m starting to flag tp’s posts now because it’s obvious he’s just trolling.

He’s just insisted no technology beyond that of the 17th century is allowed to exist. According to law.

Last I checked no one has managed to successfully sue Microsoft, Oracle, or GM over this issue so "tp" is just babbling nonsense without thinking.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

you wouldn’t be able to sell a single one as they would not allow people to do anything they wanted to do.

Well, I know the devices are soon going to trashcan, but we hope the users spent time using the software and devices enough that the activity becomes useful. Otherwise we’re just dealing with 100 million devices in dumps somewhere in europe.

Even my amiga gave several years of useful time for me when I was young. I hope our devices can do the same before they’re discarded.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

"Otherwise we’re just dealing with 100 million devices in dumps somewhere in europe."

Well, coming from the guy that apparently threw away huge amounts of money on bus videos that anyone sensible knew would fail, I can believe that you’d also somehow manage to throw away millions on manufacturing devices nobody wants to use.

"Even my amiga gave several years of useful time for me when I was young"

Yes, they were made by competent people who identified a marketplace and successfully sold to it. That’s a long way from what you’re trying to push.

Fortunately, the real world contains lots of people who already own devices that do the things you’re selling with free software, and I doubt anyone rich enough to be able to bankroll your alternative will finance such waste from your unsellable trash.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

"Even my amiga gave several years of useful time for me when I was young. I hope our devices can do the same before they’re discarded."

Your Amiga would be illegal according to your own previous arguments. There are no safeguards on it prohibiting the end user from using it for criminal purposes.

Hell, a screwdriver would be. You’ve basically argued that no tool, ever, is allowed to exist.

I’m going to start flagging your comments unless they demonstrably contain better logic than you’d expect from a brain-damaged lemming.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

"But I can still create over 100 million devices using these principles. Are you claiming my devices are not technology?"

No you can’t.

You’ve just spent twenty-odd comments trying to argue that it would be illegal for any technology to exist which could facilitate a crime.

That includes every manufactured tool known to man – including the one you’re tyring to advertise, because you can’t safeguard it from the end user recreating "Steamboat Willie" or "Daffy duck".

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

"usually the name of the author of the client software is well known, even if they have taken steps to hide the person’s identity. ISP’s are also tracking people who setup servers etc."

Wait, so Microsoft is an accomplice to 9/11 if it turns out Bin Laden wrote his pamphlets down in "Word"?
Ford is an accomplice to bank robbery because they didn’t make their cars impossible to use for criminals?
What drugs do you take to even be able to formulate that nonsense without blinking?

And no, ISP’s usually don’t "track" the communications of their clients because, you know, that would be an actual federal crime. The relevant law allowing the ISP to do that would render it impossible for banks to operate within the nation where that legislation existed.

"The lawsuit ought to be done to the technology providers that enable the infringing activity…"

Which has been tried, has failed, and will continue to fail. Unless the law of the land suddenly has a precedent for making microsoft liable for terrorist plots written in Word, Ford liable for bank robberies, and gun manufacturers liable for murder.

I welcome a US attempt to get such legislation off the ground. Once the NRA and Big Banking is done with the MPAA/RIAA and BSA no one in the world will ever mention copyright again.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Finding legal content is

But providing the service they just paid for very much is.

ISP’s do not need to "track the communication", instead they just examine the contracts they have entered with the user. Their customer files clearly state which ip addresses are used for which customers, so RIAA/MPAA can summon the isp’s contract files to catch the pirates. ISP is never involved in tracking the communications. Once the server ip address is known and determined to belong to certain isp, the isp has responsibility to dig through which customer provides that ip address. Then they can catch the pirates.

Obviously some isp’s are more diligent with the copyright enforcement than others. Some of them hide behind "bit pipe" boilerplate and are resisting copyright owner’s attempts to identify alleged infringers. But that position is losing battle, because laws are overwhelmingly on the side of the original authors instead of the alleged pirates.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Finding legal conten

ISP is never involved in tracking the communications

You evidently haven’t been looking at the actual lawsuits. Most of the RIAA vs ISP lawsuits are demands from the ISPs to show the tracked data on their consumers.

instead they just examine the contracts they have entered with the user

There are things called "dynamic IPs", you knucklehead. Even in the universe where IP addresses are, for whatever dumb reason, baked into the terms and conditions, IP addresses would still change to make this prior agreement meaningless.

the isp has responsibility to dig through which customer provides that ip address. Then they can catch the pirates

Right, like all the times they did get this information and sued children, grandmothers, homeless people, computerless people, dead people, etc etc all the times they fucked up and arrested non-pirates. Your track record is so bad, if this planet was a nuclear reactor we’d have thousands of meltdowns by now because you idiots can’t be trusted with numbers.

But that position is losing battle, because laws are overwhelmingly on the side of the original authors instead of the alleged pirates

Let’s see… Malibu Media, Prenda Law, Dallas Buyers Club, Elf-Man, Voltage Pictures… all getting their cases against ISPs kicked out by the courts because none of them could prove jack shit. Looks like the laws are overwhelmingly on the side of the average citizen and not money-grubbing assholes trying to cheat the justice system out of a free buck.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Finding legal co

Looks like the laws are overwhelmingly on the side of the average citizen and not money-grubbing assholes trying to cheat the justice system out of a free buck.

Lets do a calculation:
1) I spend $100,000 to develop some software
2) I try to license it to 10 companies, $10,000 each
3) now instead of taking the license, copyright infringement
will allow you to use the software without compensation
Now my $100,000 investment needs to be covered by the licensees, but why
would you get the software without compensation?

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

"Now my $100,000 investment needs to be covered by the licensees, but why would you get the software without compensation?"

Because there is very little you can do to claim said compensation.

Microsoft has tried time and time again, until they gave it up as a bad (and very expensive) job.
Today what they are saying is that they’d rather the user pirates their products than switches to Linux or Mac. They no longer bother to even try going after pirates unless said pirate actually sells bulk installations.

Individual users will compensate for software licenses if they WANT to support the vendor and find the method of licensing convenient and well priced. Or they may choose any of the dozens of free open source alternatives instead.

Corporations will buy the licenses because verifying the license key is usually part of their internal audit processes. Or may opt for the free open source alternatives instead.

Today most software vendors focus on selling maintenance and adaptation services rather than just the licences, because they know the information control-based model doesn’t work anymore.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Finding

"Today what they are saying is that they’d rather the user pirates their products than switches to Linux or Mac"

To the point where they’ve actually started including Linux components directly within their OS, a complete about face from where they were fighting tooth and nail a decade ago.

It’s amazing how a company like Microsoft can make the sane decision, but some pissant failure insists he’s due money.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Find

"It’s amazing how a company like Microsoft can make the sane decision, but some pissant failure insists he’s due money."

As amazing as his idea that the one who build the technology is liable for every malicious use of it? That’s what gets to me.

That and his suggestions on how to "safeguard" his own tool from abuse which only serves to illustrate he doesn’t know how computers work.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Finding lega

I’ll note that you’ve once again decided not to address any of the points brought up and instead continue to whine about scenarios where you flog off your crappy Meshpage at 3ds max-level prices.

At this point considering that you support people who sue grandmothers for money I wouldn’t be surprised if people refuse to get your license out of sheer spite.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Finding legal content is not the problem

"It’s very simple to sue the people. You launch the client, watch these pirate product names appear to the screen, you store the screenshot of the pirate products for courts to examine, and once you have the evidence stored, you can start procedings against the authors of the client and maintainers of the support infrastructure that allows this."

As we’ve seen in the increasingly desperate attempts by the copyright cult to do exactly that every such attempt has failed or turned into a vast loss operation. Worldwide.
Case in point the biggest "success" for copyright enforcement in the last ten years or so – the Cox case – actually forces every US ISP to do one of two things – quit their business or stop giving the copyright enforcers anything while scrupulously enforcing the safeharbor provisions of the DMCA. Cox’s biggest issue was that they tried to meet copyright enforcers to the best of their ability, which just wasn’t enough when there’s a thousand copyright trolls eagerly looking for easy tort. And meeting them fully means the ISP couldn’t, in practice, operate at all.

Your last sentence – of holding actual internet technology responsible isn’t exactly a blinding insight either since, for that to work, we’d have to abolish mass communication completely or turn it into such a regulated and expensive structure to maintain only the supremely wealthy could afford it. I actually look forward to some harebrained legislation of this kind rendering it, in practice, as legally safe to operate a US ISP as it would be to operate a metamphetamine facility.

I doubt you’ve actually written a single line of code in your life or you’d know full well just how impossible your suggestion is, to anyone who knows the simplest basics around computers and networking.

Let me break it down to you in the simplest possible terms once again;

Once you’ve gotten to every ISP, every network provider, every backbone provider, the DNS namespace, and every computer OEM…
…piracy will STILL remain untouched.

Therefore i reiterate; "Like it or not the reality that you need to address is that the user convenience you must meet to remain competitive IS going to match up against the various pirate index pages and the increasingly popular DHT-driven alternatives."

End of story.

If that isn’t to your liking you can, of course, deny reality until increasing costs of futile enforcement run your business into the ground.

"It’s very simple to sue the people."
The same way it’s very "easy" to fly as long as you just flap your hands fast enough.

If your arguments are indicative of your normal reasoning then I can understand why no one wants to buy your product. You seem to substitute wishful thinking and hopeful assumptions instead of factual reality before constructing answers to issues.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Finding legal content is not the problem

Once you’ve gotten to every ISP, every network provider, every backbone provider, the DNS namespace, and every computer OEM…

piracy will STILL remain untouched.

Copyright owners purpose for sueing the pirates is not to remove piracy from the world. They just want the money back what they invested to the product. If there are too small number of licensees that are actually paying for the product, the copyright owners have no other choice than sue the nearest pirates they can find and hope courts are making them win the lawsuit.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Finding legal content is not the pro

"Copyright owners purpose for sueing the pirates is not to remove piracy from the world. They just want the money back what they invested to the product."

And precisely that is what they aren’t getting. Even the copyright troll enforcement companies aren’t breaking even, looking at the vast amount of bankruptcies and disbarments in that field.

"…the copyright owners have no other choice than sue the nearest pirates they can find and hope courts are making them win the lawsuit."

They have tried this for well over 30 years and it still doesn’t work. For good and valid reason. Any law which would enable that model has side effects which would make it hazardous to even own a computer.

You seem to know very little about copyright law, normal law, telecom regulations, computers and networks…and anything else you’ve seen fit to weigh in on.

I don’t think anyone here is interested in your arguments about how it’s possible to fly if you just flap your hands fast enough, or how owning and operating a crowbar must be considered illegal unless the hardware store owner has a camcorder attached to it to ensure you aren’t using it for criminal purposes.

And by now I’m pretty sure no one believes you have the ability to program your way out of a wet paper bag because the logic you employ proves you know jack shit about computers and networks. Or law, or recent copyright history, for that matter.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
PaulT (profile) says:

"It might not be possible to create both excellent product that people want to consume and also awesome distribution network that reaches millions of users around the globe."

Again, you’re spewing your nonsense on a story about how people are complaining that the movies they love are being removed from the service that they and millions of others are already paying for.

Your rambling idiocy is always misplaced, but the very story you’re commenting on is disproving all your supposed points before you even started typing.

This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re:

the movies they love are being removed from the service

Obviously authors can decide what product they’re offering and when those products are available to customers. Deviating from those designated time frames are easy way to get sued by the entertainment industry. I.e. when they have movies leaking before publishing dates to the market, whoever receives those versions of the product outside their release windows are perfect candidates for copyright infringement lawsuit. Obviously if author decides that the product is not availabe in year 2020, and market still have people consuming it in 2020, it’s clear indication that the product is illegally available in the market.

The removal of the products often have license issues, i.e. original authors only licensed it for some time window, and displaying it on other times is not possible. Or they could be trying to catch pirates by controlling release times.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

In a word where supplying on demand anywhere in the world is a trivial exercise, the use of release windows, removing from the market for a period to try and drive up demand, and other studio tricks are a recipe for encouraging piracy and/or losing customers to actual creators who care about their audience.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

studio tricks are a recipe for encouraging piracy and/or losing customers to actual creators who care about their audience.

I never used any studio tricks or other evil stuff to market my wares, but I’m still not seeing huge amount of studio audiences queuing my product. Maybe they come after I implement monetizing features?

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Maybe they will come if and when it does something that they find valuable.

It’s not that easy. Users simply don’t know your product exists, even if it provides the exact solution they’re looking for. It’s just hidden in a flood of 2 billion other web sites and noone will find out how great the product is.

You need both the product, and the distribution network.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
Wendy Cockcroft (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Social media can solve that problem easily. The trick, as I learned right here on TD, is to be social. That means talking to people about what’s going on from their perspective, then seeing if your product can address their issues. If it can, job done.

When I had my own web design service back in the day, I would chat to developers, bloggers, and all sorts of other people about issues tangential to the service I provided, e.g. hosting, types of web design, search engines and SEO, etc. When they needed a web designer, I was top of the list because they believed I knew what I was on about.

It takes a lot of effort to cultivate fans, but that’s how you do it.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

What a shame you still cling to that as a way to blame everyone else for your failures.

Well, the failures are evolving:
1) at beginning there was no project, so noone would buy it
2) then you only have 1 3d object
3) then you only have 1 computer game
4) then you only now got frame rates working
5) then you only have a web page that allows storing your work
6) then you have 30 3d objects available in the web page
7) then you have 15 computer games available in itch.io
8) then you have 70 3d objects availalble in the web page
9) then you only get performance to acceptable level
But, you don’t have:
10) you don’t have 2 million content items like youtube has
11) you don’t have community of 5 million people
12) you cannot make 5 millioin dollars revenue
13) you use browser technology that doesnt allow the performance profile that we request
14) you don’t have monetizing system designed to annoy your million end users
15) you cannot reach all the people that pirate vendors can reach
16) you’re not using newest (vulkan) technology so your product is outdated
17) this product was already available in our social media channel, can’t you create something we haven’t seen yet?
18) your documentation isn’t as large as wikipedia
19) your end users are not willing to spend their money on that product
20) your videos are not available in disney+, netflix, youtube or wikipedia

Etc, the failures keep evolving…. When will the demands for better features end?

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

Why would videos on YouTube matter for 3D modeling/engine software? Half your "better features" aren’t even features. Meshpage is not even in the same market as Netflix or Wikipedia. Unless you’re flogging print copies of Encyclopedia Britannica from 1987 why would anyone look at 3D modeling software like Autodesk and refuse to buy it because Wikipedia exists? Who even uses Wikipedia as a video platform, for fuck’s sake?

Like, I swear half your rants are nothing more than detailing elaborate plans for people to make fun of you, and the other half is you bitching about people taking the bait…

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

Why would videos on YouTube matter for 3D modeling/engine software?

People get used to the products of established players, and bringing new product that isn’t excelling in those same areas is doomed to failure.

You’ve all the time claimed that our web page is a failure, but when the reasons of the failure are revealed to you, you refuse to believe it?

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

People get used to the products of established players, and bringing new product that isn’t excelling in those same areas is doomed to failure

Again, why would 3D modeling software need to compete with video hosting? Why is consumer decision-making based on you catering to completely unrelated markets? That’s like a vegetarian visiting a salad bar for lettuce, then setting the place on fire because they don’t offer beef filet mignon.

You’ve all the time claimed that our web page is a failure, but when the reasons of the failure are revealed to you, you refuse to believe it?

Your website isn’t a failure because you have a shit product. All you have is animated tech demos that look like Neopets flash games of the early 2000s. You didn’t think that having decent design and presentation is necessary? Is that why all you got was two buses in London to carry your "advert"?

To be fair, that’s not the only reason. It’s also completely uninformative as to what a user or consumer would even want Meshpage for, never mind pay for. Why would I pay millions of dollars for a desert plane animation that looks like a child put it together in Roblox?

And as usual, your whining about "boohoo, nobody wants to use Meshpage because they use Autodesk Maya and 3dsmax" is icing on the cake. Imagine that, people want more than birds shaped like Ws and desert hills that don’t look like kindergarten-level zigzag cutouts! Are you going to cry that Pixar should shut down because their movies make your product look terrible by comparison?

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Re:

Are you going to cry that Pixar should shut down because their movies make your product look terrible by comparison?

Pixar should make their tech so simple to use that even children can use it and get the same results as we see in tv. Are you going to destroy children’s dreams of being able to create awesome 3d graphics simply by making the tooling too complicated and burdensome to use?

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

Simple tools used by children are highly unlikely to be able to make the same quality products as more advanced tools. That’s not to say it’s impossible, but more complicated tools are likely to have advanced features that allow for better results.

Also, Pixar’s tech isn’t available to consumers last I checked, so its market would be experienced animators/designers, not children.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

Game design and animation tools already exist for kids, so no, those dreams aren’t broken.

And if you’re appealing to kids by the basis of the simplicity of your graphics, and yet they want to do what Pixar does, then what does that say about the demand for your tool since your tool can’t generate Pixar graphics? Nice own goal, would get baited again.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:13 Re:

Game design and animation tools already exist for kids, so no, those dreams aren’t broken.

These tools are not coming from pixar, even though they’re leading vendor of computer animations in the kids area.

then what does that say about the demand for your tool since your tool can’t generate Pixar graphics?

Every vendor needs to find suitable niche area where they can do the best work on the planet. I’ve just decided to do computer animation tools suitable for children. That niche already have some competition like roblox, but there
still might be good market for the tool.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:14 Re:

"These tools are not coming from pixar, even though they’re leading vendor of computer animations in the kids area."

LEGO also don’t make their plastic moulding plants accessible to the average 8 year old. So? Does that somehow kill kids’ creativity when playing with LEGO or stop them moving to more advanced tools when they outgrow the ones they use as kids?

"Every vendor needs to find suitable niche area where they can do the best work on the planet"

Yes, and many fail miserably while finding a spot in the marketplace, as you have found.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:15 Re:

> "Every vendor needs to find suitable niche area where they can do the best work on the planet"

Yes, and many fail miserably while finding a spot in the marketplace, as you have found.

Market’s requirements for new products are often unrealistic. They expect your software to allow travelling to the moon, without nasa’s help. The market seems to push the requirements that are impossible to implement to the technology people’s requirement lists. Time machines, travelling to other galaxies, warp drives, teleporting and other impossible stuff keep appearing in the requirements, without any consideration if those are possible to implement. Then they complain loudly that tech people cannot implement their (broken) requirements.

Even when the requirement is possible to implement, it could be outright dangerous to humans if it is implemented. Guns, laser swords, pathogens, spy equipment are common in people’s wishes.

When we have to refuse their requirement requests, those refusals are not made lightly. There is always some underlying flaw in the argument which prevents the implementation or its simply not safe for humans. Copyright issues belong to the same category, they cause significant number of feature rejections.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:16 Re:

Copyright issues belong to the same category, they cause significant number of feature rejections.

Thanks once again for confirming that your software shares similar features to existing software, such as putting 3D shapes onto screen, and by your copyright rules Meshpage must be deleted. Congratulations!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

People get used to the products of established players, and bringing new product that isn’t excelling in those same areas is doomed to failure.

If that what you think, give up and stop complaining. otherwise go and learn how create interest in a product, rather than destroy it via web site that leaves most people clueless about what’s on offer, and continuous whining to which leads people to thing the project will soon fold and go away.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Re:

If that what you think, give up….which leads people to think the project will soon fold and go away.

There is no good reason to quit even if you don’t immediately find solution to all failures that exist in your product. You just need to lower the price to level where the benefits and cost o the product are in balance.

bhull242 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

There are products out there that you couldn’t pay me to buy. If there’s no demand for your product whatsoever—whether because of poor marketing, poor distribution methods, or a poor product—then the price is effectively irrelevant, especially if it’s nonzero.

I agree that failing to immediately find solutions to all the failures in your product is not a reason to quit. However, you’ve been complaining about this for a while, and the complaint has been inability to get anyone to try because of “competition” from other, unrelated markets, which is insoluble. Additionally, the price can only go so low.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

why would anyone look at 3D modeling software like Autodesk and refuse to buy it because Wikipedia exists?

Well, I googled for my web page name and found that one blog has written an article about the site. The reactions I get from the bloggers are nice example of what could be the real problem:
https://mediaisnothingtomebutistilllikeit.wordpress.com/

in that page, there’s short review of meshpage, which kinda explains the market position of my web site in 2017 when the bus ads were running….

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

"Etc, the failures keep evolving…. When will the demands for better features end?"

Funny.

Paulo Coelho put up his work on the pirate bay and got an extra 12 million copies sold.

Trent Reznor gave away an album for free…and Ghost I-IV made the billboard 200 within week One.

As you’ve noticed by now the primary point of competition isn’t piracy. That hardly even matters. When you launch any entertainment media your competition is everything else occupying consumer attention. From movies to mobile games.

Unless you are extremely outstanding or happen to look like a studio’s currently desired "six-week-wonder" odds are good you are simply shit outta luck and should consider a day job.

Many are called. Few chosen. It’s a fact that not everyone gets to make making art their choice of career.
Not everyone gets to be an astronaut or successful brain surgeon either but the wannabes there whine a lot less than the would-be rockstars and bestseller authors.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

…addendum to the above; When it comes to software and tools this hurdle rises sharply since there are just so damn many skilled programmers who wrote their own version of a given app and launched it as FOSS.

You want to launch a new word processor? Well, it has to be better, more intuitive, and contain significant improvements over libreoffice and Word to stand a chance.

A new image processing app? Oh, dear…an even dozen and counting, all with excellent abilities.

Honestly, the way you do it today in software is to launch the app you built as open source then when the reviews come in, use it on your CV to get a good job.

Or, as a programmer, get yourself accredited to code on SAP systems and start raking in gagging bagfuls of cash for mediocre drudge work done mainly to fix the mistakes of grossly overpaying corporations.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

Honestly, the way you do it today in software is to launch the app you built as open source then when the reviews come in

My product have been in open source for several years. The process doesnt seem to work like you think. for example this happened under open source:
1) github repo was not used for its original purpose of distributing source code,
instead the trolls spent time on critique of dead code
2) licensing was not considered a positive sign it was designed for, instead they
consider "free" to be sign that the software has no value whatsoever
3) the community’s only contribution has been attempts to bypass login systems and trying all kinds of illegal tricks
4) the source availability of open source has tendency to being misused by piracy groups, i.e. they modify offered software to be more suitable for piracy and bypassing provided copyright protection mechanisms

Basically the trolls on the internet are misusing the ideals by which free software community has been built from. The techniques are no longer working the way it worked still in 1990’s, and something new is required. I’ve long since moved to more modern approach/web platform’s rules, i.e. keeping my source code hidden inside my web server, and providing only working user interface to users, without providing source code.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

Paulo Coelho put up his work on the pirate bay and got an extra 12 million copies sold.

That sounds horrible. I hope he prepared properly to the task of packaging the content and collecting the money, or else he’ll have few years without sleep when customers keep pinging his email and calling his phone number in middle of night to obtain the content he published.

Large operations like that needs to be planned very carefully or else it’ll be huge catastrophy.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

"That sounds horrible. I hope he prepared properly to the task of packaging the content and collecting the money…"

What happened was that Coelho already had all books up for sale with a distributor. Then a copy of "The Alchemist" leaked on Pirate Bay. His physical sales swelled by 12 million copies.

To a great author, and a great work, piracy is not a problem, only beneficial.

We’ve grown used to the idea that mediocrity also deserves recognition, as if everyone who put pen to paper deserved fame and fortune. An idea peddled by the MPAA and the RIAA mainly.

The problem is that has never been true. There is no room in art for the mediocre and uninspiring. There never was. Unless you are an inspired genius, don’t quit your day job.

It’s a bit like science in that there is room in the Nobel prizes only for a very select few who were skilled, incredibly smart, and lucky.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

"This sounds like marketing pitch from pirate bay central."

Do you have any evidence to counter it?

"Are they trying to position their web site as something actually useful"

They already have. It’s way more useful than anything you’ve ever done in your pitiful life already, in fact.

Scary Devil Monastery (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

"This sounds like marketing pitch from pirate bay central. Are they trying to position their web site as something actually useful, after naming the service as hub for pirated products?"

…you…aren’t for real, are you?

TPB hasn’t ever "marketed" themselves as anything other than "Feel free to place your torrent files/magnet links here".

As for "The Alchemist", the takeaway is that coelho gained, massively from the exposure, earning himself millions of physical sales.

When it comes to information you’ve succeeded if you can still sell it after everyone has it – like when a popular radio hit turns into a platinum album.

Because the information, if published, will become the property of everyone who wants it. This is guaranteed. It’s up to you to construct your business model around that market, not up to the market to cater to your whims.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

"That sounds horrible"

12 million extra sales sounds horrible? Hmmm, are you a deliberate failure?

"customers keep pinging his email and calling his phone number in middle of night to obtain the content he published"

Nah, I’m sure he has a competent publisher to avoid the idiocy that happens in your fantasy world.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:11 Re:

Nah, I’m sure he has a competent publisher to avoid the idiocy that happens in your fantasy world.

And when this happens to some 16 year old children who explored the piracy world and pushed his poems and contact information to the pirates? Do all these people also have a publisher that handles the customer calls?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

"And when this happens to some 16 year old children who explored the piracy world and pushed his poems and contact information to the pirates?"

You seem to be losing your tenuous grip on reality again.

"Do all these people also have a publisher that handles the customer calls?"

With your talk of customer calls, shelf space and video tapes, and your ads on buses populated exclusively by people who have no interest in your software’s platform, it’s clear you’ve no idea how the modern marketplace works.

I’m truly sorry that the modern world has left you behind, but it has nothing to do with piracy.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re:

if a kid used his Meshpage to animated a bootleg Mickey cartoon he’d be liable for copyright infringement lawsuits

This is true. There exists some protection against this situation from happening in meshpage. Currently there hasn’t been enough users to verify that the protections are working accurately enough, but at least some actions have been taken to prepare for this problem.

Basically it doesnt allow publishing the material (via meshpage) if the content isnt coming from user’s own web space. This is supposed to ensure that mickey mouse images are not being used.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

So how do people collaborate on the same project?

Well, you post your animation to the web page, which publishes it, and then your friends can see it. Then it’s possible to place your animations to your own homepage.

All attempts to prevent infringement in a product meant to enable creativity result in a crippled product.

This isn’t true. Infringement isn’t necessary to enable creativity.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

This isn’t true. Infringement isn’t necessary to enable creativity.

I didn’t say it was, but:-

Well, you post your animation to the web page, which publishes it, and then your friends can see it. Then it’s possible to place your animations to your own homepage.

Stops two or more people working on the same animation, which means you have crippled your product.

tp (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

One advantage of the Internet is that collaborators do not have to be on the same continent.

I wouldn’t put children to go through that horror.

It’s better if they spend a month tweaking their animations alone, and once its finished after 30th iteration, they decide that it’s now good enough to publish, and th