RIAA Demands Takedown Of ThePirateBay.org, But EasyDNS Refuses Over Lack Of Due Process

from the wac-that-mole dept

You may have heard recently that after switching many domains, a few weeks back ThePirateBay returned to its original thepiratebay.org domain. It's basically an ongoing game of wac-a-mole, where the entertainment industry freaks out and scares registrars into taking back whatever domain and TPB just moves on. It's unclear what good this does for anyone, but it keeps happening. And with the return to .org, it appears the entertainment industry has basically lots its mind. First, it had one of its lobbying front groups, the Copyright Alliance write a hellishly misleading post attacking Public Interest Registry (PIR), the organization that currently runs the .org top level domain.
It is shocking that a domain name registry in the United States – one that is dedicated to “the public interest” – is allowing a blatantly illegal site to have a home on the .org domain. This is especially disturbing given that the operators of The Pirate Bay have been found guilty of criminal copyright infringement, The Pirate Bay domain names have been seized or suspended around the globe, and even its co-founder, Peter Sunde, has walked away from it. Despite all this, The Pirate Bay seems to have found a sanctuary here in the United States by PIR.
As far as I can tell, there is no court ruling in the US that says any of the above is true. While it's true that a few former operators were found guilty, they served their time in prison and as far as I know, none are involved in the current site. And, as has been pointed out over and over again, the site is basically a search engine. Accusing it of "criminal infringement" makes no sense. Furthermore, while the Copyright Alliance fought hard to get SOPA passed, it failed. US law does not currently require registrars or registries to remove domains just because the Copyright Alliance or the RIAA dislike a site. Sorry: you didn't get the law you wanted, so don't pretend you did.

Torrenfreak further points out that while the Copyright Alliance points to PIR's abuse policy, it conveniently ignores that said policy does not apply to intellectual property disputes, which require actual due process.

Meanwhile, as the Copyright Alliance was whining publicly, the RIAA was sending a letter to PIR basically saying the same thing, and asking it to take down the .org domain. The letter lists other countries where various TPB domains have been blocked, and then notes:
With respect to the U.S, please remember that the infringing nature of The Pirate Bay has been noted in each of the Notorious Market Reports issued by the USTR for the past several years. Per the Google copyright transparency report, over 400,000 infringements have been identified on www.thepiratebay.org, with over 50,000 since The Pirate Bay moved back to its .org domain. This is in addition to the over 3,000,000 infringements identified on its previous alter ego, www.thepiratebay.se. It is well known that The Pirate Bay does not take action in response to notices. In addition, there have been numerous reports recently of malware and other abuse occurring via The Pirate Bay at its various domains.
Of course, it's a bit weird to use Google's transparency report as part of its argument, since that just details accusations, rather than actual evidence of infringement (and, again, I don't know how many times this needs to be pointed out, but TPB doesn't host any content). And, again, the RIAA supported SOPA, but it lost. It should stop pretending it won.

PIR, in turn, forwarded the letter on to TPB's registrar, EasyDNS. EasyDNS then contacted TPB to discuss the possible policy violations, and got back reasonable answers that it was not actually in violation. On the question of copyright, TPB claimed that it now abides by the DMCA:
TPB is DMCA compliant and if TPB receive any DMCA complaints from RIAA they will be investigated and removed if found to be valid. We have not revived[sic] any DMCA complaints from RIAA at all so far this year.
Some may point out that TPB, in the past, regularly ignored (or mocked) the DMCA, noting that as a non-US company, it was not subject to US laws. Whether or not TPB still ignores DMCA takedowns could, arguably, impact if it's abiding by registrar policies, but without a court weighing in, it's difficult to see how a registar should take the RIAA's word for it without more evidence.

The RIAA's letter also notes TPB distributing malware, and so EasyDNS asked about that as well, to see if it violated its terms of service, and again TPB insists that the RIAA is being misleading:
As with every site that are displaying 3rd party advertising trough external ad-networks, sometime bad and corrupt ads slips by, it happens to everyone, here is an example:

http://arstechnica.com/security/2016/03/big-name-sites-hit-by-rash- of-malicious-ads-spreading-crypto-ransomware/

As soon as it is discovered/detected on TPB, the ads will be taken down, or the entire ad-tag from where the malware comes, until the issue is resolved. Usually with the help of google webmaster-tools to track down the exact source of the malware.

It has happened twice during 2016, both times when adding new ad- networks, They were taken down directly when detected.
Based on that, EasyDNS properly notes that it has no legitimate basis to takedown TPB's .org domain.
At this time we find no violation of our AUP. Absent either a specific proceeding pursuant to our accreditation as a .ORG registrar or a legal finding in a competent jurisdiction to the Province of Ontario, there is nothing for us to do.

easyDNS will of course always: comply with our contractual obligations - both to the registries we operate under and to our customers; comply with the laws under which govern our jurisdiction (the Province of Ontario, Canada) and enforce our own Acceptable Use Policy.

Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention.
In a blog post, EasyDNS President Mark Jeftovic explains the due process rationale here:
Our opinion in these matters continues unchanged. As a Registrar or as a DNS provider unless there is a clear violation of our AUP or net abuse (which we are competent to detect), taking action against domains based on content or at the behest of third-parties, regardless of their altruism or noble intentions, amounts to having us adjudicate international law. It's not reasonable to expect us to do that and you don't want your domain registrar doing that.
This is the key point. Whatever you believe about TPB -- and many people see it as being horribly illegal, obviously -- due process has to mean something. The RIAA and its friends should not just be able to point to something and say "illegal, kill it!" because they have a fairly long history of being totally wrong about such things. In the past, they've argued that nearly every innovation is illegal, from player pianos to radio to cable TV to the photocopier to the VCR to the DVR to the MP3 player and to YouTube. And over and over they've been wrong about those things. And that's why due process is important, and why it's good to see EasyDNS (and PIR) recognizing this.

Jeftovic, by the way, separately highlights that no one should think of EasyDNS as being "friendly" to bittorrent site operators, as he expects it won't be long until there will be sufficient due process to take down those sites:
We should also mention our Open Letter to Bit Torrent operators, wherein we predict a near-future where due process across borders catches up with technology and when that happens it will be relatively quick, easy and painless for a law enforcement agency in one country (i.e. Sweden) to have the requisite order issued in another country (like Canada, eh) and cause a domain that appears to be flagrantly violating copyright and freeriding on content creators efforts to be shut down.

Ahead of that day, if I were a filesharing site operator I'd be using my time wisely in concentrating my efforts on legitimizing my operations. This would include negotiating blanket licensing agreements with mechanical rights agencies.
In other words, contrary to what some will claim, this is not EasyDNS standing up for torrent sites. It's EasyDNS standing up for basic due process. You'd think that the Copyright Alliance and the RIAA would support due process, but apparently that's too difficult.

Filed Under: copyright, domains, due process, sopa, takedowns
Companies: copyright alliance, easydns, riaa, the pirate bay


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  • icon
    Mason Wheeler (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:02pm

    You'd think that the Copyright Alliance and the RIAA would support due process, but apparently that's too difficult.

    Well yeah, that's kind of the entire point of the DMCA, now isn't it? Due process is too difficult, so let's come up with an end-run around it.

    And then they decided the DMCA process was too difficult, so they came up with SOPA. We stopped that, but until we repeal the DMCA, this is going to keep happening.

    Remember, when a weed grows in your garden, you can cut it off above ground, and it'll grow back, or you can uproot it, and then it's gone forever. The root of online copyright abuse is the DMCA.

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    • icon
      DannyB (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 2:40pm

      Re:

      If you really want to get rid of the problem don't just get rid of the DMCA. Get rid of copyright in its current form.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Wendy Cockcroft, 8 Jun 2016 @ 5:37am

        Re: Re:

        Sad to say, most of the people I know have bought into the copyright as property and sweat-of-the-brow arguments. We need to get better at attacking these fallacies.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 9 Jun 2016 @ 3:05am

          "I'm allowed to use what came before, but don't you dare do that to MY works, that's stealing!"

          "So you made that right?"

          "Absolutely. I created this story/song/picture and I deserve to be the only one allowed to use it and profit from it."

          "So you don't want anyone being able to build off of your works then?"

          "Not unless they pay me and get my permission! It's mine, to do with as I want, no one else has a right to do anything with my stuff!"

          "And the 'protection' over your stuff, you want that last for how long again?"

          "It's my stuff, so my entire life at the very least, and if I want to pass it down to my kids I absolutely deserve to be able to."

          "Alright. Now that we've got that out of the way, how many people did you pay and/or get permission from?"

          "What?"

          "No creation occurs in a vacuum, so the odds that your work isn't inspired by someone else's, built off of what came before is almost certainly very low. I'm guessing it wouldn't take much work at all to find something that came before that's similar to what you made that the owner could make a case for you 'stealing' their stuff, and as such I'll ask again, did you get permission from the people who's works you built upon? Did you pay them for the use of their ideas?"

          "Well... no..."

          "And why not, do they not deserve to have veto rights over anything based upon or building upon their creations, the same as you demand? Do they not deserve to be able to charge for what they created and you used?"

          "That's totally different, my works were at most inspired by general ideas, stuff no-one owns!"

          "Because the ideas and works are in the public domain?"

          "Exactly!"

          "The same public domain your demands would completely gut, ensuring that nothing ever entered it for others to build upon? Besides, someone had to come up with the basic ideas, someone had to be the first to take the ideas and given the more 'solid' form, and if you can pass down ownership between generations odds are good that the descendants of those 'original' creators are around somewhere, so surely you need to be cutting them a check, getting their permission first, right?"

          "How could you possibly figure out that sort of thing? How would you know who to pay?"

          "That's not my problem, it's yours. You're the one that wants to make something, it's up to you to make sure that you get the proper permissions first if you're going to be getting inspiration from other works."

          "And if it's impossible to find the right person? Or they refuse permission? What then?"

          "Then clearly you don't get to create your work. It's their idea/work, if you don't get permission then you don't get to use it."

          "If I had to get permission for everything I made, just because it's nearly impossible not to take inspiration from things around me, then I'd never be able to make anything!"

          "Yeah, that would be a pretty stupid, short-sighted idea, wouldn't it?"

          TL:DR version: The people who hold to the belief that ideas can and should be owned, that ideas should be treated just like property is, including being able to pass it down are ignoring that if everyone had the same ideas as them then culture and progress would have stagnated centuries ago, and there wouldn't have been anything for them to build off of.

          The growth of culture and progress in general requires taking old ideas and changing them, tweaking them, and then having the same done to the results in a never-ending cycle.

          By insisting that this not happen, that the results of creativity be locked away behind permissions and payments they ensure(or would, if people actually cared about the relevant laws) that the next stage, the next 'branch' of creativity dies before it can even start. That progress that could have happened, or would have happened stagnates as there's so many roadblocks put in place that a great many people don't even try to get past, and while that may be good news for the hypocritical parasites in the short term, it's most certainly bad news for everyone long-term.

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  • icon
    Dan (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:02pm

    ...and that's why I've switched my domains and DNS hosting to EasyDNS.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:11pm

    Haha. Mike Masnick doesn't know what a "front group" is. Totally hilarious.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Median Wilfred, 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:54pm

      Re:

      Haha. Troll doesn't know what a "troll" is. Totally hilarious.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Mason Wheeler (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 1:08pm

        Re: Re:

        Don't feed the trolls. Just click the Flag button and move on.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:18pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Nothing cracks me up more than the fact that you guys quickly hide any comment that you disagree with. OK, maybe the fact that Mike fosters this extremely closed-minded environment is even funnier.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 5:56pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Like your friend David Lowery, who actively filters comments before they're posted on his site?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:03pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              If there are comments at his site, I've never noticed. Can't comment on his comment policy. But I will note that Lowery is upfront and honest about what he believes. He'll answer tough questions directly, without a bunch of weasel words. Pretty much the opposite of Mike, IMO.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:09pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                No, what he does is have a bunch of sockpuppets spam other websites, demanding traffic to his own. But being an asshole seems to be legit under your terms.

                Seriously, why even bother having an account to log into when you're just going to troll out of it?

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:14pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:35pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Thanks, needed a laugh. It's funny how the goalpost-moving, chicken-squawking, tantrum-throwing nincompoop expects to be entertained after years of contributing absolutely nothing but garbage.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 7:01pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Oh, the irony. Lots of angry hand waving, and no discussion of the merits. I love when the sock puppets come out. Sums up MM (ahem) & TD nicely. Is it really that hard to have an honest conversation? Wowza. Surprises me every time.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 7:11pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      You've had years to prove yourself. You chose to follow up with nothing but insults and sockpuppets of your own.

                      But go ahead and keep deluding yourself everyone who disagrees with you is a Masnick sockpuppet. I guess the idea of Techdirt having an international audience annoys you.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • icon
                      PaulT (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 11:55pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "Is it really that hard to have an honest conversation?"

                      Have you ever tried one? Unless you're one of the people who changes IP addresses to pretend he's another commenter, your first comment here was whining and name calling. If you are one of those people, you proved yourself dishonest before the whining.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Karl (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 6:28am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Oh, it's this chucklefuck again?

                  Here's something interesting. From the things Average Joe has said on this site, and from his "unique" take on copyright law, I'm about 90% sure that this is Devlin Hartline.

                  Right after getting his JD, Hartline became Assistant Director for the Center for Protection of Intellectual Property:
                  http://cpip.gmu.edu/about/our-team/devlin-hartline/

                  If this is indeed him, it's no surprise he comes here to slander Techdirt.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:56pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Bawk!

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Gwiz (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 7:28am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                But I will note that Lowery is upfront and honest about what he believes.


                The problem is that Lowery seems to believe that the tech sector owes him something because he had a couple of songs that made the charts way back in the 90's.

                Our first experience with Lowery on Techdirt was him swearing up a storm in the comment section and demanding that Mike give him equal exposure on a platform Mike created and pays all the bills for. Fun times:

                https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120220/00310917802/if-youre-going-to-compare-old-music-biz -model-with-new-music-biz-model-least-make-some-sense.shtml

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Karl (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 3:58pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                But I will note that Lowery is upfront and honest about what he believes.

                It's too bad he's not upfront and honest with the facts. Here's one of many examples:
                https://tritonester.wordpress.com/2014/10/28/lies-damn-lies-and-the-45-statistic/

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 5:57pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Now watch the chicken noise man scurry away.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 6:51pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  He could have been mistaken. I don't know anything about that. You haven't shown that he backed away when presented with an incontrovertible mistake.

                  Regardless, do you think the CA is a "front group" for the RIAA, despite the publicized fact that the RIAA is a member of CA (and not just a funder)? If so, why? And why's that different than the Internet Association and its members, like Amazon?

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Karl (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 11:52pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    He could have been mistaken.

                    That goes way beyond a simple mistake, and it isn't the only example.

                    You haven't shown that he backed away when presented with an incontrovertible mistake.

                    What does his lack of "backing away" have to do with him comparing two unrelated statistics in order to drum up FUD?

                    In fact, he wouldn't "back away" even if he were presented with an incontrovertable mistake. I know this from experience. I wrote a critical comment on the Trichordist site once, and in a personal email exchange, he made some vague threats about contacting my college (I was writing from my school email account) and warnings about how Chris Castle could sue me. Then he deleted my comment and forwarded my email to Castle, presumably so Castle could so the same. I wrote a little about it here.

                    Regardless, do you think the CA is a "front group" for the RIAA, despite the publicized fact that the RIAA is a member of CA (and not just a funder)?

                    What the article actually said is that it is a "front group" for "the entertainment industry." That seems entirely accurate to me.

                    I'm not the only one. Here's how Sourcewatch describes them:
                    The Copyright Alliance is a 501(c)(4) front group created and operated by associates of former Sen. Don Nickles (R-Oklahoma) and his lobbying firm, The Nickles Group, LLC. Formed in 2007, the Copyright Alliance claims to represent a broad cross-section of copyright stakeholders, with an emphasis on the interests of creative individuals such as photographers, visual artists, songwriters and performers; however, the makeup of its board,[2] the corporate backgrounds and political connections of its founders and staff members, and its advocacy track record reveal that its true purpose is to promote the interests of prominent telecom and entertainment corporations.


                    If you want a much more in-depth explanation, I suggest you read An Examination Of The Copyright Alliance (PDF) by Christopher Johnson. Here's a particularly enlightening section:
                    THE ALLIANCE IN ACTION

                    While the backgrounds of the people at the Alliance strongly imply that the organization is a front group, it is of course their words and actions that most directly demonstrate the Alliance's true mission and reason for existence. A prime example showing what the Alliance is all about is the testimony of Executive Director Sandra Aistars to a hearing of the House Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competitiveness and the Internet, on June 01, 2011. Three panelists testified before the committee: Sandra, from the Copyright Alliance; Maria Pallante, the Register of the U.S. Copyright Office; and Michael O'Leary, Vice President of Congressional Affairs at the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

                    In her written testimony, Sandra describes the Alliance in much the same way as she does at many of her other public appearances, and in keeping with the Alliance's branding:
                    The Copyright Alliance is a public interest and educational organization supported by more than 40 entities comprised of individual artists and creators, as well as the associations, guilds, and corporations that support and invest in them. Besides these institutional members, we have more than 7,000 individual, one-voice artist advocates who give their personal time and creativity to support our work.

                    Note her emphasis on individuals, and the very obvious minimization of the Alliance’s corporate membership. Later in her testimony, she adds:
                    The Copyright Alliance represents the copyright holder next door. Our members are living and working in all 50 States and include, among others, the independent filmmakers who self-finance films that tell as-yet-untold stories, the talented crafts people who are behind every television show and motion picture you enjoy, the tens of thousands of professional photographers and videographers across the country who run their own studios, employ a handful of workers, and contract with a dozen more, and there are people working in unexpected places on extraordinary projects, like a music producer living in Wrightsville, North Carolina, who is working from his home studio with musicians as far away as Glasgow and as recognized as Neil Young.

                    To anyone unfamiliar with the details of the Alliance, Sandra and the other witnesses appear to represent a broad spectrum of interests before the committee. Maria, a government official; Sandra, allegedly speaking for the plucky "individual creators" of the general public; and Michael O'Leary, representing an association of prominent corporations. However, since the MPAA is a Copyright Alliance board member, and even better, the MPAA officer who's named as a director of the Alliance is in fact none other than Michael O'Leary himself, the appearance of a broad spectrum of interests being represented is an illusion. One more item pointing to the MPAA’s heavy presence can be seen in the video of the hearing, where the spectator sitting immediately behind Sandra appears to be Cindi Tripodi: Copyright Alliance staffer, Nickles lobbyist representing the MPAA, and former vice president of congressional affairs for the MPAA, which to remind you is the job O’Leary currently holds.

                    The whole thing is worth reading in its entirety. His blog is worth reading, too.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 16 Jun 2016 @ 1:14am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Watch the chicken run! Run far, far away!

                      In a barrel of scumsucking bottom feeders, average_joe would need to break through the wooden bottom and dig a cosy little asshole underneath to place him correctly.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Wendy Cockcroft, 8 Jun 2016 @ 5:41am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  If it's the guy who compared copyright infringement to rape, when I discussed the issue with him he basically dismissed and ignored every court judgement and law that disagreed with his opinion.

                  When opinion trumps fact, you lose me at "Hello."

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            jupiterkansas (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:03pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            In order to disagree, the comment has to make a valid point.

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    • icon
      Gwiz (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:55pm

      Re:

      Haha. Mike Masnick doesn't know what a "front group" is. Totally hilarious.


      Apparently, you are the one who doesn't know what a "front group" is.

      Here is SourceWatch's opinion of the Copyright Alliance:
      The Copyright Alliance is a 501(c)(4) front group created and operated by associates of former Sen. Don Nickles (R-Oklahoma) and his lobbying firm, The Nickles Group, LLC. Formed in 2007, the Copyright Alliance claims to represent a broad cross-section of copyright stakeholders, with an emphasis on the interests of creative individuals such as photographers, visual artists, songwriters and performers; however, the makeup of its board, the corporate backgrounds and political connections of its founders and staff members, and its advocacy track record reveal that its true purpose is to promote the interests of prominent telecom and entertainment corporations. Strong evidence revealing the Copyright Alliance to be a front group for Nickles is found in the form-990 tax returns and financial reports to the Department of Labor filed by member organizations which show that dues and contributions are being sent directly to the Nickles Group LLC offices at 601 13th Street NW, Suite 250 North, Washington, D.C. 20005
      Source

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      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:10pm

        Re: Re:

        Mike's silly claim is that the Copyright Alliance is a "front group" for the RIAA.

        From Source Watch: "A front group is an organization that purports to represent one agenda while in reality it serves some other party or interest whose sponsorship is hidden or rarely mentioned."

        Link: http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Front_groups

        The Copyright Alliance has a few dozen institutional members, one of which is the RIAA. This info is readily available on their website: https://www.copyrightalliance.org/members

        Nothing is hidden. They're not a "front group" for the RIAA. They publicly acknowledge that the RIAA is a member.

        Mike just being dishonest. Shocking, I know.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:57pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          I know reading is hard. Let's try again.

          Formed in 2007, the Copyright Alliance claims to represent a broad cross-section of copyright stakeholders, with an emphasis on the interests of creative individuals such as photographers, visual artists, songwriters and performers; however, the makeup of its board, the corporate backgrounds and political connections of its founders and staff members, and its advocacy track record reveal that its true purpose is to promote the interests of prominent telecom and entertainment corporations.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Mike Masnick (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 4:49pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Nothing is hidden. They're not a "front group" for the RIAA. They publicly acknowledge that the RIAA is a member.

          Let me get this straight. Your argument is that I'm dishonest in calling an RIAA front group a "front group" because they admit that they're funded by the RIAA? Yikes.

          The issue is not whether or not they admit the RIAA funds them. The issue is who actually runs the show and whose positions CA will always take. And it's not the "artists" that CA pretends to represent. It's the RIAA/MPAA. That's what a front group is, though it's amusing to watch you try to pretend it's not.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 5:27pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Let me get this straight. Your argument is that I'm dishonest in calling an RIAA front group a "front group" because they admit that they're funded by the RIAA? Yikes.

            Yes, Mike, you're being dishonest because they don't hide who their members are. They can't be a "front group" for one of their openly-publicized members. Saying they are a "front group" for the RIAA implies that they are hiding the fact that they represent the interests of the RIAA. They don't. They openly admit the connection. The RIAA is one of the many groups they represent. This isn't hard. You're just dishonest.

            The issue is not whether or not they admit the RIAA funds them. The issue is who actually runs the show and whose positions CA will always take. And it's not the "artists" that CA pretends to represent. It's the RIAA/MPAA. That's what a front group is, though it's amusing to watch you try to pretend it's not.

            They represent all of their members' interests. How else would they operate? Their members span numerous parts of the copyright world, e.g., music publishers, photographers, film studios, guilds, and yes, even music labels. They also represent individual artists and small businesses. Oftentimes, the interests of members, individuals, and small businesses will overlap, but this is not always the case. For example, music labels and publishers might not agree on the finer details of a certain issue. As a result, and because of the fact that they represent all members, the Alliance focuses on the areas where members tend to agree.

            That said, in this case, you accuse them of being a "front group" for the RIAA. This is simply dishonest because they openly admit that the RIAA is a member and they represent the interests of their members. There's nothing secret about it whatsoever. There's no pretending that they stand for one thing when they really stand for another. The simple fact is that the Alliance takes stands on lots of issues that don't involve the RIAA, like photography, and they don't exist just to spout RIAA propaganda.

            If you'd like to know how they represent individuals and small businesses, you should ask them. You know, do your homework before making unfounded claims. I'm sure you find this hard to believe, but many artists, authors, etc. actually like their copyrights and want them to be meaningfully protected. And this includes numerous artists who aren't recording artists. Crazy stuff, I know.

            But, yes, you are completely dishonest when you call them a "front group" for the RIAA. Happy to discuss further if you'd like.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 5:59pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Right, because the RIAA has such a long history of supporting artists... while giving themselves yearly pay rises. Wonder where all the money made from scaring children and grandmothers has gone. Into Beyonce's pocket?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 7:01pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Right, because the RIAA has such a long history of supporting artists... while giving themselves yearly pay rises. Wonder where all the money made from scaring children and grandmothers has gone. Into Beyonce's pocket?

                You've changed the subject. The issue being discussed is whether the Copyright Alliance is a "front group" for the RIAA. They're not. Just like the Internet Association is not a "front group" for Netflix, Amazon, or Google. Groups represent their members. It's super-basic stuff, and one would have to be a tinfoil-hatter to think otherwise.

                That said, the RIAA member labels clearly have done a lot for artists over the years. There's a simple reason why many bands want to sign a label deal. Of course, I've heard some anecdotes of questionable behavior, just like everyone else. I know this is TD, where nuance is taken out back and shot in the head, but it's clear enough that many artists have benefited from their deals.

                And, obviously, the labels have done far more for artists that the thieving pirates, like the Pirate Bay, that Mike defends here. That's why so many artists want a deal with a label. They're not flocking to the Pirate Bay to support their livelihoods.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 11:33pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "That said, the RIAA member labels clearly have done a lot for artists over the years"

                  Most of it at times when there was no other option, or the system was so gamed in favour of the majors there was no way to get exposure otherwise. That era is long ended.

                  "There's a simple reason why many bands want to sign a label deal."

                  Because they hope they'll be one of the tiny percentage of successful artists who make millions? It's a shame that most artists will never - and never have - been in that position. Many don't deserve it of course, but history is littered with the corpses of talented bands who got screwed by the labels in favour of that week's karaoke artist model they wanted to push instead.

                  "I know this is TD, where nuance is taken out back and shot in the head"

                  ...by the many disingenuous anonymous commenters who try to attack the site to avoid admitting wrongdoing by corporations, and avoid real discussion on the issues. Sad, isn't it?

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  JMT (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 5:38pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "There's a simple reason why many bands want to sign a label deal."

                  Same reason people buy lottery tickets.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous, 6 Jun 2016 @ 8:59pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "They represent all of their members' interests."

              Bullshit. Prove it.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 7:06pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Prove that their members pay to be members, yet they don't represent their paying members' interests? LOL.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        TheTruthWillOut, 6 Jun 2016 @ 11:11pm

        Re: Re:

        Nice one Gwiz.

        Direct hit on the maximalist hypocrite who is now crashing to the ground on fire.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:25pm

      Re:

      Shhh.... The adults at having a conversation.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:25pm

    It is shocking that a domain name registry in the United States – one that is dedicated to “the public interest” – is allowing a blatantly illegal site to have a home on the .org domain.

    Hollywood is confusing actual public interest with its interest in the public's money.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:39pm

    "One of the library books infringed on our intellectual property, so we had to set the card catalog on fire." - RIAA in the 20th century

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 12:58pm

    If libraries didn't happen before copyright, there's no way they would ever have been allowed to exist. The Pirate Bay is nothing more than a modern form of library.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 1:51pm

    I'm just waiting for the imminent day where MPAA declares VR to be illegal because you can watch movies in a virtual theater (I'm sure in the future it will be possible to do so with friends and family as well).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 1:54pm

    I would have more sympathy for the industry if they didn't keep getting caught breaking and abusing these very same laws to enrich themselves at the consumers expense.

    They clearly don't care about the law only whatever hurts their profits and following the law more than the pirates hurts their profits. Only the pirates are a lot easier to go after than trying to publicly state they refuse to follow the law.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 2:17pm

    If at first you don't succeed, lie lie again

    Not terribly surprising really when you consider their history.

    Makes demands, demands get ignored because they go beyond what the law actually says.

    Try to get a law passed to make your demands legal, large-scale public objection leads to politicians remembering that all the 'donation' money in the world doesn't help them get re-elected if no one will vote for them, and law fails.

    Continue with the same demands as before, lying and pretending that the law was passed anyway.

    The *AA's have a long history of expecting everything and everyone to bend over backwards to meet their demands/desires/whims, it's hardly surprising that they would prioritize their wants over the idea of 'due process', and consider their word good enough evidence of 'guilt' to have a site removed with no need to bother with that pesky and totally unneeded 'trial' bother.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 9:26am

      Re: If at first you don't succeed, lie lie again

      You forgot the step where they get international treaties to include the law they want as requirements

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 7 Jun 2016 @ 1:35pm

        Re: Re: If at first you don't succeed, lie lie again

        Ah yes, good catch, I did indeed miss what is one of the more sleazy tactics employed by the parasites.

        If you can't get the law passed in your own country, sneak it into a treaty with another country and then pressure the local lawmakers to add it into the local law anyway, as 'compliance with our international obligations'.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 2:27pm

    Say What?

    "You'd think that the Copyright Alliance and the RIAA would support due process..."

    What about ANY previous actions these asshats have ever taken would mislead me to such an entirely erroneous conclusion...oh, sarcasm - never mind.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    DannyB (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 2:38pm

    What good it does?

    "the entertainment industry freaks out and scares registrars into taking back whatever domain and TPB just moves on. It's unclear what good this does for anyone . . ."
    Here's what good it does. it's good for the economy:
    * it avoids the judical costs associated with the sillyness of 'due process'
    * the dinosaur entertainment industry has an excuse keep artist's money by saying "we're doing something about piracy!" and therefore you should not expect us to have money left to pay you more than a pittance.
    * domain registrars make money with each new registration of ThePirateBay.{...}
    * every DNS lookup is a lost sale! and should have to pay statutory copyright damages!
    * perhaps even printing the domain name in an article, such as this one, should be a copyright infringement that makes the legacy dinosaurs richer

    /s

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:37pm

    The sooner we shut down the internet the better, no iTunes, no Amazon, no online sales. Then possibly we can roll back these government granted monopoly laws to the early 1970's. The Swiss put their citizens privacy and welfare above avarice and greed, and the last time I checked Sweden is still a sovereign nation. Mammon, a term that was used to describe gluttony, excessive materialism, greed, and unjust worldly gain.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jun 2016 @ 3:53pm

    and when it gets it's way, it will mark the end of the internet, something the RIAA, MPAA and the rest of the entertainment industries have been trying to do since the beginning. they want either total control or it's destruction and the thick fuckers in the USA government, being paid so well by those industries, will be falling over themselves to give what is wanted!! they wont even consider (or care) what that will mean for the future of the planet, as long as they get their 'encouragements!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ryunosuke (profile), 6 Jun 2016 @ 6:33pm

    funny how RIAA claims that TPB distributes malware. I mean have you HEARD any of Justin Bieber's songs?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 1:05am

    I commend easydns, but i hope your ready to face the corrupt system

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 3:09am

    What really annoyed me about the blog post was the fact they said that TPB should legitimize their operations.

    They may as well just come out and say "sharing is wrong."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 4:48am

    Wrong date!

    I don't know where the RIAA got its information from to write their letter but their was no date of 29 February 2013 that they say in the first paragraph of their letter "and by the European Court of Human Rights on 29 February 2013."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Jun 2016 @ 8:36am

    DMCA Agent

    I checked the list of DMCA agents, and I wasn't able to find that The Pirate Bay has a registered DMCA agent. Without that, they aren't compliant with the DMCA (not that they need to be).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Jun 2016 @ 11:25am

    Saying that any site is an "illegal site" is like declaring a house an "illegal house" just because something illegal is occurring there.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Yogi, 15 Jul 2016 @ 3:46am

    EasyDNS

    My domain name has been with EasyDNS for many years without any problem, and after reading this article my respect for them has increased even more. My website is entirely legit from any point of view; nevertheless, it's good to know that people with their own agenda can't create trouble.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2016 @ 11:04pm

    There once was an average_joe
    Who worked as an average ho
    He met Chris Dodd
    Stripped down his bod
    And gave him an average blow

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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