Also known as the Center for Copyright Information, the organization lost not only its company status, but also the right to enforce the “six-strikes” system. The CCI violated state laws and is now forced to close down its doors, at least for a period of time.
Founded in 2011 by the entertainment industries, in collaboration with five of US’s most prominent internet providers, the Center for Copyright Information was put together with a clear purpose: to educate the public about copyright infringement and enforce the American copyright law.
After multiple delays, the Copyright Alert System was finally launched by the CCI on February 2013, but proved to have a short life due to some irregularities.
The Columbia Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) revoked CCI’s legal right to conduct its business on US soil.
“If entity’s status is revoked then articles of incorporation / organization shall be void and all powers conferred upon such entity are declared inoperative, and, in the case of a foreign entity, the certificate of foreign registration shall be revoked and all powers conferred hereunder shall be inoperative,” the DCRA explained.
As such, the CCI is now facing civil penalties and probably fines. Furthermore, its name is no longer protected by US laws, so be on guard for scammers who may register under CCI’s name.
“When a Washington DC corporation is revoked by the DCRA, its name is reserved and protected until December 31st of the year the corporation is revoked. After December 31st, other business entities may use the corporations name,” DCRA wrote on their website.
Although the CCI could be, at the time being, sleeping with the fishes, it may also run under a different name.
Don’t gloat yet, because the organization is much likely to come back. As a matter of fact, a TorrentFreak’s source that’s connected to the CCI claimed that the necessary paperwork for the CCI to take its status back had been filed.
Sweden’s IIS Faces The Court Of Law; Prosecutor Accuses The Organization Of Assisting Copyright Infringement
Filed under: Announcements & Events, File-Sharing Programs, Networks & Services, Legal P2P News & Issues
The Internet Infrastructure Foundation (IIS), Sweden’s company in charge with top-level domain name registrations (.se), refused to put down two of The Pirate Bay’s domain names and is now charged by the country’s prosecution office with assisting copyright infringement.
A little bird told The Pirate Bay (earlier this year), that Swedish authorities will go after its .se domain names. As such, TPB dropped the anchor in Greenland, then in Iceland, and finally in Sint Maarten (.SX).
Although TPB no longer uses any of its .se domain names, Swedish authorities are determined to cut all of the ship’s connections with the IIS. As such, the Swedish Prosecution Authority filed a petition (at the beginning of this month) with the Stockholm District Court, asking IIS to take action against thepiratebay.se and piratebay.se. The organization refused to comply.
“The legal system has not been able to shut down the service after the previous guilty verdict against TPB,” IIS’s Chief of Communications Maria Ekelund told TorrentFreak.
“Therefore the prosecutor has opened a new case against both the domain holders and .SE. The prosecutor is accusing .SE of assisting TPB who are assisting others to commit copyright infringement.”
“In the eyes of the prosecutor, .SE’s catalogue function has become some form of accomplice to criminal activity, a perspective that is unique in Europe as far as I know,” IIS’s CEO Danny Aerts said.
“There are no previous cases of states suing a registry for abetting criminal activity or breaching copyright law,” he continued.
As far as the company is concerned, they did nothing but to provide with a service that’s meant to link URLs to a specific IP address, just as they do for Google(.se).
“.SE translates the .se domain names to name servers, a name server operator translates this into an IP address and a resolver operator (such as Telia) helps .SE respond to the most frequent queries,” Aerts explained.
“IP addresses are subsequently allotted to an Internet Service Provider (ISP) through RIPE. And IANA grants us the right to administer the top-level .se domain. Perhaps I should also remember to mention Google, which helps you find the address if you do not know the domain name.”
In other words, this complex system is keeping the internet online, and IIS is not the only one responsible for doing so.
“Where should the line be drawn for legal processes and matters of liability?” Aerts asked.
“.SE will naturally respond to the prosecutor’s perspective. We have an educational task ahead of us in explaining to the District Court what a domain name is, what .SE does and the fundamentally incorrect nature behind seizing a domain name forever,” he continued.
Unfortunately for the company, the trial will cost a whole lot of money, money that will be taken out of ISS’s educational programs.
“This will be an expensive process and, although our lawyers will find it an interesting case, these are funds that we would rather spend on our investments in schools or digital inclusion,” Aerts stated.
If the Swedish Prosecution Authority wins the case, IIS will be forced to erase any evidence that thepiratebay.se and piratebay.se ever existed as registered under .se domain names.
“Removing a domain name can be compared to taking down the signs hanging outside the shoe store. Although this would make it more difficult for customers to find the store, it would still be there and any customers who were able to find it would be able to continue buying shoes there,” the company’s CEO concluded.
Filed under: Announcements & Events, Digital Media, Mobile Phones, P2P technology, File-Sharing Programs, Networks & Services
The comprehensive report on sharing PC games via BitTorrent’s networks reveals some interesting aspects of the “digital piracy” issue. The results are to be published in the “International Journal of Advanced Media and Communication”.
The illegal sharing of digital content (using peer-to-peer technology) has been the catalyst of thousands of debates and media headlines. With one side claiming that online piracy is the death of the American jobs and responsible for billions of dollars lost by the entertainment industry, the other one’s flag reads “freedom of speech”, “internet’s freedom” and “piracy is not theft”. The most epic controversy of the past decade is born, but what we really know about each of the coin’s side proves to be limited.
The report, as mentioned before, focused on game piracy and used open methodologies to gather data that covered a three-month period – between 2010 and 2011. One hundred and seventy three games were included. The results prove to tear down all the myths surrounding online piracy. For example, “shooter” games are not pirates favorite dish, but also children’s games and family games. Moreover, it highlights that the real figure of illegal copies that are being accessed via BitTorrent is under what other reports (the gaming industry’s) claim to be.
Specifics of the report reveal that 12.6 million unique peers (covering more than 250 countries/areas) shared pirated games, including Darksiders, Fallout: New Vegas, NBA 2k11, Call of Duty: Black Ops, TRON Evolution, Starcraft 2, Star Wars the Force Unleashed 2, The Sims 3: Late Night, Two Worlds II, Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit. Furthermore, of the 173 sampled games, the ten most popular titles drove more than 4 out of every 10 unique peers on BitTorrent, and just 20 of the monitored countries were contributing to more than three-quarters of the total file-sharing activity.
An average of 536,727 unique peers (spread across the globe) sharing the most popular games titles via BitTorrent were acknowledged during the three-month period. The most dedicated unique peers seemed to cover the following territories: Romania, Croatia, Greece, Poland, Ukraine, Italy, Armenia, Serbia, and Portugal.
Another interesting aspect is that mass-media’s positive game reviews drive the most attention on BitTorrent’s networks.
“First and foremost, P2P game piracy is extraordinarily prevalent and geographically distributed [at least it was during the period analyzed]. However, the numbers in our investigation suggest that previously reported magnitudes in game piracy are too high,” Anders Drachen (working for the Department of Communication and Psychology, at Aalborg University and the PLAIT Lab, Northeastern University and Robert Veitch of the Department of IT Management at Copenhagen Business School, in Frederiksberg, Denmark) said.
“It also appears that some common myths are wrong, e.g. that it is only shooters that get pirated, as we see a lot of activity for children’s and family games on BitTorrent for the period we investigated.”
Suspected of violating US’ existing laws on money transfers and money exchange, the world’s largest Bitcoin interchange link started to weaken as their funds are seized during a Homeland Security investigation.
Trying to obtain DHS’ insight on the ongoing investigation, the media was served with a “no comment” and the copy of a warrant that justified seizing Mt. Gox’s funds in Dwolla (we shall refer to Mt. Gox as Bitcoin’s powerhouse or “the powerhouse”, as it handles nearly 63% of all Bitcoin transactions starting with April this year), an ArsTechnica report informs.
The warrant justifies a special agent’s statement (working for the Homeland Security Investigations) that Bitcoin’s powerhouse is engaging “money transmitting” outside the law (due to its nature … that of being immune to Governmental [capital G] control), which is probable cause for doing up to five years in prison or a “nominal fee”.
“The warrant goes on to demand that Dwolla hand over the keys to account number 812-649-1010, which is owned by Mt. Gox subsidiary Mutum Sigillum LLC,” ArsTechnica notes.
Apparently, Home Security used a mole (the governmental agencies call it “confidential informant”) to build up a case. The blind but cunning informant created two accounts, one for Dwolla and one for Mt. Gox, purchased Bitcoins, and then transferred them into good ol’ American dollars. Just like Hansel & Gretel used bread crumbs to find their way back, the confidential informant tracked the exchange as it passed through a Wells Fargo account (no. 7657841313). The account was created by president and CEO of Mt. Gox Mark Karpeles.
“As part of the account opening process, Wells Fargo required Karpeles and Mutum Sigillum LLC to complete a “Money Services Business (MSB) Accounts, Identification of an MSB Customer” form. That document was completed on May 20, 2011 and identified Mutum Sigillum LLC as a business not engaged in money services. The application asks several questions; to include, “Do you deal in or exchange currency for your customer?” and “Does your business accept funds from customers and send the funds based on customers’ instructions (Money Transmitter)?” Karpeles answered these questions “no,” indicating that Mutum Sigillum LLC does not deal in or exchange money, and that it does not send funds based on customer instructions.
Money transmitting businesses are required by 31 USC section 5330 to register as such with FinCEN. According to FinCEN records on May 6, 2013, neither Mt. Gox nor the subsidiary, Mutum Sigillum LLC, is registered as a Money Service Business,” the warrant reads.
The informant goes on to explain that:
“Mt. Gox acts as a digital currency exchange where customers open accounts and fund the respective accounts with fiat currency, which is then exchanged into crypto-currency by Mt. Gox; the crypto-currency is known as bitcoin. Fiat currency simply refers to any money that a government has declared to be legal tender. The exchange is bidirectional and allows customers to also exchange bitcoins back into fiat currency, and then withdraw those funds. The exchange of fiat currency and bitcoins incurs a floating rate fee charged by Mt. Gox and is determined by the customer’s aggregate amount of funds exchanged on a monthly basis.”
The untouchable Bitcoin currency had quickly become very tangible. Is this a case of “no one escapes the long arm of the law” or freedom from governmental control is a taboo subject that must be swept under the rug?
Filed under: Announcements & Events, Downloads, Movies, MP3, Digital Audio & Games, Tops
TorrentFreak has published the data they collected with the top 10 most shared movies on BitTorrent for the week ended May 12. All the films included in this chart are DVDrips (unless mentioned otherwise).
A stunning surprise from ‘Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters’, as it managed to go up 5 places, all the way to number one. Breathing on the deadly duo’s necks is ‘Iron Man 3′ (still CAM version), followed by ‘Parker’.
This week’s chart features four new entries.
The chart also includes free download links for the movies listed here – via Kat.ph (clicking on download movie links in the chart below shows you all the versions available for the respective movie; just pick the one you want [don't simply click on that big blue button] and then download it).
|Ranking||(last week)||Movie||Rating / Trailer||Download Movie|
|1||(6)||Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters||6.2/trailer|
|2||(2)||Iron Man 3 (CAM)||7.8/trailer|
|4||(…)||Assault On Wall Street||6.0/trailer|
|6||(3)||The Place Beyond The Pines (DVDscr)||7.7/trailer|
|7||(…)||I Give It A Year||6.0/trailer|
|9||(…)||Escape From Planet Earth||5.2/trailer|
|10||(5)||21 And Over