Did the UK give up on piracy?

July 22nd, 2014 by

This just in from VG247:

The British government has decriminalised online video game, music and movie piracy, scrapping fuller punishment plans after branding them unworkable. Starting in 2015, persistent file-sharers will be sent four warning letters explaining their actions are illegal, but if the notes are ignored no further action will be taken.

It’s a step forward that the government bodies of the UK makes it official that “pirates” will be victims of explanatory letters, and nothing else.

The scheme, named the Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme (VCAP), is the result of years of talks between ISPs, British politicians and the movie and music industries. The UK’s biggest providers – BT, TalkTalk, Virgin and Sky – have all signed up to VCAP, and smaller ISPs are expected to follow suit.

I could have told them this years ago, and saved them frustration, time and money!

VCAP replaces planned anti-piracy measures that included cutting users’ internet connections and creating a database of file-sharers.

Which would have been a relatively bigger harm to society than the filesharing itself.

Geoff Taylor, chief executive of music trade body the BPI, said VCAP was about “persuading the persuadable, such as parents who do not know what is going on with their net connection.” He added: “VCAP is not about denying access to the internet. It’s about changing attitudes and raising awareness so people can make the right choice.”

I am sure those letters will be heavily coloured by government and industry propaganda.

Officials will still work to close and stem funding to file-sharing sites, but the news appears to mean that the British authorities have abandoned legal enforcement of online media piracy.

If piracy is not a crime – which it can’t be since the authorities choose not to prosecute (are they not forced to, if they are aware of it?) – why go after the content providers?

Figures recently published by Ofcom said that nearly a quarter of all UK downlaods were of pirated content.

Which does not equal to any significant losses. If I do not walk into a store to buy milk, that is not a loss. It is competition.




June downloads

July 5th, 2014 by

Here’s the June 2014 catch of DVDRs from the interwebs:

Captain Philips
Glimmer Man
Grudge Match
Hatfields & McCoys
Hobbit 2: Desolation of Smaug
Last rites of Ransom Pride, the
Loyal 47 ronin
Revenge of the Ninja
Robocop (2014 remake)
Stalingrad (2013)
Stash House
Surviving the game
Wolf Creek 2
World without end (miniseries)





June 25th, 2014 by

Today I was met with this message on the front page of one of the trackers (p2p file sharing sites) I visit, SwePiracy:

2006 – 2014
Swepiracy has been permanently shut down due to insufficient funds, lacking interest (among members as well as staff) and most important the extreme judicial situation of today (according to host personnel, our servers were copied together with Sparvar, although we were not hosting any tracker or torrents). All the best to you who made this long lasting era possible, and thanks to all members for eight unforgettable years! /Staff

This happens occasionally in the file sharing world, and is going to happen again. It happened with Softmupparna and with Sherwoodskogen, to mention two trackers I was at. I downloaded quite a few films from SwePiracy, as it was a so-called private tracker, which means that the quality of releases are better and there are rules to ensure that downloads work efficiently. For example, hit & runs are not allowed. If you download something, you must upload it for X amount of time to give others the opportunity to download. This is  a common rule on private trackers, but is not enforced on PirateBay, an “open” tracker.

Fortunately, and purely by coincidence, I had already registered at two new trackers this week, which seems to be good or even better than SwePiracy.



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    This blog is written by a media pirate, Long John Silver, and is published by an independent publisher to protect the identity of the pirate. If the blog is abruptly deleted, it has been killed by the host, the police or the media industry.