On today's edition of NPR's "Day to Day", I speak with host Alex Chadwick about today's announcements by the MPAA of new legal actions against P2P networks including BitTorrent, eDonkey, and DirectConnect.
I also filed a report on the MPAA's new legal assault for today's Wired News:
In the United States and the United Kingdom, the Motion Picture Association of America, the main lobbying arm of American film studios, filed civil lawsuits today against more than 100 operators of BitTorrent tracker servers which point to locations where downloadable files can be found. The MPAA also targeted operators of servers for the eDonkey and DirectConnect networks. The group's actions include criminal complaints and cease and desist orders issued to ISPs on 4 continents. Acting in cooperation with the MPAA, French law enforcement authorities took related action yesterday, and actions by authorities in Finland and the Netherlands followed today.Link to Wired News story. During the press conference, Mr. Malcolm also referred to BitTorrent tracker server operators as "cogs in the piracy machine."
BitTorrent, eDonkey, and DirectConnect allow millions of internet users to share copies of movies, music, software and games. Because of its particular efficiency in helping users handle very large files -- such as digital copies of feature-length films -- BitTorrent has attracted the enmity of Hollywood. (....)[MPAA antipiracy chief John] Malcolm described the operators of the targeted servers as "Traffic cops connecting those who wish to steal a movie with those who have a copy of it."
"These people are parasites leeching off the creativity of others," said Malcolm. "They generate ad revenues by way of popup ads, banner ads... and they solicit online donations."
Previously, the MPAA has filed hundreds of suits against individual downloaders. The new actions against server operators come just days after the Supreme Court agreed to take up the landmark MGM v. Grokster filesharing case. MPAA representatives denied that the timing of today's news was related.
Update: Petri Lyytinen says,
2039 is reporting about recent bust of finnish BitTorrent network, Finreactor, for distributing copyrighted material worth millions of euros. Allegedly they gathered evidence for court using special backdoor software written by finnish company Hitback Oy, that was lured to 26 illegal products which were downloadable from the network.Link to Finnish news stories and police reports.
Link to yesterday's BoingBoing post -- New MPAA lawsuits against BitTorrent, eDonkey expected: Link