Andy Baio has continued his excellent annual series, "Pirating the Oscars," which tracks
each year's Oscar nominee's appearance on file-sharing networks, and keeps statistics
on the method by which each nominee is captured and uploaded (camcordered, ripped from
screener/pre-release cut, ripped from commercial DVD, etc). Because Andy does these stats
on an annual basis, we get a longitudinal view into the way that file-sharing is changing in response to the studios' countermeasures, and in response to new technologies in general.
Pirating the 2011 Oscars
* This year, three films were leaked online within a day of their theatrical release -- Iron Man 2, Alice in Wonderland, and Harry Potter.
* The Rabbit Hole screener was leaked online eight days before its theatrical release, while Winter's Bone [ed: excellent film, but don't make the mistake I made -- it's not a date-night kind of movie!] was the slowest to leak online (so far) at 125 days after its theatrical release.
* Oscar-nominated films tend to get released late in the year, but how late? More nominated films have been released on December 25 than any other day, but the median date is October 20.
* For the first year, the first high-quality leak of a film -- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- was a PPV rip, most likely from a hotel's new movie releases on pay-per-view.
* Retail Blu-Ray rips are now frequently being leaked online now before retail DVDs, so I've modified the "Retail DVD" column to include them.
Warner Bros has sued talent agency Innovative Artists for running an internal-use Google Drive folder that let its clients and staff review movies in the course of their duties. They say the company ripped “screeners” (DVDs sent for review purposes) and put them on the server, whence they leaked onto torrent sites.
AT&T’s secret “Hemisphere” product is a database of calls and call-records on all its customers, tracking their location, movements, and interactions — this data was then sold in secret to American police forces for investigating crimes big and small (even Medicare fraud), on the condition that they never reveal the program’s existence.
I still love Twitter and hope it finds a way forward. But it looks like all the potential suitors have passed on buying it, and job cuts are in the offing. Twitter Inc., having failed to sell itself, is planning to fire about 8 percent of its workforce as the struggling social-media company prepares to […]
I’ve never really felt the need to purchase a smartwatch because a lot of them aren’t very functional, but at just shy of $30, the Martian Notifier Smartwatch was worth checking out. For that low of a price, it actually does feature an impressive amount of functionality, and comes in handy when you don’t want to be carrying around your […]
Geek Fuel is a subscription delivery service that caters to those of us that love comics, gaming, and general geek culture. Every month, Geek Fuel will assemble a box of goodies with a value of $50 or over. The specific items are a mystery, but you’ll always get an exclusive t-shirt not found anywhere else, a full […]
If you like to DIY and you like helicopters, you’re going to really love the Flexbot Hexacopter Kit. This copter blows traditional models out of the water: it includes everything you need to actually build your own hexacopter, and then pilot it like a pro, too.The construction is complicated enough to give you a challenge, […]