Hollywood studios busted as torrent-loving dens of piracy

Tomorrow, the Stop Online Piracy Act goes for markup. The bill argues that the Internet is full of "rogue companies" and that the only way to save the entertainment industry is to let the studios have the say-so over who can display advertising, process payments, or have DNS.

Using YouHaveDownloaded, a Russian site that indexes downloads of popular .torrent files, TorrentFreak checked to see just how suited the studios are to serving as judge, jury and executioner over the Internet. They discovered (predictably enough) that the studios are full of pirates, greedily hoovering up illicit copies of popular movies, CDs, TV shows, and more.

First up is Sony Pictures Entertainment. As shown below, on this single IP-address alone a wide variety of music and movies have been downloaded. And this is probably just the tip of the iceberg, as YouHaveDownloaded only tracks about 20% of all public BitTorrent downloads.

Another Hollywood studio where it’s not uncommon to download music, TV-shows and movies is NBC Universal. The employee(s) behind one of the IP-addresses at the Fort Lauderdale office in Florida downloaded the first season of ‘Game of Thrones,’ some trance music, a DVD of ‘Cowboys and Aliens’, and much more.

And then there are the fine upstanding people at Fox Entertainment checking out the work of a competing studio. Perhaps downloading ‘Super 8′ can be branded as “market research,” but in this instance actually paying for the DVD might be more appropriate.

After all, when Fox notices that one of their own movies has leaked online they quickly contact the FBI to get the offender jailed. Ouch.

Busted: BitTorrent Pirates at Sony, Universal and Fox

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