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Amazon Fights Piracy Tool, Creators Call It a Parody

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the it-was-uh-uh-art-yeah-that's-the-ticket dept.

Software 268

jamie points out an interesting story which started a few days ago, when a pair of students from the Netherlands released a Firefox add-on which integrated links to the Pirate Bay on Amazon product pages. Customers who had the add-on would see a large "Download 4 Free" button next to items which were also available on the Pirate Bay. The add-on quickly drew notice, and the creators were hit with a take-down notice and threats of litigation from Amazon. Now, the students have removed the add-on, and they are claiming an unusual defense: "'Pirates of the Amazon' was an artistic parody, part of our media research and education at the Media Design M.A. course at the Piet Zwart Institute of the Willem de Kooning Academy Hogeschool Rotterdam, the Netherlands. It was a practical experiment on interface design, information access and currently debated issues in media culture. We were surprised by the attentions and the strong reactions this project received. Ultimately, the value of the project lies in these reactions. It is a ready-made and social sculpture of contemporary internet user culture."

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Social Acceptability (1, Offtopic)

fibrewire (1132953) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011043)

It's creepy that i posted exactly about this a minute before this story appeared in the previous listing about "RIAA Vs. Web 2.0? Social Media and Litigation"

Chin deep (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011077)

From the summary: It was a practical experiment on interface design, information access and currently debated issues in media culture. We were surprised by the attentions and the strong reactions this project received. Ultimately, the value of the project lies in these reactions. It is a ready-made and social sculpture of contemporary internet user culture.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

What an utter load of hot steamy horse shit!

Best laugh I have had all day.

Re:Chin deep (4, Interesting)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011085)

So how is this more illegal than what tpb already does? All they're doing is /linking/ to a torrent. Whether that should be legal or not is a whole 'nother can of worms.

Re:Chin deep (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011177)

The Pirate Bay is not just linking to a .torrent though, they're a BitTorrent tracker. Given a torrent hash ID, you can get a list of IPs seeding and downloading using the torrent.

Arguably that's also legal, but it's more than just linking.

Re:Chin deep (4, Funny)

MrMr (219533) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011967)

You seem to assume that not being guilty is somehow going to protect a student from a big company that sees a threat to its bottom line?
You must be new here (on planet Earth, that is).

Re:Chin deep (5, Informative)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012021)

Last I checked the DMCA didn't apply in the Netherlands...

You're missing the point... (was: Re:Chin deep) (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26012087)

All it takes to trigger the download is One-Click (TM)...

The plugin authors did not obtain a license to use Amazon's One-Click patent, now did they? ;-)

So Where is it Now? (2, Interesting)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011053)

So where is the plug-in hiding now? The Pirate Bay??

Be interesting if the source was published to Wikileaks.

Re:So Where is it Now? (4, Informative)

RockMFR (1022315) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011097)

http://torrentfreak.com/files/piratesoftheamazon.xpi [torrentfreak.com]

The original part of the extension is actually just a fairly short Greasemonkey script. For some reason, they packaged it with a bunch of other stuff from Greasemonkey. It's pretty poor quality code, to be honest.

Re:So Where is it Now? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011755)

http://torrentfreak.com/files/piratesoftheamazon.xpi [torrentfreak.com]

The original part of the extension is actually just a fairly short Greasemonkey script. For some reason, they packaged it with a bunch of other stuff from Greasemonkey. It's pretty poor quality code, to be honest.

The Piet Zwart Institute is an art school (a pretty renowned one, too). I don't find it very strange that the code is poor. Unusual as the defense might be, it makes sense to me.

Re:So Where is it Now? (1)

ZWoz_new (1171203) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012027)

Greasemonkey? You say Greasemonkey [slashdot.org] ? A-ha, now i see social experiment!

Re:So Where is it Now? (5, Informative)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011671)

Greasemonkey has a ton of [userscripts.org] these kinds of add-ons for FF. I don't see how they are any different. Visit IMDB, find a movie, click on the Mininova link, and get a torrent search for it (by imdb number, even).

You can also get them for LastFM searches [userscripts.org] and MusicBrainz searches [userscripts.org]

Re:So Where is it Now? (3, Informative)

ThePhilips (752041) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012075)

1. Install Google Toolbar
2. Google Toolbar > Settings > Options > Buttons > Add Button > Enter in search field "Pirate Bay" > pick one of the buttons to add to your google tool bar.
3. Go to Amazon
4. Select the name of product
5. Right mouse click to call pop up menu > More Search Types > middle mouse click on added in step #2 button.

That's what I use for anime and mininova.

Defense for what? (4, Insightful)

RockMFR (1022315) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011055)

What do they have to defend? What is illegal about this?

Re:Defense for what? (5, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011151)

Indeed. What exactly are they threatening to sue them for? Contributory copyright infringement? Guess what? Amazon isn't the copyright holder of many (any?) of these works. They have no standing.

Of course, there is that trademark issue ;)

Re:Defense for what? (5, Funny)

Joe U (443617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011253)

Conspiracy to commit contributory copyright infringement.

So, yeah, it's a death penalty case.

Re:Defense for what? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011295)

Conspiracy to commit contributory copyright infringement.

There's already a new word for it: financial terrorism!

Re:Defense for what? (5, Funny)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011317)

Amazon: "Your honour, these kids are guilty of financial terrorism!"
Judge: "Kids, you're guilty, and I sentence you to receive 700 million dollars from Amazon"
Kids: "Woohoo!"
Amazon: "That's no fair!"
Judge: "Oh oh, it's not working. 800 million!"
Kids: "Woohoo!"
Amazon: "Gaah!"

Re:Defense for what? (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011625)

You have to post this the day after my slashdot mod points expire. If my keyboard didn't have drain holes I'd say you owe me a new keyboard.

Re:Defense for what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011995)

This is the funniest thing I've read all year. :-)

I immediately pasted it to all my friends, and we're still in stitches.

You're at +5 already so no need for more ... but well done. :-)

Re:Defense for what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26012147)

Konspiracy to kommit kontributory kopyright infringement would be better.

Re:Defense for what? (5, Funny)

Alsee (515537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011261)

What is illegal about this?

I believe that would be the crime of pissing off a corporation with enough money to rape your pathetic ass in court.

-

Re:Defense for what? (1)

DustyShadow (691635) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011301)

Amazon would probably claim some type of derivate work infringement of its website. Not sure it would fly in court though. But winning isn't usually the goal in this type of situation. Getting it to just go away is the main goal.

Re:Defense for what? (3, Funny)

hellwig (1325869) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011439)

Looks like it worked. Oh wait... no it didn't. [thepiratebay.org]

p.s. I don't use FireFox, so I can't verify the link torrent is anything useful.

Re:Defense for what? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011911)

p.s. I don't use FireFox

Get off my Slashdot.

Re:Defense for what? (1)

Dan541 (1032000) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011355)

Nothing, but you don't have to break the law to be punished.

Note to artists: (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011057)

I don't want to be part of your "social commentary." If your art project involves the participation of a lot of people, and you fail to inform them going in that they're part of some kind of demonstration, you're an ass.

Re:Note to artists: (3, Interesting)

Aranykai (1053846) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011073)

If you chose to join it of your own volition, that's your problem. No one put a gun to your head and made you download it.

Re:Note to artists: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011337)

Read the GP again. He's not blaming anything on the "artists". He's merely commenting on their character.

Re:Note to artists: (1)

olesaltyballs (1401943) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011451)

I guess it's time to get rid of double blind scientific studies then. Or is science not an art?

Re:Note to artists: (1, Interesting)

wisty (1335733) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011485)

But, Postmodernism was just an art project, with lots of unwitting participants (for example, most of the academics involved), and the instigators failed to inform anyone...

Got that ass-backwards (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012103)

Actually, no. If you participate in a society, that society is entitled to comment on your participation.

And the point being? (1)

Whiteox (919863) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011065)

Ok. So what's new here? Nothing?

art mash-up (1)

retech (1228598) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011075)

Following that logic, google and it's info tracking is perhaps the greatest art project in history!

I know It sounds silly (4, Informative)

rm999 (775449) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011093)

It sounds silly, but I see how this was a parody, and perhaps even some sort of statement. First off, anyone who installed this already knew how to install a bit torrent client, and probably knew how to go to piratebay and search for what they wanted. I think what the creators of this extension were commenting on is the ease of getting anything for free online; pretty much every mainstream downloadable product on Amazon is probably online somewhere.

Honestly, what serious extension has adds big "'Download 4 free,' 'Not Downloadable,' or 'Not Available'" buttons to your browser? Any way, there's no way to sue an extension out of existence - if people really want it, they'll get it. This extension is probably pretty useless, so I think Amazon should just let it die.

Re:I know It sounds silly (3, Insightful)

VinylRecords (1292374) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011113)

This extension is probably pretty useless, so I think Amazon should just let it die.

Instead of letting it die Amazon.com brings everyone's full attention to it instead, brilliant PR move.

I use Amazon.com and Pirate Bay all of them. If I had known the companies were merging I would have purchased more stock in both of them.

Please don't tell me this surprises you. (5, Insightful)

dacut (243842) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011583)

Amazon has inked distribution deals with a bunch of record companies -- deals which are certainly not permanent. If anything, given that Amazon is the first major seller of non-DRM-encumbered MP3s, these deals are probably subject to renewal in a short period of time (so that the record companies could pull the plug if need be).

Now a way of circumventing sales -- however obvious and silly -- which places links on Amazon's pages is featured on Slashdot, a fairly well read site. You're Amazon's legal department. Do you decide to:
(a) Exert pressure on the authors of this tool to remove it, thus demonstrating to the record companies that you are serious about your agreement with them and make the next round of negotiations easier? If so, turn to page 72.
(b) Do nothing. If so, turn to page 93 -- and prepare to get reamed in the ass when the record labels demand $2.50 per download.

This has nothing to do with public relations and everything to do with vendor relations.

Re:Please don't tell me this surprises you. (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011835)

If anything, given that Amazon is the first major seller of non-DRM-encumbered MP3s, these deals are probably subject to renewal in a short period of time (so that the record companies could pull the plug if need be).

This being Slashdot, I feel free to be pedantic - but this is a serious question as well.

Is there such a thing as a DRM-encumbered MP3?

Some of the AAC files iTunes sells are DRM-encumbered, and I imagine Sony has (at least in the past) sold it's own DRM-encumbered Sony format (whatever it was called) - bot does anyone put DRM on MP3 files and sell them?

Re:Please don't tell me this surprises you. (1)

dacut (243842) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011945)

Is there such a thing as a DRM-encumbered MP3?

Touché. :-) You're right, I was being redundant; my intent was to call out the non-DRM-ness of the offering.

Indeed, no, at least that I'm aware of. It is possible to watermark them, but such marks are easily removed by re-encoding the MP3 file. Now, it's possible to use MPEG 1 Layer 3 encoding technologies and layer DRM on top of it, but the result would not be what anyone would consider to be an MP3 file.

Re:Please don't tell me this surprises you. (1)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011847)

Yes, probably Amazon was obliged to do this, still, if they don't, i would have missed this 'great' add-on.

software patents are silly (1, Troll)

twitter (104583) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011441)

Looks like these guys showed how hard it is to innovate something easier than the patented "one click shopping." Anyone, anywhere can have any song, book, movie or other piece of culture if we all just share what we have to create the electronic equivalent of the best public library ever known to man. No one ever need be ignorant again. Will the USPTO reward the creators for their great gift to mankind or will they be thrown in jail?

Warning: Known sockpuppet/troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011597)

User maintains more than a dozen accounts [slashdot.org]

Re:I know It sounds silly (5, Interesting)

bahstid (927038) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011557)

What might have made a nice further comment would have been to code an extension that would show e.g. "available on Amazon for $2.00" on the pirate bay site, and see what kind of traffic would go in the other direction. ...or maybe the comment was that more insightful media corporations would have thought this up for themselves a while back.
 

Re:I know It sounds silly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011925)

It sounds silly, but I see how this was a parody, and perhaps even some sort of statement. First off, anyone who installed this already knew how to install a bit torrent client, and probably knew how to go to piratebay and search for what they wanted. I think what the creators of this extension were commenting on is the ease of getting anything for free online; pretty much every mainstream downloadable product on Amazon is probably online somewhere.

Honestly, what serious extension has adds big "'Download 4 free,' 'Not Downloadable,' or 'Not Available'" buttons to your browser? Any way, there's no way to sue an extension out of existence - if people really want it, they'll get it. This extension is probably pretty useless, so I think Amazon should just let it die.

Fair enough it isn't much use to me personally, but I'm going to install it on my wife's browser and it'll be a big help for her. She's a bit of a technophobe. Come to think of it, it would be quite useful for my mum as well. And my sister. And my wife's friend.

Got it although I don't really need this. (4, Interesting)

Erikderzweite (1146485) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011119)

I have just downloaded and installed this extention. Not that I would ever use it -- if I need a torrent, I'd go to thepiratebay.org in the first place.
But as amason tries to forbid this thing, I think I'll give it a try. Somehow it feels really good browsing amazon with this add-on knowing that this is exactly the thing they don't want you to be able to do.

Re:Got it although I don't really need this. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011407)

I'd have used it if it had Amazon links on Pirate Bay too. I know I'm a member of dying spieces but I still don't keep pirated stuff for longer then 24 hours which ends either with a purchase or uninstalling.

Re:Got it although I don't really need this. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011483)

That sounds a bit juvenile really.

Re:Got it although I don't really need this. (5, Insightful)

LaskoVortex (1153471) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011649)

That sounds a bit juvenile really.

So does calling someone a name and posting anonymously. I say go for it dude! Look, he's not collapsing the economy by doing it, some greedy bankers and a lot of irresponsible lenders already did that. Some college kid getting some free songs is not something you really need to get all huffy and righteous about. What you need to get huffy and righteous about is all of the powerful people who have destroyed the economy and your parents' retirement. But wait! Downloading a song is sooooo much more important, right?

To all of the righteous "downloading is a crime" types: get some priorities and complain about things that really matter, children.

Re:Got it although I don't really need this. (2)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012091)

Lets just say I wish I had a private corporate jet and could fly to DC and ask for large billions of dollars because "I made Bad Business Decisions".

Re:Got it although I don't really need this. (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011651)

But juveniles are the target market, and a fair sized one :).

And a billboard giving detailed instructions on... (-1, Troll)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011193)

... running a confidence scam, successfully robbing banks, the finer points of mugging, or the detailed design of a botnet/phishing/money laundering operation could be similarly defended as "art". B-)

Not that I have anything against freedom of speech. But I bet this "art work" is in direct violation of a number of laws and is about to get the "artists" into a lot of legal difficulty.

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (3, Insightful)

Joe U (443617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011223)

But I bet this "art work" is in direct violation of a number of laws

Can you name any?

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (1, Funny)

SmokeyTheBalrog (996551) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011263)

But I bet this "art work" is in direct violation of a number of laws

Can you name any?

Does, "Getting a date." qualify?

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (2, Funny)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011259)

Yeah, agreed. This is like those professors who were found with a bunch of issues of Playboy in their office and they claimed it was part of their research into the correlation of economic conditions with contemporary playmate body types, as a study of evolutionary psychology.

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (3, Interesting)

TerranFury (726743) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011319)

were found with a bunch of issues of Playboy in their office

In the year 2008, soon to be 2009, is that really that scandalous? ;-)

(Believe it or not, I actually once did cite Playboy in a literary analysis paper while at school: They carried an interview with Kurt Vonnegut and Joe Heller. No joke.)

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011351)

I'd read that research, even if it had no pictures in it. It actually sounds interesting, assuming they can find such a correlation.

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (3, Funny)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011587)

Oh ... my ... god. Apparently, I got it wrong. It wasn't some off-the-cuff excuse. They actually wrote up the paper [sagepub.com] !

More [marginalrevolution.com] links [nytimes.com] .

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (1)

Repossessed (1117929) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011751)

And the paper is 20 dollars to read :(

On the plus side, I'm apparently going to be quite the looker next year.

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (5, Interesting)

glwtta (532858) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011291)

... running a confidence scam, successfully robbing banks, the finer points of mugging, or the detailed design of a botnet/phishing/money laundering operation could be similarly defended as "art". B-)

Doesn't need defending - everything you mention is perfectly legal (at least in the US). Why would simply describing some illegal activity be against the law?

Not that I have anything against freedom of speech.

Yes you do. You are suggesting that sharing of information should be restricted if it's conceivable that someone could potentially use that information for some illegal purpose; that's pretty far into the "not for" freedom of speech end of the spectrum.

But I bet this "art work" is in direct violation of a number of laws and is about to get the "artists" into a lot of legal difficulty.

Is it? TFA is pretty light on details, but I'd be very surprised if Amazon's complaint was about anything other than their trademark being used in the name of the plugin. Even if it is possible to sue people for linking to links to torrents in the US (which I'm not sure it is), Amazon are not the copyright holder here.

Re:And a billboard giving detailed instructions on (3, Informative)

Alsee (515537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011447)

And a billboard giving detailed instructions on... running a confidence scam, successfully robbing banks, the finer points of mugging, or the detailed design of a botnet/phishing/money laundering operation

I know these people are in the Netherlands, but just a general FYI to this discussion, in the US all of those things are not only legal but it would be unconstitutional for congress to create any law criminalizing it.

If you want to blow up some building, and someone else says they are willing to do it if you give them the explosive formula, that is conspiracy to commit a crime, and that is a crime.

If you are working the register at a store, and you have actual knowledge that some particular person intends to murder someone by forcing a rubber duck down their throat, it is criminal aiding and abetting to sell that rubber ducky to that particular person.

However if you merely publish something and you don't commit any other actual crime, the fact that some generic person might use the information to commit some unknown crime does not make it criminal for you to publish that information - even on a billboard.

-

God damn Nazi assholes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011255)

Joseph Mengele gave the same assinine reasoning.

Ahem (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011299)

Students from the Netherlands develop and post an addon to Firefox that links to torrents on a Swedish torrent tracker site, and has to take it down because of the American DMCA?

Since when does American law apply universally?

Re:Ahem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011401)

Even TPB get a lot of DMCA takedown requests, but maybe this Firefox Addon was hosted in the States?

Re:Ahem (2, Interesting)

Futile Rhetoric (1105323) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011411)

Where did the article say anything about DMCA? You can threaten to sue no matter where you are.

Re:Ahem (3, Interesting)

hellwig (1325869) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011433)

We're America bitch! That's since when!

Re:Ahem (1)

geniice (1336589) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011535)

Most European systems are something of a mess in this area but a DMCA style take down notice would probably be considered due notice and ignoring it unless you are ready to go to court would be a bad idea.

Phew! (4, Funny)

quag7 (462196) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011417)

Well thank God, because now people won't download shit for free anymore and instead buy it on amazon.com.

Re:Phew! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011585)

Well thank God, because now people won't download shit for free anymore and instead buy it on amazon.com.

Yet that would be a great tool. Imagine you are struggling with a torrent or the quality is crap. Wouldn't it be nice if a clean, crisp, DRM-free copy were available for $15 delivered?

Re:Phew! (1)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011753)

...actually, very much so. Especially on older, out-of-print games. The only way to play Radiant Silvergun, for example, is to pirate it off of torrents with almost no seeders... or buy a copy used for at least $170 USD.

It's just a convenience (-1, Troll)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011457)

Anyone who buys an mp3 or movie off Amazon when it's available on Piratebay is a fool, anyway.

Re:It's just a convenience (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011699)

Anyone who puts all of his posts in <tt> tags when he could make his posts readable is a tool, anyway.

Hmmm... (1)

trickotomy (947120) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011473)

Bullshit... Keep up the good work.

Parody (4, Insightful)

Catil (1063380) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011505)

Amazon is kind of doing the opposite for years now - placing ads on torrent-sites and the like, where you can buy the same item from Amazon you are about to download for free. Therefore 'parody' is indeed the right term to use for this plugin.

Ah, I get it. (0)

Aerynvala (1109505) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011511)

A social experiment done for the lulz [urbandictionary.com] !

Re:Ah, I get it. (1)

compro01 (777531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011803)

Actually, they did write a paper on it, though it doesn't seem to be publicly available free ($20 to get it, and it isn't on TPB (yet)).

Re:Ah, I get it. (1)

Aerynvala (1109505) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011817)

Charging for access to the paper is fricking hilarious!

This social project is not over... (2, Interesting)

madhatter256 (443326) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011537)

Nope. Apparently, this tool created for this school project is not over. The second half of the experiment, after they take down the software, should be to see what kind of punishment they would receive if this were to happen in the real world.

Then they will really know, not just by the reactions of Amazon and their take down notice, but through the legal system about the social feedback such a software will receive...

Piracy tool? PUBLIC DOMAIN TOOL! (5, Insightful)

Alsee (515537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011565)

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The 2007 CIA World Factbook by United States. Central Intelligence Agency
The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Ulysses by James Joyce
Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli
Paradise Lost by John Milton
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
Grimm's Fairy Tales by Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm
The Marvelous Land Of Oz by L. Frank Baum
Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells

Amazon.com has all or nearly all of those books, some as DRM-Kindle ebooks.

Now... what idiot here wants explain to me why the hell I SHOULDN'T have this convenient Download-torrent-from-ThePirateBay button show up on the page in my Firefox browser? And offer me their brilliant rant on how this browser extension is or shoud-be illegal?

-

Re:Piracy tool? PUBLIC DOMAIN TOOL! (-1, Flamebait)

Dan541 (1032000) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011739)

Because the artist doesn't get paid if you make a copy yourself.

There.... HAPPY????

Re:Piracy tool? PUBLIC DOMAIN TOOL! (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011843)

Because the artist doesn't get paid if you make a copy yourself.

There.... HAPPY????

Thought #1: Is someone actually attempting to pay L. Frank Baum at this late date?

Thought #2: How was that post a "Troll"? Other than the usual juvenile Slashdot user's logic "This person doesn't have the same value system as I do (or lack thereof), so anything he posts is a troll"?

Re:Piracy tool? PUBLIC DOMAIN TOOL! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011943)

Thought #2: How was that post a "Troll"? Other than the usual juvenile Slashdot user's logic "This person doesn't have the same value system as I do (or lack thereof), so anything he posts is a troll"?

1) Because I believe it's a "late date" for all of those authors, CIA excepted. Dead authors don't need money.

2) Because, as implied by the title of the post, all of those works are in the public domain, and it is therefore perfectly legal for anyone to copy or distribute them for any purpose. (Radical thought, isn't it? With the current privatization of culture, I can't blame you for not thinking of that right away.) Even if a publisher publishes a new edition of these works, they're not going to be giving any of the proceeds to the author or their estate or their great-great-great-granddaughter who has twenty-five sick children and is dying of cancer.

To anyone that doesn't get it (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011577)

Piet Zwart Institute of the Willem de Kooning Academy.

That sounds just like a joke name but this place does seem to exist. 'Zwarte Piet' is dutch for santas helper.

I don't think courts normally allow the 'My school has a stupid name' defense.

Re:To anyone that doesn't get it (2, Informative)

compro01 (777531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011831)

Piet Zwart was a famous designer, photographer, and typographer, especially in the 20s and 30s.

Re:To anyone that doesn't get it (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011841)

There's a thing, I went to uni with someone called Pete Black. Doesn't sound so funny now, does it?

I wouldn't have even heard of this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011615)

If it weren't for Amazon trying to get rid of this add-on, I probably wouldn't have even heard of it existing. Thank you Amazon for give the "PiratesOfTheAmazon" extension the publicity it needed for me (and many others) to find out about it.

Pirates Of The Bay (5, Interesting)

biocute (936687) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011643)

Amazon should instead create another Firefox add-on, when users are browsing through TPB torrents, a large "Buy Genuine 4 Cheap" button next to those torrent listings would appear and link back to Amazon.com.

Re:Pirates Of The Bay (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011703)

The already have. They're called "contextual ads."

Huh? (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011777)

I guess the OJ break-in was simply a work of "performance art", too.

Yes, I know that these folks didn't do anything illegal, but the "I'm an artiste" defense has got to be one of the dumber ones I've heard. Damn, if you are an artist, stand up for your art and have Amazon really come after you before you cave. Especially if you are actually an artist.

Re:Huh? (2, Informative)

compro01 (777531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011821)

The "experiment" stuff wasn't just an off-the-cuff excuse. They did write a paper on it.

regardless of legality this is stupid (4, Insightful)

cliffski (65094) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011819)

Regardless of its legality this is truly self-destructive and silly. I can understand how people want to get stuff for free, even though I fundamnetally disagree with piracy. What I do NOT understand is why those peole cannot see that if everyone does what they do, no new content will be produced. (Mainly thats why piracy is unethical, because it relys on you leeching off everyone else).
So where you may have an economic incentive to pirate stuff, there is also a clear incentive not to let anyone else know how to do it.
So why as so many hardcore pirates such evangelists for piracy?
They are making it easier to get caught (by always seeding and promoting it), inviting much heavier penalties, and ultimately destroying the income of the exact content producers they like.
The rational pirate would keep a low profile, or at most, only distribute links to really poor content. It just goes to reinforce my belief that its mainly immature kids who do this kind of thing.

Re:regardless of legality this is stupid (3, Interesting)

eddy (18759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011917)

>What I do NOT understand is why those peole cannot see that if everyone does what they do, no new content will be produced.

Well, I don't think I have ever seen an explanation of how the imperative/compulsion to create gets overridden by the need to make money doing it.

I mean, our oldest paintings are something on the order of 30000 years old, are you trying to tell me they only got painted because the painter got paid and hade copyright protection?

Re:regardless of legality this is stupid (1)

loonycyborg (1262242) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012115)

The rational pirate would keep a low profile, or at most, only distribute links to really poor content.

Currently all 'content' is indeed poor. That's because commercial consideration override artistic ones. In order to produce art that doesn't suck, commercial stuff must be decoupled from artistic stuff.

Re:regardless of legality this is stupid (3, Insightful)

srussia (884021) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012165)

Mainly thats why piracy is unethical, because it relys on you leeching off everyone else.

That reminds me of Bastiat's "The state is the great fiction by which everybody seeks to live at the expense of everybody else."

The big difference of course is that you are talking about non-rivalrous goods (copies of works), while Bastiat was referring to scarce, rivalrous goods.

Re:regardless of legality this is stupid (1, Funny)

wild_quinine (998562) | more than 5 years ago | (#26012187)

Regardless of its legality this is truly self-destructive and silly. I can understand how people want to get stuff for free, even though I fundamnetally disagree with piracy. What I do NOT understand is why those peole cannot see that if everyone does what they do, no new content will be produced.

What browser are you using? The way I see it, either you're using Firefox, and therefore wrong, Q.E.D.

Or you're using I.E., and therefore of inconsequential opinion.

I believe it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26011839)

I know a couple of people who go to school. This is exactly the type of art they make. They're totally insane there, but in a way where I'm pretty certain it's because they're the next generation of artistic geniuses stuck together in a feedback loop of creativity.

Would people have even used it? (1)

Smuttley (126014) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011867)

Seriously? Anyone who uses Pirate Bay regularly is going to go there to look for their movie/book/warez before they think of buying it on Amazon.

All Amazon have done is publicise something that most people wouldn't have used in the first place.

Top Marks!

Re:Would people have even used it? (1)

MooUK (905450) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011915)

That is, unless we want a paper copy of a book, in which case I'll look on amazon (or more likely, in my local brick-and-mortar bookshop to browse what's available).

Shame... (5, Funny)

nigel999 (883244) | more than 5 years ago | (#26011933)

Before it was taken down, I managed to download a pair of wool slippers, a Brompton folding bike and a sweet KitchenAid stand mixer. Thanks, piratebay!
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