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TorrentSpy Ordered By Judge to Become MPAA Spy

CowboyNeal posted more than 7 years ago | from the watching-the-watchmen dept.

The Courts 372

PC Guy writes "TorrentSpy, one of the world's largest BitTorrent sites, has been ordered by a federal judge to monitor its users. They are asked to keep detailed logs of their activities which must then be handed over to the MPAA. Ira Rothken, TorrentSpy's attorney responded to the news by stating: 'It is likely that TorrentSpy would turn off access to the U.S. before tracking its users. If this order were allowed to stand, it would mean that Web sites can be required by discovery judges to track what their users do even if their privacy policy says otherwise.'"

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well (4, Insightful)

Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450077)

now no one will use torrentspy. It never ceases to amaze me how hard some people will try to put the genie back in the bottle.

Re:well (2, Insightful)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450121)

The problem is people will continue to use it.
New people discover filesharing every day and how would they know about this ruling?

The other possiblity is that people will just not hear about the news, you could post it on slash everyday (it probably will actually...) and there would always be people who won't have heard.

Re:well (4, Insightful)

Tassach (137772) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450201)

New people discover filesharing every day and how would they know about this ruling?
The same way they discovered filesharing in the first place -- word of mouth.

Re:well (3, Informative)

cshake (736412) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450609)

Example: A friend of mine sets up a DC++ hub on our college campus to get around the off-campus bandwidth caps. Entirely through word of mouth, we have 20TB and 200 people at any given time logged in. (out of 3500 students). Everyone who shares any decent amount and/or can call themselves a geek is on it.

The new content is provided by those of us with accounts on private sources, such as newsgroups, ftp, or private torrent sites. It's also provided by the incoming freshman class each year that has new things to share. We've provided for at least 80% of the campus' filesharing needs.

There will always be ways around any specific source that gets nerfed.

Re:well (1)

Viper Daimao (911947) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450753)

my college had one of those too when i was in college. That is until some idiot CS major decided to ssh into a campus computer and access the network from there and transfer a few gigs to his offsite computer. Of course ITS found out about it after that and shut it down. It was sweet while it lasted. So fast too.

Re:well (0, Offtopic)

dcollins (135727) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450713)

"Why do the folks who insist on keeping 'God' in 'one nation under God' want to get rid of 'liberty and justice for all'?"

I'd say that's pretty consistent. They want you to *say* all of that stuff, and for all of it to be equally make-believe.

Re:well (1)

magores (208594) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450179)

Some of us don't live in the US, so they could track us all they want. It wouldn't matter.

Re:well (3, Insightful)

Faylone (880739) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450335)

Except if you live in australia [slashdot.org]

Re:well (4, Funny)

BakaHoushi (786009) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450409)

In my professional opinion (I.E. 20 minutes in front of Wikipedia on the subject), if you're an Australian, and the MAFIAA demands to see you in court, send them a "gift basket" of some of your local flora and fauna, wink wink, nudge nudge. Maybe a couple of scorpions, a rabid koala bear, and a few dozen blue mountain spiders.

If they try to get you for this, what are they going to do, come after you? To the land where those animals CAME from? I don't think so.

Deep well (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450181)

"It never ceases to amaze me how hard some people will try to put the genie back in the bottle."

There's ONE way. Simply stop producing content. Kind of hard to "steal" what doesn't exist.

Re:Deep well (3, Funny)

BakaHoushi (786009) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450425)

I thought the RIAA and MPAA's current strategy was working quite well: Produce shit so awful, no one would even want it for free. Lord knows I don't pirate movies or music. It'd be a waste of hard drive space.

Re:Deep well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450521)

thats why you burn it to cds or dvds....geez you young ins and your lets store it on hard drvie!

Re:Deep well (1)

BakaHoushi (786009) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450619)

And you think money grows on trees. CD-Rs and DVD-Rs cost money! Besides, that means I'd have to FIND the CD I want with the song I want, put it in, wait for it to load, THEN play it. Who has that kind of time anymore?

Re:Deep well (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450611)

"Produce shit so awful, no one would even want it for free."

Well aside from the subjective nature, the fact that Piratebay and others even exist shoots down the "It's crap!" argument. Like I said, if there's no content to "steal" then there's no longer a piracy problem. Some will say the small guy will step up to the plate. But that ignores two things. Piracy hurts the small guys far more than it hurts the big guys. It's also on a larger scale because there are more 'small guys'*, and they don't have the money to defend themselves. And in this vacuum the small guys will take the big guys demise to heart and say "that's not going to be me", and try something safer. So yes the genie can be put back in the bottle. The problem is that everyone, both honest and dishonest will suffer.

*And their piracy problem passes under everyone's radar. When was the last time slashdot had a story on the small guys and how piracy affacted them? Nope. RIAA this, and MPAA that. We pick our forests well, and ignore the trees.

Re:well (1)

noddyxoi (1001532) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450373)

In corporate america torrents download you.

Re:well (1)

uberCHIEFTAIN! (972422) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450715)

you mean people actually used torrentspy?

The Pirate Bay (5, Interesting)

Brother Dysk (939885) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450125)

Yet another reason to use the Pirate Bay - being based in Sweden, it's incredibly unlikely that much action will be taken against it, especially in the current political climate there (as a direct result of the raid). Now they just need a way to clearly mark torrents that are tracked only by them...

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Henry V .009 (518000) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450153)

Yeah, it's not like anyone could just connect to their trackers and get the IP addresses of nearly everybody else in the swarm.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Brother Dysk (939885) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450183)

If you live in a sensible country, that ought not be an issue either. Having an indexing site and tracker that WORK, however, and that you can rely on to continue working for a while yet... those are important details.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

sexybomber (740588) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450263)

Well that's not unique to TPB, that could (and probably does) happen with most of the major .torrent sites. Yet another reason to use SafePeer.

Re:The Pirate Bay (2, Insightful)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450329)

> Yeah, it's not like anyone could just connect to their trackers and get the IP addresses of nearly everybody else in the swarm.

So hide you IP address:

https://www.relakks.com/?lang=en [relakks.com]

or

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tor_(anonymity_networ k) [wikipedia.org]

or both

(Note: I don't care what you say about using TOR in this way. There's nothing you can do about it, and really you want *all* activity - voip, email, surfing - funnelled through it.)

Re:The Pirate Bay (3, Interesting)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450211)

How is that post interesting? You're basically saying "we should be violating the copyright using a more attractive source so we won't get caught."

As much as I hate the douchebags in the maffia [and well actors/singers in general] I respect their right to make a living by selling their productions. If whatever you're pirating is actually worth it to you, find a way to acquire it such that the people who made it still get paid. Otherwise, your "wonderful" solution involves artists [who are at the bottom of the money foodchain] not getting paid.

Why not get a job and just by whatever media you like.

Tom

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Brother Dysk (939885) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450231)

your "wonderful" solution involves artists [who are at the bottom of the money foodchain] not getting paid.

Artists actually have a revenue stream the record companies don't tend to decimate; it's called the "gig".

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Dorceon (928997) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450365)

This was about the MPAA. Movie stars have gigs now?

Re:The Pirate Bay (0)

jonfr (888673) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450467)

Movie stars get paid millions of USD if they are high profile. They are far from being poor.

Re:The Pirate Bay (2, Interesting)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450463)

Who cares? They have a right to sign up for labels [even if the terms are stupid]. You don't have a right to violate their copyright protections [I'm not talking DMCA here].

If you don't like the media, don't buy it. But don't pirate it either.

Re:The Pirate Bay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450637)

You don't have a right to violate their copyright protections [I'm not talking DMCA here].

Why not?

Instead, should I follow the lead of the record companies. Oh dear, they violate other people's copyrights.

Maybe you should just accept that copyright is an outdated concept that does not belong in today's society.
Its only purpose nowadays is to make rich people richer and to give an elite few a government backed monopoly.

Re:The Pirate Bay (4, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450683)

Um. Ok here's what I suggest. Go through the effort to learn an instrument. Then, hang your livelyhood on the stake of selling an album. Then, watch with glee as it becomes popular. Then watch with horror as nobody pays for it. Paying for things is "outdated" you see, and not paying artist is the only way to "right" a wrong.

It basically boils down to, if you want the damn product pay for it. If your favourite artist signs with a label, THAT'S THEIR RIGHT. Who are you to say "because you signed with, say, EMI, I won't pay for your music?" You can vote with your dollars. If labels piss you off so much, don't buy [or pirate] label owned music. Only buy truly indy music.

People who pirate label music "to stick it to the man" are just hypocrites.

Re:The Pirate Bay (5, Interesting)

paganizer (566360) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450669)

If I don't like it, i'm not too likely to download it.
most of the music I like, except for a couple of flukes, isn't on Torrent or P2P.
What I do use shareaza (P2P) for is to make up for living half the year someplace where I only have dialup; shareaza works better than getright. Since I retired from the network biz, i'm also kinda a busy amateur photographer, CGI "artist", and 3d object designer, I throw my stuff out in the world using P2P, to keep my bandwidth bills down on my website. I sell some stuff at renderosity.com and a few other places...and I've seen my for-sale stuff on P2P. I'm not bothered by it. it's free advertising, and I've had people purchase my stuff then tell me that they tried it from P2P, liked it, so they bought it. I suppose the possibility exists that i'm losing sales in this way, but I really doubt it.
I'm not a Evil money grubbing pig, so maybe that explains my attitude... but P2P is the perfect way for a lot of markets to advertise. Bands should see music downloading as a way to advertise their gigs, or other value-added product that they actually get a fair chunk of the proceeds from.
How about this; if a band, lets say somebody who isn't famous for trying to jail their fans, put up on their band website a simple little paypal button next to a list of their songs; they could ask for .50+ for each one, as soon as the paypal is paid, you are sent a link to the ftp, edtk or .tor for the track. and no DRM, no death threats, no nothing. they would make more money in that way than they currently make from the M(af)IAA system.

Re:The Pirate Bay (2, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450699)

Throwing your own music on P2P is your right. I'm not against P2P. I'm against people violating copyright laws because they don't want to pay for the media.

Re:The Pirate Bay (5, Interesting)

the_womble (580291) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450313)

I respect their right to make a living by selling their productions.

You could reword that "...make a living by being paid the licensing fees required by their government mandated monopolies."

Why not get a job and just by whatever media you like.

Because the only thing I have ever pirated does not appear to be available in the country in which I live. Is that a good reason? If they do not have a mechanism for me to pay them, they can hardly complain about not being paid.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450439)

I'll take it you don't sing, act, play an instrument, or write scripts/scores. If copyright is what is required for society to reward "art" than so be it.

Do you get paid for your work? Why can't your employer just force you to work for free? Because you want to sell your services? How is this any different? Where I draw the line is the DMCA since it takes away the ability of society to freely [and appropriately] build upon existing culture.

As for the various regions of things, you can always buy the media in the other nation. I can buy discs from Amazon.co.uk. Why can't you?

You can buy it from the uk [or wherever] then decss it to play it locally.

OMG I R GENIUS.

Re:The Pirate Bay (4, Insightful)

lhbtubajon (469284) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450651)

Getting paid for work is one thing.

Getting paid perpetually for the work you did in 1974 is another thing entirely.

If I write a piece of code that helps my employer do something, I get paid for the amount of time I worked on it. I don't get paid every time my company sells the software, and every time they re-use the code, forever and ever amen.

Artists should definitely get paid when they perform their popular song, which is real work, paid for at the time of service.

Should artists get paid forever for the same 6 hours of work in the recording studio? How is that different from me and my code?

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Kijori (897770) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450653)

I do write scores, and also edit textbooks. While I don't like the idea of people downloading them for free - and some people do, unfortunately - I can't object to people pirating them who live in Asia or Africa - they aren't published there, and they aren't shipped there. In the same way, I have downloaded music that I couldn't find any way to buy, and I've downloaded music that I later bought but that wasn't available over here until a later release date; these cases seem to me to be a byproduct of copyright, not the intended interdiction.

Re:The Pirate Bay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450673)

This is a bullshit argument.

The people who produce high quality, culture enhancing art don't give a shit about the money.

Re:The Pirate Bay (0, Offtopic)

spellraiser (764337) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450687)

The thing is ... copyright royalties aren't just getting 'paid for your work'.

I'm a programmer. I get paid by the hour to write code that's used by tens of thousands of people every day. I don't get a share every time someone uses a piece of code that I wrote. Even if I was the one who designed that particular functionality too. Nope, just a flat fee for my creativity and hard work.

Now, music takes talent and a lot of hard work, but it's still just work. Why don't musicians just get paid by the hour for writing, recording, and performing? Why do people have to pay big bucks to listen to a recording of what they did? And please don't give me crap about the high cost of promoting bands, etc. The Internet is a wonderful and inexpensive way to promote music ... at least that's where I've done most of my music dicovery lately - sites like last.fm are an absolute joy for music buffs, and technology and paradimgs like that will get increasingly more common and sophisticated in the future.

The advent of the Internet means that information will flow freely, no matter what anyone does to try to stop that. I know this is getting to be a tired debate, but the simple truth is that the record companies will simply need to come up with different models to adapt to changing times. The same applies to movie producers, etc.

I, for one, don't forsee a collapse of the creative industries just because the old business models are being undermined. There are ways to cope; the people in charge are just to stubborn to admit that they need to find them.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450749)

You signed a contract dumb dumb. You could have signed for royalties. Similarly, artists could [and do] sign flat rates for albums. But it's THEIR RIGHT to choose the type of contract they want to sign.

I agree that they should change their models, artists don't need labels as much [as they need music lessons that is]. But it's their right to choose whatever model they want.

You have a right not to buy media from companies that are not run the way you want.

Tom

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Jarjarthejedi (996957) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450693)

"As for the various regions of things, you can always buy the media in the other nation. I can buy discs from Amazon.co.uk. Why can't you?

You can buy it from the uk [or wherever] then decss it to play it locally."

Which is considered to be just as illegal as pirating it by the RIAA...so what's the incentive? If I were to pirate something I can't get locally I have a chance of being sued. If I were to purchase and rip something I can't get locally I have a chance of being sued. Frankly if they want to treat me like a criminal no matter how I get a hold of their product, even if they get money from me, then why shouldn't I act like a criminal?

Laws like the Anti-Pirating ones are based almost solely on profit and monopoly, there's very little moral reason to obey them besides the fact that it's the law. You can make the good old fashion "Depriving the artist of money" argument but when the artist, or the company representing the artist, shows that they don't want your money by making it illegal for you to get your hands on their product by paying them then you may as well not give them your money. I mean, if someone doesn't want to sell me something, and is willing to sue me if I find a way to buy it from them, then why in the world shouldn't I simply copy it from someone else? They obviously don't want my money anyways, if they did they'd make region-changing legal.

But still the best way to hurt them is to simply ignore them. I've seen probably 2 movies at the theater in the last year and bought none. I don't buy music, I Pandora it. These guys get very little money out of me and have no legal way (like that'll stop 'em) to demand money from me, I win.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450709)

OMG those are like totally two different issues. I'm against the DMCA. I'm also pirating things just because you feel you're entitled.

I'd rather see stories about people being unjustly prosecuted with the DMCA [and more so, what we're doing to fix that], than where you can best pirate those anime episodes you love so much.

Tom

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Monkeyknifightz (1074206) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450711)

Unfortunatly amazon doesn't have everything...nor does itunes... I even find some media from my own country (America) I can't find to purchase.

Re:The Pirate Bay (2, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450731)

Find it used, find it in another market, etc.

Sure you can justify pirating really old obscure media that is hard to find, but just because something went out of print last year doesn't entitle you to pirate it. You don't suppose if demand went up they wouldn't reprint it?

Tom

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

isorox (205688) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450761)


As for the various regions of things, you can always buy the media in the other nation. I can buy discs from Amazon.co.uk. Why can't you?


Tried that, unfortunatly I live in the UK, and I'm not allowed to buy stuff that has been imported
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/6700639.s tm [bbc.co.uk]

Re:The Pirate Bay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450465)

That's your own fault for choosing to stay in that country.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

SolemnLord (775377) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450539)

Because the only thing I have ever pirated does not appear to be available in the country in which I live. Is that a good reason? If they do not have a mechanism for me to pay them, they can hardly complain about not being paid.

Interesting how you're complaining about this on an internet message board.

Re:The Pirate Bay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450679)

If they do not have a mechanism for me to pay them, they can hardly complain about not being paid.
It is their product, so they can choose not to sell it to you. This does not give you the right to take their product for free.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450717)

You could reword that "...make a living by being paid the licensing fees required by their government mandated monopolies."
Thats the price of having them produce it - oh and by the way, all property law is an artificial government mandated monopoly, so next time you leave your car in a car park and walk away from it, consider that (and no, Im not comparing copyright infringement to theft, so attack my argument, not a tangent you want to in order to make you feel good).

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

Belacgod (1103921) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450469)

Can we tag all comments on both sides of the debate over filesharing morality redundant? This comment, and those that argue with it, have nothing that hasn't been in the last 400 such debates on here.

Re:The Pirate Bay (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450499)

I wouldn't have posted it if someone didn't say it.

And frankly I think it's worth saying. Otherwise, we'll have an entire generation growing up thinking that the internet is magical and everything is suppose to be free. Then when they GROW THE FUCK UP and try to get a job they'll learn that people pirating their works isn't so much fun.

Tom

Neat move (4, Insightful)

Deadstick (535032) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450131)

It is likely that TorrentSpy would turn off access to the U.S. before tracking its users.

Which is to say, game, set and match, MPAA.

rj

Re:Neat move (4, Informative)

bishiraver (707931) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450255)

Interesting point.

Both europe and asia have more users online than north america at this point. When it comes to the internet, populationwise we are shrinking in power.

Anecdotally, most of the innovation I see in web design recently comes out of Sweden. I actually think that other countries might (if not already have already) surpass the US in terms of net export of brainpower, invention, and developmental progress (as opposed to hardware progress). Not only with our national deficit, but with this trend.. Well, I'm not an analyst.

Anyway, actions like the MPAA's (if indeed TorrentSpy decides to cut access to the US), while relatively minor in the scope of things (there will always be other trackers) is evidence of a trend of self-sanctions. Instead of us putting economic sanctions on other countries (iraq, cuba), our actions are causing other countries to effectively sanction us...

Re:Neat move (0)

Sectrish (949413) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450485)

Dispite all this, the U.S. economy does appear to be growing at a faster rate than Europe's, and has been for some time. And the innovation thing is just guessing away, in my humble opinion, the US is still a world leader concerning research. Asia _is_ growing at a fierce rate, maybe more than the western nations combined (haven't checked the numbers) (btw, I'm from Europe, no bias there)

Filter the G8 countries... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450137)

Seriously, the G8 countries are the axis of anti-piracy-evil.

They harm piracy business and it's superior products with their anti-competitive thinking and their illegal laws.

Quit Crying!!! (4, Funny)

zenlessyank (748553) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450149)

Um, Does anyone remember FTP? Or the other 69 methods of moving files around? This is just another sad attempt for someone to try to control something they dont like! The internet has become The Tree of Knowledge that God banned from us long ago, and some people don't like it!! This will stop piracy about as well as burying a goat's head in your back yard to ward off evil spirits!! DEATH TO THE MAN!!!

Re:Quit Crying!!! (4, Insightful)

Teifion (1022083) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450195)

This will stop piracy about as well as burying a goat's head in your back yard to ward off evil spirits!!
I was told that a goats head stops Depression but it may or may not stop spirits, to stop piracy I beleive you are looking for 2/3rds of an African Elephants left tusk, 1 cucumber and a kilogram of horseraddish. Take these and place them in a box then bury that in your garden. If you don't have a garden, well, I cannot help you.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (2, Insightful)

RaboKrabekian (461040) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450277)

That this was modded insightful gives me hope for the future.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (1)

Blahbooboo3 (874492) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450215)

While true alternate downloads mechanisms exist, how many people in the public have access to pirate FTP sites? Bittorrent brought illegal downloading of movies to the masses. Before bittorrent most people had no idea where or how to download movies on the internet.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (2, Informative)

gravij (685575) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450411)

Before bittorrent most people had no idea where or how to download movies on the internet.
Sure they did, it was called Kazaa lite and it was the greatest thing ever. The only problem was that they were on dial-up or something similarly slow. Bit torrent is great, but the fact that you need to find a client and a tracker and a torrent file puts it out of reach of a large group.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (1)

maeka (518272) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450423)

Before bittorrent most people had no idea where or how to download movies on the internet.

Wasn't that a nice time to be alive?
Less self-righteous "freedom fighters" who don't understand the true meaning of civil disobedience.
Less harebrained ISP throttling methods attempting to manage out of control P2P bandwidth.
No anti-piracy warnings before the showing of films in the theater.
A vibrant, helpful, and well-oiled USENET community.

(ok, so maybe that last one never existed.)

Re:Quit Crying!!! (2, Interesting)

Zeussy (868062) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450573)

I wouldn't really say brought illegal downloading to the masses. If you walk up to the average person in the street and ask them if they use the internet, you would probably get a yes. If you then asked do you use bittorrent, or know what it is, you would probably get a no.

The fact is torrents are mainly used by students, the less well of or the damn right stingy, and no matter what you do to these people no will not part money unless they have to, either because they can't afford to. The stingy people you may scare into buying content, but for the students and less fortunate there really isnt any loss in sales because there wouldn't be a sale in the first place, they are getting content they like, but couldn't afford.

If you give people a simple, organised alternative e.g. iTunes (not the best system I know) people will use it and pay for content. The MPAA should get with the times and organise an iTunes for films for the entire market (I know some studios are starting to get on the bandwagon, and I won't even touch on the DRM issue, as that will go on for hours).

But going after students and the like is pointless, there wasn't really a sale there in the first place.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (1)

tietokone-olmi (26595) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450239)

You only know 70???

Geez, must be newbie season again.

Re:Quit Crying!!! (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450525)

Um, Does anyone remember FTP?

There have been 119 million downloads of LimeWire from Download.com. 45 million downloads of BitComet. 15 million downloads of SmartFTP. 1 million downloads of Xnews.

The back corners of the Internet - accessible through software only a Geek could love - are fading from memory. If you ever knew they existed.

Boo-hoo (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450155)

Before castigating the MPAA/RIAA/etc, exactly what portion of TorrentSpy trackers go to content that is free to distribute? If you're going to be complicit in copyright infringement, expect the copyright owners to do what they have to do to protect their intellectual property. Otherwise, copyright is pointless, and as much as slashdotters believe that to be the case, it simply isn't as long as we have copyright laws on the books and content producers rely on those laws to protect their livelihood

Re:Boo-hoo (1)

Brother Dysk (939885) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450197)

"we have copyright laws on the books and content producers rely on those laws to protect their livelihood" While this may not apply to the MPAA to the same extent, the RIAA are most certainly not a content producer, nor are any of the members they represent. ARTISTS are content producers, not record companies.

Re:Boo-hoo (3, Insightful)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450207)

Buggy whip makers relied on the horse drawn carriage to protect their livelihood, and look where they ended up. Sorry, but capitalism means no one owes you a living, and if you refuse to adapt by providing something people can't get on their own, then you're toast.

After cars arrived stealing buggy whips was legal (3, Interesting)

glrotate (300695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450547)

Or maybe not. Your analogy is weak.

Re:Boo-hoo (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450739)

Buggy whip manufacturers did not have their business threatened by their *own* product being distributed in a manner that essentially places no financial burden on those distributors.

Re:Boo-hoo (1)

kamapuaa (555446) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450759)

So you're saying music will go the way of the buggy whip?

Privacy policy (4, Interesting)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450185)

If this order were allowed to stand, it would mean that Web sites can be required by discovery judges to track what their users do even if their privacy policy says otherwise.'"

You know, I heard in some countries, they can tap the phones if they get a court order, even though the privacy policy of the people talking says otherwise.

Re:Privacy policy (2, Interesting)

Brother Dysk (939885) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450217)

You know, I heard in some countries, they can tap the phones if they get a court order, even though the privacy policy of the people talking says otherwise.

Surely it's the privacy policy of the telecom that's the issue in the example of a phonetap. If this order were allowed to stand, it would mean that Web sites can be required by discovery judges to track what their users do even if their privacy policy says otherwise.

Also, if TorrentSpy are forced to monitor users, what's to prevent them from changing their privacy policy to reflect this, and placing it at the top of every page in big red writing?

Re:Privacy policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450257)

Well, true, but this is civil litigation rather than criminal investigation.

Re:Privacy policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450283)

Yeah, but such court orders in the US are limited in scope to only put specific, named persons under surveillance based on a probable cause of criminal actions. Unless, of course, the government uses the "terrorism" or "child porn" rootkits to the constitution. Then they can violate the privacy (and more!) of whomever they goddamn well please. I guess we can add "suspected copyright infringment" as a constitution rootkit to the list now.

This ruling won't stand long, for numerous reasons (4, Insightful)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450685)

>> You know, I heard in some countries, they can tap the phones if they get a court order, even though the privacy policy of the people talking says otherwise.

You're referring to wiretaps placed on specific individuals. This is very different.

Here this judge has ruled that the equivalent of wiretaps be placed on all customers of this company, regardless of their standing, oblivious to all issues of privacy, and at the behest of another corporation rather than a government agency. It is quite without precedent.

But this ruling won't stand for long, is my guess.

Every company wishing to undermine its competitors could demand that they implement similar internal monitoring to ensure that there is no infringement of their copyrights. For example, Microsoft could demand that all fileserver transactions in named large corporations be monitored and their logs be made available to MS in support of suits for infringement of Windows and Office copyrights.

In that direction lies madness, even worse than the current one. It's so grossly anti-competitive and so utterly dismissive of privacy considerations that it'll get overturned pretty quickly, I would guess.

In fact, that judge is going to get severly panned for a whole raft of reasons brought out in this thread. His ruling really verges on the incompetent. Or of course, it could be much worse than simple incompetence --- this does smell a bit of corruption, not necessarily driven by MPAA dollars but by old-boy network handshakes with their lawyers.

Pretty grim all 'round, even by the US's rapidly collapsing standards.

Privacy (1)

Drexus (826859) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450189)

There goes all the privacy anyone will have now, and in the future. The only bridge remaining is to pass a law that says any torrent site will be required to yield data. From there, the MPAA can define what a torrent site is by it's activity, even though it may be a commercial site. Yes, our privacy is lost, and the constitution is cut down once more.

Awww (2, Insightful)

db32 (862117) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450219)

Poor little copyright violators are going to have to find a new source to steal from while making high and mighty moral claims about how evil the **AA groups are. I think the RIAA and MPAA can rot, and sincerely hope that this trend of the government to support their broken business model of attacking the citizens with insane claims ends soon. However, I am so sick of people getting up in arms about these shutdowns, and then wave their tiny little banner of "but bittorrent is used for legal stuff" yeah...so...it is...but I would guess that most of the people who parade out that silly argument have never used it for anything legal themselves, and just continue to download copyrighted works.

In a nutshell, get some self discipline and quit crying. I think all of the illegal download places should be shut down permanently. These stupid people cry about prices of software, about treatment of customers, and then they get the software and use it anyways. So, the company still gets its massive userbase knowing full well that many will be illegal copies, but as long as it grows their market share they will get more sales in the long run than what anyone "stole" from them. I went to linux because I can get any of the software I could need easily (no crack/serial/download searching) free (no astronomical sticker prices), and legally (no mega fines, or any of the recent trend of jail terms) and actually pay for the tiny amount of Win32 software that I ever use. The same goes with music, I just don't buy it anymore. And here is a shocker folks, when you don't use OS/Software from the commercial world who cuts all the stupid DRM deals...when you DO put one of those "copyright protection highjacker" type disks in that install all manner of rootkit type garbage...not much happens.

In closing, for all you who are going to respond to this... If you are doing so from an illegal install of Windows or other OS... Go switch to a legal alternative through download or purchase before you even bother.

Re:Awww (2, Informative)

janrinok (846318) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450449)

Firstly, not everyone is downloading illegal material. I accept that this might account for the majority of torrent traffic but it appears to me that everyone will be penalised for the actions of a smaller group of people, however large that group might be. And it goes someway to explain how you think if you believe that ONLY illegal traffic is moved by torrents. I can download more linux isos by torrent than I would wish to do by http/ftp. There are many books - legally released in electronic format - that I have downloaded than I could ever afford to have bought.

Secondly, we are not all in the USA or bound by US law. Servers in other countries will undoubtedly become far more attractive to US citizens as a result of this ruling. BUT, it will not stop torrent traffic, so what has actually been achieved?

Re:Awww (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450529)

Congratulations on making a remarkably condescending post.

The world that you wish for is not realistic and isn't going to happen. There may be a lot of whiners on here, but you are being one of them.

hey (5, Funny)

dominious (1077089) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450227)

everyone start sharing goatse material with torrentspy. The MPAA will freak out:)

Howto delete torrentspy account (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450259)

How can one delete an account on torrentspy ? I don't find a button to do so... unfortunately.

There should be a law requiring all sites that allow you to register to also have an unregister button somewhere.

All jabber/xmpp servers allows you to unregister.

Re:Howto delete torrentspy account (1, Insightful)

Schnapple (262314) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450299)

How can one delete an account on torrentspy ? I don't find a button to do so... unfortunately.
You actually made an account on TorrentSpy? Wow. An account on a website that does something illegal, way to go buddy.

Re:Howto delete torrentspy account (4, Insightful)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450381)

Using bittorrent in itself is perfectly legal and everyone who questions that is missing a couple cogs in their brain.

Re:Howto delete torrentspy account (3, Insightful)

speaker of the truth (1112181) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450481)

The overwhelming majority of people using bittorrent use it to trade in pirated content and everyone who questions that is missing a couple cogs in their brain.

Re:Howto delete torrentspy account (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450675)

Uh... no. Of all the distributed P2P methods, bittorrent is likely the one with most legal usage percentage-wise. Nowhere near "overwhelming majority".

Re:Howto delete torrentspy account (1)

alx5000 (896642) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450533)

Neither of using TorrentSpy or Bittorrent nor downloading copyrighted material for private use is illegal in Spain. Sharing it is also legal. If it's not for public viewing and there's no profitting involved, the law (still) says it's alright.

You're stupid. (1)

glrotate (300695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450505)

You're almost as dumb as the people who call the cops when the stuff they stole gets stolen.

Go straight to stupidville. Do not pass GO. Do not collect $200.

Proxy servers and IP spoofing (2, Interesting)

Zantetsuken (935350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450267)

Ok, so if they do just "block the entire US" whats to say somebody won't set up a mirror, a howto on using Proxy servers outside the US, or IP spoofing (not sure if that would work with downloads though...) or any of a billion other ways to get around this?

Re:Proxy servers and IP spoofing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450645)

If they block access from the US, it's for the American users' benefit.

Anyone who tries to get into a site that is trying to avoid having to spy on them is an idiot.

Tor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450309)

So...anyone who is actually concerned about their privacy when accessing a site that might be tracking them will use an anonymizer like Tor? Mission accomplished.

Not lawful (2, Interesting)

Antony-Kyre (807195) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450317)

I don't believe the courts have the power to make an order like this, regardless of whether or not it is enforceable.

Actually, by the sounds of this, I think the judge could get impeached. Let us hope the ACLU or someone gets involved.

Re:Not lawful (1)

HUKI365 (1113395) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450745)

That dosen't make sense. It will be up to an appeal, etc, to decide whether or not the court has that power. Basically, courts can do anything. The only reason they keep within the law is that judges don't like being constantly overruled by higher judges and courts of appeal. Just like there is no illegal arrest (only unlawful), there is no illegal court order.

Wrong conclusion (1)

tmk (712144) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450319)

If this order were allowed to stand, it would mean that Web sites can be required by discovery judges to track what their users do even if their privacy policy says otherwise.
No - it means, the sites have to change their privacy policy by court order.

Why isn't the MPAA being prosecuted for hacking (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19450331)

Unbelievable.

One way or another, it seems that the MPAA is determined to obtain information about TorrentSpy and its users. A complaint issued by TorrentSpy suggests the MPAA paid a hacker $15,000 to steal e-mail correspondence and trade secrets. The hacker admitted that this was true.


What Pirate Bay got right (3, Interesting)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450393)

Was basing in a country with rather liberal copyright policies. I said back in the days of Napster that was their major flaw. Had they been based in a country with little or no regaurd for IP rights, what could have been done about it? That is the paradox of an open internet that governments have been trying to solve.

It was only a matter of time before governments began trying to figure out a way to regulate the Internet. All governments like control and the internet is by its very nature hard to control, and designed to be a nigh bit diffcult because of redundancy, etc. Sure China and Saudi Arabia and other countries try by limiting the number of ISPs and including filters, but people still find a way.

If you want to do something illegal on the net and can find a way to make money at it (the real tragic flaw of Napster), then there are a host of countries that would be happy to host for a percentage. And I'm not sure if anything can really be done to stop that. Trying to stop drugs hasn't worked.

secondary copyright infringement? (3, Insightful)

Catil (1063380) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450433)

From TFA:

According to the MPAA, Torrentspy helps others commit copyright infringement by directing people to sites which enable them to download copyright material, an offense claims the MPAA, of secondary copyright infringement.
So does Google [google.com] and perhaps every other searchengine as well. Oh, and /. because it now links to Google, right?

I really think that with all these torrent-sites providing access to content people should pay for, things have gone too far, but so does going after sites that link to sites that host torrents that provide connection to a tracker to find people sharing the files - and even these people are in most cases still far away from the original source.

Judgement day is in 7 days! (1)

JamesRose (1062530) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450459)

I just received the subpoena

Coming soon, the Great Firewall of America (2, Insightful)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450567)

Other countries seem to have far more liberal standards when it comes to p2p. As already mentioned, Pirate Bay is hosted in a foreign country over which we do not currently have jurisdiction, nor plan to. (no oil.) So, unless the US can apply pressure to the government over there, those people are immune to the consequences. The only option the US would have is to go the China route, start blocking access to servers Big Brother feels don't support of morals and standards of Fremurica.

I think we've already established that the MAFIAA are DDT and file-sharing sites are cockroaches: all their efforts to kill off the population just drives the evolution of the technology and breeds a better roach. Seriously, without the MAFIAA we'd probably all still be using Napster and complaining about the broken songs.

Where is the endgame here? Does P2P win and the MAFIAA is reduced to paying for a few token arrests and prosecutions? Does it go the route of illegal drugs where p2p is available if you know where to look for it but no intelligent person would run the risk of losing everything with a bust? A lot of casual pot smokers I know have gone that route, they'd love to spark up now and again but they have too much to lose now between career and family, it's just not worth it.

What's kind of funny here is that stuff can go on under the radar for years before it blows up big enough for the media to comment on. Digital content piracy was going on for years and years before we even had broadband. All the porn getting traded over bulletin boards via dial-up was nothing more than scans from porno mags. I can't say there were never any lawsuits filed over this but I certainly never heard of them. And still, this was obscure enough that only the geeks even knew it existed or commonly had computers to download it. The closest most girls ever came to a computer in those days was asking a geek friend to help them type up a report. Filesharing met that perfect storm when more non-geek kids got computers for school, broadband became commercially available, and Napster made the whole process so easy no geek had to explain it. And those broadband speeds meant that images were no longer the only feasible thing to trade.

One thing is for sure, this genie is not going back in the bottle. Our economy is in decline, real earnings are down, we're getting squeezed on gas, food costs, etc. We can't pirate a tank of gas but we can download the latest blockbuster. What do you think is going to happen? I think most geeks here can see the difference in their own consumption dynamics. When I was a teenager, I didn't have any cash so I downloaded all my software. In college, still no cash so I pirated all my anime. And damn, it took a long time to hunt down all the individual episodes of a series. But three hours of effort could save me $150 for the DVD's, well worth the effort. But once I graduated and had a real income, my time became more valuable than what I could save by pirating, it was easier to buy. I don't have to hunt down crappy encodes, then waste time organizing and burning to CD's, etc. But if I was ever reduced to the cashflow of a college student, the entertainment budget would be the first to get cut.

TorrentSpy Ordered By Judge to Become MPAA Spy (1)

infiniphonic (657188) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450633)

So does this apply to just registered users of the site, or does it extend to I.P. addresses of people who visit the site but are not registered users? The difference is subtle but important.

Living up to the name (1)

Dan541 (1032000) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450703)

At least TorrentSPY will now be living up to their name.

The government tries to do too much (4, Insightful)

forgoil (104808) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450735)

The government has no reason to care about the whole IP debacle really. What it really is a question of is an old industry with awfully rich people in charge (don't give me crap about starving artists, the fat cats that took their money in the first place could starting paying it back...) that has grown accustomed to ripping artists and consumers alike off. Music survived an awful long time before the RIAA, and so did acting before MPAA. It is a transition, which no government should interfere with. The industry and the artist and consumers alike must find a new balance. I've heard that people pay to listen to live music for instance, maybe that is how music should pay the bills, not recordings of it? Who knows but the future.

What the government *SHOULD* interfere with is price fixing, Mafia tactics, scare tactics, extortion, invading of privacy, breaking the law, etc. Which these bloody people are doing all the time. This what is getting to me, why should any government on earth be allowed to persecute individuals the way RIAA/MPAA and their friends are doing. I do not live in the US, but please please, everyone, do read this Wikipedia entry [wikipedia.org] and really think about what it says. If what the RIAA/MPAA is doing isn't cruel and unusual, nothing else. When beating and raping people is seen as a lesser crime than copying certain combinations of 1s and 0s, this are both cruel, and soon getting all to usual!

Umm... there seems to be something missing here (1)

torrentami (853516) | more than 7 years ago | (#19450765)

So even if you track someone's movements within the Torrentspy site, that still doesn't prove they actually pirated anything. All it proves is that you clicked on a link to a .torrent tracker that's most likely being hosted on another site. It's not even evidence that you've actually downloaded the tracker and started received the file that the tracker points to. This seems like a highly dubious method to try to identify pirates.
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