MPAA 13, Piracy 0: Three More Allegedly Illicit Sites Sued

The Motion Picture Association of America has been working hard since 2007 to bring movie piracy to a halt. Wednesday, the MPAA filed suits against three more allegedly illicit movie web sites. This brings their total number of lawsuits to 13; though somewhat of a piecemeal approach, they have been successful in combating underground trade and winning by settlement or default judgment. Even though they have been successful, illegal downloading is even more prevalent than before.

There are other ways of getting a movie, people. Here’s a few:

  • Hulu.com – One of the best services to watch movies and television right on your computer. It’s legal, and it’s free. You can subscribe to shows and get email alerts when a new episode is posted.
  • Fancast.com – Their byline – “Watch full TV shows and Movies FREE online!” I couldn’t have said it better myself.
  • Joost.com – Wow, another FREE AND LEGAL place to watch movies and TV shows. This has a social feel to it, where you can get recommendations from others on what to watch.
  • Major TV Network sitesNBC, ABC, CBS, USA, FOX… you get the idea. They have their exclusive shows you can watch right online just like the other websites.

Let me make one thing very clear – movie piracy is a CRIME, and it is punishable by law.

On Monday, President Bush signed legislation creating a new cabinet position, the Copyright Czar. This office will be charged to create, implement and enforce plans to combat piracy and reports directly to the president. In addition, the MPAA is already lobbying President-Elect Obama to embrace Internet filtering that will automatically detect and remove copyright infringing content. Internet filtering is being embraced worldwide and it will not be long before these filters are in place throughout the Internet. What does this mean? A much higher chance of getting caught red-handed. Not fair, you say? A copyright infringement lawsuit is no walk in the park – more like your worst nightmare. Because of current US laws protecting copyright owners, you could face incarceration and hefty fines if found guilty.

What about fair use? Well, this is the criteria for “fair use” – you determine how you are using the works of others:

  • Is the new use of a commercial nature?
  • Did the new work harm the market of the original work?
  • Is the new work a parody?
  • How much content of the original was used?

Basically, if you are uploading a copy of a movie or other copyrighted work to the Internet as a torrent or onto a P2P or file-sharing network, you are infringing on copyrighted content. Piracy is a big reason that legitimate consumers pay higher prices for the same product. Do you still think that is fair?

What are your thoughts about fair use of copyrighted content? If you are copying movies, why?

10 thoughts on “MPAA 13, Piracy 0: Three More Allegedly Illicit Sites Sued”

  1. I personally like Hulu.com – I also surf the networks to see what they’ve got and if I’ve missed anything. There are hundreds of movies, thousands of TV shows… I’m set for life as long as Fancast and Hulu exist.

    Thanks for pointing out those sites, Chris!

  2. I don’t want any kind of auto filtration, or for that matter any kind of barrier between me and the internet. While this does have good uses to it, it could be just another step to ISPs having to much control over the internet. Piracy is going to happen, I don’t care if they remove internet from the US, it will find a way. But when you do something that, lets face it, could end up filtering non-copyrighted content or something you own by mistake. That is unfair.

  3. While I support the removal of sites that blatantly share movies illegally and am against piracy; I do feel that organisations like the MPIAA and RIAA are like the mafia in their approach. Their approach can often be likened to that of the police busting down every door in a city because of the fear that some people might be committing a crime.

    As for ‘internet filtering’ – well I think that sounds like the beginning of the slippy slope to internet censorship and the demise of net neutrality. Despite piracy; these companies and corporates make huge profits off digital media.

  4. PIRACY IS A CRIME.

    Recently, I almost got into trouble when someone was piggybacking on my wifi and downloading a torrent. My ISP sent me an email from the MPAA. Luckily, I phoned the ISP and we found that my router’s wifi password was disabled.

    So be on the lookout. Log everything that happens with your router, and report piracy. I feel that people who work hard to bring movies, music, and games deserve what they earned. Pay for the games, pay for the music, and of course pay for the movies. 🙂

    -Eddie

  5. First of all, stop giving into the MPAA and RIAA by calling it “piracy”. By any definition, sharing something for no monetary gain is not “piracy”. It’s File Sharing or making copies for personal use.

    As to your question, I do it because I rarely have time to go to the movies, or even sit in front of a TV. I watch things on portable devices and PCs. I rip from Netflix, and in some cases, download from the internet. I watch 10 or so TV shows a week, all downloaded since again I rarely have time to sit in front of a TV.

    The MPAA and RIAA can eat me.

  6. I don’t keep backup copies of my movies, music, etc. In fact, I’m missing a lot of them, like I can’t find the movie “UHF”. That’s when it’s appropriate to download from a torrent site, when you’ve lost your copy, as you’ve already paid for the content, so you’re not stealing.

    Also, web filters aren’t practical. They could easily be overloaded and taken down. Do people really want everything we send to be watched? It’s not just.

    If you want to pirate movies, there’s one country that you are allowed to do so in. It’s the home of some larger torrent sites. It’s Sweden. One thing, they monitor everything going in and out of Sweden. But it’s a price to pay if you want unlimited movies for free.

  7. Well you are right, we shouldnt copy other people’s work when there are legal sites which provide free viewing for latest TV shows, but what about countries where the american TV channels like FOX are not available and HULU and the other sites are only available in the us so i dont have a choice other than using torrents or wait for a year or so until the DVD is released. so what about other countries that dont have access to these sites what should they do?

  8. I don’t understand these Large Companies trying to take down everyone. You can fight technology or you can join because in the end piracy will always be. It’s just about learning how to work with piracy and understand why it happens and not fight a losing battle.

  9. People can come up with all sorts of ways to justify downloading an illegal copy of a movie. Some say it’s not piracy, it’s sharing. Others try to justify it by saying the original content is overpriced or not available in their local area. But the bottom line is IF YOU DIDN’T PAY IT’S THEFT. It’s theft just as if you’d gone into a retail store, stuffed a movie into your coat pocket, and walked out with it. It’s exactly the same.

  10. Well, the thing is, in most of Eastern and Northeastern Europe, Piracy, or well, Copying of movies without permission, is NOT illegal. And even if I obtain it legally here from the stores – which I, by the way, CAN’T – since nothing worth watching/listening to is available.

    So, the only option for me is to download, what you call “illegally,” even though it is completely legal here.

    I’m not breaking the law and either way, unless I’m buying local content, the authors of the content would get a ridiculously small amount of money for the content.

    Also, the authors still get a huge s**tload of money, even if I copy.

    So, my point is, it is OK for me to copy since

    1) It’s legal here
    2) The authors get nothing either way
    3) I have no other way, because the music/video stores sell crap and there isn’t an iTunes store in this country.

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