Russia Uses Microsoft to Suppress Dissent
- Adding to its long-running series
on corruption and abuse in post-Communist Russia, the New York Times has reported on Russian authorities using the pretext of software piracy to seize computers from journalists and political dissidents critical of current policies. In a surprising twist, lawyers representing Microsoft have been found working with Russian police, despite reporters and NGOs providing evidence of legitimate software purchases. An official response
to the NYT piece suggests impostors claim to represent Microsoft in Russia, and notes the company's offer of free software licenses to these and similar groups.
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Sep 12, 2010 -
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has shut down nine websites in connection with an ongoing crackdown on internet film and TV piracy
. The sites seized are Movieslinks.tv, Planetmoviez.com, ZML.com, Thepiratecity.org, Filespump.com, TVShack.net, Now-Movies.com, NinjaThis.net, and NinjaVideo.net. The feds also seized related Paypal accounts and bank accounts as part of the operation. Ninjavideo was the most notorious of the group, and its admin, Phara, went so far as to record a manifesto in praise of internet piracy
posted by Pastabagel
on Jul 1, 2010 -
Ars Technica reports on the US Copyright Group (website: SAVECINEMA.ORG
), an entity that has sent out over 14,000 subpoenas in the past 5 months to P2P users
who have downloaded smaller independent movies such as Uwe Boll's Far Cry
and best picture Oscar winner The Hurt Locker
. To put that in perspective, the RIAA sued 18,000 P2P users
during their multi-year anti-file sharing campaign. The law firm takes the moviemakers cases on for free, splitting with them the money the defendants pay to settle the case ($1,500 to $2,500 per subpoena) on a site that will conveniently take your credit card. The law firm and the filmmakers could end up splitting $19.7 million, and it's likely that this kind of approach will be tried with more movies. As you might expect, some targeted individuals have been wrongly accused
posted by The Devil Tesla
on Jun 3, 2010 -
The Book Pirates of Peru.
A slideshow in which Peruvian author Daniel Alarcón describes the vibrant literary scene in his home country, where the informal publishing industry is the same size as its legitimate counterpart. There's no library system to speak of, the National Library's acquisitions budget is nil, but a culture of reading and writing is booming, with book sales and attendance at literary festivals up, up, up.
posted by WPW
on Jan 18, 2010 -
Piracy of PC games is nothing new, and has been discussed previously
. Due to the high levels of PC game piracy, some development companies have decreased (or eliminated) PC game development
, shifting support to console development. But piracy isn't limited to PCs, as modchips
and other hacks have allowed users to play pirated and homebrewed
games. In the continuing struggle for control, Microsoft banned as many as 1 million modded systems from Xbox Live
, resulting in a surge of people reselling Xbox 360s that have been banned from online play
(and modders finding a fix for the ban
). Some developers have adopted another tactic - increased development of downloadable content (DLC)
, which has been seen as both good and bad
by gamers. John Riccitiello, the head of Electronic Arts, seems to have embraced DLC as a marketing option, in noting that "[people] can steal the disc, but they can't steal the DLC
posted by filthy light thief
on Dec 9, 2009 -
[FlickrPoolFilter] Crappy Bootleg DVD Covers:
Here, you will find Tom Cruise's hit movie, Pepe Likes Tacos
. In this universe, Star Wars features Arnold Schwarzenegger
, Dustin Hoffman stars in Lost in Translation
; witches, pirates, and hobbits inhabit the same world. Titles are improved upon
. Reviews are refreshingly frank (if they make any sense at all).
Your DVD may also contain subtitles in French, Chinese, Spamsoc
, or Martian
. (Don't say there was no warning.)
Remember, kids: Piracy Creates Jobs!
posted by not_on_display
on Nov 5, 2009 -
DRM as a cloud of poison gas.
Run an illegally-downloaded prerelease version of the video game Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman always dies in a vat of poison gas. Run the legit version once it gets released and (apparently) there won’t even be
any poison gas. (Game developers
: “[Y]ou have encountered... a hook in the copy protection, to catch out people who try and download cracked versions of the game for free. It’s not a bug in the game’s code, it’s a bug in your moral code.”)
posted by joeclark
on Sep 13, 2009 -
"There is no reason that the Internet should be lawless,"
President Nicolas Sarkozy told his cabinet, as Culture Minister Christine Albanel
presented a new bill
designed to encourage responsible use of the Internet. The legislation would set up a new administrative body that would receive complaints from the music and film industry and track down offenders through Internet service providers. An e-mail warning would be sent to suspected downloaders followed by a registered letter. After two strikes, offenders would risk losing their Internet subscription for up to a year. "We know that we are not going to eradicate piracy 100 percent, but we think that we can reduce it significantly," Albanel told a news conference. [more inside]
posted by three blind mice
on Jun 24, 2008 -
Good Copy Bad Copy
is "a documentary about the current state of copyright and culture," featuring Danger Mouse, Lawrence Lessig, Dan Glickman of the MPAA and others. The film's creators are releasing it free of charge, via Bittorrent.
posted by jbickers
on Aug 3, 2007 -