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Copyright holders have asked Google to remove six billion links to 'pirate' search results over the past decade. The vast majority of these requests were honored. While copyright infringement can't be eradicated entirely, Google is slowly but steadily presenting itself as a willing partner in the anti-piracy fight.

Roughly 25 years ago, Google started its business as a simple and straightforward search engine.

The startup swiftly captured a dominant market share which it managed to retain and grow as time passed.

Google’s position as a search leader also brings responsibility. This is an issue copyright holders have hammered on for a long time. And slowly but steadily, Google tweaked its policies to hinder pirate sites.

The most direct way for the search engine to address the piracy problem is by responding to DMCA notices. If copyright holders spot pirate sites in search r...

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WishFlix is a French pirate streaming site that chose GitHub as its hosting platform. While this worked well for a while, the site was targeted by a StudioCanal takedown notice last week. WishFlix is currently still afloat but GitHub probably isn't the best hosting option for a pirate site that went viral on social media.

Running a pirate streaming site might sound complex but with help from pre-coded scripts and illicit video databases, it can be done with minimal effort.

The real challenge is driving traffic to a site while ensuring it also stays online.

1.3m TikTok Views

WishFlix nailed the first part of that equation. The French streaming site actively campaigns on social media where it has booked some impressive results. One of its TikTok videos went viral recently, generating over a million views of free advertising with an 8-second clip.

This clearly shows that there is plenty o...

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A court in India has granted what appears to be the most aggressive site-blocking injunction in the history of copyright law. In advance of the movie 'Vikram Vedha' premiering in cinemas last Friday, a judge handed down an injunction that ordered 40 internet service providers to proactively and immediately block an unprecedented 13,445 sites.

Whenever rightsholders and anti-piracy groups need more enforcement options, efforts to strengthen or establish new understanding of copyright law are rarely far behind.

In many cases these moves tend to follow a similar pattern – don’t ask for too much all at once, dismiss any idea that the internet or ‘honest’ users could suffer, and then downplay suggestions that new powers represent the thin end of an extremely large wedge.

From being presented as a tool of last resort for use in strictly limited circumstances, site-blocking injunctions are just one...

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The RIAA has booked a landmark victory against YouTube-ripper Yout.com. The Connecticut District Court dismissed Yout's request to declare the service as non-infringing. In a detailed ruling, Judge Stefan Underhill concludes that the service failed to show that it doesn't circumvent YouTube's technological protection measures. Yout is disappointed and will appeal the verdict.

Downloading audio and video is prohibited by YouTube’s terms of service but there are numerous ‘stream-ripping’ sites available on the web that do just that.

These services are a thorn in the side of music industry outfits, who see them as a major piracy threat. The operators of these stream-ripping tools disagree and point at the variety of legal uses instead.

At the end of 2020, the operator of one of the largest stream-rippers took matters into his own hands. Instead of hiding in the shadows like some competitors, Yout.com owner Johnathan Nader sued the RIAA, ask...

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The World Intellectual Property Organization's Advisory Committee on Enforcement recently heard how DNS providers have the ability to fight online piracy but could also face liability as secondary infringers. Veiled warnings like these are nothing new, but with piracy colossus Fmovies cited as a primary example, pressure on DNS entities is building once again.

Given the extreme financial power and political leverage held by the world’s largest entertainment companies, most obstacles can be pushed aside or simply rolled over. But exceptions do exist.

In the fight against piracy, not only do the smallest gains require an unusual effort but they’re increasingly dependent on the cooperation of third parties, usually those in the online tech sector. If these companies can’t be convinced to commit business resources to the piracy war voluntarily, lawsuits and mandatory conscription can lie ahead.

The message – that...

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Adult entertainment conglomerate MindGeek owns many tube sites including Pornhub. While the company itself has a piracy history, today it's one of the most protective copyright holders in the industry. With a sweeping court injunction, it hoped to take Daftsex.com and several related services offline. However, the court slammed the brakes on the request, at least for now.

Mindgeek is without doubt one of the largest and most powerful adult entertainment conglomerates in existence today.

The company effectively transformed the porn industry in less than a decade, luring people in with a promise of ‘free’ content. Mindgeek owns Pornhub, one of the most visited websites on the Internet, and is also the driving force behind YouPorn, RedTube, Tube8, Xtube, and dozens of other sites.

Several of these tube sites became big by offering access to a wide variety of content, including pirated videos that were posted by their users without perm...

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Arcom, France's Audiovisual and Digital Communication Regulatory Authority, has been sending positive signals about its fight against piracy since January 1, 2022. Among many claims, the latest report from president Roch-Olivier Maistre is a real attention grabber. According to him, In just six months, live sports piracy in France has been cut by 50%.

For more than a decade the Hadopi agency (High Authority for the Distribution of Works and the Protection of Rights on the Internet) was seen as the solution to BitTorrent-style peer-to-peer piracy in France.

Hadopi’s goal was to change the behaviors of the majority of French pirates. Ultimately, a preference among pirates for different technologies ended up taking the credit for that. With pirates drawn towards easy-to-use (but still illegal) streaming sites, Hadopi’s BitTorrent-focused anti-piracy toolkit had little chance of making an impact.

On January 1, 2022,...

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The music industry is doing all it can to get rid of its YouTube ripping problem. The RIAA and BPI, for example, regularly send DMCA anti-circumvention notices to Google, asking the company to remove sites from its search results. In recent months the independent label "Because Music" also joined in the action, overpowering both music industry groups in the process.

Three years ago, the RIAA began targeting YouTube ripping sites by sending relatively rare takedown requests to Google.

Instead of the usual DMCA copyright notices, the music group asked the search engine to remove various URLs for alleged violations of the DMCA’s anti-circumvention provision.

The sites in question are accused of circumventing YouTube’s rolling cipher, a technical protection measure that attempts to protect audio and video from being copied without permission. As such, the RIAA argues that the sites should be removed from Google’s search results.

...

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Rights Alliance and ISPs have agreed to update their code of conduct to block pirate sites more quickly in Denmark. When one ISP receives an instruction to block a domain, a new process will see other ISPs follow in less than seven days. Meanwhile, Denmark's Telecommunications Industry Association is publishing files that reveal precisely which domains are being blocked.

As pirate site blocking programs expand around the world, Denmark already has more than 15 years of experience in this branch of copyright protection.

After blocking Russian MP3 site AllofMP3 in 2006, Danish rightsholders haven’t looked back. The big drive now is how to streamline the site-blocking process so that piracy platforms can be hit as quickly and as comprehensively as possible.

Part of the problem is that to have pirate domains blocked, rightsholders need to have authorization from the court. This can be obtained by obtaining an injunction against an ISP but wh...

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Liverpool and Manchester United are arch rivals on the field but in U.S. federal court they have teamed up to fight a common enemy. Together with Tottenham Hotspur, the English football clubs are taking a stand against counterfeiters selling infringing products through Alibaba, Amazon, eBay, Wish, and other stores, seeking millions in damages.

The rivalry between Liverpool and Manchester United goes back more than a century. It even has its own Wikipedia entry.

The football teams and their fans often go head to head but on neutral territory, the clubs have recently formed an unusual partnership.

Football Rivals Team Up in Court

This week, the clubs filed a complaint at a U.S. federal court in Chicago. Together with a third Premier League team, Tottenham Hotspur, they accuse dozens of online stores of selling trademark-infringing products.

These counterfeit items, including jerseys, are openly sold ...

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