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Film Studios Seeking Complete Block of Newzbin2 in the UK 231

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the tunisia-land-of-the-free dept.
superglaze writes "Having got BT, one of the biggest ISPs in the UK, to block the Newzbin2 Usenet site, the Motion Picture Association is now trying to get the same result from all the other major service providers in the country. As this is likely to go through, it won't be long before most people in the UK will be unable to visit file-sharing sites at all, without using a proxy, VPN, or special client."
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Film Studios Seeking Complete Block of Newzbin2 in the UK

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @09:57AM (#37998488)

    At the end of the day, they won't be surprised when the ticket sales for the utter crap that they call movies doesn't go up one bit. People who download movies usually cannot afford to go and see them, or refuse to pay the ridiculous prices to see them. Cinemas in the UK are a joke. 7 quid for a coke and popcorn. 8 quid to get in. Take a family of 4 to a cinema and you are out 60 quid ($90 ish). It's a joke. Just to sit there for 90 minutes and watch utter crap. Make cinema affordable for families again and piracy will go down very quickly.

    • by Dondoet (2199592) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @10:03AM (#37998554)
      That is assuming that it's families who are pirating films, which I don't really think is the case. Personally, I pirate films every now and then for the sake of ease. Going to the cinema is a large use of time (and money), which I'd prefer to spend on something at least marginally more productive. As you said, the prices at the cinema in the uk are quite ridiculous at the moment. I think a drop in prices would probably bring in more money than at the current state but probably wouldn't reduce piracy.
      • by agentgonzo (1026204) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @10:31AM (#37998900)
        When I can buy a DVD for the price of a cinema ticket + parking + snacks and when my living room is much nicer than the local cinema, it makes very little incentive to go to the cinema. The price of the DVD alone is less than two tickets excluding everything it means the only time I ever go to the cinema is when I tag along with my friends who want to see something. If I want to watch a film, I'll just wait for the DVD. Pirating it is easier and cheaper than getting the DVD so that has a large appeal apart from the bit where I have to poo in a policeman's helmet
        • by nospam007 (722110) *

          "when my living room is much nicer than the local cinema, it makes very little incentive to go to the cinema"

          Also the lack of the 300 teenagers, checking their twitter messages twice per minute on their cells in a dark room is not negligible.

        • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @11:01AM (#37999286) Journal

          And renting the DVD is even cheaper. I pay less for an all-I-can-watch, 2 disks at home at once (becoming 3 next week for the same price) rental subscription as I'd pay for going to the cinema twice a month. I spent about £100 on my 5.1 speakers ten years ago, and about £150 on my projector four years ago. I can watch films on a comfy sofa with whatever food or drink I want and pause it when I want. If I want to watch a film with someone else, it costs the same amount, while going to the cinema will cost twice as much.

          The studios delay the DVD releases because they will cannibalise cinema profits. They don't seem to understand that this means that, given the choice, people would rather watch the DVD than go to the cinema. In any sane business, this would mean that they'd release the DVD first, giving their customers what they want. Instead, they intentionally don't give customers what they want and then blame piracy for their profits being lower than they want.

          • The studios delay the DVD releases because they will cannibalise cinema profits. They don't seem to understand that this means that, given the choice, people would rather watch the DVD than go to the cinema. In any sane business, this would mean that they'd release the DVD first, giving their customers what they want. Instead, they intentionally don't give customers what they want and then blame piracy for their profits being lower than they want.

            Cinema is dead... it just hasn't realised it yet... personall

            • Cinema is dead... it just hasn't realised it yet...

              Apparently they like losing money then. Someone should tell all those people Ive seen at the movies that theyre not supposed to be there.

              Are you arguing that Movie theatres all are losing money, and just havent realized it?

          • by rrohbeck (944847)

            What, no crying children, people whispering or candy wrapper/bags crackling? How boring.

        • by nurb432 (527695)

          When I can buy a DVD for the price of a cinema ticket + parking + snacks and when my living room is much nicer than the local cinema, it makes very little incentive to go to the cinema.

          Expect that to change. Pay per view DVD is in our future. Why else do you think all players are connected to the network? ( 'additional content' my ass )

        • When I can buy a DVD for the price of a cinema ticket + parking + snacks

          Cinema ticket is about $8. Parking is usually around $2-- this is in Chinatown, in Washington DC-- and assumes youre not a moron using $20 garage parking. Elsewhere (suburbs) its usually free, and many many many places do it for free with validation.

          And are you seriously comparing the price of an outing with parking and food to the price of a dvd? Thats not even close to fair.

          Movie theatres are expensive as others have said, and I generally prefer to get the DVD and avoid the price + hassle, but it reall

      • by AmiMoJo (196126)

        I'll be honest, I don't want to pay for most movies because the paid versions suck compared to the free ones. I'll wait until I can see them for free on TV or via a high quality download (no cam rubbish). Cinemas are not nice places and there is always some twat commentating a couple of rows behind you. DVDs are okay but a chore to rip and I haven't even bothered with Bluray.

        The real problem as I see it is that there is no easy way to make a simple payment for a movie that doesn't involve some kind of excha

    • by Bert64 (520050) <bert@@@slashdot...firenzee...com> on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @10:38AM (#37999022) Homepage

      It's 8 quid if you happen to live outside london, it costs a lot more in london...

      Add to that, the conditions... Of the cinemas i've been to over the years, most are smelly, dirty, poor climate control (either too hot or too cold), uncomfortable seats, seats too close together so you knock elbows etc etc...

      I also never understood why they sell the noisiest possible food (crisps and popcorn) at cinemas, people munching away on this stuff is noisy and detracts from the movie!

      Contrast that to cinemas in some asian countries, where they have to compete against a much higher level of piracy, the prices are not only much cheaper but the experience much better to boot.

      • I also never understood why they sell the noisiest possible food (crisps and popcorn) at cinemas, people munching away on this stuff is noisy and detracts from the movie!

        I also don't understand why they think you'll consume an entire litre of fizzy drink during a single movie. I've never seen anywhere else selling that much beverage at one time outside the Oktoberfest

        • by xaxa (988988) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @12:24PM (#38000370)

          I also don't understand why they think you'll consume an entire litre of fizzy drink during a single movie.

          American influence, I think. I don't remember much from my single trip to the cinema in the USA, many years ago, except that the staff wondered why the British children didn't want any food or drink. We lasted the duration of Finding Nemo with no ill effects, and without consuming 175% of a child's RDA of sugar in a single drink (figure for a supersized "42 oz" (1.25L) coke).

          At McDonalds (figures from the websites):
          - A "large" drink in the UK is 0.5L, a "medium" about 0.4L, a "small" 0.25L (Germany has the same sizes).
          - A "large" drink in the US is 0.95L, a "medium" is 0.62L, a "small" 0.47L, and a "child" 0.35L.

          The US "child" drink, the smallest available, is about the same as a UK/German "medium".

        • by AmiMoJo (196126)

          It's so they can justify charging you a fiver for it. Because no-one else sells drinks that size there is nothing to make a direct comparison with.

        • by LocalH (28506)

          Never seen 1-liter bottled soft drinks?

        • by turgid (580780)

          I also don't understand why they think you'll consume an entire litre of fizzy drink during a single movie. I've never seen anywhere else selling that much beverage at one time outside the Oktoberfest

          Fizzy drinks are very cheap to make, especially if you have a machine on site. Obviously, they'd like to relieve you of as much money as possible so they sell huge quantities at high prices, but lower price per unit volume that if you bough them in 330ml cans.

          The customer needs to get up to use the loo severa

      • And, worst of all, cinemas have other people in.

        There is some social aspect to watching a movie together, but a cinemas destroys even this. Politeness dictates the movie be watched in silence, or at most a whisper, making it impossible to talk to friends - and if you can't talk during a movie, you might as well watch it alone.
        • by Pope (17780)

          Why do you feel the need to talk during a movie in the first place? Watch it and talk about it after!

    • by Ihmhi (1206036)

      10: BAN INTERNET SITES

      20: print OUR PROFITS AREN'T GOING UP! WE MUST HAVE MISSED SOMETHING!

      30: GOTO 10

      .

      .

      .

      (Sometimes, the Filters kinda piss me off. Blah blah blah text to counter the yelling filter blah blah.)

    • . People who download movies usually cannot afford to go and see them,

      Ba-loney.

      Every single person I know who downloads movies has a full time job, a vehicle, a cellphone, pays insurance, goes out regularly, etc. And youre telling me they cant afford a movie?

      Being against IP or the RIAA or the MPAA doesnt excuse spouting flat out lies. Unless you have a source to back up that rather preposterous statement you made?

      • He didn't actually say "all," so no, he's not telling you that they can't afford a movie.

        Still, I'd like to know how he knows that they "usually" can't afford it.

    • Make cinema affordable for families again and piracy will go down very quickly.

      Don't compare to the cost of taking a family of four to the movies, compare to the cost of renting a movie on iTunes. It's not the spending of £60 that is the problem, it is the unwillingness to pay any money at all.

  • the article (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    having just read that, it seems, there is no need for smaller ISPs that resell the connection of BT to be blocked (which they wont be it seems).

    now, if there is one idea we can steal from patent trolls (if they didn't patent it yet) its making shell companies with no real atributes.

    how about making smaller ISPs that do nothing but resell the connection of BT, if they get sued, you drop them and offer the clients to swap to another shell company with no added costs, under the same terms.

    • by rrohbeck (944847)

      Sounds like there is room for small ISPs to resell the big guy's bandwidth but with their own DNS server.

  • it won't be long before most people in the UK will be unable to visit file-sharing sites at all, without using a proxy, VPN, or special client.

    That's like saying you soon won't be able to leave your own house - unless you use a door or window. If the Chinese government cannot filter the internet effectively the UK government will have no hope.

    • by MoonBuggy (611105)

      Although you're absolutely right, there are still serious problems with a system that allows certain types of information to be banned (and I'm not talking about the copyrighted files, it's the links to the files that they've gone after here). Pragmatic as it is, "It's not a major issue because they can't enforce it" is just asking for trouble a few years down the line.

    • by neokushan (932374)

      It's not the UK government, it's the ISPs who are being forced into it by the Record Labels. BT, Virgin, etc. don't want to filter these sites, so they're not going to care if they do a particularly poor job of it.

      I'm curious though, as far as I'm aware, this is done at the DNS level - anyone on BT know what happens when you use OpenDNS?

      • by makomk (752139)

        That's... not exactly true. The UK government forced all these ISPs to add the hardware to be able to filter websites so that they could block child porn - previously they didn't have the ability to do it - and then the record labels saw this and realised they could force them to block sites like Newzbin2 too.

        It's not DNS-based either; they insert a transparent proxy between their users and the IP addresses that the websites use and actually filter requests.

        • Minor correction: The UK government didn't force the ISPs to add the hardware. The UK government indicated that it would force the ISPs to add the hardware if they didn't do so voluntarily, and the ISPs (All the major ones, and most of the minor ones too) complied with haste. In their view, better a filter of their own design than to be forced to build one to government specifications.
    • by Inda (580031)
      "proxy, VPN, or special client"

      Or a 64gb micro-SD card, in a smart phone, acting as a WiFi access point. Who needs the internet when you have your own network?

      The kids are already doing this. It only takes one person to obtain the naughty files.

      Files will become hot-property, school currency, and the kids with the most on offer will become the most popular.

      Well done UK Gov. With this and your Channel Islands Tax Loophole closure, you'll have Hollywood making election winning donations for years to come.
      • Forgive my ignorance, but how is visiting a site via your phone's 3G any different than using a landline? Surely if BT bans access to a site it will be unreachable by any device..?
        • Think more sneakernet with wireless enhancements. You don't download: You got to Knock-Off Nigel with your phone, and he'll transfer whatever you want from his phone to yours. Such activity brings popularity, so it wouldn't be hard to find a Nigel - every school will have some in the student population, as will any sizeable workplace. The Nigels can trade their files with other Nigels online - as they have the contacts and knowledge to do so even under the strictest enforcement - and they in turn serve as p
          • Ah, I see. Another model would be, for example, a shared server or external drive that everyone could rip their (legally purchased) films onto, to share with others in a circle of acquaintances (i.e. school, uni or work).
        • by xaxa (988988)

          In 2001 not so many people had broadband internet access, and one of the kids in my class downloaded films, burned them to CD-R, and sold them at a small profit (about £1 per CD). One of my friends downloaded music and gave it away to his friends on CD.

          If filesharing sites are blocked, it could limit downloading films and music to those who know how to get round the block. The result can be the same, except according to the GP, the sharing at school now happens using an SD card in a smartphone and Wi

          • Yeah I understand what he meant now, I just got confused by the wording a little bit. I am familiar with this type of situation, as even when I was in high school (only about 6 years ago) this kind of thing went on. Everyone had broadband internet, but other than using dodgy p2p programs, most people did not know how to use filesharing. When big titles in PC games came out, one or two blokes would often flog pirated copies for a couple of quid here and there. There was also a hacked XboX in the common room
      • "the kids with the most on offer will become the most popular."

        It works. When I was a pupil, it was the height of the pokemon craze. I supplied copies of no$gba and roms on floppy, site rips of the pokedex, episode guides, even whole episodes in realmedia format via spanned ZIP archives. Made me quite popular, so long as the flow of data was kept up. Then the internet came along, and suddenly noone needed my services.
      • Files will become hot-property, school currency, and the kids with the most on offer will become the most popular.

        This. I had the good fortune of being in school when Napster launched, as well as being one of the very few kids with a high speed connection and a CD burner. I made a decent amount of money selling custom mix discs to kids I went to school with, their parents, even a few teachers were buying discs from me. It got to the point where I was getting so many orders that I was literally spending all of my free time burning CD's.

        The rebirth of Sneakernet is at hand...

  • And yet the population at large will continue to blissfully re-elect that same old clowns that are helping to slowly tighten the noose/boil us frogs... nothing to see here.
  • And doubtless it'll be just as effective as BT's blocking has been...

    Though I suspect that it's less the awesome skill of the people circumventing it and more that BT have almost certainly found the cheapest way to minimally comply with the court order making it trivial to bypass and the other ISPs will probably do the same.

    • They repurposed the same filter they use for child porn. It only does http though, so you can still get there via https. It also seems not to have replicated to all their filter boxes, so some users (mostly business customers) are still reporting they can access newzbin2 as normal.
  • by Iamthecheese (1264298) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @10:11AM (#37998658)
    By forcing the 'net underground they ultimately encourage truly free speech.
    • by elewton (1743958)

      Tentatively agreed. I hope this will lead to more people defaulting to encrypted and proxied connections.

      Especially if an Ubuntu distro already set up to do this becomes widely used.

  • I'm curious - why did they go after Newsbin2? Why not one of the main sites, like Piratebay (I know they're next, but you'd have thought they'd have gone after the big fish first). Unless Newsbin2 is a bigger site than I gave it credit for. I've never really heard of it, even from chatter amongst heavy filesharers and newsgroup users - nzbmatrix, binsearch, etc. all seem a lot more popular.

    What did Newsbin2 do to specifically piss off this label?

    • by jonbryce (703250)

      Newsbin were originally a UK based site. They were forced offshore, then they went for blocking it.

  • There needs to be a mass migration to this. It will be difficult, similar to the IPv4 to IPv6 transition, but it will be completely invulnerable to interference. TPB should take the lead by setting up a parallel darknet tracker & torrent site that runs on I2P, that would make it easy for users to start running multiple clients and ease the transition to I2P torrents. Once complete anonymity is possible, uploading will become much more popular, maybe there could be a quick interface for re-seeding old to

    • It's also got really nasty overheads. All anonymous networking has, as someone needs to retransmit. Fine for books or mp3s, but a real problem when you want to move movies or large pieces of software.
  • Or, more precisely for us un the U.S., banning guns because they kill people.

    I'm going way out on a limb here, but in the U.S., I suspect there are many more incidents of crimes committed with the aid of a handgun than there are incidents of self-defense usign a handgun. Banning guns isn't the solution for several reasons, the most salient being that criminals will still have guns from any source willing to sell them, while their victims will not.

    Forcing British ISPs to block Newzbin2 is the equivalent of

  • The once united global net will be fractured into small national networks if these legislations spread.

    • by King_TJ (85913)

      In a word, no.... What it *will* lead to is more and more regulation, until only big corporations or govt. related agencies can send/receive international traffic. You forget, the people with all the money and power (multinational corporations and government + govt. contractors) still find the Internet very useful for communications among their own entities. They won't allow it to be disassembled into small national networks, unless they're granted exceptions.

  • by BlueParrot (965239) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @12:46PM (#38000656)

    The industry can't see an arms-race when it's staring them in the face.

    This will escalate until file-sharing is done over invite-only darknets. Best
    of luck filtering fully encrypted data streams that make a jump or two
    across national borders. A DNS blacklist is one thing, but forcing ISPs to
    engage in highly costly traffic analysis is something they will fight tooth and nail.

  • ...using a proxy, VPN, or special client.

    So there are your first 3 workarounds already. Tells you how effective this is all going to be. Nothing more than harder to detect when it's actually happening now.

  • As highlighted by RevK from AAISP in a recent blog post on the stupidity of the blocking [www.me.uk]

    I can reveal the secret high-tech method for accessing newzbin2 and by-passing the recent block on the site on BT residential lines.
    Its top secret and highly technical, so don't tell anyone...
    Instead of typing http://newzbin.com/ [newzbin.com] you type https://newzbin.com/ [newzbin.com]
    Yes, that is typing an extra s in the right place.

"Though a program be but three lines long, someday it will have to be maintained." -- The Tao of Programming

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