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Piracy Privacy Sony The Media Your Rights Online

Sony, Universal and Fox Caught Pirating Through BitTorrent 284

Posted by Soulskill
from the hand-in-cookie-jar dept.
New submitter Bad_Feeling sends in a followup to the story we discussed on Monday about a new site that scanned a few popular torrent trackers and linked torrents to IP addresses. The folks at TorrentFreak decided to check IP addresses belonging to major companies in the entertainment industry and published lists of pirated files from several, including Fox, Sony, and NBC Universal. Of course, they used the information to make a slightly different point than the industry usually does: "By highlighting the above our intention is not to get anyone into trouble, and for that reason we masked out the end of the IP addresses to avoid a witch hunt. An IP address is not a person, IP addresses can be shared among many people, and anyone can be behind a keyboard at any given time."
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Sony, Universal and Fox Caught Pirating Through BitTorrent

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @09:13AM (#38368794)

    So surely the companies are distributing the movies to everyone. As they are the rights holder, it should be legal to download it?

  • by syousef (465911) on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @09:15AM (#38368808) Journal

    ...out of existence!!!

  • by advocate_one (662832) on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @09:42AM (#38369068)
    No, they had me dead to rights on all the torrents they had my IP listed for... the latest episodes of "Glee", "2 Broke Girls", "New Girl" and "How I met Your Mother"... plus a Miley Cyrus discography I was pulling down for my daughter (honest!!!)...
  • by gorzek (647352) <gorzek.gmail@com> on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @09:44AM (#38369090) Homepage Journal

    I did a search on some IP addresses assigned to overseas US military facilities. Let's just say it turns out US soldiers like transsexuals and big girls. And possibly big transsexual girls.

  • by jpapon (1877296) on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @10:09AM (#38369318) Journal
    It's not a theory. It's put into practice all the time... The PR arm distributes copies for publicity to many people (critics, celebrities, etc) . If those people start distributing their free copies, I guarantee they'll be in court as soon as they're caught.
  • by AliasMarlowe (1042386) on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @10:09AM (#38369320) Journal

    It is possible that an employee of a studio is downloading via torrents without permission.

    I'm flabbergasted that this is actually possible, unless the employee in question is privileged in particular ways, such as by being a network administrator.

    After all, how many people do you know use their work networks to download pirated content.

    None. Those who use torrents do so at home.

    Reputable companies which are large enough to have an IT department will have strict enforcement of many network policies, especially those which are related to commercial risk. Where I work, everything other than ports 80 and 443 must be opened on a per-node and per destination basis. If you need ftp or ssh, you have to state the specific need and how it relates to the business. Also, even ports 80 and 443 are heavily filtered so that social media sites (youtube, facebook, etc.), name redirection sites (dyndns and its ilk), file lockers (megaupload, etc.), webmail (gmail, hotmail, etc.) and all sites hosting questionable activities are blocked. I suspect running a client for IRC or BitTorrent would get you nowhere. There are probably some ways around this, but looking for them would be stupid and might set off career-threatening alarm bells.

  • by RubberMallet (2499906) on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @10:11AM (#38369338)

    Tell that to the lawyers who are suing people. I received a letter from a law firm claiming to represent a movie studio. They stated that they had "proof" that my IP address was being used to download a movie called Split - I had never even heard of the movie prior to the letter. I took it to a lawyer and they are handling it.. it's been almost 18 months now... they challenged the idiots who are trying to sue me, and it turns out they blitzed out 10,000 letters in the city I live in... all claiming infringement on the same movie based on the IP addresses collected via torrent clients they were monitoring.

    Proof? How do you prove it wasn't you? They say it was, and they have an IP address that may or may not have been yours at the time... they say that the IP address was at the time, involved in downloading said copyrighted material. Where's your defense? How do you prove it wasn't me (or anyone else) that was downloading the file. I can't prove it. All I can do is say.. I didn't do it, and if it goes to court... it's my word against theirs, and they have ISP records that appear to "prove" that I did download the movie.

  • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <gameboyrmh AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday December 14, 2011 @10:15AM (#38369376) Journal

    I entered the IP of one of my seedboxes which is also a Tor exit node (did the lookup through Tor, using HTTPS to the site, using a secure and anonymous browser). That exit node has Bittorrent blocked and it's on a dynamic IP that changes often. 4 out of the 8 torrents displayed were ones that I'd downloaded, 1 was recent and the other 3 had been on there for a long time. The seedbox has around 500 torrents on it.

    It also showed results for the German exit node I was viewing it through.

I'd rather just believe that it's done by little elves running around.

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