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Piracy Movies The Courts Your Rights Online

Uwe Boll, Other Filmmakers Sue Thousands of Movie Pirates 284

linzeal writes "Directors whose films have done poorly at the box office are increasingly being solicited by high-powered law firms to file lawsuits with offers of settlement. This practice, which the EFF has been calling extortive and 'mafia-like', has resulted in courts starting to rule in favor of the consumer, and in some cases throwing out the lawsuits. This is all fine and dandy, however, when you are considered the world's worst director and you largely finance films through your own holding company. At that point, the rhetoric and ridicule gets ratcheted up rather quickly."
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Uwe Boll, Other Filmmakers Sue Thousands of Movie Pirates

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  • by Daniel_Staal ( 609844 ) <> on Monday June 14, 2010 @07:00PM (#32572438)

    Actually, given the number of people who have been sued, the well-known cases of them suing innocents, and the number of people likely to be downloading movies...

    I'd say you are just about as likely to be sued if you pirate as if you don't. The average chance of being sued is near-zero, really, and the chances of them making an error are high enough that the difference between the two likelihoods is statistical noise.

  • Re:Not the case (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Zaphod The 42nd ( 1205578 ) on Monday June 14, 2010 @07:26PM (#32572686)
    Exactly. Not to mention all the possible exploits there are out there. I can tell you with 100% confidence right now that anybody running Skype can be used as a proxy without their knowledge in any way, and its completely untraceable. Computer security for anything other than major business is a joke, and people need to realize that.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 14, 2010 @07:55PM (#32572998)

    I buy the media I choose to consume, and if I don't think the price is right -- I do without.

    I applaud you. Sadly, we appear to be a dying breed. I hear far too many cries and justifications for consuming without paying.

  • by Red Flayer ( 890720 ) on Monday June 14, 2010 @08:53PM (#32573466) Journal

    "I've got mine, screw you Jack" is a grown-up attitude?

    You think that's my attitude? You're far from accurate.

    Since you seem to be a little dense, let me explain my position in full:

    In a market-based system, actors in the system make choices that depend on information.

    If I were to pirate an album, or a movie, the information I'm giving to the rights holder of that IP is that I want their product, but I'm not going to pay for it because I can get it for free. Their options are then to compete on price (by giving it away for free or nearly free, a losing proposition for them) or to lean on government to enforce and/or change the law re: copyright infringement.

    Pirating goods actually makes copyright law *worse*. It is the justification media companies use to get legislatures to pass laws that make punishments for copyright violation harsher. It is a justification media companies use to overprice their goods for people who purchase the goods legally. It is the justification used to lean on governments to sign ridiculous over-the-top IP treaties.

    My attitude has nothing to do with "I've got mine, screw you Jack". I honestly cannot comprehend how you would read that attitude from my post.

    I think our copyright laws are ridiculous -- not in principle, in my case, but in terms of the punishments for violating them, and in the duration of the copyrights. I would like it very much if the laws changed to make them more reasonable. But I'm convinced that piracy on my part would contribute to making things worse for me, worse for you, worse for everyone.

    "I've got mine, screw you Jack" applies much more to the people who pirate goods, that justify the media companies in getting laws and treaties passed that firther restrict *my* ability to enjoy media. The selfish asses who pirate everything under the sun because it's free to them are the ones who have the selfish attitude you wrongly assign to me.

  • by sortius_nod ( 1080919 ) on Monday June 14, 2010 @10:12PM (#32574004) Homepage

    Case in point:

    Old HK Jackie Chan movies vs new Hollywood Jackie Chan movies.

    New ones are so craptacular I can't even tollerate them through his amazing martial arts, give me Police Story, Project A or Armour Of The Gods and I'll actually enjoy it.

  • Re:Not the case (Score:3, Interesting)

    by slarrg ( 931336 ) on Tuesday June 15, 2010 @01:47AM (#32574994)

    Then that means we could have a huge class-action lawsuit against any ISP for virus infections or any company that had their computers botneted.

    I've never understood why companies who have a professional IT staff are held blameless when their systems are infiltrated but the average Joe with no real computer expertise is expected to be responsible for the exploits of his systems. Why do we expect a cable subscriber to be able to lock down their network when AT&T cannot?

  • by discord5 ( 798235 ) on Tuesday June 15, 2010 @04:54AM (#32575654)

    If you think Uwe Boll is bad, try watching Atomic Twister sometime.

    I dare you to find worse than Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter []. It has a kung-fu second coming of Jesus, a priest with a punk hairdo riding a vespa, and a newspaper headline reading "Critical shortage of lesbians". Other than that the movie has no redeemable qualities whatsoever, and the fact that video and audio aren't synchronized very well gets on your nerves pretty fast doesn't help either.

    Having said that, if you like bad horror movies a good laugh is Bad Taste [] by Peter Jackson, but you probably already have seen it. And Braindead [] by the same Peter Jackson is still a b-movie classic, worth more than a few laughs.

    A movie like Primer [] is a good example of the fact that not all low budget movies have to be bad. It's actually a pretty good movie, especially if you're a bit of a geek.

  • by Progman3K ( 515744 ) on Tuesday June 15, 2010 @08:47AM (#32576702)

    Especially when they are on SyFy channel every night.

    That's a good point:
    If you download a movie that has played on a television channel you have a subscription to then doesn't it become an instance of time-shifting, like a VCR or Tivo? It just saves you the bother of having to program your recorder.

When you make your mark in the world, watch out for guys with erasers. -- The Wall Street Journal