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Piracy Your Rights Online

Newzbin2 Closes For Good 204

AlphaWolf_HK writes "Newzbin2, one of the most recognized index sites for usenet, has closed for good. A statement reads: 'It is with regret that we announce the closure of Newzbin2. A combination of several factors has made this the only option. For a long time we have struggled with poor indexing of Usenet, poor numbers of reports caused by the majority of our editors dropping out & no-one replacing them. Our servers have been unstable and crashing on a regular basis meaning the NZBs & NFOs are unavailable for long periods and we don't have the money to replace them. To make things worse all our payment providers dropped out or started running scared. The MPA sued Paypal and are going at our innocent payment provider Kthxbai Ltd in the UK. Our other payment provider has understandably lost their nerve. Result? We have no more payment providers to offer & no realistic means of taking money (no, Bitcoin isn't credible as it's just too hard for 90% of people).'"
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Newzbin2 Closes For Good

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  • Google Groups next? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 30, 2012 @01:58AM (#42138999)

    Good, now can Google Groups be the next one to close?

    Seriously, while Usenet archives done properly can be of some good, Google's is the worst ever.

    Search for information on medicine, get online pharmacy posts in the archive search.

    Search for someone by name, and if there are any flamewars, ridicule, and/or defamation posts containing their name in the subject, those posts will be at the top of the search. Posts with actual useful content be damned, all they go off of is the subject keywords and maybe the references header.

    Search for any topic not medicine information or by someone's name, get a random assortment of old and new posts by default, rather than a sorted order by date from newest to oldest, due to the default being by "relevance".

    Oh yeah, and the Usenet archive is also used by employers and coworkers alike for trying to use outdated posts as either disqualification of employment or trying to get someone fired. Like it's some important background check from the long irrelevant past, while others including celebrities spout off on Facebook and Twitter.

    (Yeah, I know about that Ron S, Sarah A, and Spencer S--but it didn't work, right? Come on Ron, you only shared the fact that YOU recently discovered the archive with your coworkers, but in fact HR made some minor changes but not as expected, didn't they? From what I heard, including a separation of two team members so there was a little less contact between them, and one was possibly up for a one month suspension from work--it was your call right Ron? How do I know? Ron, instead of taking it to a conference focus room (HP SD called them focus rooms, right?), you talked about it in the cube aisles. But the Google Groups 20 years backfilled archive had been around since 2001--you were that many years uninformed about Usenet.)

    Anyway, I get a better search using Google web search (sorry, Everything) than I do with the Groups search. The Google Groups search may be good for finding spam, blackmail material, or seriously old outdated posts, but the search quality of the Groups search really does suck.

  • Re:Seriously (Score:5, Informative)

    by Nyder ( 754090 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @02:17AM (#42139067) Journal

    wtf is newzbin2? I used USENET but since existence of online forum... what's the point?

    Newzbin2 (or any sites like it) is a search engine for usenet and will put the files you select in a convenient .nzb file that you then load up in your usenet reader (that supports it of course), and it will automatically grab the files you had selected.

    For example, I can search the alt.binaries.multimedia newgroup for a poster called tvdude, and it will lists the files he has uploaded.

    This is more convenient then having to download all the headers in the newsgroup and having to sort thru them to find what you want. In fact, it's made it so easy to get stuff that usenet became more popular and is being targeted now with DMCA notices.

  • by rueger ( 210566 ) * on Friday November 30, 2012 @02:36AM (#42139109) Homepage
    Which, according The Reg, will now allow a 10 gig attachment. [theregister.co.uk]

    Google vs MPAA??
  • Re:Censorship (Score:4, Informative)

    by klingers48 ( 968406 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @02:36AM (#42139113)
    It's not even that simple. Look at the loaded, opinionist title of that article:

    Piracy site Newzbin2 gives up and closes 15 months after block

    Yeah, yeah... I know we all kind of give that knowing smile and half-eye-roll thing whenever we mention "legitimate usage!"... But still, the deck's stacked against them from the get-go. The media is abusing their position as much as the government to push the agenda of Big Content. Kind of frustrating really.

  • Re:Censorship (Score:5, Informative)

    by AlphaWolf_HK ( 692722 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @04:36AM (#42139473)

    If you got rid of corporations, you'd basically destroy the economy, and prevent a new one from growing.

    Also, everything you said above also works when you apply it to unions.

    The Bakers Union destroyed the American icon of treats - Hostess. After they did so, the Bakers Union leaders basically came away saying it was a victory because they stood their ground and sent a message, meanwhile 18,000 people lost their jobs, while the union leadership kept theirs. Hostess didn't fail due to mismanagement either, look at the practices the unions forced upon them. Workers who handled snacks weren't allowed to handle bread. Workers who handled bread weren't allowed to handle snacks. Bread truckers were supposed to refuse snacks on their trucks, even if they were headed to the same store. Instead they had to have a separate truck for snacks. The unions forced this practice due to a mutual agreement between two separate unions so that they didn't have to compete for jobs.

    Unions also hate technology. Technology often costs them their jobs, and they force their industries to stay behind as a result. When shipping first started moving to storage crates, the unions forced their employers to allow the dock workers to remove the contents of the crate while it was on land, then put the crate on the ship, then individually load its contents back into the crate. Why? Because the union couldn't stand the thought of the dock workers losing their job. Technologies change, and there will always be frictional unemployment.

    And then you have the bureaucracy the UAW creates. Employees who work at their station aren't allowed to correct problems with their equipment when it malfunctions, even if it is an easy fix. If they fix it themselves, then technicians who ARE supposed to fix it will file a grievance with their union, and the station worker will get reprimanded or even fired. How on earth can you compete on the global economy if you have to put up with that? It's no wonder GM and Chrysler went bankrupt.

    The bosses of these unions talk their members up about how they need to prevent their employers from having a six figure income so that the employees can have a greater share, but meanwhile they are forced to give up their money to pay the union boss a six figure income or else they'll be forced out of their union, and then fired because the union has a stranglehold on employer contracts.

    Unions also buy out the government, to our detriment! The sugar industry lobbied for the sugar tariffs. Because of the sugar tariffs, sugar is too expensive to be used in most food. Agricultural unions also pushed for corn subsidies. While the rest of the world uses sugar in their food, we use high fructose corn syrup. The chemists who create the world's soda pretty much all reside here, yet they make soda with sugar for the rest of the world, while ours has high fructose corn syrup.

    Did this save any jobs? Not a chance, it just kept those unions happy.

    In fact, union involvement has actually cost jobs. The steel industry lobbied for steel tariffs, saying that they'd lose their jobs if they had to compete with the global economy. The result of that is we pay a lot more for steel in America. Meanwhile, other countries pay less for steel. American goods now cost more, which means those goods now have a competitive disadvantage in the global economy. Steelworkers keep their jobs, but at the expense of many more jobs elsewhere in the economy.

    Thank you unions!

    As for your "clever social systems", those were tried many times, and all of them failed. Look at the Icarians, they were basically given an already built city for nothing at all when its previous inhabitants were forced out of it by the government. Yet somehow, they managed to have a rapidly declining economy until it all fell apart. Many *many* communes have risen and fallen for the exact same reasons. The only even remotely successful "clever social systems" were dictatorships, with millions dead in their wake.

    And why on earth would you want a zero sum game? That implies no growth at all. Without growth, you are guaranteed to fail.

  • Re:Seriously (Score:4, Informative)

    by AlphaWolf_HK ( 692722 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @04:53AM (#42139523)

    Usenet binaries are SOOO much better than torrents. Zero chance of letters from your ISP, you have no reliance upon other people to keep seeding forever, you max out your pipe (mines 30Mbit) all the time, you yourself don't need to seed forever (go ahead and delete it when you finish,) and there is some great software that automates everything you want.

    For example, I don't need to hit the pirate bay and find an ideal release of the dark knight rises. Instead I type the name (even a partial name) into couchpotato, and it automatically finds it. I can even tell it what quality I want it in, whether it is a full 50GB blu-ray rip, or maybe aim for 1080p with 10GB file size. (Generally I do the later, and only do BD rips for really good movies.)

    I can also automate downloading all of my favorite shows as they air without having to manually do anything. Dexter, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, and others automatically download on to my NAS without having to visit a single website. Just set it to get that show, and forget it. That program is called sickbeard. If a release of an episode is broken (happens sometimes, happens even more on torrents,) and a proper is released, it automatically downloads the proper release and discards the bad one.

  • Re:Bitcoin (Score:2, Informative)

    by AlphaWolf_HK ( 692722 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @05:01AM (#42139543)

    Personally I hate holding on to bitcoins, their value is subject to wild fluctuations. You never know if somebody's large wallet is about to get hacked and suddenly all of the money you had into them is gone in an instant.

    Converting cash to and from bitcoins gets costly as well, so always keeping a low supply "just in case" isn't a good idea either.

  • Re:Seriously (Score:4, Informative)

    by zootie ( 190797 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @06:14AM (#42139833)

    Still, the raw speed of usenet and the set it and forget it nature is so much better than torrents. Torrents take babysitting to make sure you get them right (and you have to keep them around longer when you're done if you want to be a good citizen and make sure the ecosystem keeps working). With nzbs, you just chose them once and you're pretty much done in seconds (with the selection) and you're watching content in minutes (and there are many automation tools that blow RSS out of the water).

    There is also the liability issue. With torrents, depending on local laws, you're usually liable because you're transferring data to others. With a distributed system like usenet, (most legal precedents place) the liability on the side of the poster (good luck finding him/her), and you're just catching something that is out there, and not taking any further action. It detaches providing something from consuming it.

    BTW, Sickbeard can also work with torrent files, but I don't know how much automation it supports.

"To take a significant step forward, you must make a series of finite improvements." -- Donald J. Atwood, General Motors