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French Court Orders Search Engines, ISPs To Block Pirate Sites 75

rtoz sends word that a French court has ordered Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft to remove 16 unauthorized video streaming sites from their search results. Many ISPs were also ordered to block access to the sites. According to TorrentFreak, "The court ruled that the film industry had clearly demonstrated that the sites in question are 'dedicated or virtually dedicated to the distribution of audiovisual works without the consent of their creators,' thus violating their copyrights. As a result the search services of Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and local company Orange are now under orders to 'take all necessary measures to prevent the occurrence on their services of any results referring to any of the pages' on these sites. Several ISPs – Orange, Free, Bouygues Télécom, SFR, Numéricable and Darty Télécom were also ordered to 'implement all appropriate means including blocking' to prevent access to the infringing sites."
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French Court Orders Search Engines, ISPs To Block Pirate Sites

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:16PM (#45556173)

    ... while the old ones continues to operate with bypasses even a 12 year old can figure out.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      ... while the old ones continues to operate with bypasses even a 12 year old can figure out.

      Actually, we're talking about France. It's unlikely that the streaming services will adapt just to suit the French market, unless they're French streaming sites. More likely, people will stop watching the streaming services and move to consuming via Youtube (which yes, is still a streaming service) or TPB. Ordering Google to block Youtube isn't going to go over so well.

      • Ordering Google to block anything for a particular country shouldn't go well FULL STOP. Seeing how these people provide content globally why should they cowtow to a specific countries request. I imagine the blocking of that content since it's coming from a French court would be to order French ISP's to do the blocking.
        • This. If I were Google and MS and Yahoo, etc. I'd just pull the plug on the .fr search page and put up a page that basically states "Due to general stupidity, we cannot be bothered to serve your country anymore. Sorry for the inconvenience. If you wish for service to be restored, please enlighten your politicians and the courts. Until then, best wishes, Google/Yahoo/MS/etc."

          Making the search engines do the work would be like requiring checkpoints at every on/off ramp and intersection of every road, freeway,

          • Only problem is, Google, MS and Yahoo already started doing this for MANY countries (including the US and UK) years ago. This isn't anything new, other than the targets. The mechanism for doing this blocking is already in place for pedophile sites.

            • Oh please, blocking google etc. is like stopping people from buying a map. You know where you want to go but don't know how to get there. All it will take is a bit of digging around forums/irc and you will find the links you want (ie. stopping at a garage).
              Blocking DNS, no problem, use IP's.
              IP is banned by your ISP
              No problem, bounce off a rented server/proxy in Idontgiveafuckistan.

              Stop passing stupid fucking laws that are impossible to enforce.

              I think it's beyond time when any asshole politician pr
              • by Luckyo ( 1726890 )

                You misunderstand. The goal of decision isn't to block the site. It's to make it prohibitively difficult for average people to find and access them. And sadly, it does work, as most of population doesn't know what "proxy" means. And of course, it massively reduces the chance of discovery with searches.

                • Valid point, sad but true.
                  Also I suppose I am leeching knowledge of these sort of things (proxies et al) into my children since they were five.
                  I keep overestimating the typical user.
    • by Yvanhoe ( 564877 )
      Actually, I am not aware of the French courts being dissatisfied by something else than a simple DNS block. This is non news so far.
  • by fred911 ( 83970 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:19PM (#45556189)

    The ruling is akin to a newspaper publishing locations of any illegal activity. Such as on Main and 5th people are selling their bodies or drugs. So stupid.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If America wasn't exporting stupid copyright laws throughout the rest of the world, this kind of stuff wouldn't be happening.

      So, really, where's the stupid?

      • by robmv ( 855035 )

        In the countries that accept those copyright laws

      • I'll take a stab and say "Corporate America".
    • Re:So French (Score:5, Interesting)

      by globaljustin ( 574257 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:33PM (#45556283) Journal

      "So French"

      We do have to look at this news through the 'french' lens...their courts and legal system are Kafkaesque (ha!)

      will the block go into effect immediately or is this conditional upon appeal to a higher court before it goes into effect?

      it's dumb of course, as another poster said they'll just use different URL's or imbed the players in other sites...

      • This kind of idiocy is not limited to the French, as many stories on Slashdot will surely tell you. Equally moronic rulings can be found in such illustrious countries like the United States, the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, etc.

        But hey, perhaps you prefer to tell yourself your "Freedom Fries" are surely not French (they're not, they're Belgian) and continue to enjoy your obvious bias instead!

  • by denis-The-menace ( 471988 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:20PM (#45556199)

    Maybe if we had respectable copyright laws instead of this Infinity+1 BS.

    But why bother when you can just purchase laws to suit your own monopoly.

    • Maybe this way the film industry becomes irrelevant faster? No more free advertising.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      so how many people pirate 50 year old films? most of the downloads are new releases

      • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        People use what's available. How many 50 year old films are available in digital copies? Kids may be hoarding the current crap, but that's because it's there, just like games on cassette in the 80s. Besides, you're wrong. Most downloaded content is TV shows, shows that are free to air with a few exceptions.

    • by QuasiSteve ( 2042606 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:51PM (#45556407)

      While I agree that the copyright term is too long (for that matter, copyright needs to go - distribution rights is what matters), this only has impact on the streaming sites insofar as a user actually saying "because of the ridiculous copyright term, I'm gonna watch this episode of Walking Dead that aired an hour ago."

      Otherwise, the copyright term could be 13 years, 5 years, 1 year or even 1 month.. and the streaming sites would still find themselves with practically the same audience; after all, what good is it to watch an episode 1 month later when everybody at the watercooler (or on your facebook or whatever) is already 3 or even 4 episodes further along?

      A complaint about the lack of appropriate coverage for a global audience would make more sense.

      • A complaint about the lack of appropriate coverage for a global audience would make more sense.

        And an unwillingness to actually take money in exchange for giving a good product. I.e. a file, unecumbered which you can play anywhere like music is now.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It is probably just me being a paranoid crank, but as the **IAA's of the world keep buying up bleeding heart idiots in governments world wide to promote perpetual copyright I have begun wondering about a few things.

        Several noteworthy turns of events have transpired since the "heyday" of internet piracy in the early 90s, back when the "commercial internet" was new. (I am well aware of the net's real age.) Take for instance: The creation of, destruction of, attempted rebirth of, and subsequent failure of Nap

      • I don't think it's so much about Facebook = the global water cooler" (what a terrible analogy! I'm sure Facebook corporate loves it...).

        Some people are simply not going to pay to access your content, and you can shut down every channel possible (you can't, it's an impossible to achieve goal from a technology standpoint), and doing that is not going to convert these people into your customers. This is a "look at all the money we COULD be making IF ONLY these people were willing to pay for our product, which

        • Of course there's always going to be a subset of people who will choose the option where they don't pay at all. However, I do think that the size of the audience for these streaming sites can be reduced greatly if the rights holders decided to make their material available in a superior form.

          And by superior form I don't necessarily mean that it has to be 4k with the full DTS tracks and DRM-free - though that would be nice; it could be as simple as just being vastly more convenient. Take Netflix - I like r

  • by Unknown1337 ( 2697703 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:36PM (#45556301)
    Another ridiculous case where the courts attempt to stop a leak by putting a bucket under it; instead of turning off the water. Whether you agree or not with the operation of the sites is not valid in this argument. The entertainment companies can't stop the real problem so they are targeting anyone who makes it easier to find. Perhaps we should think bigger. Sue the entire US government for supporting the Internet because it helps people find search engines which offer routes to illegal content. Or perhaps bigger yet, sue copper manufacturers or OS development companies for without them there would be no reasonable computer access... Just a farce as far as I'm concerned, they can't win the real battle so they'll sabotage anyone they can get their hands on... the media industry needs to grow up.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      The content industry needs to grow up ...not gonna happen. Look for example at the war on drugs that the US has undertaken for the last 70+years (yes kiddies, it was alive and well before 'Reefer Madness' in the 1960's), and they have spent billions of dollars and shot thousand of people, and sent millions to jail. And ideology wins. The people with the most money, want to keep making the most money, and so they buy congress people who make laws to their benefactors benefit. "Get me elected and copyrigh

    • It needs to transform itself. I only go to a cinema to watch blockbusters (yeah I'm getting old) and 3D stuff. Otherwise I am happy waiting for a decent DVD rip to download. Why download it if it's on DVD? Because of the stupid ass release zones crap. By the time it's released in my zone I I have watched it already. Why go buy it? Why they are still adhering to that antiquated model I don't know. Just so you know, I would go buy it instead of downloading it. I have a nice collection of my favourite
    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      Before Gutenberg it was very hard to in principle prevent a monk to "pirate" a book for you. Same goes for after Gutenberg and hiring a printing press to make "pirate" copies for you. I'm not so sure if it changed with the first Xerox machine or not. Let's face it, for most of human history preventing most of the people most of the time has been good enough. Computers kind of blew the lid on that, if you were following other conventions they'd be Weapons of Mass Infringement. It's rather hard to accept the

  • there wouldn't be any piracy so maybe the search engines should just block everything to do with Music/Movie entertainment.

  • by wertigon ( 1204486 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @01:58PM (#45556437)

    So, we all know that these sites basicly ammounts to free advertising for their counterparts, right?

    The industry believes (publicly atleast) that less piracy means more sales.

    Numerous studies however have shown that less piracy means less sales.

    So, by pirating we're actually supporting these bastards hell-bent on suing the crap out of us, the consumers.

    Therefore, here is my idea; let's stop pirating. Let's stop enjoying mainstream media. Let's stop reccomending it, talking about it - unless it's free to download, of course. Then see how long Hollywood can keep it up.

    Let's give them the nightmare they deserve, shall we?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      You've stopped taking your meds again haven't you?

      • No, just come to the conclusion that the absolutely fastest way to put Hollywood out of it's misery would be to stop pirating (and thus promoting) their content.

        If even 20% of everyone pirating "hollywood" would instead promote free movies, songs and software, Hollywood would be in serious trouble. As it stands however, not even 0.01% do that...

        Oh well.

    • Start the Free Drama Foundation and produce better content that is available under Creative Commons license. Given the enforced mediocrity of what comes from Hollywood, it shouldn't be hard to do better (if your production is aiming for an intelligent audience).
      • Got an even better idea in mind.

        Invent decentralised Facebook with away to distribute your own creations. I'm thinking something like a blog, but with an option to insert a paywall, integrated on top of say, or buddycloud. Make the software as easy to set up as a home router, or why not Wordpress? :)

        That ought to create the infrastructure neccessary to beat Hollywood. Would write it myself if I weren't buried knee-deep in work... :P

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Depending on how the court order is worded, I would respond to any blocked searches with "We're sorry, your search has been censored by [list of the guilty]".

  • by Catbeller ( 118204 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @02:20PM (#45556581) Homepage

    It will come to every ISP on the planet. The curtain is falling. To monitor sexual thought, "national security", enforcement of eternally granted imaginary property, blasphemy, badthink, The Children, and any other damned thing they can think of, we are going for full metal police state. Ladies and gentlemen, we are in a prison and they are sounding the bell for final lockup. Tech solutions will be temporary at best because they will be declared illegal, or compromised, as soon as they pop up.


    • by ruir ( 2709173 )
      What I see here is the ISPs working for free, and we the consumers ending up footing the bill. How long until they start doing self censorship or until the pan-european green dam? Will this post be considered "radical"?
  • by janoc ( 699997 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @02:28PM (#45556633)

    In fact, the order is not as bad as some of the similar ones from the past. The original article is here (in French): []

    The court ruled that the ISPs and search engines have 15 days to block the sites listed in the article and the order is in force for 12 months afterwards.

    However, here is the kicker: the court ruled that the right holders are to pay the bill for the implementation of the blocks, the ISPs are not being asked to do it on their own dime. So carpet bombing the courts with poorly researched URLs to block could get really expensive ...

  • Instead of de-listing the sites, why not de-list the content?
    We all know that as soon as one domain name is suppressed three others will spring up in its place, and we all know that 90% of all search engine links to any film are links to pirate copies, so the only way to be sure is to de-list all material relating to the movies in question.

    No Publicity is Good Publicity, amirite?

  • well, that blows. As a content creator with two documentaries on the piratebay, that pisses me off.

    • by cffrost ( 885375 )

      well, that blows. As a content creator with two documentaries on the piratebay, that pisses me off.

      Post the torrent hashes someplace where people can find them, and they'll remain accessible for as long as online stewardship of the torrents' data are maintained. For greater user convenience, magnet links can be created using the torrent hashes (on properly-constructed/maintained, standards-compliant web sites (e.g., not Slashdot)).

  • by FuzzNugget ( 2840687 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @03:10PM (#45556909)
    ... when they have to type in "" by hand into the address bar?
  • by cffrost ( 885375 ) on Friday November 29, 2013 @04:38PM (#45557439) Homepage

    PARIS — In a bizarre victory for the French imaginary property industry, a French court has ruled that the deck chairs on the RMS Titanic are to be rearranged, effective immediately. In an effort to comply with the court's order, French and US authorities are negotiating the extradition of director/enthusiast James Cameron and his personal submarine — capable of both reaching the Titanic and rearranging her deckchairs via robotic claw — to the icy North Atlantic, where the ill-fated symbol of man's hubris sunk nearly one US-copyright-term-length ago.

  • What French courts declare has about as much meaning to me as what a Nigerian Court decides or maybe one of those courts from one of the strange Arab nations that most people don't even know exists. If the French Courts have emotional bowel gas who gives a hoot as long as they keep it to themselves.

Thufir's a Harkonnen now.