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Piracy

Reddit Tells Label It Won't Cough Up IP Address of Prerelease Music Pirate (arstechnica.com) 131

David Kravets, writing for Ars Technica: Reddit says it won't give Atlantic Records the IP address of a Reddit user who posted a link on the site of a single by Twenty One Pilots a week before the song's planned release. The song, "Heathens," was originally uploaded on June 15 to the file-sharing site Dropfile. That same day, the file landed on Reddit. According to a lawsuit (PDF) in New York State Supreme Court, the file was posted to the Twenty One Pilots subreddit with the title âoe[Leak] New Song -- 'Heathens'. The Poster submitted the link under the username "twentyoneheathens," according to Atlantic. Atlantic and its subsidiary label, Fueled by Ramen, want the IP address of the Reddit leaker. The company said the file fell victim to "widespread distribution" on the Internet, so the company released the single June 16, a week ahead of schedule; the label also said the early release hindered a planned rollout on Spotify, iTunes, and other platforms. Atlantic says the leaker must be an Atlantic employee who was contractually obligated not to leak the track, which is featured in the movie Suicide Squad that debuted earlier this month. Reddit, however, said that Atlantic "has failed to show that its claims are meritorious." Reddit claims Atlantic has embarked on "an impermissible fishing expedition."
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Reddit Tells Label It Won't Cough Up IP Address of Prerelease Music Pirate

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    I'm assuming the lawsuit is covered by the labels publicity budget and funded through the band's share of the profits. Win-win for the label.

  • Because this is not about the fans, nor is it about the music, nor about the artist. No, this is about the exclusivity deals and big plans for all of those to make lots and lots of money.

    They demand blood, because somebody wanted to give the fans what they wanted, sans the liberal bloodletting, and bundling with bads.

    That cannot be tolerated. No sir. Money is at stake here.

    • As well it should be. There was plenty of time, effort and someone else's money expended to produce this product which will not be recouped. The artists, who took time from their lives to produce the music, won't get paid.

      This is absolutely no different than if you were writing software for a company and someone released the software before it went on sale. You don't paid.

      But that would be a travesty, wouldn't it, when you don't get paid for the work you did, but when someone else doesn't get paid for the

      • No, no it would not be a travesty. Your whole argument presumes too much.
      • by Dunbal ( 464142 ) *
        Yep so they should go after THEIR employee that THEY HIRED who turned out not to be trustworthy - probably because he wasn't being paid SHIT. You cannot blame "the internet" for doing what the internet is doing - making stuff worldwide once it's out there.
        • Yep so they should go after THEIR employee that THEY HIRED who turned out not to be trustworthy

          That's what they're trying to do. They need something called EVIDENCE that can help them identify the employee. That could be the IP address used to post the song.

          Reddit claims it is a fishing expedition. Sorry, not. The song was posted, it was pre-release and in violation of copyright. There is no doubt of that. The only part that is relevant to "fishing" is that the music company wants to be allowed to pull up the right line which already has a fish attached.

          You cannot blame "the internet" for doing what the internet is doing - making stuff worldwide once it's out there.

          That's not what is happening.

          • by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Monday August 15, 2016 @02:53PM (#52706223) Journal

            AN IP address is not an identifiable to a person. It may not even be legitimate (think TOR or Proxy Service).

            It is a fishing expedition. The ocean is big, they know its a fish, they are hoping to catch the right fish.

            • AN IP address is not an identifiable to a person. It may not even be legitimate (think TOR or Proxy Service).

              I didn't say it was. Please don't put words in my mouth. What I wrote was "EVIDENCE that can help them identify the employee. That could be the IP address". "Help them identify", and "could be the IP address." Not "prove beyond a reasonable doubt".

              It is quite possible that the IP address will point right at the employee. Not everyone uses TOR or is smart enough to remove all traces from their uploading activity. It may be a neighbor's access point, which also points to a specific employee. It might be his

            • AN IP address is not an identifiable to a person

              Not Yet. We just need to wait until IPV6 replaces IPV4.

              • Even with IPv6 it doesn't identify a person. Modern stacks use short lived addresses, by default, for outgoing connections. All you get from IPv6 is a household the same as with IPv4.

                IPv6 allows you to be able to uniquely address every machine. It doesn't require that every machine be reachable. It doesn't require that every machine uses there same address forever.

                And by the way IPv6 is here. There is no need to wait.

                • IPv6 allows you to be able to uniquely address every machine.

                  It's far beyond that. The IPV6 address space is so large that it's hard to comprehend. For example, IPv6 could provide roughly 5,000 assignable IP addresses for every square micrometer of the Earth's surface.

                  To put it another way, let's assume every single one of the 100 billion stars in the galaxy is inhabited, and each star has a population of 10 trillion humans in orbit around it, and each human has 1 billion devices that need IP addresses.

                  In that case, only 1/340,282nd of the possible 128-bit IPv6 addre

          • by BronsCon ( 927697 ) <social@bronstrup.com> on Monday August 15, 2016 @03:01PM (#52706273) Journal
            What was posted to Reddit was a link to the file that was uploaded to Dropfile. The Reddit user who posted the link may not be (and, in fact, likely isn't) the same person who uploaded it to Dropfile; the Reddit user is, most likely, someone with whom the untrustworthy employee who needs to be prosecuted shared the download link.

            They need to go after the uploader and only Dropfile can identify the IP address from which the file was uploaded.
            • They need to go after the uploader and only Dropfile can identify the IP address from which the file was uploaded.

              But dropfile doesn't log IP addresses of uploaders or downloads, so that's a dead end. Reddit does log IP address, so you go after logs that exist.

              • And if it was uploaded from an iunternet cafe or open WiFi (or even a hacked WiFi) location?

                The IP is useless, fishing expidition

              • You go after logs that exist and contain the data you're actually seeking, which is who uploaded the file. Literally anyone could have posted the link and it was almost certainly not the uploader. In fact, as the uploader is most likely an employee (read: representative) of the label (which has distribution rights to that song), the link was legitimately provided by the label, from the legal perspective of the link poster. They should be left out of this entirely without a court order and Reddit recognizes
                • In fact, as the uploader is most likely an employee (read: representative) of the label (which has distribution rights to that song), the link was legitimately provided by the label,

                  Oh, please. You can't be seriously arguing that every employee of a company is an official public representative of that company able to decide when it is appropriate to release the company's product. That's just lunacy.

                  from the legal perspective of the link poster

                  The "link poster" doesn't have the authority to approve the release of a music track for a company he may or may not work for. The link poster had no way of identifying the original leaker as an employee of Atlantic and can therefore make no assumptions based on that knowledge. And where you

                  • This changes nothing about whether Atlantic is correct in asking for the information as a way of tracking down the employee they need to deal with.

                    And they're fully in the right to seek a court order for that information if they can prove that it will be useful. Without one, Reddit is at risk of being sued by the user whose information is being sought should they release it; they're literally asking Reddit to take on legal liability for their fishing expedition.

                    Think I'm off base? Get yourself a few hundred million dollars, buy Reddit, and release the user's details without a court order requiring you to do so. If the user doesn't sue you as a resul

                    • Without one, Reddit is at risk of being sued by the user whose information is being sought should they release it;

                      Sued for what? Releasing an IP address (which is not identifying information as we all know) that was the source of a link that the poster KNEW was not authorized? Because it allows Atlantic to determine who the employee was who broke his contract? Wanna bet that Reddit doesn't have a TOS that prohibits what happened? You think they want legal liability for any illegal use of their system that happens?

                      Think I'm off base?

                      Yep. Know it, in fact.

                      Get yourself a few hundred million dollars, buy Reddit, and release the user's details without a court order requiring you to do so.

                      That arguing technique is so obsolete and meaningless that it's not even funny. I can

                    • Sued for what? Releasing an IP address (which is not identifying information as we all know) that was the source of a link that the poster KNEW was not authorized?

                      If that IP address leads them to contact a person, that IP address did, then, identify that person. Whether the link poster knew the source they linked to was unauthorized really doesn't come into play, as merely posting a link is neither a civil nor criminal offense. Uploading may be either or both, but then we have no proof (nor reaonable cause to believe) that the link poster and uploader are one in the same.

                      Because it allows Atlantic to determine who the employee was who broke his contract?

                      Well, for starters, by your own claim an IP address does not identify an individual, so no, it do

                    • If that IP address leads them to contact a person, that IP address did, then, identify that person.

                      No. It led them to contact someone. It did not identify them as the user of the IP or the poster. We ALL KNOW THAT IP ADDRESSES ARE NOT PERSONAL IDENTIFIERS. Don't argue otherwise, it's unbecoming and hypocritical. That person could be the neighbor, it could be the owner of a stolen cell phone, it could be the administrative contact for a domain the IP address is in. "Someone" is not "the person who posted the link", but that someone could help identify who that really was, using other information in additi

                    • That person could be the neighbor, it could be the owner of a stolen cell phone, it could be the administrative contact for a domain the IP address is in. "Someone" is not "the person who posted the link", but that someone could help identify who that really was, using other information in addition to the IP address.

                      The chance that "someone", not being whoever posted the link or uploaded the file, could identify who did either of those things is exceedingly small.

                      Fishing Expedition [merriam-webster.com]
                      noun 1 : a legal interrogation or examination to discover information for a later proceeding
                      2 : an investigation that does not stick to a stated objective but hopes to uncover incriminating or newsworthy evidence

                      Well, this isn't a legal interrogation or examination, so definition #1 is right out. Definition #2, on the other hand...

                      No

                    • "Releasing an IP address (which is not identifying information as we all know)"

                      Even if it's not directly identifying information, it can be used to derive the identity of the poster - and that is enough ot make disclosure without a court order problematic in a lot of jurisdictions.

                      This is the same connundrum that releasing anonymised data comes with - if you have enough such datasets you can use to very accurately identify people. Think about the incentive that insurers have to do that kind of analysis on a

            • the Reddit user is, most likely, someone with whom the untrustworthy employee who needs to be prosecuted shared the download link.

              Then getting his IP address will help them identify the employee, just like I said. And did I say anything about prosecution? I don't think so.

              The point remains, asking for the IP address is not "accusing the Internet", it's an attempt at identifying the source of the leak. Which is what the poster I replied to said Atlantic should be doing. They're doing what he said they should be doing.

              • Yup and without a court order it would likely also get Reddit sued by said user. So no, they're not doing what he said they should be doing, which was "go after THEIR employee", not someone who got a link from a representative of the label holding distribution rights over the music in question. From the perspective of the link poster, they got the link from an authorized distributor.
                • Yup and without a court order it would likely also get Reddit sued by said user.

                  Sued for what?

                  So no, they're not doing what he said they should be doing, which was "go after THEIR employee",

                  Since they have gone after nobody else, and are asking for information that could help them identify the employee involved, yes, that is what they are doing.

                  From the perspective of the link poster, they got the link from an authorized distributor.

                  the file was posted to the Twenty One Pilots subreddit with the title "[Leak] New Song -- 'Heathens'. "

                  The link poster knew it was a leak. Try again.

                  • Posting a link on reddit isn't illegal and as there is absolutely no evidence that whoever posted it has anything to do with whoever uploaded the file to a completely different site, only a supposition, Reddit are right to tell Atlantic to fuck off.

              • That or someone from the label was sharing it with someone authorized in a very unauthorized manner and it was just picked it up off a scraper and posted all over reddit and youtube...

      • The artists, who took time from their lives to produce the music, won't get paid.

        The artists were never going to be paid.

        Releasing a single gets them into more debt with their label, and as noted by an AC above, they will probably have to pay for this suit, which they will have no say about either.

        You should read this [salon.com] it explains pretty well how labels screw bands.

    • by sabri ( 584428 )

      Because this is not about the fans, nor is it about the music, nor about the artist. No, this is about the exclusivity deals and big plans for all of those to make lots and lots of money. They demand blood, because somebody wanted to give the fans what they wanted, sans the liberal bloodletting, and bundling with bads.

      No, they demand blood because someone decided to give the fruits of their labor away to random people who think they have the right to get it for free.

      A true fan supports the artist.

      I despice RIAA/Rightscorp etc, but in this case I totally see why they want to see blood. You're not talking about someone pirating a dvd and posting it on TPB.

      However, they should go after Dropbox, not Reddit.

      • by harrkev ( 623093 )

        Real fans WILL support the artist. I would expect that a real fan would download the track to get it first, and then pay for it later. Real fans don't want to rip off one of their favorite artists.

        I actually saw 21 pilots a few years ago before they really became popular. It was a small venue that only held a couple hundred people. Funny, there were only two of them. I wonder where the other 19 were? (yes, that's a (not very good) joke)

        • I would expect that a real fan would download the track to get it first, and then pay for it later.

          How do you pay for an unauthorized track you've downloaded when you download it, much less "later"? Of what value is a "first" the day after the track is released officially? Do you brag to other fans that you got a free copy the week before they did, and does that get you any credit with them? I know I would not be impressed with someone who thought it was a badge of pride to admit he pirated a copy of something I thought was worth paying for.

          I wonder where the other 19 were?

          I wonder why you used a question mark on that statement. And I w

          • by harrkev ( 623093 )

            How do you pay for an unauthorized track you've downloaded when you download it, much less "later"?

            For fans that have to have music the same day, download it illegally, and then purchase that track/album when it becomes available. That is a "win/win." Fans get music ASAP, labels and artists get money.

            And I would suggest you don't waste your time going to a Barenaked Ladies concert. You'll be horribly disappointed.

            Thanks for the laugh. I could use one today.

            • For fans that have to have music the same day, download it illegally,

              Nobody HAS to have music "the same day". They want the music first, and when they pirate it they accomplish the goal. They can't go back and pay for it -- they've already pirated it. And paying for another copy doesn't change that.

              This wasn't an issue of "the same day", it was weeks before the release. If nobody needs it "the same day", then they certainly cannot need it "weeks before everyone else who gets it legally".

              Fans get music ASAP, labels and artists get money.

              Maybe, if they remember to go buy a real copy, or they don't decide that the track wasn

              • by harrkev ( 623093 )

                They can't go back and pay for it -- they've already pirated it.

                I am not sure that I agree with this -- it is a bit of a gray zone.

                If you pirate a track or an album, and then later pay for it, then who is the victim? Who is out their money? One customer still equals one sale of one track/album. Where is the loss?

                • If you pirate a track or an album, and then later pay for it,

                  Who do you pay for a pirated copy of an album?

                  Who is out their money? One customer still equals one sale of one track/album.

                  I think I covered that under the positive feedback aspect of supporting the original pirate.

                  I can provide a personal anecdote in this area. Kind of close. Many years ago I asked a company for the API for one of their devices so I could write code for my own use to connect their hardware to my linux system. (There was no linux software available.) They refused. They didn't give out that information as a way of protecting the software vendors they were already wo

              • By this twisted bit of logic, would you classify the following situation as piracy?

                Say I am walking down the street to the bus stop. I stand next to a 2 something man with arm sleeve tatoos, who is listening to music on his music player, tured up so loud his ear buds are on the verge of rattling out of his ear canals. I am standing there, waiting for the bus, like all the other people there. I have not purchased a license to listen to this music but am listening to it anyway.l, because I can't physically tu

                • Is this advertising, or is it piracy?

                  Neither, but I suspect you know that are are throwing up a deliberate red herring.

                  • Look at the basic facts:

                    I heard a song without paying for it. I bought the song later.

                    Suppose this guy is a soundman for a company, and i got to hear a song before release. Does that magically make the situation different?

                    I dont consider it a red herring at all. The major factor that the pro copyright goons claim is that listening without paying is piracy. In the situations i painted, that is what happens. I listen without paying, then buy a copy later.

                    That is what most fans who pirate do. They listen firs

          • If you are a subscriber to Apple Music, Spotify, or one of the also-ran services; the RIAA gets its 30 pieces of silver regardless of whether you have the DRM-free mp3 or not. Also, legitimization of peoples' "pirated" music was part of the deal the RIAA made years before when iTunes Match was released.

        • I wonder where the other 19 were?

          Too soon.

      • "No, they demand blood because someone decided to give the fruits of their labor away to random people who think they have the right to get it for free."

        True fans go to shows and by merch, not pay for promo material. Musicians need to support themselves through LIVE PERFORMANCE, not copies of songs. IP is fucked, dont pretend its the moral high ground.
      • by lgw ( 121541 )

        No, they demand blood because someone decided to give the fruits of their labor away to random people who think they have the right to get it for free.

        This is about marketing, not product. Almost every song ever released is available free to anyone who care to steal it - this "leak" doesn't change that in any way. This was all about building the marketing hype for the new album, giving/selling exclusivity deals to first radio play, that sort of thing. Sometimes "leaking" the album this way is a deliberate part of the marketing strategy, as some people will listen to it just because of the manufactured scandal who would never have heard of the album oth

      • In other news, a burglar the authorities are calling the "Basil Bandit" has made off with dozens -- perhaps hundreds -- of spice containers stolen from the offices of the Recording Industry Association of America. Security footage shows a hooded figure carrying armloads of cumin, paprika, onion powder, and thyme.

        A facilities manager was seen staring blankly at a long row of empty cupboards, lamenting, "They... they took it all! Every last spice!"

        No word yet on the thief's identity or motive, but a p
    • I was unaware it was an Indian record label.

      How dare they be disrupeed!

  • What would Slashdot do?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 15, 2016 @02:55PM (#52706239)

      First, a grammar nazi would respond with a three paragraph long post with numerous insults for you not knowing that "begging the question" is a descendant of an old local expression that indicated something was a case of circular reasoning.

      This would then be followed by replies from a different faction of grammar nazis who hold the interesting balance that the meaning of words is mutable, but things like punctuation and sentence structure are sacred above all.

      Eventually, someone responds with a car analogy about the crash safety records of the Robin Reliant, confusing most readers even more than the original debate.

      In a final culmination, someone who meant to click 'post anonymously' but forgot will post a link to the new iOS app: cow.hosts

  • Twenty One Pilots is awful music. I mean, really really bad. If you really find the need to listen to white boy rapping, go listen to Action Bronson or (if you must) Post Malone, who actually have a little bit of talent (AB has a lot of talent). Better yet, go listen to Chance the Rapper's new album. I don't even like rap, but I can hear that there's a talented guy working at a high level.

    I'll bet that whoever at Atlantic Records released this music ahead of schedule on Reddit did so hoping that it woul

  • They have legal authority for a DMCA takedown notice. Do they have legal authority to demand records of personal information from Reddit?

    An IP address is not personally-identifying information; maybe he posted from Panera or a neighbor's wifi.

    Why don't they just ask Dropbox? Afraid their lawyers are bigger and will bend them over the witness stand?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 15, 2016 @02:20PM (#52706043)

    They did not ask Dropfile for the IP of that user? That would make more sense because that guy definitely is guilty. The Reddit poster, although guilty of bad taste, just posted a link to something already on the internet. Good luck proving he actually uploaded it to Dropfile.

    • by Falos ( 2905315 )
      TINY SMASH. TINY BREAK FURNITURE AND HOUSES UNTIL PROBLEM FIXED.

      Actually me not care who we sue, just sue somebody and appease upstairs.
  • It's an extraordinary remedy called a"Norwich Order", and to oversimplify, the requester has to swear they're suing someone, and the suit has to have a "prima facie case of" an offence and the claim has to appear to be reasonable and made in good faith. See also http://www.canlii.org/en/on/on... [canlii.org]

    Ordinary suits are filed against John Doe, and the courts asked to issue a order to third parties to help identify the defendants.

  • Reddit claims Atlantic has embarked on "an impermissible fishing expedition."

    For the uninitiated, the past 60 years of audible media both digital and otherwise has largely been a fishing expedition, ever since Edison records started carving untalented midwestern baritones into the side of a wax cylinder. policing thoughtcrime is the name of the game.

  • Reddit has already been served a National Security Letter (we think .. the Canary is dead). At least they're not giving into commercial stuff, but remember they are owned by Conde Nast. It's like Google pulling out of China to symbolically show they give a shit about censorship.

    • but remember they are owned by Conde Nast

      Most people here probably don't understand why that is relevant. I do; but I'll let you inform the others.

      You tell it bettter anyway... ;-)

  • Linking doesn't mean crap; in many (rational) places that wouldn't constitute infringement. If the label really cared they should be contacting DropFile as who UPLOADED the actual file, or perhaps they are clueless. Or both.

    • Re:Idiotic (Score:4, Informative)

      by Lieutenant_Dan ( 583843 ) on Monday August 15, 2016 @03:10PM (#52706337) Homepage Journal

      Ah, from the TFA:

      What's more, Reddit suggests that Atlantic is targeting the wrong website. "Notably, Atlantic has failed to describe its efforts, if any, to obtain such information from Dropfile.to, the website to which the song was uploaded," Reddit's brief said. It also said that "a petition for pre-action discovery should be granted only if a petitioner demonstrates that he has a meritorious cause of action and the information sought is material and necessary to an existing and actionable wrong."

      At least someone at Reddit is on the ball.

  • The outcome of this case has relevance to the debate we have been going in here about whether AC posting should or should not continue. If Reddit ends up being required to divulge personal information for a registered user, this would obviously strengthen the case for allowing AC.

  • Suicide Squad (Score:5, Insightful)

    by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Monday August 15, 2016 @03:58PM (#52706645) Journal
    All these weird stories about the movie Suicide Squad.......it makes me wonder if someone is trying some kind of astro-turfing thing to give support to the movie. The studio themselves probably leaked the soundtrack. Maybe they hired people with sock-puppet accounts to complain about Rotten Tomatoes. The whole thing is weird.
  • Anyone have the link? I want to hear the song,

    • Given the postings here designating the genre of requested Imaginary Property as being cRAP. I don't think it can qualify as a "song", indeed, given prior examples, I would be hard pressed to label it a performance,does it even reach the bar of Shatner's cover of "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds"?
    • by tacroy ( 813477 )
      This is what the google found me. https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]
  • Some suits at Atlantic are probably pissed at whatever money they lost from the song leaking early due to deals with other companies for digital or physical distribution rights. Are they right to be? Probably. They probably got paid or paid out for exclusivity or something. And, now that the song is out in the wild, some suits at some other companies are probably suing for breach of duties about piracy. As it is, some people won't bother buying it from iTunes/Spotify/Amazon/etc. They will try any way they c

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