Tag Archives: Law

Healthy Aussie Pirates Set To Face Cash ‘Fines’, Poor & Sick Should Be OK

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/healthy-aussie-pirates-set-to-face-cash-fines-poor-sick-should-be-ok-170821/

One of the oldest methods of trying to get people to stop downloading and sharing pirated material is by hitting them with ‘fines’.

The RIAA began the practice in September 2003, tracking people sharing music on early peer-to-peer networks, finding out their identities via ISPs, and sending them cease-and-desist orders with a request to pay hundreds to thousands of dollars.

Many thousands of people were fined and the campaign raised awareness, but it did nothing to stop millions of file-sharers who continue to this day.

That’s something that Village Roadshow co-chief Graham Burke now wants to do something about. He says his company will effectively mimic the RIAA’s campaign of 14 years ago and begin suing Internet pirates Down Under. He told AFR that his company is already setting things up, ready to begin suing later in the year.

Few details have been made available at this stage but it’s almost certain that Village Roadshow’s targets will be BitTorrent users. It’s possible that users of other peer-to-peer networks could be affected but due to their inefficiency and relative obscurity, it’s very unlikely.

That leaves users of The Pirate Bay and any other torrent site vulnerable to the company, which will jump into torrent swarms masquerading as regular users, track IP addresses, and trace them back to Internet service providers. What happens next will depend on the responses of those ISPs.

If the ISPs refuse to cooperate, they will have to be taken to court to force them to hand over the personal details of their subscribers to Village Roadshow. It’s extremely unlikely they’ll hand them over voluntarily, so it could be some time before any ISP customer hears anything from the film distributor.

The bottom line is that Village Roadshow will want money to go away and Burke is already being open over the kind of sums his company will ask for.

“We will be looking for damages commensurate with what they’ve done. We’ll be saying ‘You’ve downloaded our Mad Max: Fury Road, our Red Dog, and we want $40 for the four movies plus $200 in costs’,” he says.

While no one will relish any kind of ‘bill’ dropping through a mail box, in the scheme of things a AUS$240 settlement demand isn’t huge, especially when compared to the sums demanded by companies such as Voltage Pictures, who tried and failed to start piracy litigation in Australia two years ago.

However, there’s even better news for some, who have already been given a heads-up that they won’t have to pay anything.

“We will identify people who are stealing our product, we will ask them do they have ill health or dire circumstances, and if they do and undertake to stop, we’ll drop the case,” Burke says.

While being upfront about such a policy has its pros and cons, Burke is also reducing his range of targets, particularly if likes to be seen as a man of his word, whenever those words were delivered. In March 2016, when he restated his intention to begin suing pirates, he also excluded some other groups from legal action.

“We don’t want to sue 16-year-olds or mums and dads,” Burke said. “It takes 18 months to go through the courts and all that does is make lawyers rich and clog the court system. It’s not effective.”

It will remain to be seen what criteria Village Roadshow ultimately employs but it’s likely the company will be asked to explain its intentions to the court, when it embarks on the process to discover alleged pirates’ identities. When it’s decided who is eligible, Burke says the gloves will come off, with pirates being “pursued vigorously” and “sued for damages.”

While Village Roadshow’s list of films is considerable, any with a specifically Australian slant seem the most likely to feature in any legal action. Burke tends to push the narrative that he’s looking after local industry so something like Mad Max: Fury Road would be perfect. It would also provide easy pickings for any anti-piracy company seeking to harvest Aussie IP addresses since it’s still very popular.

Finally, it’s worth noting that Australians who use pirate streaming services will be completely immune to the company’s planned lawsuit campaign. However, Burke appears to be tackling that threat using a couple of popular tactics currently being deployed elsewhere by the movie industry.

“Google are not doing enough and could do a lot more,” he told The Australian (subscription)

Burke said that he was “shocked” at how easy it was to find streaming content using Google’s search so decided to carry out some research of his own at home. He said he found Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk with no difficulty but that came with a sting in the tail.

According to the movie boss, his computer was immediately infected with malware and began asking for his credit card details. He doesn’t say whether he put them in.

As clearly the world’s most unlucky would-be movie pirate, Burke deserves much sympathy. It’s also completely coincidental that Hollywood is now pushing a “danger” narrative to keep people away from pirate sites.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

On ISO standardization of blockchains

Post Syndicated from Robert Graham original http://blog.erratasec.com/2017/08/on-iso-standardization-of-blockchains.html

So ISO, the primary international standards organization, is seeking to standardize blockchain technologies. On the surface, this seems a reasonable idea, creating a common standard that everyone can interoperate with.

But it can be silly idea in practice. I mean, it should not be assumed that this is a good thing to do.

The value of official standards

You don’t need the official imprimatur of a government committee for something to be a “standard”. The Internet itself is a prime example of that.

In the 1980s, the ISO and the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) pursued competing standards for creating a world-wide “internet”. The IETF was an informal group of technologist that had essentially no official standing.

The ISO version of the Internet failed. Their process was to bring multiple stakeholders from business, government, and universities together in committees to debate competing interests. The result was something so horrible that it could never work in practice.

The IETF succeeded. It consisted of engineers just building things. Rather than officially “standardized”, these things were “described”, so that others knew enough to build their own version that interoperated. Once lots of different people built interoperating versions of something, then it became a “standard”.

In other words, the way the Internet came to be, standardization followed interoperability — it didn’t create interoperability.

In the end, the ISO gave up on their standards and adopted the IETF standards. The ISO brought no value to the development of Internet standards. Whether they ratified the Internet’s “TCP/IP” standard, ignored it, or condemned it, the Internet would exist today anyway, and a competing ISO-blessed internetwork would not.

The same question exists for blockchain technologies. Groups are off busy innovating quickly, creating their own standards. If the ISO blesses one, or creates its own, it’s unlikely to have any impact on interoperability.

Blockchain vs. chaining blocks

The excitement over blockchains is largely driven by people who don’t know the details, who don’t understand the difference between a blockchain like Bitcoin and the problem they are trying to solve.

Consider a record keeping system, especially public records. Storing them in a blockchain seems like a natural idea.

But in fact, it’s a terrible idea. A Bitcoin-style blockchain has a lot of features you don’t want, like “proof-of-work” signing. It is also missing necessary features, like bulk storage with redundancy (backups). Sure, Bitcoin has redundancy, but by brute force, storing the blockchain in thousands of places around the Internet. This is far from what a public records system would need, which would store a lot more data with far fewer backup copies (fewer than 10).

The only real overlap between Bitcoin and a public records system is a “signing chain”. But this is something that already existed before Bitcoin. It’s what Bitcoin blockchain was built on top of — it’s not the blockchain itself.

It’s like people discovering “cryptography” for the first time when they looked at Bitcoin, ignoring the thousand year history of crypto, and now every time they see a need for “crypto” they think “Bitcoin blockchain”.

Consensus and forking

The entire point of Bitcoin, the reason it was created, was as the antithesis to centralized standardization like ISO. Standardizing blockchains misses the entire point of their existence. The Bitcoin manifesto is that standardization comes from acclamation not proclamation, and that many different standards are preferable to a single one.

This is not just a theoretical idea but one built into Bitcoin’s blockchain technology. “Consensus” is achieved by the proof-of-work mechanism, so that those who do the most work are the ones that drive the consensus. When irreconcilable differences arise, the blockchain “forks”, with each side continuing on with their now non-interoperable blockchains. Such forks are not a sin, but part of the natural evolution.

We saw this with the recent fork of Bitcoin. There are now so many transactions that they exceed the size of blocks. One group chose a change to make transactions smaller. Another group chose a change to make block sizes larger.

It is this problem, of consensus, that is the innovation that Bitcoin created with blockchains, not the chain signing of public transaction records.

Ethereum

What “blockchain standardization” is going to mean in practice is not the blockchain itself, but trying to standardize the Ethereum version. What makes Ethereum different is the “smart contracts” programming language, which has financial institutions excited.

This is a bad idea because from a cybersecurity perspective, Ethereum’s programming language is flawed. Different bugs in “smart contracts” have led to multiple $100-million hacks, such as the infamous “DAO collapse”.

While it has interesting possibilities, we should be scared of standardizing Ethereum’s language before it works.

Conclusion

People who matter are too busy innovating, creating their own blockchain standards. There is little that the ISO can do to improve this. Their official imprimatur is not needed to foster innovation and interoperability — if they are consequential at anything, it’ll just be interfering.

БНТ и българското председателство на Съвета 2018

Post Syndicated from nellyo original https://nellyo.wordpress.com/2017/08/19/bnt-17/

На 14 август 2017 за обществено обсъждане е публикуван проект за Постановление на МС за създаване на Координационен борд по въпросите на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г. Обсъждането е с 14-дневен срок.

Според придружаващия доклад на Лиляна Павлова, министър, освен другото

в   заключителните разпоредби на проекта на акт се предвиждат промени в Постановление № 114 на Министерския съвет от 2016 г. за създаване на национален механизъм за координация на подготовката и провеждането на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г., отчитащи създаването на Министерството за Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз 2018 и поемането на функциите по подготовката и провеждането на Председателството от Националния център за Българското председателство.

Изрично са разписани задълженията на Българската национална телевизия, определена като домакин-разпространител на картина и звук от събитията по време на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г. с Решение № 165 на Министерския съвет от 2017 г.

Научаваме, следователно, че по-рано през 2017 г. БНТ е определена с решение на МС за домакин-разпространител на картина и звук от събитията по време на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г.

А в обсъжданото Постановление на Министерския съвет за създаване на Координационен борд  се предвижда да се внесат следните изменения, засягащи функциите на БНТ (досега според ПМС 114/2016 се създава юридическо лице –  Национален център по подготовката и провеждането на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г. към Министерския съвет, предвиден в чл.1, ал.7 на Постановлението, според проекта тази разпоредба се отменя):

“Заключителни разпоредби

§ 2. В Постановление № 114 на Министерския съвет от 2016 г. за създаване на национален механизъм за координация на подготовката и провеждането на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г. (обн., ДВ, бр. 36 от 2016 г.; изм. и доп., бр. 79 от 2016 г.; изм., бр. 12 и 39 от 2017 г.) се правят следните изменения и допълнения:

4. Член 13 се изменя така:
„Чл. 13. (1) Българската национална телевизия (БНТ), определена за домакин-разпространител на картина и звук от събитията по време на Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз през 2018 г. с Решение № 165 на Министерския съвет от 2017 г.:

1. участва в изграждането на международния пресцентър, като:
а) разработва изискванията за техническата инфраструктура на пресцентъра в НДК, свързани с осигуряване на аудиовизуален сигнал;
б) изгражда кабелната инфраструктура за аудиовизуален сигнал на територията на пресцентъра и паркинга за автомобилите за излъчване на живо;
в) осигурява и монтира оборудването за необходимите апаратни (MCR), 5 телевизионни и 8 радиокабини (с потенциална възможност телевизионните кабини да бъдат удвоени), 6 стационарни позиции на територията на Националния дворец на културата съгласно изискванията на Генералния секретариат на Съвета на Европейския съюз;
г) изгражда интранет връзка на територията на пресцентъра;
д) създава и поддържа информационен канал за журналисти чрез мониторите в пресцентъра
е) осигурява необходимите технически екипи за поддръжка на оборудването.

2. отговаря за аудиовизуалното отразяване на Председателството, като :
а) осигурява аудиовизуално покритие на събитията от календара на Председателството категория А и С и други официални събития, заявени от Министерството за Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз 2018, и излъчва сигнала в реално време на територията на пресцентъра;
б) изработва видеоматериали от събитията в минимум две резолюции за портала на Председателството;
в) изработва документален филм за Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз;
г) създава седмична рубрика за Председателството;
д) резервира и заплаща сателитните канали за живо предаване към ЕbS и реализира излъчванията;
е) участва в координационни срещи с представители на институциите във връзка с Председателството.

3. управлява услугите за телевизионни и радиожурналисти, предлагани от пресцентъра, като:
а) изработва и публикува ценоразпис на услугите;
б) осъществява комуникацията с телевизиите и радиата преди събитието, приема и координира заявките за ползване на телевизионни, радиокабини, стенд-ъпи с оператор и други услуги;
в) оказва съдействие при формирането на пуловете от оператори и фоторепортери;
г) осигурява необходимите екипи за управление на услугите.

4. има право да получи от Министерството за Българското председателство на Съвета на Европейския съюз 2018 информация за: календара на събитията от категории А и С и други официални събития, които е длъжна да отрази; местата за всяко събитие (точките в Националния дворец на културата), от които трябва да има телевизионен сигнал; броя и разположението на телевизионните и радиокабините, стенд-ъпите и паркинга за SNG; броя и местоположението на мониторите на територията на пресцентъра, по които ще се подава картина; списъка и времетраенето на събитията, които ще се излъчват на живо чрез Europe by Satellite; времевия график и резолюцията, в които видеоматериалите, трябва да бъдат качвани на портала на Председателството;

5. има право да ползва посочени от нея помещения с работни места на територията на пресцентъра за изпълнение на задълженията си;
6. има право да получава съдействие от екипа на пресцентъра и техническите екипи на “НДК – Конгресен център София” – ЕАД при възникнала необходимост;
7. има право да получава оперативна информация от екипа на пресцентъра за промените в програмата на всяко събитие.

(2) БНТ предоставя със споразумение безвъзмездно на Министерския съвет изключителните права за използване на аудио-визуалните произведения, създадени от БНТ в качеството й на домакин-разпространител на картина и звук, и филма за Председателството по всички, предвидени в Закона за авторското право и сродните му права начини за максимално допустимия срок, включително и правото за преотстъпване при последващо излъчване.”

Както е видно, БНТ ще има право да получава информация  – и задължение да изработва, осигурява, изгражда, създава, управлява и пр., както и  да предоставя безвъзмездно на МС изключителни права за (каталог) произведения.

Поне в обнародваните сега документи няма индикации каква е връзката на тези  задачи с бюджетната субсидия, която БНТ получава според Закона за държавния бюджет. В доклада на министър Павлова се казва, че

Предложеният проект на акт не оказва пряко и/или косвено въздействие върху държавния бюджет, поради което е приложена финансова обосновка съгласно приложение № 2.2 към чл. 35, ал. 1, т. 4, буква „б“ от Устройствения правилник на Министерския съвет и на неговата администрация (това е приложението в случаи, когато   проектът  няма да доведе до пряко и/или косвено въздействие върху държавния бюджет).

Щом казват.

Filed under: BG Law Making, BG Media, Media Law

Rightscorp Bleeds Another Million, Borrows $200K From Customer BMG

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/rightscorp-bleeds-another-million-borrows-200k-from-customer-bmg-170819/

Anti-piracy outfit Rightscorp is one of the many companies trying to turn Internet piracy into profit. The company has a somewhat novel approach but has difficulty balancing the books.

Essentially, Rightscorp operates like other so-called copyright-trolling operations, in that it monitors alleged offenders on BitTorrent networks, tracks them to their ISPs, then attempts to extract a cash settlement. Rightscorp does this by sending DMCA notices with settlement agreements attached, in the hope that at-this-point-anonymous Internet users break cover in panic. This can lead to a $20 or $30 ‘fine’ or in some cases dozens of multiples of that.

But despite settling hundreds of thousands of these cases, profit has thus far proven elusive, with the company hemorrhaging millions in losses. The company has just filed its results for the first half of 2017 and they contain more bad news.

In the six months ended June 2017, revenues obtained from copyright settlements reached just $138,514, that’s 35% down on the $214,326 generated in the same period last year. However, the company did manage to book $148,332 in “consulting revenue” in the first half of this year, a business area that generated no revenue in 2016.

Overall then, total revenue for the six month period was $286,846 – up from $214,326 last year. While that’s a better picture in its own right, Rightscorp has a lot of costs attached to its business.

After paying out $69,257 to copyright holders and absorbing $1,190,696 in general and administrative costs, among other things, the company’s total operating expenses topped out at $1,296,127 for the first six months of the year.

To make a long story short, the company made a net loss of $1,068,422, which was more than the $995,265 loss it made last year and despite improved revenues. The company ended June with just $1,725 in cash.

“These factors raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern within one year after the date that the financial statements are issued,” the company’s latest statement reads.

This hanging-by-a-thread narrative has followed Rightscorp for the past few years but there’s information in the latest accounts which indicates how bad things were at the start of the year.

In January 2016, Rightscorp and several copyright holders, including Hollywood studio Warner Bros, agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit over intimidating robo-calls that were made to alleged infringers. The defendants agreed to set aside $450,000 to cover the costs, and it appears that Rightscorp was liable for at least $200,000 of that.

Rightscorp hasn’t exactly been flush with cash, so it was interesting to read that its main consumer piracy settlement client, music publisher BMG, actually stepped in to pay off the class-action settlement.

“At December 31, 2016, the Company had accrued $200,000 related to the settlement of a class action complaint. On January 7, 2017, BMG Rights Management (US) LLC (“BMG”) advanced the Company $200,000, which was used to pay off the settlement. The advance from BMG is to be applied to future billings from the Company to BMG for consulting services,” Rightscorp’s filing reads.

With Rightscorp’s future BMG revenue now being gobbled up by what appears to be loan repayments, it becomes difficult to see how the anti-piracy outfit can make enough money to pay off the $200,000 debt. However, its filing notes that on July 21, 2017, the company issued “an aggregate of 10,000,000 shares of common stock to an investor for a purchase price of $200,000.” While that amount matches the BMG debt, the filing doesn’t reveal who the investor is.

The filing also reveals that on July 31, Rightscorp entered into two agreements to provide services “to a holder of multiple copyrights.” The copyright holder isn’t named, but the deal reveals that it’s in Rightscorp’s best interests to get immediate payment from people to whom it sends cash settlement demands.

“[Rightscorp] will receive 50% of all gross proceeds of any settlement revenue received by the Client from pre-lawsuit ‘advisory notices,’ and 37.5% of all gross proceeds received by the Client from ‘final warning’ notices sent immediately prior to a lawsuit,” the filing notes.

Also of interest is that Rightscorp has offered not to work with any of the copyright holders’ direct competitors, providing certain thresholds are met – $10,000 revenue in the first month to $100,000 after 12 months. But there’s more to the deal.

Rightscorp will also provide a number of services to this client including detecting and verifying copyright works on P2P networks, providing information about infringers, plus reporting, litigation support, and copyright protection advisory services.

For this, Rightscorp will earn $10,000 for the first three months, rising to $85,000 per month after 16 months, valuable revenue for a company fighting for its life.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Porn Producer Says He’ll Prove That AMC TV Exec is a BitTorrent Pirate

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/porn-producer-says-hell-prove-that-amc-tv-exec-is-a-bittorrent-pirate-170818/

When people are found sharing copyrighted pornographic content online in the United States, there’s always a chance that an angry studio will attempt to track down the perpertrator in pursuit of a cash settlement.

That’s what adult studio Flava Works did recently, after finding its content being shared without permission on a number of gay-focused torrent sites. It’s now clear that their target was Marc Juris, President & General Manager of AMC-owned WE tv. Until this week, however, that information was secret.

As detailed in our report yesterday, Flava Works contacted Juris with an offer of around $97,000 to settle the case before trial. And, crucially, before Juris was publicly named in a lawsuit. If Juris decided not to pay, that amount would increase significantly, Flava Works CEO Phillip Bleicher told him at the time.

Not only did Juris not pay, he actually went on the offensive, filing a ‘John Doe’ complaint in a California district court which accused Flava Works of extortion and blackmail. It’s possible that Juris felt that this would cause Flava Works to back off but in fact, it had quite the opposite effect.

In a complaint filed this week in an Illinois district court, Flava Works named Juris and accused him of a broad range of copyright infringement offenses.

The complaint alleges that Juris was a signed-up member of Flava Works’ network of websites, from where he downloaded pornographic content as his subscription allowed. However, it’s claimed that Juris then uploaded this material elsewhere, in breach of copyright law.

“Defendant downloaded copyrighted videos of Flava Works as part of his paid memberships and, in violation of the terms and conditions of the paid sites, posted and distributed the aforesaid videos on other websites, including websites with peer to peer sharing and torrents technology,” the complaint reads.

“As a result of Defendant’ conduct, third parties were able to download the copyrighted videos, without permission of Flava Works.”

In addition to demanding injunctions against Juris, Flava Works asks the court for a judgment in its favor amounting to a cool $1.2m, more than twelve times the amount it was initially prepared to settle for. It’s a huge amount, but according to CEO Phillip Bleicher, it’s what his company is owed, despite Juris being a former customer.

“Juris was a member of various Flava Works websites at various times dating back to 2006. He is no longer a member and his login info has been blocked by us to prevent him from re-joining,” Bleicher informs TF.

“We allow full downloads, although each download a person performs, it tags the video with a hidden code that identifies who the user was that downloaded it and their IP info and date / time.”

We asked Bleicher how he can be sure that the content downloaded from Flava Works and re-uploaded elsewhere was actually uploaded by Juris. Fine details weren’t provided but he’s insistent that the company’s evidence holds up.

“We identified him directly, this was done by cross referencing all his IP logins with Flava Works, his email addresses he used and his usernames. We can confirm that he is/was a member of Gay-Torrents.org and Gayheaven.org. We also believe (we will find out in discovery) that he is a member of a Russian file sharing site called GayTorrent.Ru,” he says.

While the technicalities of who downloaded and shared what will be something for the court to decide, there’s still Juris’ allegations that Bleicher used extortion-like practices to get him to settle and used his relative fame against him. Bleicher says that’s not how things played out.

“[Juris] hired an attorney and they agreed to settle out of court. But then we saw him still accessing the file sharing sites (one site shows a user’s last login) and we were waiting on the settlement agreement to be drafted up by his attorney,” he explains.

“When he kept pushing the date of when we would see an agreement back we gave him a final deadline and said that after this date we would sue [him] and with all lawsuits – we make a press release.”

Bleicher says at this point Juris replaced his legal team and hired lawyer Mark Geragos, who Bleicher says tried to “bully” him, warning him of potential criminal offenses.

“Your threats in the last couple months to ‘expose’ Mr. Juris knowing he is a high profile individual, i.e., today you threatened to issue a press release, to induce him into wiring you close to $100,000 is outright extortion and subject to criminal prosecution,” Geragos wrote.

“I suggest you direct your attention to various statutes which specifically criminalize your conduct in the various jurisdictions where you have threatened suit.”

Interestingly, Geragos then went on to suggest that the lawsuit may ultimately backfire, since going public might affect Flava Works’ reputation in the gay market.

“With respect to Mr. Juris, your actions have been nothing but extortion and we reject your attempts and will vigorously pursue all available remedies against you,” Geragos’ email reads.

“We intend to use the platform you have provided to raise awareness in the LGBTQ community of this new form of digital extortion that you promote.”

But Bleicher, it seems, is up for a fight.

“Marc knows what he did and enjoyed downloading our videos and sharing them and those of videos of other studios, but now he has been caught,” he told the lawyer.

“This is the kind of case I would like to take all the way to trial, win or lose. It shows
people that want to steal our copyrighted videos that we aggressively protect our intellectual property.”

But to the tune of $1.2m? Apparently so.

“We could get up to $150,000 per infringement – we have solid proof of eight full videos – not to mention we have caught [Juris] downloading many other studios’ videos too – I think – but not sure – the number was over 75,” Bleicher told TF.

It’s quite rare for this kind of dispute to play out in public, especially considering Juris’ profile and occupation. Only time will tell if this will ultimately end in a settlement, but Bleicher and Juris seemed determined at this stage to stand by their ground and fight this out in court.

Complaint (pdf)

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Unfixable Automobile Computer Security Vulnerability

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2017/08/unfixable_autom.html

There is an unpatchable vulnerability that affects most modern cars. It’s buried in the Controller Area Network (CAN):

Researchers say this flaw is not a vulnerability in the classic meaning of the word. This is because the flaw is more of a CAN standard design choice that makes it unpatchable.

Patching the issue means changing how the CAN standard works at its lowest levels. Researchers say car manufacturers can only mitigate the vulnerability via specific network countermeasures, but cannot eliminate it entirely.

Details on how the attack works are here:

The CAN messages, including errors, are called “frames.” Our attack focuses on how CAN handles errors. Errors arise when a device reads values that do not correspond to the original expected value on a frame. When a device detects such an event, it writes an error message onto the CAN bus in order to “recall” the errant frame and notify the other devices to entirely ignore the recalled frame. This mishap is very common and is usually due to natural causes, a transient malfunction, or simply by too many systems and modules trying to send frames through the CAN at the same time.

If a device sends out too many errors, then­ — as CAN standards dictate — ­it goes into a so-called Bus Off state, where it is cut off from the CAN and prevented from reading and/or writing any data onto the CAN. This feature is helpful in isolating clearly malfunctioning devices and stops them from triggering the other modules/systems on the CAN.

This is the exact feature that our attack abuses. Our attack triggers this particular feature by inducing enough errors such that a targeted device or system on the CAN is made to go into the Bus Off state, and thus rendered inert/inoperable. This, in turn, can drastically affect the car’s performance to the point that it becomes dangerous and even fatal, especially when essential systems like the airbag system or the antilock braking system are deactivated. All it takes is a specially-crafted attack device, introduced to the car’s CAN through local access, and the reuse of frames already circulating in the CAN rather than injecting new ones (as previous attacks in this manner have done).

Slashdot thread.

timeShift(GrafanaBuzz, 1w) Issue 9

Post Syndicated from Blogs on Grafana Labs Blog original https://grafana.com/blog/2017/08/18/timeshiftgrafanabuzz-1w-issue-9/

Matt from Grafana NYC spent the week visiting Stockholm to focus on v5.0 with Torkel. Despite warnings otherwise, the weather has been beautiful, making a nice backdrop for many UX discussions. Very, very excited to soon show what we’ve been working on.


Latest Release

Grafana v4.4.3 is Available for download

To see the full changelog, head over to our community site.


Grafana <3 Prometheus

Our very own Carl Bergquist spoke at PromCon 2017 yesterday in Munich, highlighting recent Grafana features and enhancements.

We also used the opportunity to debut our coming Prometheus query editor with a load of new functionality; seems the community approves,
in fact this is our most popular tweet ever!


From the Blogosphere

  • Wikimedia Metrics: A tweet this week reminded us of the public metrics Wikimedia exposes using Grafana. Exploring the performance stats in real time for the 5th mot popular site on the internet is pretty fun.

  • Creating Grafana Annotations with InfluxDB: Nice short article by Max Chadwick showing how to quickly add InfluxDB as a source for Grafana annotations.


This week’s MVC (Most Valuable Contributor)

This week’s MVC highlights what is great about Open Source software.

ericslaw
ericslaw submitted his first PR to a public project this past week. Speaking from personal experience, submitting a PR can feel daunting and and we were lucky that he chose Grafana. Even the smallest contributions, like Eric fixing a bogus link within our templating has big impact.


Tweet of the Week

We scour Twitter each week to find an interesting/beautiful dashboard and show it off! #monitoringLove

Seems the excitement about Prometheus and Grafana has also caught the attention of a certain superhero.



What do you think?

That wraps up another issue. Hope you’re finding these roundups valuable. Let us know how we’re doing! Submit a comment on this article below, or post something at our community forum. Help us make this better!

Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and join the Grafana Labs community.

Cloudflare Kicking ‘Daily Stormer’ is Bad News For Pirate Sites

Post Syndicated from Ernesto original https://torrentfreak.com/cloudflare-kicking-daily-stormer-is-bad-news-for-pirate-sites-170817/

“I woke up this morning in a bad mood and decided to kick them off the Internet.”

Those are the words of Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince, who decided to terminate the account of controversial Neo-Nazi site Daily Stormer.

Bam. Gone. At least for a while.

Although many people are happy to see the site go offline, the decision is not without consequence. It goes directly against what many saw as the core values of the company.

For years on end, Cloudflare has been asked to remove terrorist propaganda, pirate sites, and other possibly unacceptable content. Each time, Cloudflare replied that it doesn’t take action without a court order. No exceptions.

“Even if it were able to, Cloudfare does not monitor, evaluate, judge or store content appearing on a third party website,” the company wrote just a few weeks ago, in its whitepaper on intermediary liability.

“We’re the plumbers of the internet. We make the pipes work but it’s not right for us to inspect what is or isn’t going through the pipes,” Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince himself said not too long ago.

“If companies like ours or ISPs start censoring there would be an uproar. It would lead us down a path of internet censors and controls akin to a country like China,” he added.

The same arguments were repeated in different contexts, over and over.

This strong position was also one of the reasons why Cloudflare was dragged into various copyright infringement court cases. In these cases, the company repeatedly stressed that removing a site from Cloudflare’s service would not make infringing content disappear.

Pirate sites would just require a simple DNS reconfiguration to continue their operation, after all.

“[T]here are no measures of any kind that CloudFlare could take to prevent this alleged infringement, because the termination of CloudFlare’s CDN services would have no impact on the existence and ability of these allegedly infringing websites to continue to operate,” it said.

That comment looks rather misplaced now that the CEO of the same company has decided to “kick” a website “off the Internet” after an emotional, but deliberate, decision.

Taking a page from Cloudflare’s (old) playbook we’re not going to make any judgments here. Just search Twitter or any social media site and you’ll see plenty of opinions, both for and against the company’s actions.

We do have a prediction though. During the months and years to come, Cloudflare is likely to be dragged into many more copyright lawsuits, and when they are, their counterparts are going to bring up Cloudflare’s voluntary decision to kick a website off the Internet.

Unless Cloudflare suddenly decides to pull all pirate sites from its service tomorrow, of course.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Всички гледни точки и парадоксът на толерантността

Post Syndicated from nellyo original https://nellyo.wordpress.com/2017/08/17/all_sides/

Какво значи  всички гледни точки да са представени в медиите?

Означава ли медийният плурализъм равностойно представяне на страните с различни позиции в едно събитие? Съвсем неотдавна медиите отразяваха равностойно протести и контрапротести, все едно за каква кауза и с чия подкрепа – и винаги се аргументираха с плурализма на гледните точки. Така е и досега: Динко и Перата щяха да си останат малко познати, ако не беше телевизията.

Но конкретен  повод за размисъл са събитията в Шарлотсвил, САЩ, и реакцията на президента Тръмп.

Според Тръмп:

отговорността за случилото се е и на двете страни.  Имаше група от едната страна и група от другата и те се нападнаха с бухалки – едната от страните, можете да ги наречете “лявото”, нападна другата група.

Различната оценка изрази Тереза Мей:

Не виждам знак за равенство между онези, които изповядват фашистки възгледи, и онези, които им се противопоставят. Мисля, че е важно всички, които заемат отговорни позиции, да осъдят крайно десните възгледи

Това различие прави впечатление и на американски, и на български медии.

С думите на  известен актьор и телевизионен водещ в САЩ,

Ние сме разделени. ОК. Винаги сме били разделени по някои от  големите политически въпроси. Всичко е наред. Докато се отнасяме един към друг с уважение и не забравяме, че в крайна сметка сме всички американци, ще се оправим.

Но проблемът е … говоря за тези хора, които  – щом спечели Тръмп – смятат така: “Не е нужно да се преструваме, че вече не сме расисти! Ние вече не трябва да се преструваме! Можем отново да бъдем расисти! ”

Не, не! Ако сте един от тези хора, моля, трябва отново да започнете да се преструвате. Трябва отново да започнете да се преструвате.

Ако говорим за България – винаги сме били разделени по някои от големите въпроси. Но кои са двете страни? Равностойни ли са    – и равностойни ли трябва да бъдат за медиите?

Дори не става дума само за плурализъм, а за свободата на изразяване: дали  екстремните версии на белия национализъм и явния расизъм и фашизъм са защитено слово? Свободно слово – или реална заплаха за свободното слово под прикритието на свободата на изразяване?

Коментирайки Alt-Right в САЩ,  медиите напомнят за парадокса на толерантността на Попър: ако има неограничена  толерантност, дори към нетолерантните, няма да може да се защити обществото на толерантните – и то ще си отиде, заедно с толерантността.

 

Filed under: BG Content, BG Media, Media Law

“Public Figure” Threatened With Exposure Over Gay Piracy ‘Fine’

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/public-figure-threatened-with-exposure-over-gay-piracy-fine-170817/

Flava Works is an Illinois-based company specializing in adult material featuring black and Latino men. It operates an aggressive anti-piracy strategy which has resulted in some large damages claims in the past.

Now, however, the company has found itself targeted by a lawsuit filed by one of its alleged victims. Filed in a California district court by an unnamed individual, it accuses Flava Works of shocking behavior relating to a claim of alleged piracy.

According to the lawsuit, ‘John Doe’ received a letter in early June from Flava Works CEO Phillip Bleicher, accusing him of Internet piracy. Titled “Settlement Demand and Cease and Desist”, the letter got straight to the point.

“Flava Works is aware that you have been ‘pirating’ the content from its website(s) for your own personal financial benefit,” the letter read.

[Update: ‘John Doe’ has now been identified as Marc Juris, President & General Manager of AMC-owned WE tv. All references to John Doe below refer to Juris. See note at footer]

As is often the case with such claims, Flava Works offered to settle with John Doe for a cash fee. However, instead of the few hundred or thousand dollars usually seen in such cases, the initial settlement amount was an astronomical $97,000. But that wasn’t all.

According to John Doe, Bleicher warned that unless the money was paid in ten days, Flava Works “would initiate litigation against [John Doe], publically accusing him of being a consumer and pirate of copyrighted gay adult entertainment.”

Amping up the pressure, Bleicher then warned that after the ten-day deadline had passed, the settlement amount of $97,000 would be withdrawn and replaced with a new amount – $525,000.

The lawsuit alleges that Bleicher followed up with more emails in which he indicated that there was still time to settle the matter “one on one” since the case hadn’t been assigned to an attorney. However, he warned John Doe that time was running out and that public exposure via a lawsuit would be the next step.

While these kinds of tactics are nothing new in copyright infringement cases, the amounts of money involved are huge, indicating something special at play. Indeed, it transpires that John Doe is a public figure in the entertainment industry and the suggestion is that Flava Works’ assessment of his “wealth and profile” means he can pay these large sums.

According to the suit, on July 6, 2017, Bleicher sent another email to John Doe which “alluded to [his] high-profile status and to the potential publicity that a lawsuit would bring.” The email went as far as threatening an imminent Flava Works press release, announcing that a public figure, who would be named, was being sued for pirating gay adult content.

Flava Works alleges that John Doe uploaded its videos to various BitTorrent sites and forums, but John Doe vigorously denies the accusations, noting that the ‘evidence’ presented by Flava Works fails to back up its claims.

“The materials do not reveal or expose infringement of any sort. [Flava Works’] real purpose in sending this ‘proof’ was to demonstrate just how humiliating it would be to defend against Flava Works’ scurrilous charges,” John Doe’s lawsuit notes.

“[Flava Works’] materials consist largely of screen shots of extremely graphic images of pornography, which [Flava Works] implies that [John Doe] has viewed — but which are completely irrelevant given that they are not Flava Works content. Nevertheless, Bleicher assured [John Doe] that these materials would all be included in a publicly filed lawsuit if he refused to accede to [Flava Works’] payment demands.”

From his lawsuit (pdf) it’s clear that John Doe is in no mood to pay Flava Works large sums of cash and he’s aggressively on the attack, describing the company’s demands as “criminal extortion.”

He concludes with a request for a declaration that he has not infringed Flava Works’ copyrights, while demanding attorneys’ fees and further relief to be determined by the court.

The big question now is whether Flava Works will follow through with its threats to exposure the entertainer, or whether it will drift back into the shadows to fight another day. Definitely one to watch.

Update: Flava Works has now followed through on its threat to sue Juris. A complaint filed iat an Illinois court accuses the TV executive of uploading Flava Works titles to several gay-focused torrent sites in breach of copyright. It demands $1.2m in damages.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Showtime Seeks Injunction to Stop Mayweather v McGregor Piracy

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/showtime-seeks-injunction-to-stop-mayweather-v-mcgregor-piracy-170816/

It’s the fight that few believed would become reality but on August 26, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Floyd Mayweather Jr. will duke it out with UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor.

Despite being labeled a freak show by boxing purists, it is set to become the biggest combat sports event of all time. Mayweather, undefeated in his professional career, will face brash Irishman McGregor, who has gained a reputation for accepting fights with anyone – as long as there’s a lot of money involved. Big money is definitely the theme of the Mayweather bout.

Dubbed “The Money Fight”, some predict it could pull in a billion dollars, with McGregor pocketing $100m and Mayweather almost certainly more. Many of those lucky enough to gain entrance on the night will have spent thousands on their tickets but for the millions watching around the world….iiiiiiiit’s Showtimmme….with hefty PPV prices attached.

Of course, not everyone will be handing over $89.95 to $99.99 to watch the event officially on Showtime. Large numbers will turn to the many hundreds of websites set to stream the fight for free online, which has the potential to reduce revenues for all involved. With that in mind, Showtime Networks has filed a lawsuit in California which attempts to preemptively tackle this piracy threat.

The suit targets a number of John Does said to be behind a network of dozens of sites planning to stream the fight online for free. Defendant 1, using the alias “Kopa Mayweather”, is allegedly the operator of LiveStreamHDQ, a site that Showtime has grappled with previously.

“Plaintiff has had extensive experience trying to prevent live streaming websites from engaging in the unauthorized reproduction and distribution of Plaintiff’s copyrighted works in the past,” the lawsuit reads.

“In addition to bringing litigation, this experience includes sending cease and desist demands to LiveStreamHDQ in response to its unauthorized live streaming of the record-breaking fight between Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.”

Showtime says that LiveStreamHDQ is involved in the operations of at least 41 other sites that have been set up to specifically target people seeking to watch the fight without paying. Each site uses a .US ccTLD domain name.

Sample of the sites targeted by the lawsuit

Showtime informs the court that the registrant email and IP addresses of the domains overlap, which provides further proof that they’re all part of the same operation. The TV network also highlights various statements on the sites in question which demonstrate intent to show the fight without permission, including the highly dubious “Watch From Here Mayweather vs Mcgregor Live with 4k Display.”

In addition, the lawsuit is highly critical of efforts by the sites’ operator(s) to stuff the pages with fight-related keywords in order to draw in as much search engine traffic as they can.

“Plaintiff alleges that Defendants have engaged in such keyword stuffing as a form of search engine optimization in an effort to attract as much web traffic as possible in the form of Internet users searching for a way to access a live stream of the Fight,” it reads.

While site operators are expected to engage in such behavior, Showtime says that these SEO efforts have been particularly successful, obtaining high-ranking positions in major search engines for the would-be pirate sites.

For instance, Showtime says that a Google search for “Mayweather McGregor Live” results in four of the target websites appearing in the first 100 results, i.e the first 10 pages. Interestingly, however, to get that result searchers would need to put the search in quotes as shown above, since a plain search fails to turn anything up in hundreds of results.

At this stage, the important thing to note is that none of the sites are currently carrying links to the fight, because the fight is yet to happen. Nevertheless, Showtime is convinced that come fight night, all of the target websites will be populated with pirate links, accessible for free or after paying a fee. This needs to be stopped, it argues.

“Defendants’ anticipated unlawful distribution will impair the marketability and profitability of the Coverage, and interfere with Plaintiff’s own authorized distribution of the Coverage, because Defendants will provide consumers with an opportunity to view the Coverage in its entirety for free, rather than paying for the Coverage provided through Plaintiff’s authorized channels.

“This is especially true where, as here, the work at issue is live coverage of a one-time live sporting event whose outcome is unknown,” the network writes.

Showtime informs the court that it made efforts to contact the sites in question but had just a single response from an individual who claimed to be sports blogger who doesn’t offer streaming services. The undertone is one of disbelief.

In closing, Showtime demands a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction, and permanent injunction, prohibiting the defendants from making the fight available in any way, and/or “forming new entities” in order to circumvent any subsequent court order. Compensation for suspected damages is also requested.

Showtime previously applied for and obtained a similar injunction to cover the (hugely disappointing) Mayweather v Pacquiao fight in 2015. In that case, websites were ordered to be taken down on the day before the fight.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

ВАС, тричленен състав: Отнемането на лицензията на БиБиТи незаконно

Post Syndicated from nellyo original https://nellyo.wordpress.com/2017/08/16/cem_bbt-2/

Както вече е известно, през септември 2016 г. Съветът за електронни медии отне лицензиите за телевизионна дейност  на две търговски дружества  – ТВ Седем и Балкан Българска Телевизия.

На 7 август 2017 г.  петчленен състав на ВАС потвърди отнемането на лицензиите на ТВ Седем за две програми. Решението е окончателно.

На 14 август 2017 г. тричленен състав на ВАС с Решение 10470 се произнася и по решението на СЕМ за лицензията на БиБиТи  ЕАД  –  търговски доставчик на медийни услуги, притежаващ Индивидуална лицензия № ЛРР-01-3-016-01 за доставяне на аудио-визуална услуга с наименование  News 7.

За правното основание, възприето от СЕМ –  неверни декларации  – съдът пише следното:

В конкретния случай повече от очевидно е, че процесният казус не третира отказ за издаване на лицензия,а за прекратяването на вече издадена такава.Прекратяване и отнемането на лицензията, като отделни регулаторни правомощия на СЕМ са обект на регламентация в разпоредбите на чл. 121 и 122 ЗРТ, и в този смисъл е налице ясна и конкретна нормативна регулация на двете хипотези и те не следва да се извличат по тълкувателен път. Нито една от двете разпоредби не предвижда откриване на производство по несъстоятелност като основание за отнемане или прекратяване на вече издадена лицензия за доставяне на аудио-визуална услуга.

 
Съвсем логично

Настъпилите в последствие обстоятелства в правната сфера на лицензианта,не могат да бъдат приравнени на невярно деклариране към момента на кандидатстването за лицензията. Декларацията представлява документ с официален характер, който удостоверява факти и обстоятелства за предходен или настоящият момент. Чл.111, ал. 1, т.6 ЗРТ изрично предвижда кандидатите да декларират, ”че не са налице” а не, че няма да настъпят определени обстоятелства. Декларацията за наличие на конкретни обстоятелства няма характер на обещание занапред.

Съдът

ОТМЕНЯ Решение № РД-05-143 от 13.09.2016г. на Съвета за електронни медии с което се отнема и прекратява индивидуална лицензия № ЛЛР-01-3-016-01 за доставяне на аудио-визуална услуга с наименование News 7, издадена на Балкан Българска Телевизия ЕАД.

РЕШЕНИЕТО подлежи на обжалване пред петчленен състав на Върховния административен съд в 14-дневен срок от деня на съобщаването му на страните по делото, че е изготвено.

В някои медии неточно са приели, че решението за ТВ Седем, което наистина е окончателно, се отнася и до БиБиТи.

Filed under: BG Law Making, BG Media, BG Regulator, Media Law

Spinrilla Refuses to Share Its Source Code With the RIAA

Post Syndicated from Ernesto original https://torrentfreak.com/spinrilla-refuses-to-share-its-source-code-with-the-riaa-170815/

Earlier this year, a group of well-known labels targeted Spinrilla, a popular hip-hop mixtape site and accompanying app with millions of users.

The coalition of record labels including Sony Music, Warner Bros. Records, and Universal Music Group, filed a lawsuit accusing the service of alleged copyright infringements.

Both sides have started the discovery process and recently asked the court to rule on several unresolved matters. The parties begin with their statements of facts, clearly from opposite angles.

The RIAA remains confident that the mixtape site is ripping off music creators and wants its operators to be held accountable.

“Since Spinrilla launched, Defendants have facilitated millions of unauthorized downloads and streams of thousands of Plaintiffs’ sound recordings without Plaintiffs’ permission,” RIAA writes, complaining about “rampant” infringement on the site.

However, Spinrilla itself believes that the claims are overblown. The company points out that the RIAA’s complaint only lists a tiny fraction of all the songs uploaded by its users. These somehow slipped through its Audible Magic anti-piracy filter.

Where the RIAA paints a picture of rampant copyright infringement, the mixtape site stresses that the record labels are complaining about less than 0.001% of all the tracks they ever published.

“From 2013 to the present, Spinrilla users have uploaded about 1 million songs to Spinrilla’s servers and Spinrilla published about 850,000 of those. Plaintiffs are complaining that 210 of those songs are owned by them and published on Spinrilla without permission,” Spinrilla’s lawyers write.

“That means that Plaintiffs make no claim to 99.9998% of the songs on Spinrilla. Plaintiffs’ shouting of ‘rampant infringement on Spinrilla’, an accusation that Spinrilla was designed to allow easy and open access to infringing material, and assertion that ‘Defendants have facilitated millions of unauthorized downloads’ of those 210 songs is untrue – it is nothing more than a wish and a dream.”

The company reiterates that it’s a platform for independent musicians and that it doesn’t want to feature the Eminem’s and Bieber’s of this world, especially not without permission.

As for the discovery process, there are still several outstanding issues they need the Court’s advice on. Spinrilla has thus far produced 12,000 pages of documents and answered all RIAA interrogatories, but refuses to hand over certain information, including its source code.

According to Spinrilla, there is no reason for the RIAA to have access to its “crown jewel.”

“The source code is the crown jewel of any software based business, including Spinrilla. Even worse, Plaintiffs want an ‘executable’ version of Spinrilla’s source code, which would literally enable them to replicate Spinrilla’s entire website. Any Plaintiff could, in hours, delete all references to ‘Spinrilla,’ add its own brand and launch Spinrilla’s exact website.

“If we sued YouTube for hosting 210 infringing videos, would I be entitled to the source code for YouTube? There is simply no justification for Spinrilla sharing its source code with Plaintiffs,” Spinrilla adds.

The RIAA, on the other hand, argues that the source code will provide insight into several critical issues, including Spinrilla’s knowledge about infringing activity and its ability to terminate repeat copyright infringers.

In addition to the source code, the RIAA has also requested detailed information about the site’s users, including their download and streaming history. This request is too broad, the mixtape site argues, and has offered to provide information on the uploaders of the 210 infringing tracks instead.

It’s clear that the RIAA and Spinrilla disagree on various fronts and it will be up to the court to decide what information must be handed over. So far, however, the language used clearly shows that both parties are far from reaching some kind of compromise.

The first joint discovery statement is available in full here (pdf).

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Roku Gets Tough on Pirate Channels, Warns Users

Post Syndicated from Ernesto original https://torrentfreak.com/roku-gets-tough-on-pirate-channels-warns-users-170815/

In recent years it has become much easier to stream movies and TV-shows over the Internet.

Legal services such as Netflix and HBO are flourishing, but there’s also a darker side to this streaming epidemic. Millions of people are streaming from unauthorized sources, often paired with perfectly legal streaming platforms and devices.

Hollywood insiders have dubbed this trend “Piracy 3.0” are actively working with stakeholders to address the threat. One of the companies rightsholders are working with is Roku, known for its easy-to-use media players.

Earlier this year Roku was harshly confronted with this new piracy crackdown when a Mexican court ordered local retailers to take its media player off the shelves. While this legal battle isn’t over yet, it was clear to Roku that misuse of its platform wasn’t without consequences.

While Roku never permitted any infringing content, it appears that the company has recently made some adjustments to better deal with the problem, or at least clarify its stance.

Pirate content generally doesn’t show up in the official Roku Channel Store but is directly loaded onto the device through third-party “private” channels. A few weeks ago, Roku renamed these “private” channels to “non-certified” channels, while making it very clear that copyright infringement is not allowed.

A “WARNING!” message that pops up during the installation of these third-party channels stresses that Roku has no control over the content. In addition, the company notes that these channels may be removed if it links to copyright infringing content.

Roku Warning

“By continuing, you acknowledge you are accessing a non-certified channel that may include content that is offensive or inappropriate for some audiences,” Roku’s warning reads.

“Moreover, if Roku determines that this channel violates copyright, contains illegal content, or otherwise violates Roku’s terms and conditions, then ROKU MAY REMOVE THIS CHANNEL WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE.”

TorrentFreak reached out to Roku to find out how they plan to enforce this policy, but we have yet to hear back. According to Cord Cutters News, several piracy channels have already been removed recently, with other developers opting to leave the platform.

Roku’s General Counsel Steve Kay previously informed us that the company is taking the piracy problem seriously. Together with various stakeholders, they are working hard to address the problem.

“We actively work to prevent third-parties from using our platform to distribute copyright infringing content. Moreover, we have been actively working with other industry stakeholders on a wide range of anti-piracy initiatives,” Kay said.

Roku is not the only platform dealing with the piracy epidemic, the popular media player software Kodi is in the same boat. Kodi has also taken an active anti-piracy stance but they’re not banning any add-ons. They believe it would be pointless due to the open source nature of their software.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Wirzenius: Retiring Obnam

Post Syndicated from corbet original https://lwn.net/Articles/730986/rss

Lars Wirzenius announces
that he is ending development of the Obnam backup system. “After
some careful thought, I fear that the maintainability problems of Obnam can
realistically only be solved by a complete rewrite from scratch, and I’m
not up to doing that. If you use Obnam, you should migrate to some other
backup solution. Don’t worry, you have until the end of the year. I will be
around and I intend to fix any serious bugs in Obnam; in particular,
security flaws. But you should start looking for a replacement sooner
rather than later.
” LWN looked at
Obnam
in 2012.

BREIN is Taking Infamous ‘Piracy’ Hosting Provider Ecatel to Court

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/brein-is-taking-infamous-piracy-hosting-provider-ecatel-to-court-170815/

A regular website can be easily hosted in most countries of the world but when the nature of the project begins to step on toes, opportunities begin to reduce. Openly hosting The Pirate Bay, for example, is something few providers want to get involved with.

There are, however, providers out there who specialize in hosting services that others won’t touch. They develop a reputation of turning a blind eye to their customers’ activities, only reacting when a crisis looms on the horizon. Despite the problems, there are a few that are surprisingly resilient.

One such host is Netherlands-based Ecatel, which has hit the headlines many times over the years for allegedly having customers involved in warez, torrents, and streaming, not to mention spam and malware. For hosting the former group, it’s now in the crosshairs of Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN.

According to an application for a witness hearing filed with The Court of the Hague by BREIN, Ecatel has repeatedly hosted websites dealing in infringing content over recent years. While this is nothing particularly out of the ordinary, BREIN claims that complaints filed against the sites were dealt with slowly by Ecatel or not at all.

Ecatel Ltd is a company incorporated in the UK with servers in the Netherlands but since 2015, another hosting company called Novogara has appeared in tandem. Court documents suggest that Novogara is associated with Ecatel, something that was confirmed early 2016 in an email sent out by Ecatel itself.

“We’d like to inform you that all services of Ecatel Ltd are taken over by a new brand called Novogara Ltd with immediate effect. The take-over includes Ecatel and all her subsidiaries,” the email read.

Muddying the waters a little more, in 2015 Ecatel’s IP addresses were apparently taken over by Quasi Networks Ltd, a Seychelles-based company whose business is described locally as being conducted entirely overseas.

“Stichting BREIN has found several websites in the network of Quasi Networks with obviously infringing content. Quasi Networks, however, does not respond structurally to requests for closing those websites. This involves unlawful acts against the parties associated with the BREIN Foundation,” a ruling from the Court reads.

As a result, BREIN wants a witness hearing with three defendants connected to the Ecatel/Novgara/Quasi group of companies in order to establish the relationship between the businesses, where their servers are, and who is behind Quasi Networks.

“Stichting BREIN is interested in this information in order to be able to judge who it can appeal to and whether it is useful to start a legal procedure,” the Court adds.

Two of the defendants failed to lodge a defense against BREIN’s application but one objected to the request for a hearing. He said that since Quasi Networks, Ecatel and Novogara are all incorporated outside the Netherlands, a trial must also be conducted abroad and therefore a Dutch judge would not have jurisdiction.

He also argued that BREIN would use the witness hearing as a “fishing expedition” in order to gather information it currently does not have, in order to formulate some kind of case against the defendants, in one way or another.

In a decision published this week, The Court of the Hague rejected that argument, noting that the basis for the claim is copyright infringement through Netherlands-hosted websites. Furthermore, the majority of the witnesses are resident in the district of The Hague. It also underlined the importance of a hearing.

“The request for holding a preliminary witness hearing opens an independent petition procedure, which does not address the eligibility of any claim that may be lodged. An investigation must be made by the judge who has to deal with and decide the main case – if it comes.

“The court points out that a preliminary witness hearing is now (partly) necessary to clarify whether and to what extent a claim has any chance of success,” the decision reads.

According to documents published by Companies House in the UK, Ecatel Ltd ceased to exist this morning, having been dissolved at the request of its directors.

The hearing of the witnesses is set to take place on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 9.30 in the Palace of Justice at Prince Claus 60 in The Hague.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Game of Thrones Pirates Arrested For Leaking Episode Early

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/game-of-thrones-pirates-arrested-for-leaking-episode-early-170814/

Over the past several years, Game of Thrones has become synonymous with fantastic drama and story telling on the one hand, and Internet piracy on the other. It’s the most pirated TV show in history, hands down.

With the new season well underway, another GoT drama began to unfold early August when the then-unaired episode “The Spoils of War” began to circulate on various file-sharing and streaming sites. The leak only trumped the official release by a few days, but that didn’t stop people downloading in droves.

As previously reported, the leaked episode stated that it was “For Internal Viewing Only” at the top of the screen and on the bottom right sported a “Star India Pvt Ltd” watermark. The company commented shortly after.

“We take this breach very seriously and have immediately initiated forensic investigations at our and the technology partner’s end to swiftly determine the cause. This is a grave issue and we are taking appropriate legal remedial action,” a spokesperson said.

Now, just ten days later, that investigation has already netted its first victims. Four people have reportedly been arrested in India for leaking the episode before it aired.

“We investigated the case and have arrested four individuals for unauthorized publication of the fourth episode from season seven,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Akbar Pathan told AFP.

The report indicates that a complaint was filed by a Mumbai-based company that was responsible for storing and processing the TV episodes for an app. It has been named locally as Prime Focus Technologies, which markets itself as a Netflix “Preferred Vendor”.

It’s claimed that at least some of the men had access to login credentials for Game of Thrones episodes which were then abused for the purposes of leaking.

Local media identified the men as Bhaskar Joshi, Alok Sharma and Abhishek Ghadiyal, who were employed by Prime Focus, and Mohamad Suhail, a former employee, who was responsible for leaking the episode onto the Internet.

All of the men were based in Bangalore and were interrogated “throughout the night” at their workplace on August 11. Star India welcomed the arrests and thanked the authorities for their swift action.

“We are deeply grateful to the police for their swift and prompt action. We believe that valuable intellectual property is a critical part of the development of the creative industry and strict enforcement of the law is essential to protecting it,” the company said in a statement.

“We at Star India and Novi Digital Entertainment Private Limited stand committed and ready to help the law enforcement agencies with any technical assistance and help they may require in taking the investigation to its logical conclusion.”

The men will be held in custody until August 21 while investigations continue.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

ВАС: отнемането на лицензиите на ТВ Седем незаконно

Post Syndicated from nellyo original https://nellyo.wordpress.com/2017/08/14/cem-tv7/

Преди почти година СЕМ с две решения отне лицензиите за телевизионна дейност на две телевизииТВ Седем и Балкан Българска Телевизия ЕАД.

Тези телевизии имат славна история, в частност – в последните години – според обвинителния акт на Прокуратурата на Република България   от юли 2017 те имат общо с модела КТБ.

Но в правовата държава отнемането на лицензия става на базата на закон.

Лицензиите са отнети на основание  “установяване на неверни данни в декларациите по чл. 111.” Това са декларации  за  отсъствие на правни пречки, включително че кандидатите за лицензия не са лица, които “през последните пет години, предхождащи кандидатстването за лицензия, са обявени в несъстоятелност или са в производство за обявяване в несъстоятелност или в ликвидация” (чл.105, ал.4, т.5).

Според СЕМ тъй като  през 2016 г. са открити производства за несъстоятелност на двете търговски дружества, се отнемат лицензиите за неверни декларации – нищо че  данните са били верни към момента на подаване на декларацията.  СЕМ намира, че възникването на правните пречки за доставчик, който вече притежава лицензия,

е нарушение на критериите за допустимост за издаването й, което като последица налага принудителното й отнемане.

 ВАС (тричл. състав)    отменя решението на СЕМ за ТВ Седем ЕАД:

СЕМ, в противоречие с лимитативните посочени в закона предпоставки, е отнел индивидуалните лицензии на [фирма] за доставяне на аудио-визуални медийни услуги с наименование „ТV7” и „СУПЕР7” и е заличил от Публичния регистър на СЕМ програми „ТV7” и „СУПЕР7”. Предвид изложеното настоящият състав приема, че обжалваният акт е издаден в противоречие с приложимия материален закон и следва да бъде отменен.

Решението на петчленния състав на ВАС от 7 август 2017 оставя в сила решението на тричленния състав:

[…] проблемът, който очертава параметрите на правния спор, е свързан с въпроса дали лицензията може да бъде отнета на припознатото от органа основание и без ЗРТ да го е уредил нарочно. Отговорът му е отрицателен.

  • а. Отнемането на лицензия по същността си е мярка от категорията на принудителните административни. За да бъде правомерно приложена, основанието на ПАМ, видът и съдържанието й трябва да са изрично уредени със закон – арг. чл. 23 ЗАНН. Подобно разрешение намира разумното си оправдание в интензитета на засягане на правната сфера на адресата на мярката, в частност – прекратяването на породените от лицензионния акт права, и е проявление на общия принцип в публичното право, че на административните органи е разрешено само това, което е изрично предвидено в закона.
  • б. Основанията за отнемане на лицензия са лимитативно установени в чл. 122 ЗРТ. Разпоредените с отмененото решение правни последици не могат да настъпят от други юридически факти извън уредените от закона, а в техния обсег откриването на производство по несъстоятелност на доставчика на медийни услуги не попада. В противен случай би се накърнил принципа за законоустановеност на ПАМ. Само на това основание решението на колективния орган е подлежало на отмяна.
  • в. Дори да се приеме, че в ЗРТ съществува празнота, немислимо е нейното преодоляване и чрез аналогия на закона (с основанията по чл. 125д ЗРТ за заличаване на регистрацията на радио- и телевизионните оператори) или на правото, вкл. посредством правоприлагане по аргумент за по-силното основание в една от четирите му проявни форми, на която се позовава касатора. Аналогията е изключена на самостоятелно основание от изчерпателността на изброяването на предпоставките за отнемане на лицензия, а тя определя и характера на правните норми в текста на чл. 122 ЗРТ, ограничаващ обема на правомощията на СЕМ с упражнения предмет.


ВАС посочва още, че

Отнемането на лицензията е само един от способите по чл. 121, ал. 1 ЗРТ за прекратяването й – вж. т. 2 на текста. Отделно основание с идентични правни последици е прекратяването на юридическото лице, титуляр на лицензията – чл. 121, ал. 1, т. 3 ЗРТ. В случая на производство по несъстоятелност, приключващо с решение на съда по чл. 735, ал. 3 вр. ал. 1 ТЗ, прекратяването на лицензията би било резултат от евентуално постановеното заличаване на търговеца. Т.е. според обективното право разрешаването на колизията между критерия към кандидатите за лицензия и действието на вече издадена при последващо несъответствие с него е поставено в зависимост от изхода на производството по несъстоятелност, който би могъл да рефлектира върху съществуването на правния субект – носител на лицензията, респ. способността му да осъществява дейността, предмет на лицензионния режим.

Filed under: BG Content, BG Law Making, BG Media, BG Regulator, Media Law

MPAA Revenue Stabilizes, Chris Dodd Earns $3.5 Million

Post Syndicated from Ernesto original https://torrentfreak.com/mpaa-revenue-stabilizes-chris-dodd-earns-3-5-million170813/

Protecting the interests of Hollywood, the MPAA has been heavily involved in numerous anti-piracy efforts around the world in recent years.

Through its involvement in the shutdowns of Popcorn Time, YIFY, isoHunt, Hotfile, Megaupload and several other platforms, the MPAA has worked hard to target piracy around the globe.

Perhaps just as importantly, the group lobbies lawmakers globally while managing anti-piracy campaigns both in and outside the US, including the Creative Content UK program.

All this work doesn’t come for free, obviously, so the MPAA relies on six major movie studios for financial support. After its revenues plummeted a few years ago, they have steadily recovered and according to its latest tax filing, the MPAA’s total income is now over $72 million.

The IRS filing, covering the fiscal year 2015, reveals that the movie studios contributed $65 million, the same as a year earlier. Overall revenue has stabilized as well, after a few years of modest growth.

Going over the numbers, we see that salaries make up a large chunk of the expenses. Former Senator Chris Dodd, the MPAA’s Chairman and CEO, is the highest paid employee with a total income of more than $3.5 million, including a $250,000 bonus.

It was recently announced that Dodd will leave the MPAA next month. He will be replaced by Charles Rivkin, another political heavyweight. Rivkin previously served as Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs in the Obama administration.

In addition to Dodd, there are two other employees who made over a million in 2015, Global General Counsel Steve Fabrizio and Diane Strahan, the MPAA’s Chief Operating Officer.

Looking at some of the other expenses we see that the MPAA’s lobbying budget remained stable at $4.2 million. Another $4.4 million went to various grants, while legal costs totaled $7.2 million that year.

More than two million dollars worth of legal expenses were paid to the US law firm Jenner & Block, which represented the movie studios in various court cases. In addition, the MPAA paid more than $800,000 to the UK law firm Wiggin, which assisted the group in local site-blocking efforts.

Finally, it’s worth looking at the various gifts and grants the MPAA hands out. As reported last year, the group handsomely contributes to various research projects. This includes a recurring million dollar grant for Carnegie Mellon’s ‘Initiative for Digital Entertainment Analytics’ (IDEA), which researches various piracy related topics.

IDEA co-director Rahul Telang previously informed us that the gift is used to hire researchers and pay for research materials. It is not tied to a particular project.

We also see $70,000+ in donations for both the Democratic and Republican Attorneys General associations. The purpose of the grants is listed as “general support.” Interestingly, just recently over a dozen Attorneys General released a public service announcement warning the public to stay away from pirate sites.

These type of donations and grants are nothing new and are a regular part of business across many industries. Still, they are worth keeping in mind.

It will be interesting to see which direction the MPAA takes in the years to come. Under Chris Dodd it has booked a few notable successes, but there is still a long way to go before the piracy situation is somewhat under control.



MPAA’s full form 990 was published in Guidestar recently and a copy is available here (pdf).

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.