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The Internet Government The Courts News and Go Dark 1260

Posted by michael
from the last-one-out-turn-off-the-lights dept.
Numerous people wrote in with similar stories: "Without providing a reason, both of these sites have shut down: and" We mentioned a few days ago that the MPAA was going after Bittorrent sites.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted. and Go Dark

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  • Damn it! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by nordicfrost (118437) * on Sunday December 19, 2004 @12:51PM (#11130942)
    How am I going to watch Enterprise now? No TV channel in Norway sends it, nor do they have any plans to send it. I buy the DVDs. I watch the movies. And then they fuck people over by removing my only way of watching it before it comes to DVD?

    And, no, I don't have access to Swedish channels.
  • by maskedbishounen (772174) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:00PM (#11131029)
    A big point many people miss -- trackers are what keep the torrents together. Indexers like SuprNova, although highly popular, do nothing but point people where to go.

    It's like asking a bartender about the street corners where the girls hang out late at night. If he responsible for how you use the information; ie, if you engage in prostition?

    It's a sad, sad day when information is made the scapegoat. If anything, they should be applauded, and kept as a means for getting to the real criminals.
  • Stop Posting Links (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EvilGoodGuy (811015) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:02PM (#11131043)
    People, please stop posting links to your favorite torrent site that is still up and kicking. They are already under tremendous pressure right now, and I don't want them to have any more attension brought to them. Those that are interested can find the sites themselves, so please, help save the few that are left and stop posting links.
  • by utexaspunk (527541) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:04PM (#11131057)
    this is the same sort of thing that happened with the original Napster. Any sort of centralization is going to become an immediate target for MPAA/RIAA legal action. At least with BitTorrent there can be other sources for .torrent files, but so long as they can shut down any large repositories like, finding files will be too cumbersome for all but the most determined users.

    DC++ seems to have the same weakness, with the hosts, but as long as host lists are legal, it will remain pretty easy to find new hosts. Gnutella seems pretty safe, but they've managed to pollute the network enough to make it almost unusable.

    alas, it is only a matter of time before something comes along that perfects this problem and leaves the MPAA/RIAA with no option but to come up with a new business model. Free music seems to me to be a fine way to advertise a touring artist who is making money off of the shows. Movies may have to resort to product placement, or something.
  • by zmollusc (763634) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:10PM (#11131127)
    How's this for a solution to film piracy?

    1. Forget chasing 'pirates'. This will save a lot of expensive legal bills. Cut back drastically on advertising too, as you don't need to whip people up into a frenzy to get them to theatres in the first week.
    2. Make film (Citizen Kane: starring Adam Sandler or something).
    3. Make a VCD cut and make unlabelled cheapo vcd's. Using the economies of scale, sell these so cheap that the guys selling pirate vcd will buy from you rather than burn their own copies. Your margin is the difference between a bulk pressed cd and a small scale burned copy.
    4. Simultaneously sell the film as a download for the same price as you get for the vcd.
    ...wait a few weeks
    5. Make a nicer, longer dvd cut of the film and, again, sell these so cheap that the guys selling pirate dvd will buy from you rather than burn their own copies.
    6. Sell the dvd cut of the film online at the same price as the DVD wholesale price.
    .... wait some more
    7. Theatre release of film in lovely THX/35mm
    8. Boxed set dvd release with extra everything.

    By doing this you make money from the guys currently selling 'pirated copies' of films and money from people who can't be bothered to find a torrent of your film. The money saved on lawyers and advertising would probably pay for setting up the servers.

    At stage 3 you are the sole supplier of vcd of your film, it is uneconomic to burn copies so you own the market. People may share your film over the internet but the hassle of finding a torrent and/or running P2P software is competing against the paid download (4) which is priced as low as a blank cdr.

    This is simple economics. Cut back on expensive things like lawyers and advertising, then put out bargain bin priced product to soak up the sales to misers and the poor. You can still make bigger margins on the nicely packaged versions to people who want to buy them.
  • Jurisdiction? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kozz (7764) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:11PM (#11131131)
    What about all those folks who said at the last "SuprNova is going bye-bye" story that it couldn't be touched because it was somewhere in Europe where the MPAA can't reach them?

    We can't really say this is the result of MPAA, can we? Can they "get" the folks related to if they are located in Belgium or Turkey or whereever?
  • Duh! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:12PM (#11131144)
    <sarcasm> Haven't you read the Constitution? It is your God-given right to obtain and distribute copyrighted works without the author's permission! Except when it comes to GPL'd software, of course. We hang motherfuckers who violate that shit. </sarcasm>

    Let's face it. The majority of BitTorrent traffic is not strictly legal. What did you expect? The RIAA is going to try to protect its business.
  • Re:What a relief (Score:3, Insightful)

    by davideo_ID (772303) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:13PM (#11131151)
    Are you under the illusion that the MPAA would not already know about these sites? I mean, you reckon they don't have google or are you thinking the don't have an internet connection? Maybe they work from a dail-up connection and don't get to check out any forums? A bit more respect for the powers of the dark side might suit you well
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:17PM (#11131172)
    And then they fuck people over by removing my only way of watching it before it comes to DVD?

    WTF? I do feel your pain (well, I could have, if I were the least interested in Star Trek), but you're not being "fucked over".

    You'll just have to wait until you can watch it legally. I.e. when a TV station you have access to broadcasts it, or when you can buy the DVD. Tough shit.

    You have no right to download stuff (or more precisely, in more civilised non-DMCA-afflicted countries, people have no right to illegally distribute stuff) just because it's not yet available legally where you happen to live.

    Some retard modded your post "insightful". I think it could possibly be "informative" or "interesting", since despite your confused outlook you provided an example of yet another effect of the anti-piracy crusade.
  • by chiph (523845) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:23PM (#11131218)
    I wouldn't automatically assume it was the fault of one of the recording industry groups ... it may be that simply couldn't afford their bandwidth costs any more. But until we hear more from the owners, we're all just guessing as to the cause.

    Chip H.
  • by Buran (150348) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:23PM (#11131227)
    People find resources they need through web links. People advertise the resources they have, or like, through web links. Especially if there is a need needing filling, like there seems to be now. "Find the sites themselves" how, without weblinks? I'd like to see a search engine that does a good job indexing sites that no one links to! I'd like to see a web browser that automagically knows about unlinked sites, no matter how perfectly they may match the needs of whoever is doing the surfing.

    There is no point in having a web site that no one links to, because no one will ever go there. Furthermore, if people like a particular site, they tend to talk about it, and link to it. That's just the way the net is.

    In other words, you're advocating doing something that makes it IMPOSSIBLE to do the other thing you're advocating doing.

    So which do you want? Pick one, dammit, and be consistent.
  • by KennyP (724304) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:26PM (#11131240)
    ... of the MAN trying to keep us down...

    I'll miss SuprNova... A lot of good old tv there.

    Kenny P.
    Visualize Whirled P.'s
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:27PM (#11131244)
    Look man, everyone knows he with the gold makes the rules.

    So if you really want torrents to continue being available on the internet, and in general any kind of p2p activity to be available on the internet for US customers - then the following must happen.

    1) You need to get some gold for your own lawyers. That is just the fact of the matter. It sure is nice to get all this free stuff, but as they say - there is no free lunch.

    2) You need to get some gold for your lobbiest to the congress critters. They only know what the MPAA/RIAA mouths tell them. A politician basically knows only how to get elected, otherwise they would be doing something else.

    3) You need to get politically motivated. You need that political organization named above. You need your own to keep the membership active in letter/fax/email writing and informative campaigns.

    Play time on the internet is over. It is time to grow up and realize politics, government, and all that corruption is part of the game now.
  • by Jim McCoy (3961) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:28PM (#11131253) Homepage
    A big point many people miss -- trackers are what keep the torrents together. Indexers like SuprNova, although highly popular, do nothing but point people where to go.

    It's like asking a bartender about the street corners where the girls hang out late at night. If he responsible for how you use the information; ie, if you engage in prostition?

    The big point that you are missing (and most people running torrent trackers) is that if you have a reasonable suspicion that the information you are providing to someone is going to be used for criminal purposes then you are treading dangerously close to the definition of "conspiracy".

    Let's take your example of the helpful bartender a bit further. You wander into a bar and over several drinks proceed to tell the bartender about your sleazy business partner and how he is cheating you. The bartender tells you that "he knows a guy" who can take care of your problem for a bundle of cash. You take the number he gives you, meet with a contract hit man, and pay him a wad on money so that your business partner meets a rather violent demise.

    Is the bartender a participant in your conspiracy to commit murder? According to the law he is. A reasonalbe person would have no problem conecting the dots here and information that was provided had a purpose...

    To drag this back in to the real world, you might want to take a look at how the law deals with flea markets and swap meets where counterfeit goods are being sold. The person organizing the swap meet can post as many signs as they want saying that they have no idea what you are selling and are only providing a place for people to put their goods on display, but the law treats that claim like the BS it truly is. The people running the torrent trackers know what is being provided and what their role in the game is, and if they try to claim that they are shocked that people are trading pirated music, software, and videos on these services they will be bitch-slapped by the law.
  • Re:Reason (Score:2, Insightful)

    by geoffspear (692508) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:31PM (#11131283) Homepage
    MPAA has no "legal jurisdiction" anywhere. They're a trade group, not a government body, and the most likely do have legal standing to sue under Swedish law.
  • by General Trolltalk (840230) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:35PM (#11131309)
    No one said the MPAA shut them down. It was just only mentioned that these sites went offline around the same time it was announced the MPAA was going to start going after these types of sites.
  • by xstein (578798) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:35PM (#11131311)
    This is simple economics.

    You're missing the idea behind cost of production and supply/demand. Hollywood filmmakers will NEVER be able to sell as cheap as pirates for the simple reason the pirates do not pay anything for the material. Making movies is a costly venture, advertising or no advertising, lawyers or no lawyers.

    While I do agree Hollywood is approaching this the wrong way, your idea is fundamentally flawed. Besides, this has nothing to do with cost of production--this is simply supply/demand economics. The market will set the price, and right now it has done so very efficiently for DVDs. Hollywood needs to embrace the Internet, not implement artificial methods of stopping Internet piracy--remove the demand for pirated movies, not the supply.
  • by Beautyon (214567) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:42PM (#11131364) Homepage
    How can posting a list of files possibly be illegal?

    That is all that Suprnova ever did. Now, if its illegal to post a list of files, it must also be illegal to print one in a newspaper, or write one on a piece of paper with a pencil anad photocopy it.

    If you go a google search for "index of" apache *.dmg* "port 80" [] you get lots and lots of links to copyrighted software. By your flawed logic, Google "is just plain illegal" because it provides lists of files just as Supernova did.

    Printing a list can never be an illegal act. At least not in a free country it cant.
  • Re:Exeem (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @01:45PM (#11131378)
    "Since I read somewhere that it's closed source, and there is no intent to port it to linux... I hope Exeem dies a firey death, as places like suprnova can easily be replaced.
    Now if Exeem because opensource, and becomes availible for Linux... well... another matter entirely."

    Only on Slashdot would nonsense like this get moderated up. Please explain what is insightful about this? He proclaims he read something that he cannot backup with a source and he shows that he is a zealot and hopes that all non open source projects fail. That's really insightful.......
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SirWinston (54399) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:01PM (#11131473)
    > How am I going to watch Enterprise now?

    It starts with a "U" and rhymes with "BLUESNET". ;-) Seriously, *everything* gets posted there a day or two after it's released. Just follow the white rabbit to a big premium news server provider and download anything you want without the possibility of the MPAA or RIAA ever seeing your IP.

    All these episodes of Hex [] and uncensored Degrassi: The Next Generation [] and advance Battlestar Galactica [] I'm watching in the U.S. have to come from somewhere...

    Funny how Europeans always complain about not getting American shows in a timely manner, when most of what I want are Canadian and British shows I can't get here (or can't get uncensored, like Degrassi), or U.S. shows that were cancelled here before showing all episodes but have all the episodes shown overseas (like the sexiest teen show ever on American network TV, The Opposite Sex []). The new *Battlestar Galactica* is the only exception, but it's a joint U.S.-British production shown in Britain first...

    I'd gladly pay for subscrptions to premium British and Canadian TV services if I could, but I'm not allowed thanks to geographically discriminatory content licensing. Content providers need to be pushed into broader worldwide same-date (or at least close--not many months or years difference) availability. Funny how in the era of "free trade" the multimedia content industry is the only one erecting more barriers to trade instead of tearing them down. While geographically I can't just subscribe to Britain's Sky Digital since their satellites aren't positioned for this side of the world, there's no technological reason I shouldn't be able to subscribe to Canadian services. I'm not permitted to by Draconian content licensing.

    Artificial trade borders are gone on the Net, but instead of adjusting to exploit it the content industry is trying to protect the old fiefdoms. Instead, it should be doing for downloadable TV what iTunes did for downloadable music. But it's too complacent and protectionist to adapt.
  • Re:What a relief (Score:2, Insightful)

    by russint (793669) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:08PM (#11131510) Homepage
    Yeah, beacuse the MPAA doesn't already know what torrent sites exist. </irony>
  • Re:Exeem (Score:5, Insightful)

    by karstux (681641) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:13PM (#11131542) Homepage
    Well, I dunno about the "insightful" either, but I for one would never use a closed-source p2p client.

    It's really just a matter of safety (and paranoia): only with opensource clients I can be relatively sure that the client won't rat out on me or install malware of various sorts. Honor among thieves (or pirates :)) is nothing I'll trust on...

    The portability is an added (very nice) bonus.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Planesdragon (210349) <> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:24PM (#11131613) Homepage Journal
    might I suggest that there is a better way to spend your time?

    You *can* do something about the law. Convince other Americans that the Public Domain is a Good Thing. Run for office if you have to.

    Better to try convincing them now than after you're facing a civil trial.
  • Re:Jurisdiction? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:27PM (#11131637)
    Can they "get" the folks related to if they are located in Belgium or Turkey or whereever?

    Of course they can get to anyone in any country that has a suitable copyright law. (Newsflash to USA readers: there are laws in other countries besides yours.)

    Here is how you sue someone who committed a crime against your and lives in a foreign country: Get the yellow pages for a major city of that country. Look under "Legal Services". Call a lawyer. Ask if the crime is prosecutable under that country's legislation. Hire lawyer to file necessary paperwork and to go to court.

    Details differ, such as does each country's law make it possible succesfully to prosecute torrent file distribution as contributory infringement, aiding and abetting, or similar.

  • by wintermute1974 (596184) <> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:29PM (#11131653) Homepage
    the MPAA is co-operating in criminal investigations with police in Finland, the Netherlands and France, so it is reasonable to infer that reports of raids in more European countries are likely to surface shortly. []

    Yes, the MPAA is acting on behalf of its members and copyright holders, ensuring that intellectual property is not distributed for free. They have the law on their side, and can probably buy or lobby anyone of importance that disagrees with them.

    That said, I think the MPAA is fighting a losing battle. People like to share, to spread what little wealth and happiness they have around.

    BitTorrent enables a system where people of like interests and hobbies can reward one another as they are connected to the same torrent. And yes, this includes both legitimate and illegitimate uses.

    Sharing is part of human nature and any organization that throws its weight around in an attempt to circumvent our instinct to share will ultimately prove to be futile.
  • Re:Irony (Score:2, Insightful)

    by shurdeek (571257) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:33PM (#11131681)
    The problem is however, MPAA tries to cling to outdated business methods that don't work anymore, and use "force" (legal system) for it and complaining how everyone is so unfair. In contrast, the heroes of Atlas Shrugged (Dagny Taggart, Francisco D'Anconia, Hank Rearden, ...) were always striving to do something new, that pleases their customers, that WORKS, and to SOLVE problems. They weren't complaining that the world is unfair and "they couldn't help it".

    That unauthorized copying (incorrectly called pirating or stealing) is illegal doesn't change the fact that the current model will never again work (in other words "the genie is out of the bottle"). If a typical (non US) consumer has a choice of e.g. downloading the new episode of Simpsons the day after it was released for free, or wait 1 year until it reaches local TV (and is usually dubbed and I prefer the original), or wait 5+ years until it's released on DVD, how can MPAA keep expecting people to play "nice"?

  • Re:who else? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by secolactico (519805) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:57PM (#11131836) Journal
    Why not distribute .torrents by using emule or irc... lets go underground..

    You also need the trackers. You can't distribute those.
  • Re:No worries (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @02:58PM (#11131839)
    Am I the only one who thinks it's stupid to register an account to download warez? It's just one more thing for them to track.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by brogdon (65526) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:01PM (#11131857) Homepage
    "You have a right to do anything that does not harm another. Since they are not even trying to get his money for the show, there's no basis whatever for any claims of monetary losses. The author gains nothing by keeping his work from others, so disseminating it cannot be said to harm him."

    Look, I'm no Nazi when it comes to the occasional IP theft. I have been known to use p2p apps from time to time; but what you just wrote is false. When you pirate a copy of something, even when the creator has no plans to try and sell it to you, you're still harming him by eroding his ability to control the distribution of his own work. That's a very important thing in the eyes of musicians, writers and filmmakers.

    Also, your assertion that the author is not losing money due to your theft is lost if you consider the fact that he might choose to market his creation to your area at a future time. He has lost potential income, even if it's years before he decides to take action on it.

    Like I said, I'm not trying to be self-righteous on this as I've done my own share of downloading, but people who think p2p downloading of things is a purely correct thing to do really need to think about what they're doing a little more.
  • by tepples (727027) <tepples@[ ] ['gma' in gap]> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:05PM (#11131890) Homepage Journal

    When you pirate a copy of something, even when the creator has no plans to try and sell it to you, you're still harming him by eroding his ability to control the distribution of his own work.

    Not entirely: see the fourth fair use factor.

    That's a very important thing in the eyes of musicians, writers and filmmakers.

    The mere fact that major publishers and copyright industry trade groups have convinced musicians, writers and filmmakers that complete control over distribution is so desirable is part of the problem. How would one go about solving it?

  • by tepples (727027) <tepples@[ ] ['gma' in gap]> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:11PM (#11131926) Homepage Journal

    So what you are saying is that it is ok that they are helping illegally distribute software/music/movies/etc because make up for it by helping distribute say 5% of their stuff legally?

    Yes. Sony v. Universal.

  • by antiMStroll (664213) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:17PM (#11131964)
    Murder, contract killers, I'm surprised terrorists and children in peril didn't make the analogy. How about something a bit more realistic? The bartender tells a patron who wants to go fishing the location of the nearest sporting goods store. The patron uses the fishing gear purchased out of season. The bartender knew it wasn't fishing season when providing the directions. No murders, no money changing hand with the bartender, no quantifiable loss, just breaking a law intended to preserve a resource. Is the bartender guilty of conspiracy? Only in a sense worthy of a Victor Hugo novel, a reasonable person would not connect the dots. In a civilized, humane society the patron bears full responsibility for the act, which is at best a misdemeanour and a small fine.
  • by k_stamour (544142) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:27PM (#11132036) Homepage
    dam u code fast.....
  • Re:who else? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by YU Nicks NE Way (129084) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:35PM (#11132094)
    Slashdot caved; that doesn't mean that the Scientologists were on the right side of the law.
    You're right, but that's even worse. There's no real question that the scientologists weren't on the right side of the law, and they won anyway. In giving them the victory, the editors showed that contrary to their disclaimer, they do exercise full editorial discretion over the content of the site. That makes them fully liable for any illegal solicitation which they allow to remain visible.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tricorn (199664) <> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:43PM (#11132131) Journal

    How is importing a DVD and breaking the region coding scheme by playing it on a multi-region DVD, or importing a region 1 DVD player when you're "not supposed to" (Region 1 DVDs and Region 1 DVD players are only supposed to be sold in Region 1 countries) "morally" any better than downloading it from the Internet? If something is available on the Internet, you'd be willing to buy it if it was available, you'd STILL be willing to buy it when it DOES become available, even if you've downloaded it over the Internet and watched it - what harm to the copyright owner are you alleviating by choosing to NOT download and watch it?

    In other words, perhaps the law has to be written the way it is, because the law can't distinguish between people who would be causing actual harm (they would buy it if it wasn't available, they wouldn't buy it if it is available for free download on the Internet) and those who wouldn't, but is it "wrong" to violate the law (other than being caught) if you are, in fact, in the non-harm group? Note that this is separate from the issue of whether you can honestly assess which group you are in. It is also more complicated if you'd be willing to pay SOME price, but not the price being asked (if it is indeed available through a "legitimate" channel) or in the form being offered (e.g. cut for commercial television), and/or you actually do pay some price to a non-legitimate distributor.

  • Re:Damn it! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Horse Rotorvator JAD (834524) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:44PM (#11132142)
    Yes the legal threats page is worth reading. It has some funny comments in it. This is part of their reply to a legal threat from ADV Films:

    Hello, my dear sir(s)!
    We all like Evangelion a lot. This, however, does not mean that we like YOU. So instead of mindlessly acting on your notice of so-called infringement, I took the liberty of forwarding it to our legal counsel:

    On the subject of's supposed infringement of your intellectual rights. I have been given the authority, as legal consel, to reply to your kind letter.

    We understand that you are familiar with Bit Torrent technology. Then you may, or may not, understand that none of the data that you hold the copyright to reside on's servers.

    This raises the question of the reach of Swedish and European copyright law. It is the opinion of us, and the Swedish Supreme Court, that information about WHERE to obtain copyrighted material, which is the case with Bit Torrent, is not illegal.
  • by ScooterBill (599835) * on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:44PM (#11132144)
    You can always push this concept to whatever level you want. Should the alcohol companies or firearms manufacturers be considered co-conspirators? Should your ISP be liable? Should the government be liable for information that traverses the ether since they tax it and are therefore "involved"? Should the U.S. military be liable for "incidental deaths" in Iraq?

    The reality is that the one with the biggest stick makes the rules. Those of us with the little sticks have to be far more clever which isn't that hard when it comes to competing with governments and large corporations.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Doctor Crumb (737936) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @03:55PM (#11132217) Homepage
    They are *broadcasting* it in the first place. If they want to control the distribution, they're going to have to use a system where it is possible to control it, instead of blaring it across the airwaves for all takers.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Have Blue (616) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:02PM (#11132266) Homepage
    The author gains nothing by keeping his work from others

    The author gains the right to control the copying of his work. That's why they call it that.
  • The copyright industry owns the advertising media and has the right under private property law to deny any public service advertisement.

    If you think that political will can only be harnessed through advertising, you don't know politics.

    You need to find some charismatic people -- NOT anyone who's stumped for OSS, because largely they aren't -- and convince them. They will, in turn, convince others.

    Arguments like "Snow White might never have been made if the laws today were in place then. Who knows what new great movie isn't being made because of overzealous copyright laws?" are what you want to go for.

    As for entering public office -- get yourself a respectable profession, and pick a political party.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grumpygrodyguy (603716) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:13PM (#11132346)
    Better to try convincing them now than after you're facing a civil trial.

    Rather than threaten him, why don't you sit back for a moment and consider that it's exactly what he's doing?

    Convince other Americans that the Public Domain is a Good Thing.

    Good advice, but the best way to do this is through demonstration...not rhetoric.

    You *can* do something about the law...Run for office if you have to.

    "Going through the system" is almost impossible under the current regime. The people who run the system get their paycheck from folks like the MPAA, they have specifically designed 'the system' in such a way that folks like you and me have a snowballs chance in hell of getting anything changed.

    What he's doing is real change, not imagined or self-righteous change. It takes courage, and self-belief. Let your government bully you if you prefer, let everyone wave the word 'law' around like it's a word from god, but don't try and convert him for our sake. We need more people like him.

    It took Martin Luther King and Malcolm X to make real change then. It takes the same two types of people to make real change now.

    "When patience has begotten false estimates of its motives, when wrongs are pressed because it is believed they will be borne, resistance becomes morality." --Thomas Jefferson
  • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:19PM (#11132393)
    As a counter example - read the yellow pages in any major city in America. Look up "escort services" -- typically you will find multiple pages of listings. It has been this way for at least twenty years (that's when, I as a horny teen, ordered my first call girl on a trip to the big city) and probably a whole lot longer than that.

    As escorts are just another name for prostitutes, that would make the yellow pages of every major metropolitan area guilty of conspiracy for solicitation. Yet, these ads continue to run and the yellow pages publishers seem to be completely unmolested by the legal system for their part in it all.

    Now, you can't quite download a hooker via bittorrent, but I think the analogy between the call girls in the yellow pages and suprnova is a lot closer than the analogy between the bartender's hitman and suprnova.
  • by adam31 (817930) <> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:37PM (#11132504)
    You take the number he gives you, meet with a contract hit man, and pay him a wad on money so that your business partner meets a rather violent demise.

    Or, to use a probably more accurate analogy... when my friend wanted to shoot spit wads during english class, I lent him a pen to bore out for a spit-tube... and damn! We both totally got busted for detention!!

    bittorrent != murder

  • Re:Damn it! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by phoenix321 (734987) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:38PM (#11132511)
    To paraphrase an old expert's opinion, while not even being an expert: it depends

    In a digital network, you either have a central authority able to control all data flow or you have none. There is no middle ground, I fear. So you either have a "watchful eye", if I might call it that, above you, screening all your traffic. Or you don't.

    If you accept a central authority, no problem. But remember, they can check you silently and must do so everytime you say, send or receive anything through the net. They will need to monitor your opinion, your preferences, your private and casual conversations and worse.

    What makes this central network authority a prime target for bribery and despotism. Like the police today. Anyone, even law enforcement officers, have their price and/or can fail in their morale. While a police investigation leaves a paper trail, has multiple officers involved and has an electable politician or sheriff behind it, network auditing has not. Criminal investigation usually happens after a crime was committed and affects those related to a crime, but scene network screening has to run regularly and affects everyone. On one hand they need to have proof to convict you, on the other the proof is a set of bytes with no identifying properties.

    Short: anti-authoritarian movements can be tracked, silenced and imprisoned more easily if you have a central authority scanning traffic.

    The main goal of Freenet is to prevent usurpation of power by the executive branch. Those in power will always reject dissent and sooner or later try to use a subverted law against true freedom of speech.

    In my own humble opinion I can say freedom all is a higher goal than protection of few children. Now mod me down, flame me to oblivion, whatever you like. Call me stone-hearted if you like, but if I must choose between truly free speech, truly anonymous and open or prevention of children's suffering, I chose the first.

    Dictatorship in one country hurts more children than all molesters can do worldwide. Preventing dictatorship is the best way to help and care for all children. Chasing molesters only helps a few.

    And I will not let my emotion for hopeless underage victims overwhelm my rational thoughts. I will not trade "a good thing" for "no bad thing" as this will lead me nowhere. And I will never ever become a tool of population control, spreading memes of fear and scare for a threat that is perceived way out of proportion if you look closely.
  • by Jugalator (259273) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @04:51PM (#11132608) Journal
    I think those organizations shutting down these sites just started to initiate the next generation of decentralized P2P clients... That's usually the only thing they do, help speed up the next generation of file sharing software, more clever than the last time. It usually doesn't happen if not a great deal of sites are taken down, since then there's not as much need to advance technology.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by shark72 (702619) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @05:40PM (#11132934)

    "Maybe this is a troll, but I'll bite anyway. You have a right to do anything that does not harm another. Since they are not even trying to get his money for the show, there's no basis whatever for any claims of monetary losses. The author gains nothing by keeping his work from others, so disseminating it cannot be said to harm him."

    Nonetheless, the person who owns the copyright has the exclusive right to choose how it's copied. Whether you think they're making the right choice, or whether you think that they'd agree with your decision, or whether you think that they'll suffer no monetary loss makes no difference. It's their right, not yours.

    The balance here, of course, is that anybody can create something and copyright. If you don't like what somebody does with their own intellectual property, you are completely free to release your own under the terms you choose.

  • by glassesmonkey (684291) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @05:53PM (#11133012) Homepage Journal
    Everything is running fine until some moderators feel obligated to let the unwashed masses in on the secret of SuprNova.

    Next time there is good working P2P systems up and running, please don't WRITE ARTICLES ABOUT HOW GOOD THEY ARE.

    Seriously, can we let the lawyers find out about The-Next-Best-Thing(tm) on their own. Do we have to spoon-feed it to them and put a big bullseye on everything good?
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bar-agent (698856) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @06:03PM (#11133076)
    But if a few children are being exploited, does this mean you have a free society at all?

    Yes. Do you think that a "free society" means everybody is safe and happy? No. That's not what a free society is. A free society is one where you can succeed or screw up on your own, where the Man doesn't force you down 'cause there is no Man.

    There is no such place as Utopia. Some people will always be fated to suffer, but, in a free society, most people have every chance to make their own destiny. A free society is as close to Utopia as we can get.

    What you are arguing, sir, is the fallacy of the excluded middle.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by automaticlarynx (747144) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @06:06PM (#11133087) Homepage
    "If someone drugged you, raped you, took pictures of the rape, do they automatically have the right to put distribute those photos on the Internet? What about your rights?"

    You're conflating two unrelated ideas. If someone drugged me and raped me, they've already broken the law, and ought to be arrested, tried, and put into prison. The photos are a non-issue.

    People are allowed to take photographs, even of bad things. Photojournalists are allowed to take photos of people comitting crimes. It's important to not confuse the issue of what the real crime in your example is. The crime is the drugging and the rape, not taking a photo.

    A photograph is a record of an event, just like a written story, or even an orally told story. If you're suggesting that photographing crimes is wrong, you're also strongly suggesting that writing about them or even talking about them is wrong. Is that really the position you want to take?
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by oliverthered (187439) <[moc.liamtoh] [ta] [derehtrevilo]> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @06:15PM (#11133159) Journal
    I would disagree, they don't have any right to prevent you getting copy if you want one.

    I want a copy of something, if you won't sell it to me I'll find other ways of getting it, it's hardly my fault that you won't sell it.

    Limited release is just a form of racketeering and price fixing, which is aginst the law.

    I don't think europe went through a revolution just so we can get landlords back.
  • by garwil (841790) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @06:20PM (#11133191) Homepage Journal
    You can never stop piracy. People have been sharing copyright material ever since it became available. People have always bootlegged at concerts, copied their friends' music (either onto cassette tape or CD), rented films on VHS and copied them. It isn't legal, but it always has and always will go on. The difference now is that its happening on a larger scale than before, and that people are more easily caught. If I walk over to my friend's house, borrow a CD, take it home and copy it, there's no way anyone will ever find out. If I download the same CD over KaZaA or as a .torrent anyone can find out my IP address, get loads of info on me, and no doubt pressure my ISP into handing over my name/address. I can then be sued. However, this will not stop piracy. Sure it might stop me (for a while at least) but its not gonna stop the majority. The MPAA/RIAA can shut down all the sites they want but sooner or later, they're gonna have to change their business model. There's a great line in About A Boy about getting royalty fees from Christmas carol singers. This anti-P2P stuff is almost as insane.
  • by Excelsior (164338) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @07:17PM (#11133540)
    If there was a god, there would be no lawyers to murder.
  • by YU Nicks NE Way (129084) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @07:22PM (#11133581)
    From a legal point of view, that doesn't matter. What matters is that the Slashdot editors exercised direct control of the content of the discussion. That, coupled with the "unlimited mod points" that the editors have puts them in a very different position than the bartender with a bulletin board. The barkeep just cleans the board periodically without regard to content. Slashdot's editors constantly monitor the content of the board for content. Bad news from a liability standpoint.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Thing 1 (178996) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @07:58PM (#11133812) Journal
    Thanks for the defense. I know that my GP believes that only "sensational" civil disobdience is "worth it" but I'd be far less effective rotting in jail or paying heavy fines through the nose.

    And I'm actually going to perform a form of "civil obedience" -- No More Downloads. I have a ReplayTV and a TiVo, so I can get all the video I care to watch from them. Yeah, the new movies will take longer, but there are so many, many old movies to watch that it's not really an issue.

    So I can't be thrown into jail, or be fined. (Of course, since they weren't required to show me the evidence against me (I'm still appalled at that!), then I suppose they could convict me with the same "level" of evidence, in which case I could easily end up in jail or with heavy fines...)

    But regardless of what the authorities have in mind for me, I will be spending perhaps 20% of both my free time and my disposable income in supporting this position, which is that there is no stop to the spiraling Copyright Cartel. Works produced now, even 50 years ago, will never see the Public Domain. The software I add value to will be able to be used to violate current copyrights, but that's not my goal: I should be able to freely download TV shows, movies and music from the 70s and early 80s. That was how copyright was originally intended, as a way to increase the wealth in the public domain, not as a way to make some people rich for doing a small amount of work.

    I will promote only valid uses of the projects I support, where "valid" means "the original definition." Yes, I agree that for some small subset of issues, technology can drastically change the meaning and it should be reinterpreted. But with technology turning a traditionally scarce economy into an economy in which there is no scarcity, and then having the law turn it back into a scarcity economy for no other reason that to enrichen some corporations (not even individuals!), that's just wrong and I will fight against it until they come to take me away (haha).

    And soon, we'll have nanotechnology and we will be free from a world in which there is scarcity in physical items as well as audio and video. At that point (if they let me live...), I'll start helping open source nanotech projects working towards building factories to duplicate any physical good based on a blueprint. Some of the first blueprints we share (over the internet, of course, and likely using ANts/Freenet/Frost/other project I will be working on shortly) will be those items that can help out the lower levels of Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs [] -- like food and shelter. Perhaps McDonald's will be upset that someone "uploads" a Big Mac, so that everyone can download and eat as many as they want. And moving forward the higher-value items like Playstations, computers, and Corvettes will ruffle a few feathers. But those feathers should be calmed knowing that these wonders are available to everyone on the planet.

    Yeah, I'm waxing a little philosophical/utopian, and I know the future won't be exactly the way I see it, but then one of the steps is to distribute blueprints for advanced spaceflight, and then all bets are off because no government will be able to keep all of its citizens within its sphere of influence (without crippling or killing said citizens, and then those governments which don't do that will expand far faster).

    It hurts having my internet access removed, and I'm still reacting. But I like to think that I'm reacting in a productive manner; rather than burning down Hollywood, I'll just help create technologies that make them less profitable.

  • by caffeine_monkey (576033) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @08:01PM (#11133823)

    How about this: instead of using Freenet to distribute each individual torrent, could you publish on Freenet a torrent that contains other torrents? For instance, a torrent for each category of files, like what was on Suprnova - a "Movies-Drama" torrent that contained a zipped file of all torrents in that category? This way, you wouldn't be relying on Freenet to distribute every torrent file, just a much smaller index of torrents.

    If somebody wanted to take ownership of this, they could create a Freenet page with an anonymous feedback form. When somebody has a torrent to publish, they could submit the info to the anonymous form, and then the publisher would compile all the new torrents into the next version of the index.

    I'm only an occasional user of bittorrent, and it's been a long time since i tried Freenet, but does this sound like something feasible?

  • Re:Suprnova Mirror (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dr. Spork (142693) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @08:19PM (#11133899)
    Now that it's gone, what is there to mirror? The old stuff? That's not really so useful. Also, weren't suprnova also hosting trackers?
  • Re:Usenet (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2004 @08:23PM (#11133911)
    I NEVER hear anything about usenet, and there are hundreds of gigabytes of stuff posted every single day.

    Son of a bitch, fucking blizzards, you just don't get it do you? Why do you think you "NEVER hear anything about usenet"? The first rule of newsgroups is you don't talk about newsgroups. You seem to take that as a joke so fuck you. (Don't take that too hard, it's just some venting steam. It's kinda like how you use to open the lid to a pan of something boiling when you were a kid and the steam just about blinded you, but underneath that steam was some goodness awaiting your smacking lips, cheers)

    Nearly my entire MP3 and digital video collection (and actually just about everything else) has come from usenet.

    Good. And you expect that to be free? You expect nothing is required of you in return? Your requirement is to keep mum which your IQ doesn't apparently permit.

    I don't understand why this seems to still be the great untapped resource?

    It is tapped. Where do you think you got your complete collection you fucking nut? Don't you realize you were one of the selected few to gain access to? It was either from someone else or you were just born with that odd adaptation of exploring and stumbled across it. (Note this doesn't necessarily make your IQ higher, it could just as well be instinct.)

    Especially nowadays with services like, it makes finding and downloading from usenet a real snap!

    Despite what is discussed here; OSS, linux, BSD, etc, the majority of users run windows. It's possible the use of linux purges to intelligence, but not necessarily. What I'm meaning to get at is if usenet was a snap people would be talking about it. The rule of thumb is if UN is not being discussed, you don't discuss it. And NEVER do you say it should be discussed.

    Just the other day I introduced my brother to usenet, and he couldn't believe what he had been missing for so long.

    This is what it is. Just make sure that reading this and learning the code you somehow weren't passed on to learn, you also pass it on to your brother.

    In conclusion I hope this information is not accepted as a joke. You have to realize that I wanted to respond earlier, but there was too much attention on the topic with torrents and all. I meant for your post to look like a crazy old person wrote it from the dark ages, not a nimble 15 year old who stumbled upon the elixir of life.

    I reiterate my preaching of not being an idiot. Every medium when caught under the nose of common folk meets a dire end. If you think that everybody knowing about this will somehow make it better ... well you don't understand the protocol.

    The newsgroup protocol is designed to propagate al l material to other servers handling this protocol. Currently you support or don't support a newsgroup, but do not filter the messages. It's an all or none approach. The ability to break this is not very feasible given this fact and that the networked servers run global. If you may not have already guessed, dictating law globally is difficult thing to do. However, with politics moving more international and with relations extending, we're at more of a peril of obliteration.

    The only thing that thus truly keeps the clowns from slapping the proverbial stick upon us is the cost:benefit of arguing a mandatory shift from this protocol to a new one. It's like changing TCP/IP which is the backbone of the internet. You might think NGs are petty and of little importance to big corporations, but many use them for internal communication. Microsoft for instance uses newsgroups [] for customer relations against products and blah. However they monitor these NG (microsoft.*) so don't use them.

    So do us all a favor and keep the big end of the stick into the selected few. It's similar to big CEOs earning millions while you squand

  • by Snaller (147050) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @09:21PM (#11134170) Journal
    Its laws, like its territory, are inviolable and the business of Slovenians.

    That's what Iraq said as well. Don't forget the US government do not care about international law if it goes against their commercial interests.
  • by Tzarius (688342) <rtzarius&gmail,com> on Sunday December 19, 2004 @09:27PM (#11134195) Homepage Journal
    Doesn't matter whether they are publicised or not - it's the Spartacus effect*. There are far, far too many to take down or disable. It's beneficial to get the word out, too - better to have a few big, efficient networks than many scattered, underperforming ones. Besides, the real killer p2p app (decentralized, full privacy) will come that much faster this way.

    *Not sure if I'm using that correctly.
  • Re:Damn it! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Snaller (147050) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @09:39PM (#11134275) Journal

    The balance here, of course, is that anybody can create something and copyright. If you don't like what somebody does with their own intellectual property, you are completely free to release your own under the terms you choose.

    What we don't like is the term "intellectual property" - property is something you can touch - to apply it to anything else is amoral and wrong.
  • Re:Exeem (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Knnniggit (800801) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @10:11PM (#11134470)
    Maybe not, but someone will check. And if they find something that shouldn't be there, word will get around quickly. Even if nobody actually looks at the code, the programmer can count on it happening. Open source keeps people honest that way.
  • Re:Exeem (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bfields (66644) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @10:44PM (#11134654) Homepage
    So you look at every line of code for each client application you run to verfiy that you are safe and dont need to be paranoid?

    And with each update you go through each line and verfiy that its safe?

    I haven't read the proof of Fermat's last theorem. Nevertheless, I think it's probably true, because:

    • I know that all the details are available for anyone to examine.
    • I know that very smart people have given the proof careful critical readings.
    • Every time I've personally read the proof of a mathematical result that has stood such tests, I've found it to be sound.

    For similar reasons, I also believe that the structure of DNA is what my chemistry teachers told me it is, even though I haven't personally performed the necessary experiments.

    *Most* of the things I'm asked to believe on a daily basis are things I've never personally verified. I decide how much faith I should have in them partly by thinking about the processes by which they were arrived at.

    Not that I have *that* much faith in the process that produces bittorrent. But still, it's important to realize that there are ways you can get assurances from the open source process without personally verifying every line.

    --Bruce Fields

  • Re:Damn it! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Zork the Almighty (599344) on Sunday December 19, 2004 @11:34PM (#11134852) Journal
    If I use Freenet to download a movie, will I also be hosting child porn? With Bittorrent and eDonkey, I have a choice of what content I distribute.

    Freenet works precisely because the people who are hosting content can not find out what that content is, and therefore (presumably) can not be held responsible for it. You need this to have a truly anonymous network, which is what Freenet is trying to be. The Freenet FAQ is being honest with you. If you can't tolerate the possibility (however remote) of hosting child porn or whatever, then you shouldn't run a Freenet node.

    For what it's worth, if you do run a node you can always publish lots of non-child porn material to decrease the probability that your node (and all the other nodes as well) are hosting child porn. Who knows, maybe if you publish lots of good stuff more non-pedophiles will be attracted to Freenet. I for one was happy to find a bunch of classical music on Freenet when I first checked it out. The network really is whatever you want to make it.
  • by GooDieZ (802156) on Monday December 20, 2004 @01:53AM (#11135319) Homepage
    ok to help you out a bit in that article in magazine Mladina...
    I live in the country where so called "sloncek" is so much into trouble. And no he's not into trouble. Only servers are down and are not comming back no time soon, as FBI, MPAA and RIAA are making their cowboy dance. The man is harmless, and he didn't do anything illegal at all by our Law.

    And to awnser final question! YES USA are the biggest Copyright brakers, as 37% of all suprnova hits was from US.

  • by tepples (727027) <tepples@[ ] ['gma' in gap]> on Monday December 20, 2004 @02:10AM (#11135358) Homepage Journal

    Nonetheless, the person who owns the copyright has the exclusive right to choose how it's copied.

    In that case, corporate personhood is the problem.

    If you don't like what somebody does with their own intellectual property, you are completely free to release your own under the terms you choose.

    No I can't. If I create what I sincerely believe is an original work, some incumbent copyright owner is likely to come out of the woodwork and claim I copied it. This happened to George Harrison, and statistics show it could happen to any songwriter [].

  • by RedBear (207369) <> on Monday December 20, 2004 @04:48AM (#11135696) Homepage
    Seriously, can we let the lawyers find out about The-Next-Best-Thing(tm) on their own. Do we have to spoon-feed it to them and put a big bullseye on everything good?

    What's the point of having a good thing if you can't tell anyone about it?

    Obviously it wasn't that good if it went down with the mere threat of a raid by the authorities. It wasn't that good if the authorities in multiple countries could be talked into performing such a raid. Sites that demonstrably use Bittorrent for purely legal distribution of such files that they own the copyright to will not be going down. Your favorite Linux distro, for example, will still be available by Bittorrent most likely.

    No lawyer has any legal ground to stand on to convince the authorities in France to shut down Mandrake's Bittorrent tracker, run by Mandrake and published with a link on Mandrake's own website. SuprNova and the others are going down for the same reasons the original Napster went down; because they were too centralized and operated on the fringes of legality, if not totally outside the law.

    What's that old saying again? What doesn't kill an Internet technology will only make it stronger. This won't kill BT for 100% legal uses and a new decentralized P2P technology is already evolving (exeem?) to replace BT for stuff like warez that can't be shown to be 100% legal. If you try to keep things secret you just put off the inevitable. The lawyers will always find out about and attack questionably legal things eventually, that's their job. Plus, the more people you keep out with your secrecy, the worse performance you'll get from your BT downloads.

    In the end, the next "working" P2P system will be that much closer to being indestructible. They certainly won't be able to take it down just by shutting down one website or writing an article about it on Slashdot. Anything that can be killed by a simple article on /. doesn't really deserve to be out there in the first place. You're just whining that you can't get to your free warez as easily as you've gotten used to. So what?

    Bittorrent was never even designed to do what it has been used for by sites like SuprNova, despite how cool it may have been while it worked. The creator of Bittorrent said so himself. It was not designed to be an instructible way to exchange copyrighted data illegally without fear of reprisal. It's not Slashdot's fault that you and others decided to use it for this purpose anyway. Slashdot is really doing you a favor by hastening the evolution of the next generation P2P clients. You'll get access to your warez and old TV shows, don't you worry. It just won't be via after today.

    You have no defensible point and yet you were modded +5, Insightful. At least 3 mods should be ashamed today.

Old programmers never die, they just branch to a new address.