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Blocking Pirating Sites Deemed to be Ineffective

By - Source: http://seclab.ccs.neu.edu/publications/ndss2013clickonomics.pdf | B 40 comments
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New research coming out of Boston's Northeastern University suggests that the strategies of the music and music industry that target the blocking of websites that host copyrighted material is not an effective anti-piracy measure.

Content that may be shut down in one location is likely to spring up somewhere else at a rapid pace, creating a cat and mouse game that cannot be won. They mentioned Megaupload, which, for example, was asked by Warner Bros. to remove more than 2,500 infringing links every day in September 2009. Yet even the seizure and shutdown of the site did little to slow piracy as this event is likely to have encouraged other "one-click hosters" (OCHs) to pick up Megaupload's traffic volume.

"Currently, this game seems to be in favor of the many pirates who provide far more content than what the copyright owners are taking down," the researchers said. "This imbalance of powers, together with the size and diversity of the One-Click Hosting ecosystem, suggest that anti-piracy laws to reduce the availability and reachability of pirated content may be less successful than what their proponents might expect."

The researchers said that there are currently more than 10,000 domains that are hosting pirated content. They said that copyright holders should not focus on the seizure of domains, but on blocking their ability to process payments from users, which could prove to be much more effective.

"On the other hand, strategies against economically motivated actors may effectively target certain parts of the ecosystem," the study concluded. "Together with increased legal proceedings, we expect them to render many OCHs more diligent, and maybe even proactive, in their own anti-piracy efforts."

 

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  • 28 Hide
    vittau , January 12, 2013 10:51 AM
    I know a good anti-piracy measure: DRM-free services that don't treat their customers like criminals, and better prices.
  • 27 Hide
    Anonymous , January 12, 2013 9:11 AM
    The thing is that most people wouldn't pay for this stuff that they download illegally, they would just go without, if it was something I really wanted and was worth my money then I would buy it
  • 24 Hide
    25gtt , January 12, 2013 9:37 AM
    I always thought that if the music was affordable then perhaps people would not be willing to pirate as much.
    Perhaps the funds spent on chasing the pirate website could be reinvested to reduce the price of the songs.
    That plus entrusting lets say Sony with my cc details is a risk, if you can recall what happed to the PS account sometime ago *Oops*
    So i cant help but think, overpriced music with unsecure transactions = overpriced risk.

Other Comments
  • 27 Hide
    Anonymous , January 12, 2013 9:11 AM
    The thing is that most people wouldn't pay for this stuff that they download illegally, they would just go without, if it was something I really wanted and was worth my money then I would buy it
  • 19 Hide
    abbadon_34 , January 12, 2013 9:13 AM
    I could have told you that, but who wants to help such a devious cause?
  • 5 Hide
    ojas , January 12, 2013 9:19 AM
    Slow news day?
  • 24 Hide
    25gtt , January 12, 2013 9:37 AM
    I always thought that if the music was affordable then perhaps people would not be willing to pirate as much.
    Perhaps the funds spent on chasing the pirate website could be reinvested to reduce the price of the songs.
    That plus entrusting lets say Sony with my cc details is a risk, if you can recall what happed to the PS account sometime ago *Oops*
    So i cant help but think, overpriced music with unsecure transactions = overpriced risk.

  • 23 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , January 12, 2013 9:37 AM
    Can I get a Duh, Duh?
  • 20 Hide
    manofchalk , January 12, 2013 9:40 AM
    I thought that trying to block TPB and other sites was already known to be a bad tactic.
  • -9 Hide
    may1 , January 12, 2013 10:33 AM
    It would be far more effective to generate a public black list of domains, pressuring ISPs to avoid them
  • 28 Hide
    vittau , January 12, 2013 10:51 AM
    I know a good anti-piracy measure: DRM-free services that don't treat their customers like criminals, and better prices.
  • 13 Hide
    srap , January 12, 2013 11:02 AM
    manofchalkI thought that trying to block TPB and other sites was already known to be a bad tactic.

    It cannot be said enough times. Especially for the guys at the media industry.
  • 11 Hide
    azraa , January 12, 2013 11:31 AM
    No shit, Sherlock
  • 21 Hide
    beayn , January 12, 2013 12:58 PM
    Movies are too expensive. $25 for a bluray so you can get HD on your HDTV is stupid. They should offer a "no extras" cheaper option. If they won't budge on price, go with $10 at release with no extras. If I could pick up movies for $5 to $10 I would purchase most of them. As it stands now, I buy a $25 movie once a year, if that.

    Games are offering less and less content. Some games are offering a 6 hour campaign for $60. Back in the day, games were more expensive at $70 or more (I paid $90 for Neverwinter Nights), but they offered long hours of play. 80 hours I got out of NWN, which is little more than $1 per hour.

    Games are now $10 per hour or more. If I were to buy two copies at $60 per game for my wife to play as well, we'd be paying $20 per hour, which is probably more money than most people make at their full time jobs.

  • 18 Hide
    ddpruitt , January 12, 2013 1:25 PM
    Give me access to what I want when I want for a reasonable price and I won't pirate it. I stream network TV shows because I can watch them when I want. On the other hand I would rather have them available via Netflix or Amazon Instant because it's much easier to navigate, search, and use than pirating. I buy Blu-Rays all the time when they're on sale.

    If the MPAA and RIAA want us to stop pirating they would provide us with what we want, rather than what they want.
  • 3 Hide
    house70 , January 12, 2013 1:36 PM
    JOSHSKORNCan I get a Duh, Duh?

    Yes, Jimmy, you can.
  • 3 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , January 12, 2013 1:42 PM
    well this was a no brainer. i guess they don't realize that torrents are spread across a wide spectrum of servers from other torrent sites as well in a interweb.
  • 5 Hide
    -Jackson , January 12, 2013 2:58 PM
    Quote:
    Can I get a Duh, Duh?

    First thing that came to my mind. :lol: 
  • 8 Hide
    alidan , January 12, 2013 3:35 PM
    damianrobertjonesIf you can afford it.. then buy it. If you cannot afford it then WAIT for it to appear on ebay or amazon at a reduced price.There is NO EXCUSE for downloading illegal material.After saying that I, along with, probably, everyone posting here today, has sampled the world of 'free' material. If it all suddenly vanished overnight then I would buy all of the stuff that i wanted. On the other hand it takes months for certain television shows to appear, if they even ever do, over here in the UK. Same for films.If you want to stop all of this pirating stuff then target the newsgroups and THEN the web pages. After newsgroups go for the big players that have the crazy silly pipes out there in the world. ANY law enforcement department should be able to eventually stop all of this at the larger sources and I'm confused as to why they haven't yet done so? Oh yeah, there's more important stuff to do like stopping armed robbery, domestic violence, drugs etc.If YOU made the material... would you like someone to steal it from you? No... yet we all download.P.s. If the price of a Blu-ray is too much for you then wait for the price to fall. It is not as if your LIFE depends on it! We're so stupidly self entitled at times


    i love bringing this up, but photoshop.
    its only a major product because of piracy.
    the only reason it got big was everyone used it, and because of that businesses went with what everyone knew.

    photoshop costs 700$ new and 250$ for student.

    cs5 = 650$
    cs4 = 683$
    cs3 = 550$
    cs2 = 400$
    cs = 380$ 180 if you are ok with open box
    photoshop 7 = 440$ 144 open box
    photoshop 6 = 500$ 65 open box

    and i cant even find anything older than that on amazon
    for home use, the only one that is priced reasonably is 6
    but 6 is so old that im seriously doubting if it could even work on a modern computer.

    some things will never be reasonably priced...
  • 3 Hide
    Gamoholic , January 12, 2013 3:55 PM
    "music and music industry"?
  • 5 Hide
    LORD_ORION , January 12, 2013 4:17 PM
    Awesome outlook... right up there with the drug war and locking up drug users as an effective method.

    Should be pretty obvious where this line of thought is headed... Not only does the media industry want hegemony over the outside Kim Dotcom's of the world, they also want predatory financial policies in place for users of services that don't have an official blessing. eg: You didn't download pirated content, but you used an unsanctioned service legally that hosts pirated content, so you get to pay too.
  • 5 Hide
    InvalidError , January 12, 2013 4:19 PM
    Funny how researchers are only now concluding that taking down sites and services is ineffective... people in the pirating business have been telling everyone that for the past 20+ years.

    Everyone would be better off if content/software creators went for the embrace-and-extend mindset rather than exploring every litigation option possible to repress people who would not have bothered with their content/software otherwise. So much effort and productivity wasted on something that benefits nobody and most often hurt legitimate customers worst.
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