LimeTorrents Fights Blocking Efforts With New Domain and Homepage
Icon

Torrent site LimeTorrents has changed its domain name and updated its homepage in response to various blocking efforts. The site hopes to bypass ISP blockades, at least temporarily, but also to counter a Google ban. While the site is determined to stay online, its operator says that running a torrent site is not getting any easier.

Founded in 2009, LimeTorrents has been a familiar name in the torrent ecosystem for nearly a decade.

The site is regularly listed as one of the ten most-visited torrent sites on the Internet. However, as a prime source of pirated content, it has also seen plenty of trouble over the years.

During the site’s early days, music group IFPI seized its servers, for example, and a few years later the site’s operator got dragged into a lawsuit by Lionsgate over the Expendables 3 leak.

Despite these issues, the site remains alive and well. That said, running a torre...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Russia Has Permanently Blocked 3,400 Pirate Resources
Icon

Site-blocking is the in-vogue anti-piracy mechanism and in this respect, Russia is taking matters to extremes. According to an announcement from the authority tasked with managing Internet restrictions, more than 3,400 online resources are now subject to permanent blocking after being sanctioned by either the Moscow City Court or Ministry of Communications.

After years of criticism from both international and local rightsholders, in 2013 the Russian government decided to get tough on Internet piracy.

Sites engaged in Internet piracy can now find themselves blocked by ISPs, who render them inaccessible to local citizens.

Several years on, Russia is still grappling with a huge piracy problem that refuses to go away. It has been blocking thousands of sites that allegedly engage in copyright infringement. Some of the blocks are lifted when sites comply but for those that repeatedly flaunt the rules, tougher punishment lies in wait. Read entire story at TorrentFreak

‘Piracy Audiences Are Untapped Pools of Wealth’
Icon

This week UK telecoms regulator Ofcom announced that streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon are now more popular than traditional pay-TV. It's a sign that the Internet plays a crucial role in today's distribution of video entertainment. However, according to research and analytics firm MUSO, pirate audiences remain a great untapped pool of wealth.

Anti-piracy firms often portray copyright infringers as thieves that must be stopped or eradicated.

However, the people at UK firm MUSO have a different take on the piracy problem. With funding from the local Government, they’re offering classic takedown tools, but the company prefers to frame piracy as an opportunity rather than a threat.

This became apparent once again when UK telecoms regulator OFCOM released new figures this week. According to the agency, online subscription services including Netflix and Amazon Prime have, for the first time, overtaken satellite an...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Copyright Troll Law Firm Broke Copyright Law, Disciplinary Board Finds
Icon

A law firm deeply entrenched in so-called copyright troll activities in Finland broke copyright law itself, a disciplinary board has found. Hedman Partners sent out letters demanding large sums to make supposed lawsuits disappear but according to the Finnish Bar Association, it committed an offense when it obtained private subscriber data for one client but then used it with others.

So-called copyright trolling in the file-sharing space involves copyright holders claiming their rights have been infringed before heading to court to demand the identities of subscribers behind IP addresses.

Once these identities have been obtained, law firms affiliated with trolls write to the person whose name appears on the ISP bill in order to demand cash settlements to make supposed lawsuits go away. It’s a lucrative but extremely controversial practice.

This type of activity got underway in Finland during 2013, taking hold during 2014, with a notable escalation in...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Nintendo Sues Console ROM Sites For ‘Mass’ Copyright Infringement
Icon

Nintendo has filed a lawsuit against the alleged operator of the popular console ROM sites LoveROMS.com and LoveRETRO.co. The sites are among the most notorious online hubs for pirated games, according to Nintendo, and face millions of dollars in potential damages.

Emulators are handy tools for people who want to play games on platforms other than the usual console they’re intended for.

These are particularly useful for retro games and consoles, which are no longer sold, allowing users to enjoy the games they were hooked on decades ago.

However, many game publishers are less content with this practice. Nintendo, in particular, has repeatedly called out ROMS and emulator sites, both in and outside the United States.

This week, Nintendo took two of these sites to court. In a complaint filed at a federal court in Arizona, th...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Steal This Show S04E02: Crypto & The Beyond
Icon

Today we bring you the next episode of the Steal This Show podcast, discussing renegade media and the latest decentralization and file-sharing news. In this episode we talk about the crypto revolution with Primavera De Filippi, blockchain researcher at Harvard University and CNRS.

In this episode, we meet Primavera De Filippi, author of the recently published ‘Blockchain and the Law‘, from Harvard University Press (co-authored with Aaron Wright).

Primavera is interested in how the law will change to accommodate blockchain — and how blockchain might replace parts of the law.

We’ve already seen how P2P filesharing strained the world’s copyright law: what changes will P2P money bring?

Steal This Show aims to release bi-weekly episodes featuring insiders discussing crypto, privacy, copyright and file-sh...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

SEGA Accused of “Anti-Consumer” Behavior With “Rushed” Sonic Mania Plus Protection
Icon

The Bulgarian responsible for cracking the latest variants of the Denuvo anti-tamper technology has slammed SEGA for being "anti-consumer". Voksi says that when cracking the protection on Sonic Mania Plus, he noticed that the anti-piracy system hadn't been deployed properly, meaning that even people who buy the game will be negatively affected.

Since their aim is to prevent people from copying titles and playing them for free, no anti-piracy technologies are popular with pirates.

Underlying this emotion is a kind of unofficial ‘hate-scale,’ in which the level of a dislike for a particular system increases proportionately to its success on the ground. Denuvo, one of the most prominent and difficult to crack anti-piracy technologies, is hated most of all.

Denuvo isn’t undefeatable, various groups and individuals have proven that. However, there are persistent claims, denied by its makers, that the tec...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

NetEase Refutes PUBG’s Copyright Infringement Claims in Court
Icon

NetEase, the Chinese developer of the popular mobile games 'Rules of Survival' and 'Knives Out', has responded to PUBG's copyright infringement claims. The company asked the California federal court to dismiss PUBG's lawsuit, describing it as an attempt to monopolize the popular “battle royale” genre.

When PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) was first released last year, it became an instant hit.

This success earned the company hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue, but according to PUBG, this could have been much more if others hadn’t copied their work.

The general theme of PUBG is now used by many games, which is a thorn in the side of the developer. To protect its financial interests, the company, therefore, decided to take the developer of two alleged spinoffs to court.

In April, PUBG filed a lawsuit against NetEase, the makers of ‘Rules of Survi...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Premier League Obtains Piracy Blocking Order For 2018/19 Season
Icon

The High Court has granted the Premier League permission to continue blocking live pirate streams of football matches in the UK. The football organization obtained a pioneering injunction early 2017, with a second order expiring in May 2018. That has now been renewed by Justice Arnold for the 2018 to 2019 season. Many of the details are shrouded in secrecy.

Top tier football broadcast licensing in the UK is handled by the Premier League but like all content owners, it faces a threat from unauthorized providers.

Instead of paying significant monthly subscriptions to broadcasters such as Sky and BT Sport, large numbers of fans are turning to piracy-enabled set-top boxes for their fix. While not as sleek as their official counterparts, they can provide a cheap alternative for those on a budget.

Often Kodi-powered, these devices are augmented with third-party addons that facilitate access to streams freely available online or the mor...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak

Former Pirate Bay Cyberlocker ‘Bayfiles’ Makes a ‘Comeback’
Icon

Bayfiles, the file-hosting service originally launched by two Pirate Bay co-founders, makes a comeback under new ownership this week. The site disappeared after the 2014 raid on a Stockholm datacenter. The new operators acquired the site's domains and logotype from Fredrik Neij, but will otherwise start from scratch.

In 2011, Pirate Bay founders Fredrik Neij and Peter Sunde launched Bayfiles, a new file-sharing venture.

Instead of relying on torrents, which had previously made TPB a huge success, Bayfiles allowed users to upload and download large files directly.

With its no-nonsense sharing approach, the site swiftly accumulated a steady user base. However, that ended when the site was abruptly pulled offline, following a raid in 2014. Bayfiles probably wasn’t the primary target, but the site never returned.

While most users had given up on Bayfiles, an anonymous group of &#...

Read entire story at TorrentFreak