May 10

Limewire is Begging for a Second Chance

In case you missed the news, Limewire is begging the music industry for a second chance.  You know, after they stole from it for a really long time.

What do you think? Should the music industry forgive and forget, instead taking this opportunity to try to monetize the immense userbase of Limewire users?  Is it even possible to convert them to paying customers?  Or are Limewire users just going to move on to another service?  Seeing as how it takes years for the music industry to stop a service like Limewire, maybe another can hop in for a bit (maybe dupe a few users) and make a couple million $. Or, perhaps due to the precedence set by this case the next one will fall all that much faster.

It will definitely be interesting from here on out.

May 10

Hollywood’s Injunction to Disconnect The Pirate Bay (This Time in Germany)

Today I was discussing the recent LimeWire copyright infringement decision with a colleague of mine, when he remarked “I want the Pirate Bay shut down too.” Then I realized that some of you may have missed the latest news. According to an article on TorrentFreak, a group of major Hollywood studios have obtained a preliminary injunction from the Hamburg District Court in Germany against The Pirate Bay’s web host, CB3ROB, prohibiting them from connecting the Pirate Bay’s web servers to the Internet.

You can read more about this at Torrentfreak. However, for more information I recommend checking out this article over at The Register in the UK, where representatives from the web host say they know nothing of this injunction, and even go so far as to refer to The Pirate Bay as “fully legit.”

The sad part is, that if the Pirate Bay gets disconnected, it’s almost certain we’ll see it pop right back up in some other country on another web service. I hate to say it, but perhaps it’s time we consider actually putting together laws that require ISPs to block access to sites that are known to be operating illegally. Otherwise, it’s just going to continue to be a game of whack-a-mole.

May 10

LimeWire Has Officially Been Deemed Illegal (It’s About Time)

LimeLimeWire has finally been found illegal, liable for copyright infringement, a bunch of thieves, etc.

The news of this has been all over the web (WSJ has one of the best pieces of coverage), but I think Patrick Ross of the Copyright Alliance has one of the best responses to it on their blog.

I left my thoughts on the Copyright Alliance’s site, but thought it was worth sharing here as well. So, consider this my official response to the news.

“This is one of the best pieces of news I’ve seen reported in a long time. It’s about time this happened. I remember a few years ago, I was talking to some people I knew and found out that they don’t ever buy music – instead they only download from Limewire (or did at the time). The thing is, when I told them that what they were doing was illegal, they had no idea. Their response was “but I bought some pro version and a plan.” It was only after explaining to them that it still was unlicensed and nothing went to any of the artists or creators that they saw just how misled they had been.

Limewire’s entire business plan was built around the theft of copyrighted materials, and as you said, they were just fine with that. It’s good to see that the Judicial System has stepped up and given them the smack they so deserve.”

It’s about time.

Aug 09

Joel Tennenbaum and Jammie Thomas-Rasset Were Not Fined for Downloading Music

With the news about the recent decisions in both the Joel Tennenbaum case and the Jammie Thomas Rasset case, there has been a lot of uninformed complaining going on. The biggest error among the misinformed is this: they think people were fined for downloading music.

They weren’t.

In most articles you’ll read online, the act of downloading is the focus, like this one over at Gizmodo.  I understand that a lot of people online like to steal music, and that they’re upset that some people got in trouble for it – but the fact is, they’re wrong about what the people got in trouble for.  The people (Tennenbaum and Thomas-Rasset) got in trouble for downloading and distributing music.  They were found to do so willingly, and while knowing that to do so was illegal. Continue reading →