AfterDawn: Tech news

MPAA files lawsuits with data from P2P logs

Written by James Delahunty @ 25 Aug 2005 11:05 User comments (40)

MPAA files lawsuits with data from P2P logs Major Hollywood movie studios have filed another round of lawsuits against file sharers it alleges to have distributed copyrighted movies over the Internet. However, this time is different from all over lawsuits. The studios have not been searching through P2P networks for IP addresses, they got the IP addresses from P2P companies own logs. In total, 286 lawsuits were filed against sharers in the United States. The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) said the logs were from file sharing sites shut down earlier this year.
These would be BitTorrent websites that were shut down although even though a court in Texas ordered LokiTorrent to turn over server logs in February, the MPAA admitted that none of the lawsuits filed were related to that. This is sort of "propaganda" by the MPAA to try to dissuade file sharers from using BitTorrent sites in fear that their trading actions might be logged. "Internet movie thieves be warned: You have no friends in the online community when you are engaging in copyright theft," MPAA Senior Vice President John Malcolm said in a statement.

However, while a lot of BitTorrent sites log how much you upload and download (for reasons of ratio and to weed out leechers) most don't log what files you uploaded and downloaded. Last December the MPAA launched an aggressive campaign against individual file sharers and some services like BitTorrent hubs. Since then, many sites have closed their doors either voluntarily or because of legal action taken against them.

BitTorrent is legal and is increasingly being used for legitimate distribution. Bram Cohen, creator of BitTorrent has long warned that using BitTorrent to share copyrighted material is a "dumb idea" because it's not designed to hide the identities of people sharing. Operators of BitTorrent sites argue that they do not host any copyrighted files at all, they just host .torrent files which are then used by file sharers to start downloading and sharing with each other.


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40 user comments

126.8.2005 00:53

"most down log what files you uploaded and downloaded" Should that be most donT log or did I miss something completely? "Internet movie thieves be warned: You have no friends in the online community when you are engaging in copyright theft," ROFLMAO They are just pathetic. I hope people will take the MPAA to court like that divorced mom RIAA. Someone has to fight!

226.8.2005 01:04

yep it shpould be, thans a lot :-) that was a product of microsoft word spell check ;-) ill fix it

326.8.2005 06:17

Microsoft word's spellcheck always puts more errors back than it takes out Dela ;) You'd be better off using an online spellcheck

426.8.2005 08:15

lawsuits lawsuits lawsuits, when will they ever get the point that all these lawsuits will just make users make mirros of p2p or other sites and start right back up i understand that they are mad but it's pointless :)

526.8.2005 10:38

The MPAA is just dumb. They can't even word their unfounded threats properly. This isn't "copyright theft"; I don't think any file sharer has magically made a copyrighted work become uncopyrighted. If whoever made that quote had half a brain, they would have said copyright infringement. Pity it's not a crime to lie to the public.

626.8.2005 18:26

Never did like logs :-(

726.8.2005 19:49

Thanks for the story. I wish they would -not- include the threatening quotes from MPAA executives in those articles, like in this one. It's like giving them free advertising, delivering their message for them to the appropriate audience. I wish they would write something like "So-and-so released a statement to the P2P community with threatening connotations, but this type of low-brow bullying has been shown to be ineffective in curbing P2P usage, time after time. As usual, they fail to grasp the impossibility of what they are greedily trying to achieve, and are continuing in their attempts to buy their way through the legal system in order to maintain their grasp of an industry that has enjoyed an over-inflated revenue for long enough."

827.8.2005 00:56

There is a fatal flaw in the MPAA`s logic.

This is sort of "propaganda" by the MPAA to try to dissuade file sharers from using BitTorrent sites
Lets say I am a casual downloader on some BitTorrent site. I see all this "propaganda" about lawsuits etc. and decide to stop using any BitTorrent software to download. I have decided to go cold turkey and walk the straight and narrow. PRAISE THE LORD . I HAVE SEEN THE LIGHT !!!! Some time down the road the MPAA get a hold of the sites log and decides to sue me. Unless they offer some sort of amnesty going forward whats the point of quitting. Once a downloader , always a downloader. Even though I have stopped , I am branded with a capital D on my forehead, just waiting for the MPAA police to show up !!! They want people to stop but have not given anyone a good reason to stop.

927.8.2005 06:55

WAAAAAAA!! I'm the MPAA! WAAAAAAAAA!! Stop stealing my stuff! WAAAAAAAA!! You're all mean! WAAAAAAAAA!! Now all my big brothers who are lawyers are gonna hunt all down wether or not you download any more since my threats don't stop you cause i'm such a pussy! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!

1027.8.2005 18:33

I tell you what, it is starting to get pretty f*cking scary for the people that download these things (i don't and have never because i am aware of the consequences and do not fancy being sued ;)) no offence to the people still downloading but you have to be a pretty stupid motherf*cker to continue downloading now that the sh*t has realy hit the fan...

1127.8.2005 20:37

@Phantom69, this is just another example of the MPAA's exaggerated propaganda, as was mentioned in the article. If you allow lies and bullying to shape your behavior, the MPAA succeeds. I'm not telling you to infringe on copyrights, but like 72morgan said, once you're guilty, you're guilty. Getting caught is no where near as easy as they claim though.

1228.8.2005 04:04

phantom 69, please tell me of a single case where someone who as you say "downloads" has ever, EVER been charged with a civil or criminal violations? Can you name one? no. They have been using various methods to chill the uplaodrs, and make ingorant people (unfortuately like yourself) think, through poorly informed press using wrong terminology, that "downloaders" have also been targeted -- when it has never been the case.

1328.8.2005 06:59

very nicely put Yeardly

1428.8.2005 09:15

286 lawsuits/20 million plus illegal downloads, so the chances of you getting sued are................

1528.8.2005 10:07

That's a sad day man, for sure!! Getting busted for 60kb torrent file!! What a Joke. I'm up in Canada, but on the downloading side of things, I'm glad I'm not in the US. They make it seem like the MPAA is broke and giong out of business.LOL Oh well, be carefull US neighbors!!! Weycraze

...a mind is a terrible thing to waste...

1629.8.2005 20:01

I am here to enlighten you all! I know this is going to sound kind of stupid, but as we all know, the RIAA is saying now that once a downloader, always a downloader deal. I think 72morgan put it that way?? Anyways, this sparked something in my mind. If you had the oppurtunity, the RIAA agent is sitting in front of you saying, "Sign this and you are free to go." would you sign it? Here is what it says, you must identify yourself, delete all illegal content you have, and swear to never download illegaly again. It is a contract. Do you sign it?? Just think about this. I have been thinking about it, and I don't know if I would or not. The chance of gettnig caught is so small, and the price I'd have to pay would just make me work harder. If I have to come up with $20,000 to pay for 'damages' I'll find a way. If you think about though, how many of you that have downloaded illegal files before would have bought them for the retail price? I have NEVER downloaded anything I felt was worth paying for, or that I didn't already own that got destroyed. What it boils down to in my situation, is no more than $100 in damages no matter what they say, and that is pushing it on the upper side of the price range. Anyways, back to the subject, would you sign it?? "Sherman also announced the Clean Slate Program that grants amnesty to users who voluntarily identify themselves, erase downloaded music files and promise not to share music on the Internet. The RIAA said it will not sue users who sign and have notarized a Clean Slate Program affidavit." Source: Think about that, I'll be waiting for replies and a discussion;) Razor

1729.8.2005 20:04

Sorry for this double post, but I can't edit... Also read this, it fights the amnesty offer. Razor

1830.8.2005 08:08

Razor89 - The amnesty contract sort of amuses me a little reminds me of that pledge they get high school seniors to sign before prom night, which makes them promise that they won't lose their virginity after the dance. Back when I was a senior, those who signed it were rewarded with access to a pizza party and a break from half a day of school. -Guess how many signed it? -Guess how many were deflowered anyway? Obviously, it's not the perfect comparison, because with the amnesty program you actually have to 'give yourself up' as someone who has already been 'breaking the rules' that the MPAA and RIAA claim exist. (If I understood it correctly, the program gives you the option to come forward, admit downloading/possibly adding you name to the keep-an-eye-on-me list, sign the contract, delete the downloaded content, and then you wouldn't be sued so long as you never downloaded again -- but if you were 'caught red-handed' without having signed the contract, you would not have the option to sign it after-the-fact) With the volatility and clear desperation that these corporations have exhibited in their scramble to hogtie technological advancements in digital communications for their benefit, I think it's safe to say that one thing they have NOT gained through their efforts is the trust of anybody in the P2P community. Personally, I don't think I have the trust in these corporations that would be necessary for me to enter into any type of contract with them whatsoever. And as always, of course, I don't think their goals are legitimate. I think that the group this program is really aimed toward is the parents of younger downloaders. The MPAA/RIAA is probably hoping that these parents read articles about the lawsuits or see them on the news, like the recent one about the divorced mother. I think they are counting on other 'divoced mothers' and parents out there to identify with the victims of these lawsuits and worry that 'it could happen to them.' The next day they read an article about the amnesty program, and immediately ask their kids to sign the contract and delete the content. It's a clever move if you ask me, as in many cases it is parents out there who don't have a realistic grasp of the internet. For example, how many young subscribers to legal music services have probably been asked by their parents after reading such an article, "Are you doing that illegal downloading?" I know that aren't always oblivious, but I think a lot of the parents don't understand the downloading, and the MPAA/RIAA fear-tactics are easy to get away with when you're dealing with people who don't understand the subject itself. All these parents know is, "I don't know what this is, but I don't want to get sued." As for the P2P community at large -- my prediction is that the amnesty program, much like any previous efforts, will be about as successful as a lemonade stand. There'll be a few takers, but mostly it's a waste of time.

1930.8.2005 11:14

yeardley, you hit the nail on the head. It's funny that it used to be the parents worried about kids being ignorant and taken advantage of. Now the roles are reversed.

2031.8.2005 09:24

Like the other comments said, this is just stupid! I just got back from a vacation in Taiwan, and one thing that I notiched are how prices are so different there from where i live (netherlands) For example, the music that is made in Taiwan, is half the price of what the western/american music costs. And the same goes for movies, and people there don't even bother looking at the western movie and music sections because it is just too expensive. I should note that these people make less money then us european/american/western people. I boought a CD+DVD box of a Taiwanese female artist that I enjoyed watching on TV and the like. The CD+DVD box was about 10 euro, and trust me, it wasnt low quality crap, or well not in my opinion. So instead of suing people and making loosing more and more customers because of bad names, maybe they should just half their current prices. I know I would easly buy a new DVD every week if they were 5 to 7.5 euro, and I dont mean making them that price 2 years after they have come out, but the moment the DVD is put on the market. And I am sure that a lot of people feel that way. Ah well thats just my thought.

2131.8.2005 13:11

So...I see now that as the article I posted says, signing that contract will not guarentee you are not sued, only that you are not sued by them. I think that is crazy that the prices are so low everywhere but where I live lol. If DVD's were as cheap here as they are there, I would have no motivation to get illegal copies of them because by the time I wait for the download, get the supplies, and burn it, it will cost almost as much and be much worse quality. I would also buy them at a cheaper price, and also if the stuff I wanted was more available. A lot of the things that I have gotten illegaly I did beleive they were worth the money, but I simply couldn't get them becuase nobody carries them and the like. I like going to the movies too, but it costs so damn much. The prices are skyrocketing here, and the movies aren't getting any better! We should all move over there or make a petition or something. I guess in a way, everyone that downloads instead of buying is boycotting in a way. Razor

222.9.2005 07:56

Yes.. I agree. If media was released at decent prices, eveyone would buy..... Company greed destroys this. It always has, and probably always will. They fail to realise that its better to sell 100,000,000 Million units for $10 each, then maybe 1,000,000 for $30 each.. The car industy suffer the same problem. If people were to pay retail prices for 2 new albums, a couple of movies, and a few PC games, the could spend $300 + per week...which is crazy. These days people want more... Its not a case of a new movie every 4 months, and a new game treat twice per year.. Most peple I know what every movie, every game, every release.... in with the new, and out with the old on a weekly basis The Internet has sped up distributon, and alows more people to enjoy things more often... Retail prices need to offset this digital advantage, with agressive pricing. But instead of doing something about it. They winge, sue people, and don't see the big picture. And besides... Do the realy think stopping a few torrent sites will remedy their issue. You could go to a LAN, and dump every release to your PC in 15 minutes over the nework.

232.9.2005 10:06

Point 1...The movie industry screws their own people all the time, what makes anybody think they will be honest with anybody else.

Point 2...The MPAA's fight against downloaders is now run by lawyers. The lawyers are going to keep things going as long as they can just for the money, nothing else. If P2P were an ambulance, it would have been stomped into the ground under the lawyer's feet by now.

When the MPAA started this campaign, they announced that they were not concerned about anyone downloading old movies. They used the movie "It's A Wonderful Life" as an example. They stated that they were only concerned about the sharing of first run movies and their dip in immeadiate profits. Then, after analizing the data, it was found that new movies only accounted for 18 percent of the total downloads. The majority of the downloads were of classic movies and TV shows. Ahaa, there is money to be made here.. The MPAA then started going after ANY video sharing.

While this was going on, old movies and TV shows began to be marketed more aggressively at retail outlets. More shelves were added to increase the "classics and TV" display areas. Many of the videos for sale in stores are downloaded from the net by studios and distributers. These are the same files that the MPAA lawyers will try and nail a P2P users for. They are then converted to DVD and sold at these stores. All one has to do is follow the money trail...

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 20 Mar 2008 @ 12:57

242.9.2005 11:14

S2K per your request...A lady that I work with has been served with a civil suit for uploading and downloading movies. The movie industry is wanting $620,000.00 to settle the suit without taking the case to court. Needless to say, they are attempting to take everything that the woman has. I do not believe that they are simply trying to scare people. I think that they mean business. I know from my friends experience that if you are one of the heavy hitters on P2P networks that they will come knocking on your door.

252.9.2005 17:29

$620K!! Seems to me they target easy money, you have some affluent friends. Only way I could settle out of court would be in the back alley.

262.9.2005 17:36

my solution(if u can afford it)-netflix or blockbuster online+dvd burner+software that makes backups of dvd's+decryption software and this way, the mpaa will still make a buck because i assume that some of the money is going to them

273.9.2005 00:23

I agree with 72Morgan, if we are going to be sued in the future for past copyright infringements, what's the incentive to stop downloading from torrent sites?

283.9.2005 00:57

It is merely a matter of time...... Someone who is not of sound mind.... Will be served by either the MPAA or RIAA.... They will be threatened and bullied and will snap' like a dry twig.... This person of "bright, normal intelligence" will then make a nice little home-made explosive, or load their favorite weapon, and run into an office of the MPAA / RIAA (or perhaps an acting attorney's office) and Blow them all to Kingdom Come... These are stressful times in the USA.... It "will" happen..... just give it some time.... Who knows, maybe that statement of claim is sitting in His or Her mailbox right now..............

296.9.2005 14:49

LOL joeman...I like the way you put that. When I talk about stuff like that people stare at me like I'm insane, but now that I know someone exists that is the same way... I think that is just a great analogy. He gets sacked with a couple million dollar lawsuit, and after that, what has he got to lose?? Some people see life as no more than money, which is why he was downloading in the first place, it was cheaper! Another thing I thought about today was that the amnesty deal seems like a horrible idea if you think about it. You sign the contract to the MPAA and they sell it to a third party. Suddenly you're getting sued by the company that made the movie anyways, and you forced it upon yourself when you probably wouldn't have gotten sued anyways. This contract is just so full of loopholes on THEIR side!! Razor

306.9.2005 21:54

Razor.... Yes tis' true many people have not the gumption to say what they feel, and mean what they say, a shame really... I sometimes wonder if anyone remember's that rash of shootings that occurred in the late 70's through to the mid 80's at the US Postal service outlets ? Whatever happened to the rest of those crazy bastards? Did the loonies all just "go away" ? Nope, they just got treated a little bit better by the company, and by the individuals in senior and supervisory capacities and roles. Why you might add? Because they feared for their very "Freaking Lives" ! How about the shootings at some of the McDonald's restaurants and some of the other fast food joints ? Did those types go away too? Nope, most weren't employees of the establishment, or related to the place in any shape or form. It was a nicely populated place where they knew they could do some damage. No, these people are still out there, but fortunately for all of us, they have prescription medication that prevents them from doing those types of "things"..... Unfortunately what I speak of is true and DOES happen quite often (maybe not the RIAA or MPAA, just yet..) but it in fact happens everyday. As I am well acquainted with local Law Enforcement in my area, I tend to be privy to first hand accounts of what "really happened" concerning "those stories" on the six o'clock news. Many who are in, or related to Law enforcement, can attest to this... What we see on the news is a mere "FRACTION" of what actually happens within our heavily populated cities and areas. If the public had the same information the Police did on a daily basis, they'd be out buying RAZOR wire and Shotguns,..Ha ! (OK, so that might be a little extreme, but it would be somewhat of an awakening and a "Real Worry" for many). Anyway, yeah..., this whole RIAA / MPAA thing has gotten waaaaaay out of hand. Corporate greed and Slime-bag Politician's have been manipulating digital copyright law and digital media use for years now. People are completely FED UP with them and it's going to get very fugly indeed. The USA already has one of the worst health programs on the entire planet. Health care costs are astronomical, and prescription medicines are simply unattainable for many due to it's very high cost. See where I'm going with this..... The lawsuits been read a couple hundred times...... It sits on the kitchen table..... There's no money, no job..... The prescription hasn't been picked up for a month.... What to do.....what to do....what to do..... /Joeman....

317.9.2005 07:05

Maybe, if we talked real nice...We could put in a request to Bin Laden.........

327.9.2005 11:11


337.9.2005 13:09

Hey, does anybody know if the MPAA have any legal powers in Great Britain, or if you can be sued over there for copying American Films?? Please Reply

347.9.2005 13:48

He walks into the middle of the room and drops his bag with hardly a glance from the people sitting at their desks.... His overalls and fake, Clip-on ID card looked real enough to fool the receptionist (not that anyone could tell the difference anyway...). As he reaches into the bag, a board meeting has just finished and every one is filtering out of the boardroom.... He thinks to himself, "My timing couldn't have been any better". Instead of pulling out Networking tools and Category 5 wire, out comes a M16A2 with M203 40mm Grenade Launcher. He stands up and screams at the top of his lungs... "SAY HELLO TO MY LEEETLE FRIENN" ! Ba-Boom, Brrrtt, Brtttttt, Boom ! (The MPAA suits don't waste anytime and start scurrying like a bunch of Roaches)... Ba-Boom! Brrttt, Brrrttt <clink, clink, clink, clink...(smoking shells bouncing off the floor tiles) More suits running for the exits screaming like little school girls as bullets rip through the tops of desks and into office chairs directly behind them, monitors explode outward... The grenade launcher fires and a couple of suits are launched effortlessly like rag dolls though the huge glass windows looking into the boardroom.... Yep, Forget Bin Laden....Tony Montana is a Guaranteed fix to this silly lawsuit problem..... **Those bastards had better not steal my movie idea either ! ** /Joeman.....

357.9.2005 14:12

Don't forget the lawyers..........

367.9.2005 15:08

Well I figure he nailed some of those pompous dicks before he went for lunch at McDonald's.... /Joeman...

379.9.2005 20:19

lol....Nice input, nice input. I like the idea of maybe this insane guy buying a dress and a wig and stuff, and for breasts, he straps on a bra full of plastic explosives. Then you can probably imagine the rest...Walk into RIAA building and bam. Anyways, yeah...Pretty much a waiting game now. They snipe out a few of us while they miss the big picture, killing customers and building up the feeling of revolt until we create an uproar. Razor

3819.3.2008 19:24

Everyone knows full well that downloading files that are copyrighted is illegal. And if any of you had anything maketable and valubale you wouldn't want someone theiving your property either. That being said: Your take your chances and hope thier not looking at you ! Recently they have been going after the big theives burning hundreds of movies and or music files then selling them to the public as authentic copies but by the price any individual knows thier anything but the real deal. These assholes ruin it for everyone to make a few bucks. However a thief is a thief ! be it one song or one movie your open for prosecution on detection. Don't whine and plead ignorance if your caught - suck it up like a man and pay the piper ' don't use silly crap like ( oh come on I only loaded one movie or one song and I already bought them but they got damaged so that gives me the right to steal ! hahaha !!!

3919.3.2008 20:06

gosh could that be a sony shill ? "copying one song from your legaly purchased CD and thats only stealing one song " lmao rofl
I will do what i want with my legally purchased copy of anything..............................................

for the younger crowd shill is a bad name for a representative

4020.3.2008 00:40

This meant a lot more to me two and a half years ago. You know, back when it happened.

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