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User rights inititative ToS;DR aims to bring transparency to website terms of service (Pho...

A new website, ToS;DR (Terms of Service; Didn't Read) aims to raise user awareness of website terms and conditions by comparing like-for-like criteria across a variety of web services. Each criterion is assessed and given a rating of good, mediocre or alert (i.e. bad). The criteria are then collectively assessed to come up with an overall score for each service, ranging from Class A (best) to Class E (worst).  Read More

The Pirate Bay is already inaccessible via most UK internet service providers, though work...

Another milestone in the ongoing effort by UK lawmakers to restrict access to The Pirate Bay was reached on Friday, as British internet service providers Be Broadband and parent company O2 joined counterparts Sky Broadband, Virgin Media and Everything Everywhere in blocking access to the controversial file sharing website.  Read More

A number of high profile websites are going dark today, to protest the proposed U.S. gover...

A number of high profile websites are going dark today to protest the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT IP Act (PIPA). The bills are designed to protect intellectual property holders by toughening measures against copyright infringers. Opponents say that aspects of the bill pose grave threats to free speech and internet entrepreneurship, with some high profile webmasters claiming that the bill, if passed, would threaten the very existence of their sites despite not hosting copyright-infringing material directly. Wikipedia, Reddit and Boing Boing are among the sites effectively shutting down today.  Read More

The SLUG is a device that allows users to record any streamed audio off of a computer or o...

Perhaps you’ve experienced this frustration before. There’s a piece of audio on a website that you want to use in a project of your own, and it’s playing right there on your computer, yet you have no way of copying it – short of holding a microphone up to your speakers, that is. Well, Kenneth Gibbs and Seena Zandipour want to change that. They’ve invented a little gizmo called the SLUG, that can reportedly obtain lossless recordings of any streamed audio being played back by a computer or other electronic device. The music labels will no doubt be about as happy to see the emergence of this thing as they were when blank audio cassettes first hit the stores.  Read More

The distributed nature of P2P networks such as Bitorrent sees millions of users sharing fi...

The BitTorrent peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing protocol was estimated by internet traffic management and analysis company ipoque to account for roughly 27 to 55 percent of all internet traffic as of February 2009 – much of it pirated software, music and video files. While the distributed nature of P2P networks sees millions of users sharing files every day, a new study to examine the behavior of users responsible for publishing files on the Mininova and The Pirate Bay portals reveals that a small group of around 100 users is responsible for the majority of content published over BitTorrent.  Read More

A new technology called 'video DNA matching' is able to identify pirated movies, based on ...

Presently, most automated systems can only identify copyrighted video material if it’s a direct copy, still bearing the unique digital signature of the original. This can sometimes be circumvented by altering the copy, or creating the copy optically using a video camera to shoot a movie off the screen. A new anti-piracy technology called “video DNA matching,” however, sees past such deception.  Read More

NEC's new technology hopes to stamp out video piracy on the Internet

NEC Japan has fired the latest salvo in war between pirates and video producers with the announcement of new identification technology capable of detecting copies of videos illegally uploaded to the Internet in a matter of seconds. According to NEC the technology achieved an average detection rate of 96 percent at a very low false alarm rate of 5ppm (5 in one million). It is also capable of detecting altered video content, such as caption overlays, camera captured copies and analog copies.  Read More

“Fair Use” industries generate US$4.7 TRILLION

Industries that rely on fair use exceptions to copyright law grew faster than the rest of the U.S. economy from 2002 to 2007, expanded 5 percent and accounted for 23 percent of real economic growth, according to a new CCIA economic study. The study entitled “Fair Use in the U.S. Economy” was released the day after Intellectual Property Day, and drew a distinctly different conclusion to another study released the day prior by the GIPC which advocates the tightening of fair use exceptions.  Read More

The Digital Britain report recommends technical measures to cut off suspected pirates at t...

Illegal peer-to-peer sharing of movies, music and software is currently estimated to comprise more than half the world's Internet traffic - and copyright holders are up in arms, saying that CD, movie and software sales are taking a devastating hit from the quick, convenient and anonymous piracy options the broadband age has opened up. Now, the UK is considering legislation that would see suspected illegal file sharers cut off altogether by their ISPs - despite the fact that the European Parliament recently rejected a similar plan from France, on the grounds that it contravened the modern citizen's fundamental right to access the Internet.  Read More

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