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Messages - olddays1

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P2P - Filesharing / RIAA & Homeland Security downloading torrents
« on: December 19, 2011, 07:34:52 am »
If there’s one organization known for its crusade against online piracy, it’s the RIAA. Nevertheless, even in the RIAA’s headquarters several people use BitTorrent to download pirated music, movies, TV-shows and software. And they are in good company. The Department of Homeland Security – known for seizing pirate domain names – also harbors hundreds of BitTorrent pirates.

Last week we wrote about a new website that exposes what people behind an IP-address have downloaded using BitTorrent. The Russian-based founders of the site gathered this data from public BitTorrent trackers, much like anti-piracy outfits do when they track down copyright infringers.

In response to the article many readers commented that they indeed saw a few familiar downloads, and they are not alone.

YouHaveDownloaded currently lists information on more than 50 million users. Although this is only a fraction of all public BitTorrent downloads, it shows that in pretty much every major organization people are pirating content.

Earlier this week we already showed that there are BitTorrent pirates at Sony, Universal and Fox. A few days later it was revealed that torrents are being downloaded in the palace of French President Nicholas Sarkozy, and today we can add the RIAA and the Department of Homeland Security to the list.

After carefully checking all the IP-addresses of the RIAA we found 6 unique addresses from where copyrighted material was shared. Aside from recent music albums from Jay-Z and Kanye West – which may have been downloaded for research purposes – RIAA staff also pirated the first five seasons of Dexter, an episode of Law and Order SVU, and a pirated audio converter and MP3 tagger.

All in all, quite an astonishing revelation for an outfit that wants to disconnect copyright infringers from the Internet.

Another prominent organization that has been in the news for their tough actions against online piracy is the Department of Homeland Security. In recent months they have seized domain names of hundreds of sites accused of facilitating counterfeiting and piracy, including the torrent search engine Torrent-Finder.

By now it probably comes as no surprise that staff at the Department of Homeland Security are also using BitTorrent. In fact, we found more than 900 unique IP-addresses at the Government organization through which copyrighted files were downloaded.

Since Homeland Security employs more than 200,000 people the finding is hardly a surprise. However, this and the other revelations show that BitTorrent is being used everywhere, from government agencies to even the most outspoken anti-piracy outfits.

For now at least, since the RIAA has lobbied hard for a nationwide piracy monitoring system much like YouHaveDownloaded.

In a few months millions of online ‘pirates’ will be monitored as part of an agreement between the MPAA, RIAA and all major U.S. Internet providers. Alleged infringers will be notified about their misbehavior, and repeat offenders will eventually be punished.

But will the RIAA be punished too?!+Mail

P2P - Filesharing / I Know What You Downloaded on Bittorrent
« on: December 14, 2011, 07:18:56 am »
Most people know that BitTorrent is far from anonymous, but seeing all your recent downloads listed on a public website is still quite a revelation. This is exactly what does. The developers of the site want to make people aware of the public nature of BitTorrent, and are currently working on a more anonymous version of the leading file-sharing technology.

So what have you downloaded lately?

If you’re not using BitTorrent through a proxy or VPN, there’s a good chance that the rest of the world can see without asking.

YouHaveDownloaded is a new Russian-based service that claims to track about 20 percent of all public BitTorrent downloads. However, they go a step further than just collecting IP-addresses and file-names by exposing all the harvested information to the public on their website.

People who visit the site immediately see their download history, as far as it’s available in the site’s database. In addition, they can also search for files or IP-addresses to find out who’s downloading what. At the time of writing the database has information on 51,274,000 users who together shared 103,200 torrents.

TorrentFreak got in touch with Suren Ter, one of the site’s founders, to find out why they decided to create this spying tool.

“We just want to remind people that the Internet is not a place to expect privacy,” he says. “Nowadays many people use it without understanding what information they leave behind. Also, even those who understand choose to ignore it quite often.”

The Russian developers created the site partly as a wake-up call. Those who don’t want this kind of information to be public should take steps to anonymize their traffic, and do that right. This message is also reflected in the site’s ‘privacy policy‘.

“Baby, this is the Internet. There is no such thing as privacy around here. You are sitting in the privacy of your own house, clicking links, reading stuff, watching movies. It may seem like you are pretty much alone, but smart nerds are watching you. They watch your every move. You are not human to them. You are a target — a consumer,” it reads.

Jokes aside, the site does indeed make people aware of the public nature of BitTorrent, something that can’t be stressed enough. Of course not everyone will be happy to see that their information is being exposed, so the developers also offer an option to de-list an IP-address.

Apart from exposing download habits the developers are also considering the creation of a more private file-sharing protocol. They already have a theoretical concept based on Bitcoin’s technology, but a workable piece of software is still very far away.

“The general idea is similar to what Bitcoin does. The key is to have an anonymous and reliable identity for each peer, and a Bitcoin-like signature chain algorithm will help,” Suren said.

The developers are currently trying to find out how viable their idea is, and then they’ll decide whether they should continue working on it or not. For now, they’ll keep on tracking dozens of millions of downloaders, for all the world to see.

Update: For those who have dynamic IP-addresses the service is obviously going to show content that someone else has downloaded.!+Mail

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: December 06, 2011, 08:15:20 am »
with out any...

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: November 23, 2011, 05:06:18 am »
that was dipped....

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: November 19, 2011, 06:50:26 am »
  Have it removed....

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: November 16, 2011, 06:39:08 am »
 that huge swollen.....

P2P - Filesharing / Re: Movie pirate sues police for deadly force arrest
« on: November 12, 2011, 06:46:28 am »
Earlier this year convicted movie cammer Timothy Epifan filed a lawsuit against Somerset County police and the MPAA for arresting him with deadly force and breaking his leg. The case is still ongoing, but Epifan has struck a deal with the Hollywood group meaning that the MPAA has been dropped from the lawsuit.

In 2009 an arrest in connection with the camming of the movie Bruno at a cinema in Manville, New Jersey, turned into a small drama.

Tipped off by the MPAA, the police went after brothers Paul and Timothy Epifan who they suspected of recording first-run movies and selling the copies on the Internet.

As the brothers left the cinema, police officers stopped them to announce that they were under arrest. Paul Epifan complied without a struggle, but according to the official report his brother Timothy fled and was pursued by police.

After a short chase of 20 seconds, during which Timothy Epifan lost his flip-flops and was running barefoot, the suspect stopped at the sight of two marked police cars. But while he was standing still, a third and unmarked police car ran into him and broke his leg in multiple places.

For this arrest with deadly force, Timothy Epifan took both the police and the MPAA to court earlier this year. He is seeking thousands of dollars in damages for the emotional, physical and economic damages he suffered as a result of the violent arrest.

The case has been dragging on for a few months with both sides making their arguments, but last week the MPAA was dropped from the lawsuit. The attorneys of both parties agreed to dismiss all claims without costs of disbursements.

The case against Somerset County police, who are accused of using deadly force to apprehend a suspect for a non-violent crime, continues. According to the original complaint, Epifan’s attorney writes that his client still can’t walk without help.

The collision with the car “left a 10-foot trail of skid marks, bone, blood and skin,” and as a result “Epifan sustained severe leg fractures, has undergone multiple surgeries, incurred hundreds of thousands in medical bills and now walks with a cane.”

Epifan himself plead guilty to the camming charges and was released from his one year prison sentence earlier this year.!+Mail

P2P - Filesharing / MPAA Lists "notorious" pirate sites to US government
« on: October 28, 2011, 06:45:11 am »
The MPAA has submitted a new list of “notorious websites” to the Office of the US Trade Representative, sites that are all in danger of becoming the target of planned U.S. legislation. The list contains the most-visited torrent sites including The Pirate Bay, file-hosting and linking sites such as MegaUpload, and Russia’s Facebook equivalent, VKontakte.

 List here....!+Mail

P2P - Filesharing / BitTorrent throttling practices of ISPs
« on: October 23, 2011, 09:59:30 am »
Data published by the Google-backed Measurement Lab gives a unique insight into the BitTorrent throttling practices of ISPs all over the world. It reveals that Comcast was slowing down nearly half of all BitTorrent traffic in the U.S. early 2008, but only 3% last year. In Canada, Rogers has the worst track record as it systematically throttles more than three-quarters of all BitTorrent traffic.

 Hundreds of ISPs all over the world limit and restrict BitTorrent traffic on their networks. Unfortunately, most companies are not very open about their network management solutions.

Thanks to data collected by Measurement Lab (M-Lab) the public is now able to take a look at the frequency of these BitTorrent throttling practices. Among other tools, M-Lab runs the Glasnost application developed by the Max Planck Institute.

The interactive data set published yesterday spans a two-year period and this initial release covers the period between April 2008 and May 2010. It includes BitTorrent throttling percentages of ISPs in dozens of countries, divided into three-month periods. Below we discuss a few trends and notable findings.
United States

The BitTorrent throttling practices of Comcast, exposed by Robb Topolski and TorrentFreak in 2007, were in part what led to the Measurement Lab research. After an FCC investigation Comcast was ordered to stop slowing down BitTorrent on a large-scale, and the data shows that the company has kept its word.

Early 2008 Comcast limited nearly half (49%) of all BitTorrent traffic but this was reduced to 3 percent by the first quarter of last year. Cox, another heavy throttler, went from 51 percent to 3 percent in the same time period. The data further shows that in 2010, Clearwire was the only U.S. Internet provider that limited more than 10 percent of all BitTorrent traffic, 17 percent to be precise.

Worst: Clearwire (17%)

Best: Comcast and others (3%)

In Canada, all large ISPs have admitted to slowing down BitTorrent traffic, and some do so to a great extent. Since the start of the measurements Rogers has continuously throttled more than three-quarter of all BitTorrent traffic, and there are no signs that this will stop.

During the first quarter of 2010 the two other large Canadian ISPs, Bell and Shaw, were throttling 16 and 14 percent respectively. Videotron on the other hand has never slowed down more than 7 percent, and only 3 percent during the last measurement year.

Worst: Rogers (78%)

Best: Videotron (3%)
Great Britain

In Great Britain, TalkTalk used to limit a third of all BitTorrent traffic, but this was reduced significantly by the end of 2009. They now only slow down BitTorrent during peak hours which resulted in a 12 percent throttling rate early 2010. Tiscali and BT Group are exposed as the most heavy throttlers while Virgin Media, O2 and BSkyB have had relatively low percentages throughout the measurement period.

Worst: Tiscali and BT Group (27%)

Best: BSkyB (5%)

A quick look at some other countries shows that in Australia none of the large ISPs were throttling BitTorrent traffic heavily in 2010, and the same can be said for Sweden and France. In The Netherlands UPC used to throttle heavily, but this was no longer the case early 2010.

In Germany, Kabel Deutschland seems to be the poorest choice for BitTorrent users (36%), and in Poland UPC has to be avoided as they limit 87 percent of all BitTorrent traffic.

Those who are interested in seeing how their own ISP performs can take a look at the full dataset at The researchers promise to release more recent data in the future, and it will be interesting to see how the various throttling habits of ISPs develop.

For those who have a choice, which us unfortunately not always the case, the data can definitely help to make an informed decision when signing up at a new Internet Provider.!+Mail

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: August 16, 2011, 08:52:36 am »
bent and wrinkled....

Offbeat Relish / Re: Three word forum
« on: August 13, 2011, 08:21:12 am »
of the shining...

P2P - Filesharing / 200,000 bittorrent users sued in the US
« on: August 08, 2011, 08:08:00 am »
   The avalanche of mass-lawsuits in the United States that target BitTorrent users has reached a new milestone. Since last year, more than 200,000 people have been sued for allegedly sharing copyrighted material online, and this number continues to expand at a rapid pace. Added up, the potential profit from the so-called pay-up-or-else scheme runs into the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Mass file-sharing lawsuits have been filed all across the United States in recent months, almost exclusively targeting BitTorrent users. Copyright holders have embraced this new revenue stream by the dozen and new lawsuits are being filed every week.

The United States judicial system is currently being overloaded with new cases, and a few days ago the number of targeted Internet subscribers in federal courts broke the 200,000 barrier.

Through these mass lawsuits the copyright holders are trying to obtain the personal details of (mostly) BitTorrent users who allegedly shared their material online. Once this information is handed over, they then offer the defendant the opportunity to settle the case for a few hundred up to a couple of thousand dollars, thereby avoiding a full trial and potentially even bigger financial penalties.

A fairly exhaustive spreadsheet shows that the current number of Does that have been sued since the beginning of 2010 currently stands at 201,828. Nearly all of the defendants are accused of sharing copyrighted files via BitTorrent, and 1,237 allegedly used the eD2k network.

Over the course of the year several cases have been dismissed and settled and the estimated number of defendants who are still at risk lies at 145,417.

Most defendants are being sued in the high profile case brought by the makers of The Hurt Locker. As of May this year this lawsuit targeted 24,583 alleged BitTorrent users, and the first batch of settlement letters have been sent out to the people who pay for the allegedly-infringing Internet connections.

Despite the massive number of defendants, none of the cases have made it into a full jury trial as the copyright holders ask for in their original complaint. This also means that the evidence they claim to hold has not been properly tested.

It is believed that a significant amount of the people who are accused in these cases are not the actual infringer. However, since the copyright holders prefer settlements above full trials and because defendants don’t want to risk a $150,000 fine, the accuracy of the evidence remains a mystery.

What’s very clear is that for the copyright holders, tracking companies and lawyers, the settlement scheme is extremely profitable. If half of the original defendants eventually settle for an average fee of $2,500 they would generate a quarter billion dollars in revenue – from piracy.!+Mail

P2P - Filesharing / Re: Filesoup admin walk free
« on: July 06, 2011, 08:22:48 am »
At the beginning of 2011 two administrators of FileSoup – the longest standing BitTorrent community – had their case dropped by the authorities and were free men once again. But that was not the end of the story for one of the admins. In his quest for justice, Steve Lanning appealed the unsatisfactory police investigation by filing more than 50 complaints, and is claiming that the police are covering up many mistakes.


P2P - Filesharing / Re: LimeWire sued for 75 TRILLION $
« on: May 15, 2011, 03:33:40 am »
 In the midst of their jury trial, the company behind the defunct LimeWire client and the RIAA settled their dispute out of court. Limewire will pay $105 million to compensate the major music labels for damages suffered. A moment of justice for the music industry, but not necessarily for the artists. The recouped money is destined for reinvestment in new anti-piracy efforts and will not be used to compensate any artists.

According to the injunction that shut down LimeWire last year, the company “intentionally encouraged infringement,” its software was used “overwhelmingly for infringement” and the company knew about the “substantial infringement being committed” by LimeWire users.

The evidence further showed that LimeWire marketed its application to Napster users and that its business model depended on mass copyright infringements.

Following the injunction LimeWire immediately disabled its file-sharing client, but the trouble for the company was far from over. Record labels and music publishers kept chasing LimeWire demanding compensation for the losses they claim the file-sharing service operator had caused.

The labels calculated that the company behind the popular file-sharing client owed them up to a billion dollars, and they filed a claim to collect it.

Last week, a New York federal jury trial started, but before this came to an end the two parties agreed to settle the case for $105 million. The RIAA brought in 9,715 tracks as evidence, which means that the amount translates to $10,808 per track instead of the maximum $150,000 the jury could have awarded.

The labels are obviously pleased with the outcome of the case. They’ve successfully argued that LimeWire caused both them and their artists significant losses.

“The resolution of this case is another milestone in the continuing evolution of online music to a legitimate marketplace that appropriately rewards creators,” RIAA Chairman Mitch Bainwol said in a comment.

Too bad, however, that the RIAA isn’t sharing any of the ‘damages’ with the artists, to reward them. Despite presenting thousands of artists as victims in the case, none of them are expected to see any of the settlement money in their bank accounts anytime soon.

RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy previously told TorrentFreak that the ‘damages’ accrued from piracy-related lawsuits will not go to any of the artists, but towards funding more anti-piracy campaigns. “Any funds recouped are re-invested into our ongoing education and anti-piracy programs,” he said.

Thus far the RIAA has not announced officially how the LimeWire settlement will be spent, but we don’t expect them to steer away from their previous course. This makes today’s decision on compensation a victory for the major labels, but certainly not one for musicians.!+Mail

A movie pirate who pleaded guilty to a count of forgery for camcording in a local cinema, is now suing the Somerset County police and the MPAA after his leg was broken during the arrest in 2009. The 23-year old Timothy Epifan of Manville, New Jersey, has filed a lawsuit against the parties involved for using deadly force to apprehend him for a non-violent crime.

During the summer of 2009 two Martinsville brothers were arrested in connection with the camming of the movie Bruno at a cinema in Manville, New Jersey. Tipped off by the MPAA, the police claimed the pair had been recording first-run movies and selling the copies on the Internet.

As the brothers left the cinema, detectives stopped them and allegedly announced that they were under arrest. Paul Epifan complied without a struggle, but according to the prosecutor his brother Timothy fled and was pursued by police.

After a short chase of 20 seconds, during which Timothy Epifan lost his flip-flops and was running barefoot, the suspect stopped at the sight of two marked police cars. But while he was standing still, a third and unmarked police car ran into him.

For this arrest with deadly force, Timothy Epifan has now sued both the police and the MPAA, seeking thousands of dollars in damages.

According to the complaint filed at the U.S. District Court of New Jersey, Timothy Epifan was hit from behind and dragged 10 feet into the parking lot.

In a statement the plaintiffs claim the collision “left a 10-foot trail of skid marks, bone, blood and skin,” and as a result “Epifan sustained severe leg fractures, has undergone multiple surgeries, incurred hundreds of thousands in medical bills and now walks with a cane.”

Among other things, the defendants are accused of using deadly force when there was no indication it was needed.

“Using a police motor vehicle to apprehend a suspect who is fleeing on foot by physically striking the suspect to disable and arrest the suspect constitutes deadly force,” the complaint reads.

Epifan, who was sentenced to a year in county jail and three years of probation after pleading guilty last year, hopes to be compensated for the emotional, physical and economical damages he suffered as the result of the violent arrest.!+Mail

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