‘Live’ TV Piracy Watermarking Defeated by Devices Sold on eBay

Watermarking has long been one of the tools used to track sources of pirated content so with the growth of live content streaming, it's becoming more important than ever. However, while broadcasters can use these marks to shut down infringing streams in a live situation, pirates are reportedly able to remove them using devices readily available on eBay.

Anyone familiar with the annual leak of awards season movies onto the Internet will recognize the watermarks used to identify the purpose of a copy.

The “For Your Consideration” watermarks are perhaps the most widely recognized additions to DVD screeners, notifying the viewer that the copy was originally provided for the scrutiny of Oscars and similar voters.

Other watermarks, with “Property of Studio XYZ here” splashed across the screen, serve a similar purpose.

While these watermarks are designed to ensure that any leaks result in heavily defac...

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Censorship Machines are ‘Destroying The Internet’ As We Speak?

This week the EU's controversial "upload filter" plans moved ahead. Opponents of the plans warn that this could "ban memes" and "destroy the Internet" as we know it. If that rhetoric is true, the Internet is actually already being destroyed right under our noses, with surprisingly little pushback.

Online censorship has always been a hot topic and with the EU’s proposed “upload filters” hitting the headlines, it’s at the top of the agenda once again.

The fear of losing the ability to share ‘memes’ plays well on social media. Similarly, many journalists happily use ‘censorship’ in their headlines as, apparently, the fate of the Internet is at stake.

A common theme is that, if the plans are implemented, powerful corporations may soon decide whether you can share something online – fair use or not. While to a degree th...

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ETTV Launches Official Proxy to Fight ISP Blocking

When several torrent distribution groups started their own home at ETTV.tv, they moved into unchartered territory. In addition to distributing the latest releases, they were facing new problems, including ISP blockades. With a new proxy portal, ETTV is now responding to this week's Australian blockade, as well as similar efforts.

For several years, ETTV has been a household name in the torrent community.

The group, which distributes pirated TV-shows, originated at ExtraTorrent but when the site closed it built its own home.

Together with several like-minded uploaders, including ETHD, they launched ETTV.tv last fall. While the groups still distribute their work on other mainstream torrent indexes, the site’s traffic has been growing steadily.

That doesn’t mean that it’s been a smooth ride though. Like many other sites that offer pirated content, ETTV has been subject to vario...

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PeerTube: A ‘Censorship’ Resistent YouTube Alternative

YouTube is a great video platform that has a lot to offer to both consumers and creators. At least, those who play by the rules. For creators, there is a major drawback though, one that put a spotlight on the alternative 'free-libre' software PeerTube this week.

On Tuesday we reported that several YouTube channels had all their videos blocked worldwide. This included those belonging to MIT OpenCourseWare,’ the ‘Blender Foundation,’ and many others.

The error message that was displayed typically appears for copyright reasons. However, in this case, the problem was more complicated, related to a new license agreement, among other things.

While some prominent channels have now been restored, others still face similar issues. The people at Human Beatbox, for example, tell us that they are experiencing the same problem...

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Netflix Seeks to Boost its Global Anti-Piracy Team

Netflix wants to expand its Global Copyright & Content Protection Group. The streaming giant is looking for an individual "who can hit the ground running" into a variety of tasks, from scanning all the major social media platforms and dealing with takedown requests, to gathering data on pirate streaming sites, cyberlockers and usenet platforms.

For many years, Netflix relied on content supplied by other companies to satisfy its growing userbase. Now, however, that reliance is beginning to take a back seat to productions of its own.

Back in February, Netflix CFO David Wells said that his company was set to spend more than $8 billion on content in 2018, a figure that contributes to the 700 original TV shows and 80 movies it will offer globally this year. There can be little doubt, Netflix is now a powerful creator and commissioner of content in its own right.

This shift in strategy raises some interesting points, not l...

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Roku Under Pressure To Solve its Piracy Problem

Faced with a copyright infringement related ban in Mexico, streaming media platform Roku is working hard to win hearts and minds. In May, the company invited a group of Mexican journalists to its Silicon Valley headquarters to hear about its anti-piracy efforts. However, Mexico's Telecommunications Law Institute says the company needs to follow the example set by Apple TV.

Until the turn of the decade, obtaining online pirate content was almost exclusively achieved by individuals with desktop and laptop computers. With the rise of streaming, set-top devices are now the major entry point.

With Kodi-enabled Android devices grabbing much of the attention (and criticism), other platforms have also been feeling the heat.

Despite offering plenty of legitimate content such as HBO Go, Hulu, and Netflix and playing no active role in the provision of unlicensed media, Roku is one of those enduring a bumpy ride.

Last year following a complaint from ...

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ISP: Piracy “Extortion Letters” Benefit ‘Greedy’ Companies, Not Poor Artists

Swedish Internet service provider Bahnhof is continuing its crusade against copyright holders that target alleged file-sharers. The company has published an article which shows that these copyright cases have little to do with the Government's intention of protecting individual copyright holders with limited financial means.

In recent years file-sharers around the world have been threatened with lawsuits, if they don’t pay a significant settlement fee.

These so-called “copyright trolling” efforts have been a common occurrence in countries such as Germany and the United States, and in recent years they have conquered Sweden as well.

Where Internet providers remain on the sidelines in most countries, Swedish ISP Bahnhof has shown to be a fierce opponent of the copyright enforcement efforts. The company uses all possible means to protect its subscribers, both in an outside of court. Read entire story at TorrentFreak

TVAddons Founder “Resigns” to Ensure Kodi Addon Platform’s Longevity

Under siege, third-party Kodi addon platform, has announced the resignation of its founder. Adam Lackman, who is being targeted by Canada's leading telecoms companies in a copyright infringement battle, says he will give up admin rights and access to sensitive information, in order to preserve the longevity of the TVAddons platform. TF spoke with the Canadian to find out more.

Right now, life isn’t particularly pleasant for the founder of TVAddons.

As previously documented, Adam Lackman is being sued by an army of Canadian telecoms giants including Bell Canada, Bell ExpressVu, Bell Media, Videotron, Groupe TVA, Rogers Communications and Rogers Media.

With mixed results in court thus far, last week saw bailiffs for the plaintiffs revisit Lackman’s home, hoping to secure property to pay off CAD$50,000 in costs run up by the telco’s attorneys.

In the end, however, the bailiffs only earmarked a laptop and two “near worthl...

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Cloudflare Settles Dangerous Piracy Liability Lawsuit

Cloudflare has settled its piracy liability lawsuit with adult publisher ALS Scan. The case in question was scheduled to go to trial with the CDN provider standing accused of contributory copyright infringement. Details of the settlement agreement have not been made public, but Cloudflare must be happy to move on.

As one of the leading CDN and DDoS protection services, Cloudflare is used by millions of websites across the globe. This includes many pirate sites.

In recent years many copyright holders have complained about Cloudflare’s involvement with these platforms, and in 2016 adult entertainment publisher ALS Scan took it a step further by dragging the company to court.

ALS accused Cloudflare of various types of copyright infringement, noting that several of its customers used the company’s servers to distribute pirated content to the public.

During the legal batt...

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Nintendo Switch Piracy is “Unstoppable” – Until People Go Online

Earlier this year Team-Xecuter, a hacking group with a long history of defeating console security, announced a new defeat for Nintendo Switch. The "future-proof" route to both homebrew code and mass piracy excited the masses but the reality on the ground will be a little less colorful. According to hacker SciresM, Nintendo has deployed a system which can detect people playing pirate games online and ban their consoles forever.

For as long as games consoles have existed, security to prevent people from playing pirated games has been under attack.

In the early days, the existence of a hardware cartridge was initially enough to prevent clones, but with ever more determined hackers on the job, few protections have survived the tests of time.

More recently, however, the mighty Xbox One and PlayStation 4 have proven exponentially more difficult to crack. Locked down hardware and continuously updated firmware pose unprecedented challenges to today’s hackers, with few making the progress they did in y...

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