We’ve heard a lot about how protecting artists rights would “break the internet”, turns out the internet seems to be doing just fine. So much for all of the chicken little fear mongering from Silicon Valley interests that have been profiting by illegally exploiting artists and creators for over a decade.
The world is waking up. Dear Larry, the internet is not breaking, it’s time to “get over it.”
A court in France has ordered Google, Microsoft and Yahoo to block 16 video-streaming sites from their search results.
The High Court in Paris ruled the websites were dedicated to the “distribution of works without consent of their creators”.
“Search engines are incredibly skilful, yet they are still leading consumers to illegal money-making sites even when the searcher is seeking legal content online,” said Chris Marcich, president of MPA in Europe, Middle East and Africa.
“The present situation is confusing for consumers, damaging the legal download market and legitimising copyright theft. The decision in France clearly is a step in this direction.”
Several internet service providers were also ordered to block the sites.
Websites illegally hosting copyrighted content have been targeted by City of London Police.
“Operation Creative is being run… to really get to grips with a criminal industry that is making substantial profits by providing and actively promoting access to illegally obtained and copyrighted material,” said Supt Bob Wishart.
The scheme encourages offenders to change their behaviour so that they are operating within the law, he added.
“However, if they refuse to comply we now have the means to persuade businesses to move their advertising to different platforms and, if offending continues, for registrars to suspend the websites,” he said.
THREE major music companies have been granted orders which will allow internet service providers here to block access to a file-sharing website as part of efforts to prevent “wholesale copyright theft” on “a grand scale”.
The judge was satisfied many of those were engaged in copyright infringement, devastating the ability of a generation of creative people to make a living from their talents.
With the closure of Hotfile, questions are raised about what this means for content creators and the cyberlocker industry. Here are a few likely outcomes.
The judge in the case also ordered Hotfile that, if it wishes to remain open, it has to use “digital fingerprinting” to filter out infringing works. However, Hotfile, either unable or unwilling to comply with that request, has decided to shut down its site, effective immediately.
Hotfile’s closure is easily the biggest case of a cyberlocker being forced offline through legal action since Megaupload in January 2012. However, with nearly two years passed since Megaupload’s shuttering, the Web, especially for illegal downloads, is already a very different place.