August 16, 2005

Netease Drops Music Search Service To Cut Piracy

FT: (sub. req.) Chinese portal player Netease has suspended its online music search service over concerns about copyright piracy, a move that could create pressure on others such as newly listed to follow suit.
Music companies have complained that MP3 search services offered by Chinese portals and search websites promote the distribution of unlicensed content...
Baidu declined to comment on Tuesday on Netease's move or its plans for its own music search platform.Google does not offer a dedicated MP3 search service in China. Such services are offered by a range of other companies, however, including Sina, China's biggest portal.
Music search services form one part of a debate over how to manage digital copyright, with some observers arguing that online search engines should not be held responsible for content accessed through their services.

Posted by Rafat Ali in Asia, Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0)

August 14, 2005

Music industry worried about CD burning

AP: Music copied onto blank recordable CDs is becoming a bigger threat to the bottom line of record stores and music labels than online file-sharing, said Mitch Bainwol, CEO for the Recording Industry Association of America, this Friday.
The data, compiled by the market research firm NPD Group, suggested that about half of all recordings obtained by music fans in 2004 were due to authorized CD sales and about 4% from paid music downloads.
Copy protection technology "is an answer to the problem that clearly the marketplace is going to see more of," he added.

Posted by Rafat Ali in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 01, 2005

Do Copy-protected CD's Really Stop Casual Pirates?

Yahoo: Here's a good refresher with respect to "Secure CD's", which generally restrict users to only 3 copies of discs that they legitimately buy..."The copy protections are not iron-clad, however: You can make three copies of the CD on each PC on which you load it. You can also make three additional copies of the CD from the tracks that you have ripped to your Windows Media Player library. Once you have burned CDs using Windows Media Player, the tracks cease to be protected, and you can upload this audio CD into another media player, such as ITunes. And once the tracks are uploaded, you can burn them as often as you like." Sounds like the emperor's not wearing any clothes to me...

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

UK Music Labels File Piracy Lawsuits

Yahoo: British Record companies are filing their first ever lawsuits against five people accused of illicitly sharing music online. So far, more than 60 BPI lawsuits have already been settled out of court, with users paying up to 6,500 pounds each in compensation...

According to Peter Jamieson, chairman of the British Phonographic Industry trade group, "Music fans are increasingly tuning into legal download sites for the choice, value and convenience they offer...But we cannot let illegal filesharers off the hook. They are undermining the legal services, they are damaging music and they are breaking the law."

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 29, 2005

RIAA Adds To Its Anti-Piracy Campaign

FMQB: The RIAA issued another 765 lawsuits yesterday, ever determined in its quest to stem the tide of sharing music online. The groups position is that downloading without permission is ‘garden variety theft’ and it thinks these lawsuits will send strong messages to the users of certain P2P networks that their actions are illegal, they can be identified and the consequences are real...But I don't know...I still believe that most people want to do the right thing...surely there are better strategies to increase sales and educate the average consumer. Slyck reports that the total number of lawsuits now totals 12,326 individuals (most are Kazaa users)  and the total population of the file-sharing community reached approiximately 9 million users last month. So, the total P2P population actually doubled since 2003 – the same year the RIAA began suing alleged infringers...You tell me if this sounds like "real" progress for the RIAA...

RIAA President Cary Sherman stated, “Enforcing our rights against the businesses and individuals engaged in music theft is a critical component of our overall effort to discourage illegal downloading and encourage music fans to turn to legal services. We know that our education and enforcement efforts have made a real impact. With broadband penetration skyrocketing, use of legitimate services continues to surge, while the wildfire-like growth of illicit services has been arrested.” 

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 27, 2005

New Piracy Report

Press Release: I came across a new research report this morning being put out by the Canadian Gieschen Consultancy, which provides counterfeit intelligence analysis and security research relating to documents, products and intellectual property. While I'm not a paying subscriber of DOPIP (Document, Product and Intellectual Property Security), some of the findings have been posted online...Surprisingly, among the 46 countries analyzed, the US reported the highest IP property violations at $87 million and CD's ranked 6th in items being counterfeited...

--The Internet now accounts for 13% of incidents where counterfeit and pirated goods are sold.

--Intellectual property theft incidents (trademark infringement and copyright violations) also reached its highest level this year at 42% of all counterfeiting activity.

In summarizing the activity for the month of June, Glen Gieschen, Managing Director of Gieschen Consultancy stated "The market for fake and bogus goods is growing with the help of the Internet.  Nearly 13% of all enforcement activity for June was directed towards spam, internet auctions, retail sites and other Internet activities which sell or distribute counterfeit and pirated items.  P2P services such as eDonkey and BitTorrent play a significant role in copyright infringement as music, films, software and books are distributed freely or at a fraction of the cost."  (Thanks Mike !)

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 26, 2005

Squeezing Blood From A Turnip In Kentucky

courier-journal: This story bothered me when I read it the first time, so I read it again to make sure I comprehended it correctly. Last month, 56 year old Michael Brown from Kentucky who describes himself as "almost deaf", received notice that the recording industry was suing him in federal court for allegedly trading copyrighted music illegally on the Internet. It's no surprise that his daughter was the culprit, but now Brown faces a tough choice...Pay thousands of dollars for a lawyer to fight the charges or pay thousands of dollars to settle with the recording industry. That choice hardly seems fair. To make the situation even harder to digest, Brown is a self-employed engraver who only earned $13K last year. The article also reports that several Louisville residents facing lawsuits said they feel unfairly singled out by claims they can't afford to challenge...Another suit was filed against a 65-year-old woman who is legally blind. Her grandchildren apparently used her computer two years ago...I think that parents and legal guardians should be held responsible for the actions of their children - but in some cases there should be exceptions. What do you think? Punishing the parents/guardians  does nothing to change the behavior of the actual downloaders...Jenni Engebretsen, a spokeswoman for the RIAA said the group will try to "reach a reasonable settlement" with defendants who claim the lawsuits pose a financial hardship...Yeah right, I'll believe that one when I see it...But blaming teenagers appears to be no excuse even for the handicapped. "Where there is evidence of infringement in a particular household," Engebretsen said, "there are consequences."

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 21, 2005

Universal Music Canada Extends Agreement With Musicrypt

ccnmatthews: Following Monday's announcement with Koch Records, Musicrypt also announced yesterday that Universal Music Canada has extended its exclusive agreement to use Musicrypt's Digital Media Distribution System (DMDS) to securely deliver broadcast quality music to radio and throughout the company. In doing so, Musicrypt is blazing a trail to eventually eliminating physical/hard copies of music in the business environment - which is part of the industry's effort to curb pre-release pirated copies...

Randy Lennox, President & CEO, Universal Music Canada, said, "In Canada, Musicrypt's DMDS has revolutionized the way record companies distribute digital files internally and to radio. The progress this company has made in the last 2 years with their patented software is remarkable".

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

MediaMax Breaks All Records in Q2

Press Release: MediaMax has announced that Q2/05 has developed into its largest production and revenue-producing quarter ever as the company quickly approaches its 20 millionth protected CD in North America. The company boasts the ability to deliver a unified technology capable of protecting audio CDs as well as music purchased over the Internet and through music kiosks..."The Company’s record label customers often acknowledge that the use of MediaMax on current album releases minimizes the sales drop-off in the first critical weeks of a new CDs release."

According to Scott Stoegbauer, vice president of sales & marketing, “This past quarter has seen MediaMax CDs debut in #1, #2 and #3 positions on Billboard’s Top 200 album charts which have gone on to become Gold-selling and Platinum-selling albums, all in the same quarter!...This is truly an unprecedented set of accomplishments in our industry and demonstrates that major record labels, publishers, artists, and composers recognize the painstaking care taken by our Company to deliver a memorable and positive experience to consumers while, at the same time, protecting their digital assets.” 

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Pirated CDs More Sophisticated, Tied To Organized Crime

FMQB: The RIAA's annual Commercial Piracy Report released a week ago has turned up some troubling (non-internet) statistics showing that pirated CD distributors are increasingly manufacturing and selling higher-quality product that closely resembles legitimate CDs. "The practice and trade of music piracy have become more sophisticated, cunning and connected to organized crime", said EVP of Anti-Piracy Brad Buckles.

Latin music continues to be among the most heavily pirated genres, comprising nearly half of all illicit music product seized in 2004...The study also notes that the sale of pirated CDs has largely moved from street vendors to indoor retail locations such as convenience stores and corner markets...The RIAA's numbers show a 58 percent (1.2 million discs) increase in seizures of counterfeit CDs in 2004. The number of counterfeit CDs that were seized actually declined 27 percent, while the seizure of counterfeit labels rose 372 percent and seizures of CD-R burner equipment nearly doubled compared to 2003.

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack