back to article Police probe pirate-DVD detecting dog's demise

A dog trained to track down pirate DVDs has been found dead. The cause of death is not yet known. Police named the disc-sniffing mutt as Manny, one of a pair donated to Malaysian anti-piracy authorities by the Motion Picture Association of America, the New Straits Times reported yesterday. Manny and companion Paddy arrived in …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Mark Sadler
    Paris Hilton

    Trained to find Disks !?!

    Only in Ireland.

    Paris coz they're as crazy as she is!

  2. Senor Beavis

    How the...?

    Sad news about the mutt, but I'm intrigued: how does a pirate DVD smell different to a legit one? I'm genuinely interested if anyone knows how the dogs can be trained to differentiate.

  3. dervheid


    but just WTF do pirate CDs and DVDs SMELL OF?

    I'm presuming it's an odour released by one or more of the chemicals used in the disc production, but I could be wrong.

    Or are the 'pirates' partial to a particular food/drink/aftershave?

  4. Mark

    Turns up in a chow mein.


    Chestnuts roasting on an open fire...

  5. Dan
    Dead Vulture

    Eh?... Doh!

    How did the MPAA train a dog to detect copyright infringement?

  6. Spleen


    I expect the MPAss.A found that the dog's dam and sire had made a unauthorised copy of themselves. Imagine their horror when they discovered that if you put two products together, before long they'll create another one - for free! With no regard to the intellectual property rights of their owner or the distorting effect copying themselves could have on the market. Obviously, the unauthorised copy had to be destroyed.

    You heard it here first: when MPAss.A executives discover that human beings are capable of this unauthorised reproduction as well, they will lobby to ban sex. And probably win.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Dogs trained to find Disks.......

    ..........HMRC could have done with borrowing those!!

    The one with the puppy sniffing at it in the corner please.

  8. Barn


    I agree, how can they smell the difference between pirate and legit?

    Or is it all just an MPAss.A scare tactic?

  9. Anonymous Coward

    It's not the DVD's they smell

    It's the stench of grog swilling scurvy riddled pirates they go after. Unless that is the pirates take them for walkies along the plank.

  10. Luke Wells
    Paris Hilton

    what the hell?

    How can a dog smell illegal files/movies/music?

    Maybe disc manufacturers / DVD-Writer manufacturers have been secretly working together to make drives that detect copywrited material is being recorded and somehow get the disc to smell like pie and chips?

  11. Anonymous John


    the dog ate a fake disk.

  12. Simon Ball


    A single DVD may not have a strong scent, but a very large number of them might. And if they're in a place where they aren't officially acknowledged as being - for example a shipping container that doesn't have DVDs on the manifest - then examination is not unreasonable.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    @Barn etc.

    They don't need to know if they are legit or not (think BitTorrent ?) if they are being smuggled then they must be illegal by definition, and worth £15.99 per disc...

  14. Ross

    Re: Smells of piracy

    It doesn't matter whether the disks can be determined to be pirated or legit by smell. If you import thousands of disks for sale you need to pay tax on them. Do you honestly think the pirates put "10,000 DVDs" on their manifest? Really? No, so if your dog sniffs out 10,000 DVDs in a box that says it doesn't have 10,000 DVDs in it then you can bet it's worth a closer gander.

  15. stranger on the road

    it is not the difference is smell

    but the similarity, in otherwords, if someone is trying to ship a package marked as "cloth" or "books" yet the dogs can smell DVD's in there, then they will open that package to check what it contains.

    note, just my thoughts, don't know in this is how it is done.

    good luck

  16. peter


    I have a pack of blank Dvds opened last month, they still have a strong smell. The manafacturers use different dyes but there must be a common base for them with the cheap discs pirates will use.

    Not that they can say it is pirated, but I doubt people smuggle them on a plane. Shipping it in a container makes more sense, and dogs would show up wrongly labeled cargo, or be able to search warehouses for hidden stashes.

    The sellers can earn more for their boss than by dealing drugs/running a cannabis farm, and the criminal charges are nothing compared to dealing class A or B. Everyones a winner

  17. Test Man

    They don't...

    ... detect pirate discs. They can smell out any kind of discs within packages, which custom investigate to see whether it's legit or not.

  18. This post has been deleted by its author

  19. Thomas

    Maybe they don't smell the difference between pirate and legit?

    Perhaps either they are just meant to find any hidden stash of media so as to aid other police investigations or the MPAA have decided that from henceforth anyone that owns any disc and does not pay them £36/week for the privilege is in breach of the license under which they temporarily 'possess' the intellectual content that is transiently carried on its surface?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Scare tactic

    Of course it's not a scare tactic, in the same ways as drug-sniffer dogs at airports, trained to find particular suitcases not drugs, aren't a scare tactic.


  21. Eponymous Cowherd


    ***"Or is it all just an MPAss.A scare tactic?"***

    Bump off a DVD sniffer mutt to make it look like the crooks are worried about them?

    Naah, surely not.....

  22. Rhyd


    FTA: "They were trained to smell chemicals used in the production of CDs and although they could not distinguish genuine CDs from pirated ones, they were to help enforcement teams sniff out hidden discs."

  23. Samuel Walker

    Don't quote me on this but

    I remember reading somewhere that the chemicals used in Recordable and Rewriteable disks (AKA the kind that the RIAA thinks MUST mean you're a pirate) are different to the disks pressed in a factory.

    I presume they must smell different.

  24. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    It's sad.

    The dog clearly had to watch all those DVDs and just died of overload.

  25. Matt


    I'm guessing it was trained to smell for the dyes used in recordable discs, dyes which wouldn't be present in pressed discs. Even I have noticed a curious and distinctive odour when opening a fresh pack of blank discs. It's quite pleasant actually...ooh, look at the colours...of that dancing elk...flurb...

  26. John P

    Simple. They can't

    A quick Google turned this up on

    "Lucky and Flo's skills are unique: they are the only dogs in the world that can smell DVDs. The smell probably comes from the resins and polycarbonates used in their production and the dogs are determined to find them, wherever they are. They can't tell which are pirated of course, but they can certainly find ones that have been hidden."

    So they don't sniff for pirated disks, just help the MPAA find hidden ones. Hell, if PCSOs are involved in the raid, they probably need help to find the ones sitting on the coffee table straight infront of them.

  27. XDDX

    Obvious really...

    it was fitted with a Jawbone Bluetooth detection unit...

    ..mine's the woad coloured anorak

  28. JimC

    > How it finds Pirate DVDs

    I imagine it will find any DVDs, but the genuine ones are in the boxes labelled DVDs, and the pirate ones are in the boxes labelled Tractor spares or whatever... Its a pretty good bet that any DVDs witghout good documentation are smuggled pirates...

  29. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Disc smell

    >but just WTF do pirate CDs and DVDs SMELL OF?

    Inkjet ink? used on the labels?

  30. Mike Crawshaw

    @ Barn "Scare Tactic"

    "Or is it all just an MPAss.A scare tactic?"

    If it is, it's worked. My dawggie is terrified of the MPAss.A!!

  31. Maty


    >>I agree, how can they smell the difference between pirate and legit?<<

    HMV used to be called 'His Master's Voice' with a logo of a little doggy looking down the tube of a phonograph horn? Now we know what they were training doggy to do.

  32. Hedley Phillips

    Burnt or pressed

    Correct me if I am wrong...

    but are legit disks pressed and illegal ones are burnt. I imagine the dogs smell the dyes on the burnt ones.

  33. Chris


    Disks which are able to be burned use a different set of chemicals then ones that are pressed/stamped. The dogs could detect the chemicals. (Although I seem to recall them not being hugely accurate, but what is a couple of false positives when it comes to the EVILS of burning your own disk.)

  34. Barry

    They detect...

    ... the chemicals used to create the discs (the dye on the surface) - although, they cannot tell the difference between illegal and legit.


  35. Jeff Deacon
    Black Helicopters

    Should have known better

    Given that persons of the religious persuasion that is dominant in Malaysia have a religious mandate against dogs (try asking a blind person with a guide dog who has attempted to make a taxi journey in some parts of the UK or USA), it is surely not surprising that the dog came to a swift end.

  36. Mark

    WTF do pirate CDs and DVDs SMELL OF?

    Rum, me hearties!

    Yo ho ho!

  37. Mark
    Dead Vulture

    "trained to smell for the dyes used in recordable discs"

    What about the PROFESSIONAL bootlegs? The ones where the outsourced factory pressing legitimate DVD's run off an extra run at quiet time? The ones sold for profit (because the manufacturing cost of a DVD is about 20p but sell like hotcakes at a 500% markup)?

    Well, of course these people have money, so they go after the ones who make up the small fraction of disks copied with consumer grade equipment.

    (the norwegian blue is pushing up dasies)

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Would you like rice with that?

  39. MS
    Paris Hilton

    Must have been suicide.

    The dog was probably took its own life after being mercilessly humiliated by his drug sniffing coworkers.

  40. Adam Williamson
    Thumb Down


    Yeah...chow mein...that famous Malaysian dish.


  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    He hit a large stash of Will Ferrell movies. Poor pooch.

  42. J


    "Police named the disc-sniffing mutt was as Manny"

    Me speak not English. Editor (usual) sleepy?

    Damn, I gotta check how is my football team's captain doing. His name is Manny, and he's Asian, and he's a mutt, and I haven't heard from him in a while... (I don't know whether he can sniff DVDs though).

  43. StopthePropaganda
    Thumb Down

    hand over the backups and no one gets hurt!

    but i suppose under some byzantine new law, any Word or Excel or Powerpoint doc that is backed up to CD isn't "mine" either since I don't 'own" the program that wrote it..or the thoughts that went into it since the "words" are owned by some other entity...

  44. Anonymous Coward


    ...the pirates have a dog that can sniff out dogs that can sniff out pirated CDs?

  45. Daniel

    the difference...

    Surely the majority of legit discs are stamped and the non legit are burnt (as a rule of thumb)

    Or are we talking about sophisticated pirates who u actually have the professional tools to make stamped DVD's rather then buying blank discs and burning them?

This topic is closed for new posts.