back to article Movie bosses demand Google take down takedown notices

Movie studios have taken the fight against piracy to a whole new level by sending takedown notices to Google asking it to remove links to their takedown notices. NBC Universal and 20th Century Fox are meta-fighting the Chocolate Factory because its search links to takedown notices on sites like Chilling Effects could be used …

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  1. Khaptain Silver badge

    "I probably shouldn't be saying this, but it is a compliment of sorts," he said. "The demand is there. And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales. [Piracy is] something that comes along with having a wildly successful show on a subscription network." ®

    Glad to see that at least one of them has the balls to admit the truth for once.

    1. dotdavid
      Pirate

      "[Piracy is] something that comes along with having a wildly successful show on a subscription network"

      Especially when that network isn't made available to most of the potential customers.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        They're shooting their own foot.

        I regularly buy DVD and Blurays of tv shows and movies, when they're available that is! make those tv shows available outside of US the same day or close to that as they air and i would be glad to take out my credit card and forget my torrenting ways, that's all.

    2. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
      Coat

      Also kinda reminds me of Sir Terry Pratchett's response at being told he was the most shoplifted author in Britain.

      Or at least his response about being told about his supposed response about being told he was the most shoplifted author in Britain, to be slightly more accurate.

      <---Mine's the one with the coat in the pocket...

    3. Professor Clifton Shallot

      "Glad to see that at least one of them has the balls to admit the truth for once."

      Right - if they make good (or at least popular which is almost the same thing) products they will also make money - piracy does not prevent that.

      Acknowledging this fact however is not the same thing as saying piracy is perfectly okay and that all actions to oppose it are necessarily an abuse.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Acknowledging this fact however is not the same thing as saying piracy is perfectly okay and that all actions to oppose it are necessarily an abuse."

        It is and they are.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "...if they make good (or at least popular which is almost the same thing..."

        Is it?

        I find that a lot of the time huge popularity is a pretty good benchmark for total lack of quality: boy bands... chart music... reality TV... Hollywood fims... fast food... pissy lager... etc. etc.

    4. Alan Brown Silver badge

      He also commented that his only real issue with home piracy was the generally poor quality of the rips. (commercial piracy is another matter, as he pointed out)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        RE: Alan Brown

        Thing is it is not at all true though.

        The only rip that was ever poor quality was I think S02E02 when it was ripped from HBO Go a week early.

        (Marked as a webrip).

        Sky Atlantic puts adverts into HBO programs. (HBO afaik is advert free).

        Adverts are totally unacceptable to me under any circumstances.

        I pay for everything off Virgin Media (Except Porn and probably a few obscure foreign language channels that cost). If they offered HBO ad free like it is in America I might watch it. (As it stands I only watch BBC).

        I have thought about just getting Lovefilm and Netflix and removing the stuff that costs more and just buying boxed sets of what I actually like when they come out.

        If I lived in a cave I probably wouldn't mind waiting but I don't want it spoilt by hearing other people talking about it. (Except in stuff like Game of Thrones where I have read/bought the books anyway.)

        1. Rampant Spaniel

          Re: No adverts

          There was me thinking I was the only one lol. I get they make it cheaper, but honestly I'd be happier to pay extra not to have the adverts and just throw an extra couple of shows on a day to fill the gaps. Hulu seriously pissed me off with those (and the fact that quite a few shows just redirect you to other sites), just double the damn price and let me watch. At least give us the option, it would be really easy to do with web streaming as it wouldn't impact scheduling any. Hulu is cheap, triple the cost and stream all the major stuff directly and throw in offline viewing \ cacheing then I would be happy. Hell even more than triple if you throw in movies. I won;t break the law to get what I want, I'll just spend my money elsewhere. If you want my money sell me something decent.

    5. Dazed and Confused
      Holmes

      I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

      > And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales.

      Glad to see that at least one of them has the balls to admit the truth for once.

      There was a report out from the European Commission Joint Research Centre a couple of weeks back which the beeb covered under the headline "Music sales are not affected by web piracy, study finds" see

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-21856720

      While a few people won't buy because they've seen it already, the interest that grows out of the pirated copies out ways the lost sales.

      It's just like the biggest beneficiary of the piracy of MS Windows and DOS for years was MS. The reason that for so long that there was no competitor to MS Office was the competitor to a legal copy of office was an illegal copy. Presumably the reason they took so long to even start making it more difficult to filch is that they were well aware of this.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Pirate

        Re: I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

        out ways != outweighs

        Otherwise, you're right about WIndows and piracy.

        1. Dazed and Confused
          Headmaster

          Re: I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

          > out ways != outweighs

          Very true, one day I should learn to either proof read my postings or pay someone else too, but hey.. there you go, life's too short.

          1. Gannon (J.) Dick
            Pint

            Re: I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

            Does it matter where I steal my postings ? Isn't there some symbol on the stuff that has already been proofed ?

            beer-friday is too short.

          2. Adam 1

            Re: I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

            > or pay someone else too,

            Hmmm

          3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: I'm suprised El'Reg didn't pick up on a story a couple of weeks back

            one day I should learn to either proof read my postings or pay someone else too [sic]

            I personally don't feel any need to hire a proofreader for my posts - Firefox's built-in spellchecker catches most typographical errors, and I write enough that my error rate is reasonably low, and my usage nearly always matches some variety of preferred, except where I deliberately deviate. But this did make me think that an interesting project might be to set up a proxy server that, for any non-secured form submission containing a textarea, would submit said textarea as an Amazon Mechanical Turk job for proofing. There could be some heuristics on the backend to reject any revised text that contains suspect or excessive changes. Open the proxy only to registered users and charge back for the MT charges plus a profit margin.

            Voila - automated paid proofreading for web forum posts.

            I don't know if anyone would actually use it, and if there is any demand something like it may well already exist (I wouldn't be a bit surprised). But while it's not as interesting a use of MT as, say, Matt Richardson's Descriptive Camera, it's a mildly entertaining idea. Particularly if the back-end automated approval system implements some interesting language-processing techniques.

    6. graeme leggett

      according to the BBC he has qualified his comments

      "I am 100 per cent, completely and utterly against people illegally downloading anything," he told the Sydney Morning Herald."

  2. Tomas K.

    This is a reasonable request

    Any source of means to pirate should be removed from the Net. As facilitators of piracy (see The Pirate Bay and others), are being prosecuted for their crimes, people are coming to understand that these online links are in violation of copyright law, and should be removed.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Trollface

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      ← You forgot this.

    2. Simon Round
      Pint

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      @Thomas K

      Interesting stance you have regarding the lawfullness of online links.

      Should links to Product manuals in PDF format also be removed at the original manuals will most likely have copyright notices in them? Even though they may be linking to the original manufacturers website?

      If you start making online links illegal then suddenly everything on the internet become illegal and we may as well just pull the plug!

      Right. Now I've got my popcorn. I'm ready to watch the arguments on this one.

      Beer because it's Friday.

      1. LaeMing
        Boffin

        Re: PDF links

        Simon Round: "Should links to Product manuals in PDF format also be removed at the original manuals will most likely have copyright notices in them? Even though they may be linking to the original manufacturers website?"

        Interestingly, my university legal dept. insists that we DO get permission for this sort of thing. Every manufacturer for our equipment has said 'certainly, you may' except for Sony, who have a more "IT'S OURS NO YOU CAN'T" attitude (which is, sadly, not surprising to me at all).

    3. NukEvil
      FAIL

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      Looks like SOMEONE forgot to check the "Post anonymously?" checkbox. Now I know who to blame all the past and future "Piracy is illegal, and people that do it should be removed from society" posts on.

    4. Aitor 1

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      I have reported you.

      Why? Because you came here to troll.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Because you came here to troll.

        I think you might be unaware there's this word in a dictionary (see "irony")

        1. Allison Park

          Re: Because you came here to troll.

          how much is the toll for your bridge?

    5. Ross K Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      Any source of means to pirate should be removed from the Net. As facilitators of piracy (see The Pirate Bay and others), are being prosecuted for their crimes, people are coming to understand that these online links are in violation of copyright law, and should be removed.

      You're talking through your arse.

      Unless you're some kind of superhuman international IP lawyer you can't tell me with 100% certainty that it's illegal in every country on earth to host a site that provides links to trackers based elsewhere.

      Here's another downvote to add to your growing collection...

    6. J.G.Harston Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: This is a reasonable request

      "Any source of means to pirate" ?

      So, any method of communication between humans.

      You first.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    "But, in a cruel twist of fate..."

    I think you meant to say, "But, in a wonderfully satisfying bit of irony..."

  4. Frankee Llonnygog

    Microsoft also?

    Well, Microsoft needs to have a word with Bing as it hosts plentiful links to notices on Chilling Effects.

    Remind me who owns Bing?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Compromise

    Keep the text but redact the links, like government documents with black bars over them?

    1. Kevin Johnston Silver badge

      Re: Compromise

      Unfortunately the various Government departments keep forgetting they need to 'Replace' the text with a bar and think that black text on a black background is good enough

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Compromise

        Are you sure that such actions are done "forgetfully"?

        Mine's the one with the foil lined hoodie.

  6. John Colman
    Pint

    Streisand meets Inception

    So now, having first drawn attention to the dodgy links, "Big Media", to borrow an Americanism, are now drawing attention to the links to the dodgy links. Next we'll see them fire a broadside against the blogs that cover the story for pointing out the existence of the links to the dodgy links, thus drawing attention to the links to the links to the dodgy links...

    Barbara Streisand would be proud!

    1. 4.1.3_U1

      Re: Streisand meets Inception

      Well it seems to me that blogs posting links to content elsewhere keep getting taken down all the time. The taking down of MU last year doesn't seem to have had any effect other than that there are more file hosts and more blogs all the time.

      Everything changes, but everything stays the same.

  7. ecofeco Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Teh Stupid

    Wow. Just... wow.

    The beatings will continue until moral improves, eh?

    1. dotdavid
      Headmaster

      Re: Teh Stupid

      Morale. The companies doing the beatings don't know the meaning of the word moral.

  8. ElReg!comments!Pierre

    "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales."

    And that is the crux of the matter. "piracy" does not negatively impact sales, and never had. Quite the contrary in fact, as Microsoft could tell you...

    People download illegally, or get passed "pirated" copies, and then if they like it they go buy the DVD with the good-quality images and all the nice bonuses. The thing is, ordinary people only have so much money to spare on entertainment if they want to be able to eat and pay the bills. They won't spend more, and they usually don't spend less. "piracy" in this context ensures that your product is widely known and appreciated, and thus that people will spend their disposable cash on it rather than on the competition's.

    The real reason why Big Media _has_ to be seen as being "tough on piracy" is that piracy is the argument they use to hide the beancounting dirty tricks that allow them to hide profits and thus not pay taxes. "Pirates ate my profits, honest".

    1. Darryl
      Pirate

      Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales."

      Yep, basically you could reword his quote to say something along the lines of 'If it's a good product, you don't have to worry about piracy affecting your profits.' which leads to 'If you're not making any money on this product, then it's probably because it's crap, not because of evil pirates.'

      1. skeptical i
        Devil

        Is the converse better? [was: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales."]

        "Sorry, boss, our offerings apparently suck so much syphillitic moose bung that no one even wants to STEAL them" doesn't sound like ringing product endorsement, does it?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

      "People download illegally, or get passed "pirated" copies, and then if they like it they go buy the DVD with the good-quality images and all the nice bonuses"

      Well I dont,

      I download reasonable quality compressed DVD rips, I dont have no truck with that la-de-da high def or BLUey bollocks.

      The quality is perfectly adequate

      Then I store it forever on my NAS

      I dont buy the DVD cos I dont want loads of cardboard and plastic cluttering up my living space.

      The bonuses are a waste of time too, I dont want to watch stuff with someone talking all over it no matter who they are. Deleted scenes? theres usually a good reason they were deleted. And if I do want them I'll get it on youtube.

      Unfortunately the content creators gain nothing from me, Although I did buy a DVD of "Serenity" i saw in a bargain bin cos I figured in that one instance it would be nice to be legal.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Windows

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        I agree with you entirely. Except that i do download bluray/HD content and that requires the (ever increasing)5Tb of storage i have here using plex straight onto my TV. I use Usenet, i use torrent, i use P2P to get my wares....

        Oh, and i dont feel the need to hind behind a cloak of anonimity...

        As i have said before, i am a 5% freetard....

        Apparently....

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        "People download illegally"

        Really? Is there some new law I should be aware of? Please find me a single case where someone was prosecuted specifically for downloading pirated material illegally?

        As far as I know it is not, and has never been illegal to download copyright infringing content.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

          "As far as I know it is not, and has never been illegal to download copyright infringing content"

          Correct - it is only illegal to distribute it.

          1. Dave Bell

            Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

            But the way BitTorrent works gives the lawyers the chance to accuse the downloader of also distributing.

            There's a can of worms in that.

            1. Danny 14

              Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

              Newsgroups or file lockers are immune then (dcma immune ones of course or youll need to he quick)

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        You might think it does for you, but statistically piracy actually increases sales: http://techcrunch.com/2013/03/21/study-pirates-rejoice-illegal-downloading-doesnt-impact-digital-music-sales/

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        I up voted you because I agree with you, mostly.

        Just so that you know I'm a socialist not a capitalist and have little trust of or faith in corporations, but corporations face a double-edged sword on this. If corporations allow unlimited piracy of the content they've created and own then why would anyone pay for it? So, a person might say that they, the corporation, should have earned enough from advertising to cover their costs and earn a nice profit, but why would most or many of us watch the show that has advertising when the the same show without advertising is also available?

        Then there's also the issue of why we feel we deserve to just have these for free. When I was young we had three TV channels that were often a little fuzzy because of interference and technical what not stuff. Everyone got the same channels and had access to the same shows providing that you could afford a TV and an antennae. The industry (and TV show production) has changed a lot since then and many of the shows worth watching are on speciality channels that are part of a package, we pay extra for them if we want them.

        The "we pay extra for them" and farther above the word "deserve" brings up other issues. There's a whole sociological argument as to what's fair and that really just as human beings we all deserve these things. For instance, as a middle income wage earner (well I used to be but apparently now that I have children my income which I would have previously considered enough puts us in the lower income wage level) and I can't afford to have the speciality channels that I'd like, or think that I'd like, although I do pay for one for my children.

        The whole wage thing brings up another aspect of corporate profiteering through outsourcing, the reducing of wages for the same job or wage freezes. All of these further exacerbate the problem of "illegal downloading" as more and more of us can't afford to pay for any extras. On the other hand, many of us watch far to much TV and or spend too much time on the Internet, guilty as charged on both counts, and we would probably all profit from visiting the library, going for a walk or other such activity that costs little to nothing.

        To summarize, corporations should be allowed and expect to earn a reasonable (what's reasonable?) profit for producing things people want and people should generally be able to afford to pay for the things they want, otherwise the system is broken.

        IMHO the system is broken and we need to re-evaluate how the whole system works. No easy answers are there?

        haha, now I have to laugh at my long and winding rant. It didn't start like that and I should really walk my dogs.

      5. Donn Bly

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        "Yes it did?" No, even in your case it did not negatively impact DVD sales - because you would not have gone out and bought the DVD of the movies anyway.

      6. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: "And it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales." YES IT DID

        And in other news, scientists have determined that anecdote does, indeed, constitute proof, and that people who base their entire argument on personal anecdote are not nitwits incapable of critical thought.

        Unless they feel the need to use block capitals for emphasis, of course.

  9. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    Recursive copyright convulsion

    So, the studios issued takedown notices which infringed their own copyright? Now they can sue themselves and disappear into their own anuses - and the sooner, the better.

    1. Velv Silver badge
      Go

      Re: Recursive copyright convulsion

      And by making a strumash about the notices, they've drawn even more public focus on where to alleged material can be found.

  10. HamsterNet
    Unhappy

    Quality

    Fed up of this argument that pirated copies are poor quality. I download videos (movies and TV shows) in full 1080p glorious quality, because its a much better product that I can actually purchase anywhere. They are available right after airing / BR-ing anywhere on earth but with no adverts, no annoying message telling me not to pirate, no time restrictions, no DRM. Just the video in full quality. When I can pay for the same quality of product I will.

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Quality

      Good for you, but we didn't have a break down of how much many copies are downloaded 'as soon as possible' i.e movie cams, screeners and TV shows, and how many are DVD/BluRay rips which come later.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Quality

        "Good for you, but we didn't have a break down of how much many copies are downloaded 'as soon as possible' i.e movie cams, screeners and TV shows, and how many are DVD/BluRay rips which come later."

        Just assume that some consumers want the first / worst copy (e.g. cam), and more consumers will become tempted as the quality improves; some may come back again. Simple.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The sooner Google start charging for take down notices,

    The better.

    1. ratfox Silver badge
      Happy

      I'm sure they'd love to

      Unfortunately, chances that it would legal are kind of teeeeeeeeny.

    2. chris lively

      Re: The sooner Google start charging for take down notices,

      If this were possible you could just put the movie companies out of business. Build a "search" engine that goes through all the pirate stuff. Wait for notice, send bill. Rinse and repeat.

      As awesome as that sounds, it will never happen.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    top story

    beats the North Korean antics adobe down

  13. Rick Giles
    Linux

    Two thinngs that will end all this horse$h1t:

    Freedombox and Piratebox

  14. bag o' spanners
    Devil

    re: quality

    I wouldn't keep all my eggs in one NAS shaped basket. Please take and post a photo of the expression on your face when it goes tits up and requires a reload. Seen this happen twice now producing 4TB of corrupt files. Cases are bulky, but tubs arent. Anything I shovel onto a hard drive gets a secondary rip to dvd.

    1. Danny 14
      Pint

      Re: re: quality

      It isnt exactly immune but a 4tb zfs raid nas is good enough for the home (freenas) easy enough for most people and a cheapiah option.

  15. gujiguju

    Affecting profitability

    The silly joke of the studio conglomerates' lawsuits is that no movie was unprofitable because it was pirated...and no TV series was canceled because of low TV ratiings due to after-the-fact pirating.

    In fact, as the "Where's the 'any' key" executives and attorneys at TV networks & movie studios spend millions on legal fees, they could've used that money to hire great technical teams to build any-device, time-shifting, place-shifting video services. (See Aereo, as an example of Barry Diller doing just that.)

    And the Nielson rating company monopoly in US, was being lazy in not adding viewership statistics from DVRs and YouTube, so some shows that were actually popular were canceled because the ratings measurement was incorrect.

    James Cameron proudly proclaimed that as "Avatar" zoomed past $1.5 BILLION in revenue, it was the most pirated movie.

    The intrinsic friction here is that the movie bosses want to artificially reduce day-one demand, because they think they'll be able to milk revenue through all the various distribution "windows."

    o Theater

    o iTunes/Amazon

    o Netflix (expires if movie wins an Oscar or sold to HBO for a 12-month window)

    o DVD

    o HBO or other movie channel

    o Basic cable channel

    o Free TV broadcast (after 15 years)

    o Etc...

    In fact, it may be likely that many people with families, busy schedules, less disposable income, traffic/parking annoyance, ugly local theater, whatever reason...would rather watch the movie at home on their internet set-top box or tablet...

    Btw, note also, a movie ticket for the Wizard of Oz in 1939 was 23¢.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Affecting profitability

      Btw, note also, a movie ticket for the Wizard of Oz in 1939 was 23¢.

      By the way, there is a peculiar phenomenon called "inflation" which makes comparing an unadjusted price from almost 75 years ago irrelevant.

      Using standard US CPI rates, $0.23 in 1939 is $3.84 now. Certainly, based on the CPI rate, average movie ticket prices have risen faster than inflation; but it's hardly as dramatic as you make it out to be. Also, there are still small, second-run cinemas in the US that routinely charge in the $3-$4 range for some showings, so it's still possible to see films at the adjusted 1939 price.

      Personally, I don't see what's to get all worked up about. It's not as good a value for your entertainment dollar as print, in my opinion, but it's not terrible, relative to other entertainment options. That said, I haven't gone to the movies in years. I have more cheap entertainment than I know what to do with.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wasn't Orlowski complaining about this at some point? The whole "if people know what you've taken down then they can find it!" and suggesting takedowns should be secret and only the media companies and the dark lords at google should ever know what was taken down, ignoring the fact that would make arguing erronious take downs impossible (like when a group of individuals decide to pretend they had rights to all the Hatsune Miku tracks and had a vast number removed from youtube, there's a Miku song about it actually)

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    A time bomb.

    I find piracy the logical solution to an illogical paradigm, however, I still know it's wrong. But at this level, it appears defending piracy is equal to defending the freedom to speak or write whatever you want on a webpage. Am I being too paranoid, or could this turn into a censorship nightmare 10+ years from now?

    Another question that comes to mind: Will Google play ball with Hollywood like they have with China?

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: A time bomb.

      It's already become a censorship issue with some bloggers and even journalists being sued for copyrtight infringement.

      See also the "Google tells Sweden to remove a word", (posted here on El Reg) fisasco.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: A time bomb.

        Actually I did read that, you're right. I guess the entire internet is becoming ThePirateBay.se, with only words themselves becoming illegal content.

      2. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

        Re: A time bomb.

        @ecofeco One aspect of the Swedish/Google spat that didn't get a lot of coverage: it is generally known that if you don't try to protect a trademark, you may lose the mark. So if Google _didn't_ act, maybe they would have risked losing their trademark (a Bad Thing)... Perhaps Google's private expectation was that they would complain, the Swedes would override them, and honor (and trademark protection law) is satisfied...

        Instead, the Swedes whined about Google's complaint, despite the (legal) reality that Google had no choice but to object.

  18. Barrie Shepherd

    Every DMCA request should require a physical seal/stamp or similar to demonstrate that it has been generated by a human after a due diligence process has been completed.

    Having a robot trawl through the interweb results of a search engine and throwing millions of DMCA requests out is plain wrong. Using the DCMA process to censor a transparency report is also wrong and sets a dangerous precedent for governments to use similar tactics to hide their ever increasing surveillance/monitoring of our activities.

    While I'm at it the crime is copyright theft or similar is not "piracy" - I wish the enlightened (i.e. not in studios pockets) Press would start using that term as the studios have "pirated" the term to add a touch of evil to the crime. IMHO each individual act of copyright theft is a minor civil offence (and should be treated as such) but I agree that the collective impact of a number of acts may damage an industry - to date I think that "Cried wolf too much" gives a better understanding however.

    I wonder if the banks will send out DMCA requests to Google claiming that even mentioning their name and addresses (never mind street view issues) encourages bank robbers to steal from them??

    1. Malcolm Weir Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      @Barrie Shepherd... Hear! Hear!

      While we're at it, an act of downloading copyrighted material may not even be any kind of offense; the content producers categorically "turn a blind eye" to some acts simply because it is in their best interests. Hence the HBO bloke's apparent change of heart: he is opposed to _illegal_ sharing, but if he (HBO) happen to want it shared, then it's not illegal, and he can go back to being appreciative of the effects of the practice.

      Of course, no content producer is going to make a habit of _saying_ they want something shared, but how often do you see _TV_ production companies filing copyright infringement suits? (compared to music and film companies, for example)/

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Reading the Headline

    I came in here thinking that the movie studios had issued a bunch of takedowns for their takedown notices. This would be because the movie studios had written those takedowns notices and thus were copyrighted by the movie studios. Therefore, Google was infringing the movie studios' copyrights on their takedown notices and they felt like they should be removed to protect themselves...

    After reading the actual story, I'm not sure which would be more interesting.

    And hopefully, I haven't just taught the movie studios/recording industry another new trick...

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OK, so....

    ....piracy is good then?

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Haven't these guys heard of ROBOTS.TXT?

    Old as the hills, but crawlers like Google respect it. If they don't want a takedown notice to be indexed, they simply need to add it to the list of pages to be skipped.

    Something like this:

    User-agent: *

    Disallow: /

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Haven't these guys heard of ROBOTS.TXT?

      The whole point of the publishing of the takedown notices is transparency and that they ARE indexed. Google sends them to www.chillingeffects.org

      See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chilling_Effects

      1. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        Re: Haven't these guys heard of ROBOTS.TXT?

        Well, either they are indexed, or they are not indexed. They can't have it both ways.

        If they put them up to be trawled by any crawling spider, then they can expect the pages to be cached and indexed. If they don't want them cached or indexed, then the solution is to not expose the information to the web crawlers in the first place.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Haven't these guys heard of ROBOTS.TXT?

          Google WANTS them published!

          So the media industries don't just block every hyperlink they don't like with no oversight.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ...it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales...

    Someone is going to lose their job.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: ...it certainly didn't negatively impact DVD sales...

      Someone is going to lose their job.

      No, they just made him issue a public "clarification" stating that piracy is wrong. There's an earlier post about it.

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