back to article Sony Pictures email hack: The bitter 'piracy war' between Google and Hollywood laid bare

Emails obtained after the Sony Pictures hacking attack have revealed just how badly the Motion Picture Ass. of America has been cocking up its fight against piracy. One set of leaked conversations, spotted by TorrentFreak, occurred between Sony studio executives talking about the problem of Google searches showing links to …

  1. Florida1920

    Ask pharaoh

    Instead of attacking the messenger (Google), the Motion Picture Ass. (!) of America should try getting the message.

  2. J. R. Hartley

    Well this is awesome.

    Just goes to show what utter cunts the MPAA are, as if there was ever any doubt.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well this is awesome.

      Also goes to show that there's no point in helping them or capitulating in any way as it won't change anything.

  3. kainp121

    Go ahead

    and piss google off. Then wounder why TPB link is at the number one spot.

  4. Katie Saucey

    Search for "torrents"

    First result is:

    Top 10 Most Popular Torrent Sites of 2014 | TorrentFreak

    Clearly Google gives zero fucks about the MPAA. BTW, IMO is much better than TPB

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: Search for "torrents"

      TPB isn't so much a torrent site any more as a symbol of defiance.

      ♪ I get knocked down

      But I get up again

      You're never going to keep me down ♪

    2. William Donelson

      Re: Search for "torrents"

      All of these blocked by Sky.

    3. Florida1920

      Re: Search for "torrents"

      IMO is much better than TPB.

      Well done! kickass now tops torrentfreak. And I'd never have known about either if MPAA hadn't gone all Streisandy.

    4. PleebSmash

      Re: Search for "torrents"

      TorrentFreak is a news organization. They've done a lot of original articles and interviews on file sharing issues that you wouldn't see on any mainstream sites. They have been blocked by workplace filters and the like in the past, but good luck censoring it from Google.

  5. solo
    Paris Hilton

    Bending forward?

    Google is itself a seller of copyrighted content now through Play Store. I remember they had started negating torrent's rating in the end of 2012. Same year in June or July, they had announced that their store'd be called Google Play and sell media and magazines.

    Sounded more of a selfish move to me.

    1. Test Man

      Re: Bending forward?

      Correlation doesn't equal causation.

      This is basic stuff, so pull your head out of your arse.

      1. solo

        Re: Bending forward?

        A company that, for a decade did not act much on torrent sites (good or bad is a complicated judgement) and just when it came on the same boat (good boat or bad boat is, yet again, a complicated matter) decided to loose open its canon on the issue.

        While I didn't say targeting torrent sites is good or bad, it's pretty clear that Google was not only being a good samaritan.

        This is a very basic stuff. Keep you arse in good use, gentleman.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bending forward?

      > Sounded more of a selfish move to me.

      It's a company out to make money. Did you expect anything else?

      Google will go where the money is.

      It's a shame the MPAA and its members don't understand that otherwise they might find that the Internet poses previously unimaginable opportunities for them were they predisposed to avail themselves of it.

      The likes of Hulu and Netflix understand this. Not only that, cinemas are seeing a massive new revival.

      To make money, one requires imagination. The suits in Hollywood are too old to change.

  6. Vociferous

    Are MPAA worse scum than RIAA?

    Or are they both equally horrible in their own way, like diarrhea and vomit?

    1. -tim

      Re: Are MPAA worse scum than RIAA?

      The RIAA used to do good things. They used to help set and promote technical standards for recording and broadcast. Of course that was half a century ago.

  7. Howard Hanek

    Next up the MPAA goes after Disney for its long history of association with pirates. They want Johnny Depp and Keira Knightly brought to LA in chains for a show trial.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      although the acting in those films was at times criminal, not even a legal system claiming US judges have rights over French citzens using Irish computers could possibly claim jurisdiction over the worlds in works of fiction ...

      could it?

    2. Tom 13

      Re: Johnny Depp and Keira Knightly brought to LA in chains for a show trial.

      For the right price I understand Depp will do just about any kind of show they want and possibly even an encore!

  8. TPX

    Google should not be manipulating anything, including search results. The service has nothing to do with what people want to search for and it should remain neutral. The Motion Picture Association should work harder cleaning up the sleazy and corrupt motion picture industry rather than concentrating on manipulating Google and the rest of the world. The problem is also with the unreal copyright laws the MPAA have passed. If they don't want the buyer to own something they should stop selling it. When I buy a DVD or a file I should be able to share it with whoever I want. They should not be allowed to sell something, and not only continue to own it, but continue to own the buyer as well.

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      I can't help but think that if Google gave you the raw, unmanipulated output of a search's results, it would be next to useless to you.

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Google should not be manipulating anything, including search results

      Without manipulation there are no search results. They're the results of human-designed, machine-implemented algorithms operating on data. They don't exist in nature.

      And, of course, the entire value of Google's search results to the end user is in their "manipulation" (i.e., ranking).

  9. midcapwarrior

    so if they can automate the moving it down the ranking

    Then they could remove it form the list altogether.

    Course that might cost google search revenue

    1. Grikath

      Re: so if they can automate the moving it down the ranking

      Yes they could indeed.. And then it would be waiting for the next Entirely Reasonable Request from [X] to remove [Y] , and then the next.. and the next..

      Google can get away with downgrading some search results, but giving in to outright censorship? Really good for your business, that...

      1. Tom 13

        Re: so if they can automate the moving it down the ranking

        Yes, but what's the difference between downgrading a torrent site and just blocking it? According to the law (good or bad it's the law and we as a society have agreed to follow the law or change it, not simply break the ones we don't like), the sites being downgraded are engaged in piracy. Therefore search sites ought to be blocking, not simply downgrading. Except that we granted aggregators an exemption to that for bulk processing data because it would be too burdensome to make them edit the lists.

        This is a bit of a game changer as far as Google is concerned. This tacitly admits that the legal safe harbor provision they've relied on for protection against prosecution is pure fiction. Much as I don't like the way the RIAA and the MPAA have handled their part of copyright protection, I'd say this makes the case that the safe harbor provision needs to die. You either do no evil or you do evil. There is no try.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: so if they can automate the moving it down the ranking

          "Therefore search sites ought to be blocking, not simply downgrading"

          They should indeed block every single URL that is subject to an order as part of the outcome of a court case.

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: so if they can automate the moving it down the ranking

      Then they could remove it form the list altogether.

      Yes, that's brilliant. Let anyone get any site removed from Google results by filing copyright-violation claims. There's no way to abuse that process, is there? It wouldn't be at all onerous to implement, would it?

      In addition to "Preview" and "Submit", maybe the Reg should put a button at the bottom of the comment form that leads to a short course on critical thinking.

  10. Disko

    Clippy's 2 cents for the MPAA...

    "It looks like you are trying to prevent people from downloading. You are going to be needing a lot of help with that."

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    " if studios wanted to talk to the search giant, they would need to do so directly"

    Divide et impera.

  12. nijam Silver badge

    On a slightly-related topic (well, only-a-bit related, but never mind), is there any news on whether the the movie studios' tax-avoiding antics are going to come under the same spotlight as iwa being shone on Google, Apple, at al?

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