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Illegal Movie Downloads


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#1 Richard Boddington

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 10:40 AM

I'm sure many of you have seen this site and the others like it:

http://www.mininova.org/

Looks like they have just about every movie out there available for download, including stuff not officially on DVD. They appear to have my movie on there but I can't test it because I'm on a Mac and it looks like you need a PC to run the software. (oh well I guess I should be flattered much bigger budget indie movies are not on there!)

I'm amazed that the studios haven't banded together to get these sites shut down, since most of the product that is being illegally shared comes from them. I mean they have Iron Man, The Dark Knight, The Hulk, etc. Some of the biggest movies of the year.

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#2 Serge Teulon

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 10:49 AM

try http://joox.net/
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#3 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 11:19 AM

They are probably offshore sites, in small countries where the long arms of Hollywood can't reach them.

At least Dark Reprieve is not close captioned by Chinese people, as Stars Wars was on this site. Rolling-around-the-floor funny at times:

http://engrishfunny.com/

Troopseses, we are for the big!

Edited by Saul Rodgar, 16 September 2008 - 11:21 AM.

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#4 Mike Simpson

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 01:09 PM

The reason they arent banned is because the files arent actually on the websit ( on torrent sites people upload a part of the file and the downloader pieces it together from a few or sometimes hundreds of different people). I think the idea is since the website never touches the file they have no legal liability. Im also pretty sure they have been trying to get rid of them for a couple years.
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#5 timHealy

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 09:00 PM

The reason they arent banned is because the files arent actually on the websit ( on torrent sites people upload a part of the file and the downloader pieces it together from a few or sometimes hundreds of different people). I think the idea is since the website never touches the file they have no legal liability. Im also pretty sure they have been trying to get rid of them for a couple years.


I think that is what Pirate Bay does.

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#6 Walter Graff

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 10:33 PM

They are probably offshore sites, in small countries where the long arms of Hollywood can't reach them.


Some are but not all. AND just because you are not in the US does not mean that you are not subject to the laws of copyright in those countries:

mininova.org is registered in Scottsdale, AZ USA through a godady registration company so is subject to US laws:

Registrant Organization:Domains by Proxy, Inc.
Registrant Street1:DomainsByProxy.com
Registrant Street2:15511 N. Hayden Rd., Ste 160, PMB 353
Registrant Street3:
Registrant City:Scottsdale
Registrant State/Province:Arizona
Registrant Postal Code:85260
Registrant Country:US
Registrant Phone:+1.4806242599




joox.net is Swedish
ID...........: ORG-150846
Name.........: Christoffer Bubach
PostAddress..: Åsbräcka 311
PostCode.....: 463 94
PostArea.....: Lilla Edet
Country......: SE
Phone........: +46.739740520
Fax..........:
Email........: asmhacker@gmail.com
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#7 Walter Graff

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 10:47 PM

The reason they aren't banned is because the files arent actually on the websit ( on torrent sites people upload a part of the file and the downloader pieces it together from a few or sometimes hundreds of different people). I think the idea is since the website never touches the file they have no legal liability. Im also pretty sure they have been trying to get rid of them for a couple years.


Not exactly. Torrent sites are subject to the same copyright infringement that any other domain name is. The MPAA and others have them shut down all the time. Downloanding bittorrent files is not illegal, but opening a bit torrent file that then downlaods a copyrigthed film is. The website where you got the torrent is liable to that copyrighted material since it is a gateway to that file just as a pot dealer doesn't smoke it but is liable for selling it.
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#8 Richard Boddington

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 11:24 PM

Here's another very suspicious site:

http://www.cdcovers.cc/

They let you download the packaging for movies, hmmm I wonder what they want that for?

So they can sell bootlegged DVDs perhaps? Or do they just like to admire DVD wrap sheets?

Just right click the file and you get a high res wrap sheet that you can print.

I came across this site because some people have started a thread on there trying to figure out how to get the packaging for my movie.

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#9 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 11:53 PM

You can download virtually anything now. I even saw a feature I shot on a torrent site and laughed my ass off because the film is mediocre at best.

I have a friend who got a deal with a tiny indie record label for a music CD he produced and of course his whole CD showed up on a torrent site inside of a month of its release. This is a guy who probably will sell, at best, a thousand copies of his CD, and yet there it is - for free.

I still think there's a decent percentage of folks who will deliberately buy a DVD of a film they really like, (even if they downloaded it), in order to support the artists who made it and to have a high quality copy.

When/if internet service providers start charging for bandwidth, maybe it will effect this kind of downloading...

.
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#10 Richard Boddington

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 12:15 AM

The one thing I have found in all of this is that downloading a movie via one of these sites is not very user friendly at all. I sure as heck can't figure it out, and from looking at the comments some people make lot's have trouble actually getting the file off the web.

I can't see the "average" computer user going this route to obtain a movie.

If all you had to do was hit "download" and it happened like magic, then I can see how this would be a major issue. The number of downloads recorded on these sites for even the biggest Hollywood blockbusters is quite small compared to the number of DVDs that get sold.

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#11 Evan Winter

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 12:56 AM

Hey Richard,

The torrent you found is indeed your full movie; from opening match flare to ending copyright credit. Also, torrents are actually pretty easy to use. You simply download and install a torrent client (the good ones are all free) and then for 9 out of 10 movies and albums you simply click the download button on sites like mininova or the pirate bay and away you go. In fact, I'd bet torrents are more user friendly than the 100-button remotes used to control the digital cable boxes that infest most homes.

In my opinion, all the effort made to fight this technology is the epitome of an exercise in futility. The knowledge cannot be unlearned and the tech cannot be disappeared. The studios and music labels need to get all Apple-like and figure out how to properly monetize entertainment products. Actually, they need to leap-frog Apple's system and give their audiences something even better than the iTunes model.

Moreover, I don't believe that the upcoming generation can be convinced that this is stealing. I barely believe it to be stealing myself and I remember, all too well, the days before anyone in my city could 'get online'.

With regards to stealing, the common torrent argument is that stealing removes the item in question from the owner's possession and that what we see with torrents is more aptly titled 'copying'. The owner still possesses the original and has not be deprived of their property. The argument is likely specious and yet I can't bring myself to look down on torrent users or even chastise them.

I have no idea what the solution will be but I'm fairly certain I know what it will not be. The RIAA and MPAA's methods are foolish and alienate the very people they would like as customers.

As an interesting but not wholly analogous aside, check out the customer backlash against one of this year's most anticipated video games (read the reviews):
http://www.amazon.co...c/dp/B000FKBCX4

The game 'Spore', in lieu of combating piracy, contained a form of Digital Rights Managment (DRM). This was EA's attempt to control the way their product was used by the customer. That didn't work out so well...

Edited by Evan Winter, 17 September 2008 - 12:59 AM.

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#12 John Brawley

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 02:07 AM

The one thing I have found in all of this is that downloading a movie via one of these sites is not very user friendly at all. I sure as heck can't figure it out, and from looking at the comments some people make lot's have trouble actually getting the file off the web.

I can't see the "average" computer user going this route to obtain a movie.

If all you had to do was hit "download" and it happened like magic, then I can see how this would be a major issue. The number of downloads recorded on these sites for even the biggest Hollywood blockbusters is quite small compared to the number of DVDs that get sold.

R,


I think the trick is to actually jump ont he bandwagon rather than give scouts merit badges for dobbing in ownloaders (which is the MPAA's solution)

I reckon most people want to do the right thing. If you make it easy and cheap enough.

Itunes works because the song's aren't that expensive, you know what youre' getting, (not a dodgy up the back of the cinema version) and you know that your purchase goes back to the artist, probably as a bigger percentage of the cost paid.

If you make it easy for people to do the right thing then i think most people will. I think Itunes proves this works. (it has it's issues too and im no great fan of Itunes BTW) Of course there will still be piracy, but how's anyone going to stop it ??

You're far better educating people about the advantages of doing it the *right* way and making it as easy and convenient as the pirated stuff. If studio's were so rigid about selling dvd's and release dates before tv dates etc that would take away of lot the impetus.

jb
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#13 Alex Ellerman

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 08:07 AM

Rich -

the packaging site is disturbing, b/c as you alluded to, that is someone that wants to mass copy & sell your movie!@ that sux. it's a different animal than someone who wants to download and watch your movie, who *could* potentially be turned into either a paying user or a convert to tell other people about your movie...

using that which is infinite (downloads) to sell that which is scarce (dvds) is the economic model used by Reznor to give away his downloads and sell fancy versions of his records. Here is what you are up against with today's youth/internet opinion:

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#14 Walter Graff

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 09:02 AM


Let's make no mistake about it, stealing movies, music, or anything else that someone works hard to make, is not right, nor something any professional should agree with. You'd know first hand how it felt if it was your work and your revenue was being negated by theft.

Someone tried to cut hairs by saying that stealing movies is not illgeal. Any way you slice it, it is. It is not a crimial theft, so not punishable by imprisonment, but a violation of civil law. Civil law is punishable by a lawsuit, or in the case of a website an injunction and/or fines. Injunctions mean you must stop what you are doing. Civil law allows you (you personally) for having an illegal copy of a movie on your computer to be fined anywhere between $200 and $100k.

The problem with the industry is like the record industry, the issue is not so simple to solve. And the industry is a system that simply isn't flexable enough to deal with it well, but they are learning. Will people steal movies forever. Yes, they always have. Will better methods to make available movies at fair prices? Yes, that has been shown to be accomplishable by such services as Itunes.

Personally I think anyone on this board that condones theft of movies is not a professional, just an idiot. You can't be a respectful professional and try to undermine the business you work in, or for many, wish you worked in. Professionals respect their craft. Considering it cost $4 to rent a pristene DVD of a film, why someone want to go through the trouble of downloading movies illegally, really says something negative about the person in my opinion. Stealing is worng, no matter how you try to make it sound.

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#15 Chad Stockfleth

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 09:25 AM

I am of questionable moral fiber since I don't care if people download stuff.

Personally, I have downloaded things....say an episode of Mr. Show Season 3. You know what, I watched the show and then bought the whole DVD package for a whopping $26US. I think this is common.

The philosophy seems to me to be that if it's a big budget movie, who cares if you download it because it's from a giant studio who really doesn't care about making good movies anyway, and they are probably going to make their $100m regardless. On the other hand, if it's a small budget thing, you probably weren't going to buy it anyway, so at least they get some exposure out of it.

I'm sure there is grey area.

The Indie's with passion are going to make their movie, regardless, because they want to make an artistic statement.

Spiderman 3 was probably downloaded a lot, but it still did gangbusters. Oh, maybe it did $224m instead of $226 but would that deter a studio from making Spiderman 4? And would anyone care if it did?

Cage rattler,
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#16 Alex Ellerman

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 12:19 PM

This is what happens to foreign companies domiciled outside the US, servers outside the US, but domain registered inside the US:
http://www.theregist..._cuba_websites/
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#17 David Calson

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 01:38 PM

I don't like the argument that it's okay to take something from someone or some company because they won't miss the $$$.

If I lift Donald Trump's wallet, it's still theft eventhough he has billions more.

I'm of the mindset that if you're going to use something of someone's for enjoyment, work or whatever that they should be compensated for it. If people have to go the store and pay $20 for it, so should I

Edited by Blade Borge, 17 September 2008 - 01:39 PM.

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#18 Chad Stockfleth

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 01:56 PM

But people don't see it as taking money from a single person, but rather many nameless, faceless studio executives. I'm not saying this is what I believe, but is the general perception.

Personally, I think that movies are too expensive. $14 to go to the theater is too much. $17 for a DVD is too much.

Now, given the choice between downloading online or buying an $8 DVD, I would probably buy the DVD. Of course, in reality, I've never even downloaded a movie except through Itunes and rarely buy DVD's.

The bottomline is that downloading exists and I don't think you can stop it. You've got to prove to the consumers that you are offering a cheaper/better product. That is what capitalism is based on. Productions Studio's have had it pretty easy over the years making giant profits and churning out mediocre product. They have to come to terms with the fact that very few people are going to pay $30 for the Blu-Ray of "Surfer Dude".
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#19 Walter Graff

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 02:14 PM

"If I lift Donald Trump's wallet, it's still theft even though he has billions more."

He'd tell you that. A good marketer but nowhere near the money he tells folks he is worth. Or put it this way, billionaires don't do reality shows. Only when they don't have liquidity and need the money. I know his family well, and can tell you that he's the BT Barnum of our time.
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#20 Richard Boddington

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 03:02 PM

I've spent some more time on this site:

http://www.cdcovers.cc/

It's really insidious what these people are doing. It's far worse than downloading a movie via the internet. Clearly the hundreds of people on this site need good quality packaging so that they can sell bootlegged DVDs to people that think they are buying a legit copy. These bootleggers show up at flea markets across Canada and the USA and sell these DVDs like they are legitimate business people.

Most movie downloaders I'm sure watch the movie for their own use and that's the end of it. The people on the above web site are clearly dubbing and packaging their own DVDs and selling them how ever they can.

I notice that the police here in Ontario have actually started seizing bootlegged DVDs at local flea markets. Of course nothing will happen to the bootleggers but it's a start.

Chad I wanted to address some of your comments:

You say:

"You've got to prove to the consumers that you are offering a cheaper/better product."

How do I as a filmmaker compete with free? Even if I sell my DVD for 50 cents, that's still more expensive than a free download.

Maybe I should tell people I'll pay them $17.00 to take my DVD, that will screw the bootleggers over eh?

R,
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