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File Sharing

French File Sharing Law Claims Its First Victim

One French citizen faces a fine of up to 600 Euros and a two week disconnection from the Internet for sharing files online.

After sharing a file or two and ignoring warnings from the government to knock it off, an as-yet-unnamed French Internet user has become the first person fined under France's controversial 'Hadopi' law -- a statute that gives file sharers "three strikes" before swooping in with draconian measures like hefty fines and disruptions in Internet service. In addition to a fine that could be as much as 600 euros, the individual will reportedly have their Internet service cut for up to two weeks.

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BitTorrent Made a Cloud Storage Alternative That Doesn’t Store Things in the Cloud

I've come to love Dropbox. I use a few different computers day to day, and it's nice to have a way to sync files between them easily. Not everyone loves that Dropbox stores your files on their servers, but there hasn't really been a non-cloud solution to file syncing until now. BitTorrent just launched their Sync app to the public, and it works similarly to services like Dropbox, but without using cloud storage.

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You Wouldn’t Steal a Museum Installation: The Pirate Bay’s First Server Put on Display

One minute they're up in their room sharing files and the next they're incurring the wrath of intellectual property holders everywhere. This year -- September to be precise -- marks the tenth anniversary of when the equally beloved and despised The Pirate Bay file-sharing site was founded, enabling people the world over to watch and listen to media of all kinds without even having to pay a dime to do so; a quality which really hasn't earned it any popularity points within the film and music industries. To commemorate this milestone in unrepentant copyright infringement, the Computer Museum in Linköping, Sweden has placed the site's very first server on permanent display as a part of its "50 years of file-sharing" wing to be revered by techies, and possibly smashed by crowbar-wielding corporate goons, everywhere. The fact we're treating modern technology with the same respect as ancient religious relics has to be saying something about our current culture.

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File-Sharing is Now an Official Religion in Sweden

The Missionary Church of Kopimism, or in layman's terms, the Church of File-Sharing, was founded in 2010 by Isak Gerson, a philosophy student with a love of file-sharing that, well, bordered on religious. Now, after years of petitioning the Swedish government for official status, he finally got it. The idea was that through official religion, file-sharers might be able to find protection from persecution for their beliefs, which obviously include illegal file-sharing. But it wasn't just a bid for some kind of technical protection, as Gerson seems to take this whole religion thing kind of seriously.

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New Milestone for BitTorrent Users Sued in the US: 200,000

Users pirating copyrighted material have always been the target of lawsuits. From pirating music, to movies, to games, to nearly fifty years worth of Doctor Who -- if it is available in some sort of digital format, it will be pirated. Recently, the rate of file-sharing lawsuits have become much more prevalent, and almost exclusively focused on BitTorrent users. A few days ago, the number of people targeted by these lawsuits in the United States broke the 200,000 mark.

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Swedish File-Sharers Want Religious Status

The founders of the Missionary Church of Kopimism have attempted to gain official recognition of their religion. What religion is that, one may ask? Why, a group of software pirates that are so into piracy, they are claiming it as their religion. They hold CTRL+V and CTRL+C as their sacred symbols. What is it they are trying to achieve through their religion? To spread harmony, which would be a noble endeavor, if it weren't between piracy and the police.

Found by 19-year-old Isaac Gerson, the church believes:

...copying and the sharing of information is the most beautiful thing in the world. To have your information copied is a token of appreciation, say the church, a sure sign that people think you have done something good.

The church was denied the status it seeks back in March of 2010, because it was deemed their meetings did not constitute "worship." Their religion revolves around a few core principles:

# Reproduction of information is ethically right. # The flow of information is ethically right. # Remix Spirit is a sacred kind of copying. # Copying or remixing information conveyed by another person is an act of respect.

They're also against DRM, as one might never have guessed, and their induction policy is fairly simple: Agree that all information should be copyable and free, within the context of the above principles. If these principles are so extremely important to your beliefs, you can go ahead and learn more about your potential religion at its website.

(TorrentFreak via Slashdot)

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Maker of Batman Porn Rip Off Suing Filesharers That Ripped Off His Movie

We often wonder, incredulously, when the internet will reach a limit on talking about superhero porn parody movies. Not that we think the production of such things should stop or that they're not worth reporting on, we simply went through a period where we felt awash in a vast and unruly sea of Batman XXX: A Porn Parody information. When does the idea of superhero porn parodies reach a point where we feel the need to report on them? What other facet of our news mandate does it have to intersect with for us to want to tell you about it? File sharing and copyright issues, as it turns out.

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Woman Hit with $1.5 Million Dollar Fine for Downloading 24 Songs

Jammie Thomas-Rasset, the Minnesota mother of four who has fought the RIAA for the past four years over 24 songs that she illegally downloaded and shared over P2P network Kazaa and has become something of a high-profile figure due to her refusal to settle, was handed a stiff verdict on Wednesday: A jury ruled that Thomas-Rasset should pay Capitol Records $1.5 million for those 24 songs, breaking down to damages of $62,500 a song. While the RIAA, which can on rare occasions smell PR poison before it drinks it, has said that it doesn't intend to make Thomas-Rasset pay the full fine, having previously offered to settle for "$25,000 and an admission of guilt," this latest ruling, which marks the third in Thomas-Rasset's case and is subject to further appeal, shows that the days of astronomical piracy suit valuations are far from over.

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California Court Orders IsoHunt Shut Down

It looks like the "IsoHunt Lite" gambit didn't stave off legal repercussions as planned: The US District Court of California has levied a permanent injunction against IsoHunt, the BitTorrent search engine, and its sister sites TorrentBox, Podtropolis and Ed2k-it; causing them to block all American users. As of this posting, however, IsoHunt is still up and running in the US. From NewTeeVee:
Judge Stephen Wilson of the US District Court of California, Southern District issued a permanent injunction against the popular torrent site Isohunt yesterday, forcing the site and its owner Garry[sic] Fung to immediately prevent access to virtually all Hollywood movies. The injunction theoretically leaves the door open for the site to deploy a strict filtering system, but its terms are so broad that Isohunt has little choice but to shut down or at the very least block all U.S. visitors. Fung could be held in contempt of court if he doesn’t comply with the injunction, and he could possibly be thrown into jail.

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IsoHunt is Back — Sort of — with IsoHunt Lite

IsoHunt was one of the more popular torrent sites out there among the file-sharing crowd both for its selection and its ease of use, which is why it sent a definite chill through the piracy industry when the site was first taken on by Columbia Pictures and then hit by a judge with a proposed order to remove copyright-infringing links from the website, which we’re guessing comprised a pretty healthy percentage of their links. (Cue Celebrity Deathmatch episode in which one of the announcers thought he’d be arrested for illegal file-sharing, but it turned out he only “pirated” public domain songs like “She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain.”)

Now, the creator and owner of IsoHunt, Gary Fung, has defied defeat by rolling out a new, “lite” version of IsoHunt, which he says will still allow users to find the torrents they’re looking for, complete with relevant information, but that the site now has a .hk domain and, more importantly, is deliberately configured to look more like Google or Yahoo, search engines which haven't really been called out in file-sharing lawsuits despite the fact that they can be used to call up much of the same copyright-infringing information as torrent search engines like IsoHunt.

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