Github Restores Reverse-Engineered GTA Code Following DMCA Counter Notice

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GitHub has restored a fork of the fan-made “Re3” project that published reverse-engineered code of the popular GTA 3 and Vice City games. The action follows a counter-notice sent by a third-party developer in response to Take-Two Interactive's takedown. Github followed the DMCA procedure and isn't publicly taking sides.


In February, a group of developers released a project that had many passionate GTA fans excited.

After years of work, they published “Re3” and “reVC,” two fully reverse-engineered releases of the GTA III and Vice City games, which were originally released two decades ago.

The reverse-engineered code opens the door to many tweaks and modifications that make the old games much more playable on modern computers. Importantly, however, an official copy of the games was still required for the code to work properly since game assets are not included.

Ta...

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Movie Tycoon Sues YouTube over Piracy and Exposes Content-ID ‘Caveat’

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Movie tycoon Carlos Vasallo is suing YouTube for widespread copyright infringement. Despite sending over 10,000 takedown notices, pirated copies of his movies continue to appear. YouTube did offer access to its Content-ID system but the movie magnate refused, as that would require him to release the video platform from all possible piracy claims that took place in the past.


To protect copyright holders, YouTube uses an advanced piracy recognition system that flags and disables videos that are uploaded without permission.

This copyright filter, known as Content-ID, works reasonably well but its use is limited to a select group of major copyright holders.

The Spanish-born movie tycoon Carlos Vasallo should fall into this category. Through several companies, the actor and producer owns the rights to the world’s largest collection of Mexican and Latin American movies. Unfortunately, many of these are illegally shared on YouTube.

In 2015, Va...

Read entire story Yesterday at TorrentFreak

Triller Wants Google & YouTube To Unmask Jake Paul vs Ben Askren Pirates

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Last week Triller filed a $100m lawsuit against several sites claiming that they illegally streamed the Jake Paul vs Ben Askren fight. The judge says that since Triller has failed to provide evidence that they acted jointly, one or more of the targets could be dropped from the lawsuit. Triller says that evidence will be forthcoming but it needs permission to quickly subpoena Google and YouTube.


Triller’s widely publicized $100m lawsuit against sites that allegedly streamed the Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren fight on April 17 has hit complications.

In its complaint, Triller identified several domains and what appears to be individuals, describing them as “business entities” that breached its copyrights. The lawsuit also referenced 100 John Does.

This week, Triller offered an amnesty package to those who watched the fight without permission but the main lawsuit is already facing some pushback from the court.

Triller Provided No Evidence to Show That De...

Read entire story Yesterday at TorrentFreak

Cox Sues Rightscorp and BMG over ‘Abusive’ DMCA Notice Campaign

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Internet provider Cox Communications has filed a lawsuit against Rightscorp and BMG, accusing them of sending thousands of DMCA notices to an outdated email address. The ISP argues that the companies intentionally engaged in an abusive and unfair campaign with a goal of fabricating massive copyright infringement claims.


Internet provider Cox Communications has been on the losing end of several piracy lawsuits in recent years.

In December 2015, a Virginia federal jury held Cox Communications responsible for pirating subscribers, ordering the company to pay music publisher BMG Rights Management $25 million in damages.

This damages figure was reduced in a settlement agreement but, soon after, the Internet provider was hit with a $1 billion jury verdict in a similar case, which is still under appeal.

Overhauling the Takedown System

These lawsuits were a wake-up call for Cox. To cope with t...

Read entire story Yesterday at TorrentFreak

Court Slams Allarco ‘Pirate Device’ Lawsuit, Refuses to Ban Sales at Staples & Best Buy

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Super Channel operator Allarco claimed that major retailers including Staples and Best Buy are selling and encouraging the use of "piracy devices" that undermine its business. However, the company's application for an injunction banning sales has now been denied, with the judge slamming Allarco's application and investigative actions from every conceivable angle.


In September 2019, Super Channel owner Allarco Entertainment filed a lawsuit in Canada’s Federal Court targeting Staples Canada, Best Buy Canada, London Drugs, Canada Computers, several related companies and up to 50,000 ‘John Doe’ customers.

Allarco accused the retailers and their staff of promoting and instructing in the use of ‘pirate devices’, set-top boxes that could enable customers to access infringing content. The complaint was supported by 100 hours of undercover recordings which, according to Allarco, showed prospective customers being instructed how to us...

Read entire story 5/5/2021 at TorrentFreak

EU Study: Movie Pirates Chat on Reddit and Music Pirates Prefer Twitter

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New research published by the European Union Intellectual Property Office shows that social media networks are regularly used by pirates. An analysis of millions of conversations estimates that 35% of all digital content discussions "could be possibly related to piracy." Interestingly, not all content niches prefer the same social media platforms.


The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) regularly conducts studies to identify copyright-infringement threats and challenges.

These studies help the public to understand local piracy trends and can be used as input for future policy decisions.

Most recently, EUIPO published a study (pdf) that looks at the role of social media in relation to counterfeiting and piracy. The researchers used both quantitative and qualitative analysis to review millions of conversations on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Reddit.

Piracy and Social Media

The goal of the study...

Read entire story 5/4/2021 at TorrentFreak

Triller Offers Amnesty to Pirates, Claims VPN Users Aren’t Protected

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Last week Triller filed a $100m lawsuit hoping to make several sites pay for illegally streaming the Jake Paul vs Ben Askren fight. Triller believes that up to two million people viewed the fight illegally so is now inviting people to enter into a $49.99 settlement agreement. VPN services, it is being claimed, will offer no protection to those who used them to pirate the event.


On April 17, Jake Paul squared up against MMA veteran Ben Askren, finishing the accomplished wrestler in the first round.

The card was a success but according to Triller, many sites and up to two million people streamed and viewed the event without paying.

In order to make some of these people pay, last week Triller filed a $100m lawsuit in a California court targeting a range of sites and up to 100 John Does.

While tracking down individuals and sites that offered the streams has its complications, vigorous legal action could give Triller opportunities to achieve damag...

Read entire story 5/4/2021 at TorrentFreak

U.S. Requests Lower Sentence for ‘Cooperative’ Member of Scene Piracy Group

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Jonatan Correa was part of the piracy Scene group SPARKS that presumably caused Hollywood millions in losses. After pleading guilty, he now faces a prison sentence of 12 to 18 months. However, the U.S. Government is asking a New York federal court to issue a lower sentence since Correa didn't have a financial motive. In addition, he has been cooperative since his arrest.


Last year, the U.S. Department of Justice booked one of its biggest successes in its battle against online piracy.

With help from law enforcement organizations around the world, the feds took out the prominent SPARKS Scene group, which was a major blow to the broader piracy ecosystem.

Initially, the number of piracy releases grinded to a halt, but in recent months things have pretty much returned to normal again. The same can’t be said for the three men who were indicted. They still face criminal charges for their role in the SPARKS group.

One of the accused men...

Read entire story 5/3/2021 at TorrentFreak

The Pirate Bay Co-Founder Peter Sunde Acted Illegally, Court Rules

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The Helsinki Court of Appeal has confirmed that Peter Sunde, the co-founder and former administrator of The Pirate Bay, violated the rights of various record companies. According to the Court, Sunde helped to distribute copyrighted recordings via the torrent site between 2005 and 2009.


As part of the entertainment industries’ mission to have infringing sites blocked by ISPs in Finland, in 2011 the Helsinki District court ordered local ISP Elisa to block The Pirate Bay to prevent music piracy.

A year later, IPFI filed a lawsuit against two other providers and the administrators of the Pirate Bay, demanding that the former restrict access and the latter cease-and-desist their activities.

In 2016 and after the operators of the site failed to respond, the Helsinki District Court handed down a default judgment requiring site co-founder Peter Sunde to pay se...

Read entire story 5/3/2021 at TorrentFreak

Relying on a Torrent Site for Vaccination Advice Is a Terrible Idea

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Torrent site MagnetDL is warning its users against taking Covid vaccines, pointing them to a copy of the controversial 'Plandemic' documentary. While we're not medical experts, we know that taking health advice from a torrent site is not a great idea. In fact, it can be quite dangerous.


More than a year has passed since the Covid pandemic started and the virus still has the world in its grip.

Some countries have a lower infection rate than others, with lockdowns and vaccinations playing a major role, according to experts.

When it comes to vaccinations there’s no shortage of polarized opinions. Many health experts believe that vaccinations for adults – on the whole – do far more good than harm. However, others are not as convinced. This skepticism can be in part triggered by fear or religious beliefs.

People are entitled to their ow...

Read entire story 5/2/2021 at TorrentFreak