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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Anonymous Against ISP Blocking

In response to a Madras High Court ruling for Internet service providers to block torrent sites and video streaming portals, the hacktivist association Anonymous took control of Reliance Communications’ servers, as well as of websites of the Supreme Court and the department of telecom.

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The Madras High Court decision resulted from a petition filed by Copyright Labs that represent RK Productions for two films – Dhammu
(Tamil) and 3 (Telugu). Telugu included the hit song “Why this Kolaveri di,” which went viral online.

The creative industry targeted not only torrent and file-sharing services, but also such websites as Vimeo and Daily Motion, which are both legal sites containing user generated material. Experts admit that if this is the way law enforcement officials and broadband providers are going to fight file-sharing, then there’s not much to say. The matter is that people will always find the method to access the blocked destinations. The Pirate Bay was one of the first torrent-based services to start helping people to access digital content – it did it by switching from .torrent files to magnet links, for example. Indeed, magnet links are considered the future of file-sharing, because they offer the possibility to store your entire file database on a single USB stick.

Meanwhile, not all pirates are those by choice – they are rather pushed by the lack of the available material. Many of them confess that they only torrent because the TV shows and films they are waiting for are unavailable to them, or the quality of content is very bad. In fact, many cable operators offering HD content don’t give it properly. In addition, in some countries, including India, channels censor what is said on a show. Of course, this usually ruins the entire experience.

Other industry experts say that the main problem of the media companies is that they fail to adapt to the Internet and consumers’ needs. At the same time, they could have monetized from the web, but are usually scared of what would happen to them if they fail to adapt to the web. That’s why they refuse to come up with innovative means of distribution of the creative works and generate new material. Instead, they choose blocking websites and portals on the grounds of copyright protection. Too pity.

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