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RIAA updates list of rogue piracy sites

By | Published on Wednesday 29 October 2014


The Recording Industry Association Of America has submitted its updated list of ‘rogue’ websites to the American government, something which has become an annual event. Both the music and movie industries Stateside provide the Office Of The US Trade Representative with lists of websites they believe are guilty of enabling rampant copyright infringement, the hope being that the Trade Representative can put pressure on countries where said sites are available and/or based.

Most of the sites on the latest list are usual suspects, though it’s interesting that Russian social network vKontakte is still on there. But perhaps more noteworthy are the statements accompanying the list, in which the RIAA’s Neil Turkewitz hits out at piracy operations which claim that copyright enforcement is a form of censorship, while accusing others of paying lip service to the takedown system as set out in the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, but only so they can appear legit while exploiting weaknesses in said system.

On the former, according to Torrentfreak, Turkewitz writes: “[Some say copyright enforcement is a] form of censorship or restriction on fundamental freedoms, and some pirate sites cloak themselves in the language of freedom to justify themselves – sites like The Pirate Bay”.

But the RIAA man argues that copyright in fact protects, and is therefore part of, the freedom of expression. He goes on: “If the protection of expression is itself a restriction on freedom of expression, then we have entered a metaphysical Wonderland that stands logic on its head, and undermines core, shared global values about personhood”.

On the DMCA takedown provisions, which provide protection to digital platforms which host or link to copyright infringing content as a result of user-upload or automated activities, providing they give copyright owners a way to have offending content or links removed, Turkewitz says that piracy sites exploit these protections. Some of the sites on the RIAA’s lists of offenders may operate a takedown system, but they do so knowing that infringing content will be reloaded onto their platforms as soon as it is removed.

“As a result, copyright owners are forced into an endless ‘cat and mouse’ game”, writes Turkewitz, “which requires considerable resources to be devoted to chasing infringing content, only for that same infringing content to continually reappear. It is imperative that [such] site operators take reasonable measures to prevent the distribution of infringing torrents or links and to implement measures that would prevent the indexing of infringing torrents”.

So make of all that what you will. And now a list of the bad guys in piracy-ville (according to the RIAA): vKontakte, EX.UA, The Pirate Bay,,,,,, Zamunda,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Sdí, Hell Spy, HellShare,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Degraçaé,,,,,,,,