Friday, November 02, 2007

Microsoft Renews Anti-Piracy Drive, Launches New Web Site

Washington (AHN) - A new web site providing information on how customers can tell whether a software is genuine or not underscores a renewed drive by Microsoft to stop pirated versions of its Windows products.

The web site, launched Wednesday, tell consumers about suspicious packaging and other signs of a pirated or fake copies of Windows or other Microsoft software.

full story

Friday, October 12, 2007

An open letter to the RIAA

Posted by Don Reisinger

Dear RIAA,

As the watchdog for the so-called "recording industry," I expect you to preserve and protect the viability and future growth of the recording industry. In fact, I don't even have a problem with you doing that. But sad as it as, your tactics have come under attack by those on both sides of the "piracy" fence imploring you to find something better to do with your time. Isn't it time you listen to your critics and realize that your tactics are making you one of the most hated organizations in the world?

read the rest here

Friday, July 06, 2007

How can you stop it

when it seems to be their way of life, rip the rest of the world off:

Semiconductor maker Microchip Technology sues Chinese company for alleged piracy

SHANGHAI, China: Semiconductor maker Microchip Technology Inc. said Wednesday that it is suing a Chinese manufacturer for alleged illegal copying of its microcode and other proproprietary information.

Chandler, Arizona-based Microchip said it filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Shanghai Haier Integrated Circuit Co. in Shanghai's No. 1 Intermediate People's Court.

Details about the lawsuit or any damages sought were not immediately available

Full story

Friday, June 29, 2007

Piracy Crippling Burma’s Music Industry

Piracy in Burma has brought the country’s music industry to its knees, according to performers and music producers, who say they can no longer compete with the stream of cheap copies of CDs and VCDs.

“Piracy drives the industry into absolute paralysis,” well-known songwriter Maung Thit Min told The Irrawaddy. “We used to discuss intellectual property laws under the World Intellectual Property Organization, but nothing has been done to follow these guidelines.”

Full story

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Extradited piracy leader sentenced to 51 months

Hew Raymond Griffiths, a 44-year-old British national living in Australia and leader of one of the oldest and most widely recognized Internet software piracy groups in the 90s called DrinkOrDie, was extradited to the U.S. in February and sentenced this past Friday to 51 months in prison on one count of conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement.

Full story

More about drink or die

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Hostel II director blames piracy for poor box office sales

Director Eli Roth is speaking out about the lackluster box-office for his latest film, Hostel: Part II, and he's blaming everyone but himself. Roth puts piracy front and center as the reason for the film's performance. "Piracy has become worse than ever now, and a stolen workprint (with unfinished music, no sound effects, and no VFX) leaked out on online before the release, and is really hurting us, especially internationally," he says, before going on to specifically tear into critics who reviewed a leaked copy of the film.

Full story

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Weapon against piracy

One of the most ubiquitous scenes that you will observe outside many railway stations in Mumbai is of people selling pirated CDs and DVDs. Nowadays, it's become very easy for anybody to create such multiple copies (and sell them) even without having any appropriate right to do so. It's illegal and it is causing huge losses to the companies producing the original versions.

Yes, there are copyright laws. But, these laws are inadequate to stop or control the distribution of digital content through media devices or the Internet. This is where Software Digital Rights Management (DRM) comes into the picture. "The only way to stop software piracy is to protect software from unauthorised use. And this can be done through DRM," says Shailendra Sahasrabudhe, Country Manager, Aladdin Knowledge Systems – a global major in this industry.

Full story

NBC wants government crackdown on piracy

NBC Universal has told America's communications regulator, the FCC, that the US government needs to do more to encourage the removal of pirated content from the internet.

The FCC is currently taking comments in relation to net neutrality over fears that ISPs and telecom providers could seek to block or downgrade the delivery to subscribers of certain applications and or content from competitors. NBC used its filing on the topic to address the issue of the piracy of intellectual property.

Full story

Monday, June 18, 2007

Piracy more dangerous than bank robbing

NBC'S top lawyer, Rick Cotton, has said that too much money was spent defending society from bank robbers, fraud and burglary.
Cotton said that policing money should be spent doing more about piracy instead.

He said that law enforcement resources were "seriously misaligned". If you add up all the various kinds of property crimes in this country, everything from theft, to fraud, to burglary, bank-robbing, it only costs the country $16 billion a year.

Full story

Sounds a little far-fetched to me...ed.

China, US to step up anti-piracy work

China has promised to pursue product pirates identified by US authorities in a new effort to stamp out counterfeit products, the head of the US customs agency said Friday.

Under a memorandum of cooperation signed this week, US Customs will provide China with information on the source of seized goods, and Beijing will report back within 90 days on the status of efforts to track down the counterfeiters, Basham told reporters.

"We've got to start dealing with the source of the problem. We can't expect to rely upon interdiction to be our tool in order to stop these products," Basham said.

Full story

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Software piracy widespread in Azerbaijan, says ICT minister

“Software piracy is widespread in Azerbaijan. The piracy is around 21-23% in the United States while the level is 93-95% in our country. We have therefore decided to frame legal framework for intellectual property and software use,” said Ali Abbasov, the country’s communications and information technologies minister.

He added that the first move will come to license software used in computers of the government bodies.

“The government will control the process. The schools are provided with licensed software at present within the scope of the government program to computerize education institutions,” he underscored.

Hey, what and where the heck is Azerbaijan?

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Hitachi, Oracle jointly fight piracy in China

Japanese electronics group Hitachi and U.S. software firm Oracle Corp. plan to jointly market wireless tags that help to identify counterfeit goods in China, the Nikkei business daily said on Sunday.

Hitachi and Oracle will market the IC, or integrated circuit, tags for a wide range of products, including cash vouchers, luxury items and home appliances, the Nikkei said. IC tags are tiny chips that can store basic information about a product such as where it was produced and by which company.

Rest of story

Pirated products valued at $200 billion

The value of global counterfeited goods traded in 2005 was at least 200 billion dollars (148 billion euros) and could be several hundred billion dollars more, the Paris-based OECD estimated on Monday.

The multilateral economics body, which has 30 member countries, released details of an 18-month probe into counterfeiting and piracy worldwide that aimed to shed light on the shadowy business of bootlegs and fakes.

The figure of 200 billion dollars, based on international customs data, did not include counterfeit and pirated products that were produced and consumed in the same country, the OECD said

Full story

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

CD Wow to pay labels $81 million news:-CD Wow has been ordered to pay a Big 4 music cartel 'trade' company some £41 million (today about $80,994,655) for breaking UK import rules.

And downloading wasn't an issue.

"The High Court in London ruled in March that the site's owners, Music Trading Online, were 'in substantial breach' of a 2004 agreement to stop importing CDs," ordering the company to pay "£37m plus interest to the British Phonographic Industry (BPI)," says the BBC.

The story has ceo Henrik Wesslen declaring, "We are the little guys selling CDs to the UK market and they (the BPI) have picked on us for that reason. Other bigger sites doing the same thing have been left alone."

According to The Times Online, CD Wow imported cheap CDs from Hong Kong, "but promised as long ago as 2004 to stop the practice." But earlier in the year it was found guilty of continuing the trade.

"Yesterday CD Wow - a privately held company with little-known British and European founders - said that the BPI was able to cite only 39 instances of the rules being breached, a fraction of the 10,000 CDs it ships a day," says the story.

But, "CD-Wow is no consumer champion," stated the BPI's Geoff Taylor, says the BBC.

Full story

Lobbyist Urges Income From Karaoke

HONG KONG — The music industry needs to obtain more revenue from karaoke royalties and radio stations in China to offset losses to piracy, the head of an industry association said Wednesday.

"The new business model is built on the diversification of revenue streams," IFPI chief executive John Kennedy said at a music industry conference in Hong Kong.

Revenue from CD sales still represents a big chunk of the industry's overall earnings, but its share is decreasing, and record companies need to branch out into digital music, radio and karaoke royalties, especially in China, Kennedy said.

London-based IFPI, which represents the recording industry worldwide, estimates that sales of pirated music products worldwide were worth $4.5 billion in 2005 and that nearly 20 billion songs were illegally downloaded that year.

China is a serious offender, with pirated CDs or tapes accounting for more than 85 percent of the market, according to IFPI.

Full story

Monday, May 21, 2007

Microsoft signs software deal with Vietnam

HANOI -- US software giant Microsoft Monday signed an agreement with communist Vietnam to use its licensed programs in government desktop computers in a bid to reduce rampant software piracy.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer met Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on a one-day visit during which both witnessed the signing of the agreement with the post and telematics ministry to use genuine Microsoft software.

Under the deal, Microsoft Office Systems software will be loaded onto 300,000 central and rural government desktops and computers in educational institutions, said a spokesman for Microsoft.

The deal aims to make Vietnam's government compliant with intellectual property (IP) protection rules and to foster a vibrant information and communication technology (ICT) industry, both sides said in a statement.

Full story

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hollywood steps up fight against ‘pirates’ in Asia

SINGAPORE— Hollywood has stepped up its fight against movie piracy in Asia with the release of an anti-piracy trailer in Singapore.

The 30-second trailer shows a thief, swinging in from a helicopter and dodging lasers, trying to steal a DVD. He is later caught. More than 30 cases of pirated movies, filmed with handheld video cameras in theaters, have been traced to the Asia-Pacific region in the past two years, said Fritz Attaway of the Motion Picture Association

“As we tackle this problem in our cinemas across North America and in Europe, we anticipate that even more will come from the Asia-Pacific region,” Attaway told reporters.

In the last week, the MPA discovered 14 recordings in Malaysia of the new “Spider-Man 3” movie.

Asia: The Steep Cost of Software Piracy

The overall rate of theft declined in the Asia-Pacific region, but because of increasing computer sales, its even more damaging to revenue

Despite a dip in the overall software piracy rate, increased PC ownership and growing broadband Internet access have pushed up revenue losses due to piracy in Asia.

According to the latest software piracy report released Tuesday by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), the average piracy rate in the Asia-Pacific region, including Australia and Japan, grew slightly to 55 percent in 2006, compared to 54 percent in 2005. However, estimated revenue losses due to piracy rose sharply by 44 percent to US$11.6 billion last year, compared to US$8.1 billion the year before.

Full story

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Mexican piracy ring smashed

Anti-piracy experts have worked closely with Mexican authorities in executive several search warrants against a freight forwarding company that was a distribution point for pirated music and film product to various cities across Mexico. An investigation was underway for a number of weeks after a seizure of 37,000 pirate CD-Rs in the company's dispatch terminal.

Full story

Principal Guilty in Software Piracy Case

Russian officials frequently allege that foreign governments, including the U.S., are meddling in Russia's internal affairs, and Russian media reports have portrayed the software piracy case as that of a Western corporation bringing its power to bear on one man -- in this case, a principal who also teaches history and earns $360 a month.

A court Monday found the principal of a village school guilty of using bootleg Microsoft software and ordered him to pay a fine of about $195 in a case that was cast by Russian media as a battle between a humble educator and an international corporation.
The trial of Alexander Ponosov, who was charged with violating intellectual property rights by using classroom computers with pirated versions of the Windows operating system and Microsoft Office software installed, has attracted wide attention.

Full story

Asia West??

In Bid to Stem Piracy, Warner Bros. Halts Promo Screenings in Canada

Burbank, Calif. - In a move aimed at combating piracy, Warner Bros. Pictures announced on Wednesday that it has cancelled all promotional and word-of-mouth screenings in Canada for all of its forthcoming releases.

The studio said it is responding to Canada's lack of legislation banning the videotaping of films in movie theaters, adding that over the last 18 months, some 70% of its films have been camcorded in Canada.

The practice is illegal in the U.S. under various federal, state and local laws.

"Canada is the number one priority in terms of anti-camcording legislation," said Darcy Antonellis, Warner's senior vice president of worldwide anti-piracy operations.

"Within the first week of a film's release, you can almost be certain that somewhere out there a Canadian copy will show up."

Full story

Friday, May 04, 2007

BSA Steps Up Anti Piracy Drive

According to reports, the Business Software Alliance (BSA) recently carried out civil enforcement action against Hyderabad-based SM Technologies, and its owner, Suresh Babu Mandava, leading to the seizure of pirated software worth Rs 2 crores approximately.

A total of 1,843 CDs were recovered, allegedly containing pirated software of Microsoft, Adobe, Autodesk, and Symantec, under various titles, versions, and copies.

This is the second time, in a short span of three years, that the same company has been raided. Earlier, in September 2004, BSA had filed a criminal complaint against the company, and police had raided the premises at three locations in Hyderabad.

Full story

Not exactly asia, but...

NYC aims tougher law, public plea at piracy

NEW YORK - With the summer blockbuster movie season just ahead, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg this week signed legislation that upgrades film piracy from a violation with a $250 fine to a misdemeanor that carries up to six months in jail and penalties of up to $5,000.

The stricter law coincides with an advertising campaign against film piracy.

The Motion Picture Association of America says more than 40 percent of bootlegged films are secretly videotaped in New York City theaters. The duplications are typically sold for mass reproduction or posted on the Internet, sometimes just hours after the movie has premiered.

Full story

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

US put India in "priority watch list"

India, China, Russia and nine other nations have been targeted by the United States for failing to sufficiently protect American producers of music, movies and other copyrighted material from widespread piracy.

The Bush administration on Monday placed the 12 countries on a "priority watch list", which will subject them to extra scrutiny and could eventually lead to economic sanctions if the administration decides to bring trade cases before the World Trade Organization.

Another 31 countries were placed on lower level monitoring lists, indicating the concerns about copyright violations in those nations did not warrant the highest level of scrutiny.

Full story

Friday, April 27, 2007

U.S. groups say Chinese product piracy rising

The flood of pirated movies and other goods from China is growing despite increased enforcement, two U.S. business groups said Thursday, appealing to Beijing for tougher action.
Beijing's anti-piracy activity "is either not enough or not of the right kind," the American Chamber of Commerce in China and the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai said in a report released on International Intellectual Property Day.

Forty percent of companies surveyed said the volume of counterfeiting of their products in China increased, while only 4 percent saw a decline, said the report, an annual review of Chinese business conditions.

Chinese product piracy has worsened tensions with Washington, which filed a World Trade Organization complaint this month accusing Beijing of violating trade commitments by failing to protect copyrights, patents and other intellectual property rights.

Full story

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Canada asks to join WTO talks on China piracy

WASHINGTON - Complaining that it, too, is a victim of Chinese piracy, Canada wants to join the United States in complaining about Beijing's lax enforcement of copyright and intellectual property rights.

Full story

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Microsoft's China sales up 20%

Software giant Microsoft Corp. said Tuesday it expects its China sales to rise more than 20 percent this year, boosted by new products and a national crackdown on software piracy.

Responding to complaints by Western governments and companies, as well as criticism from a growing number of domestic firms, China has been clamping down on piracy over the last two years to the benefit of software makers such as Microsoft (Charts).

Weak copyright laws in China make it hard to enforce the issue. CNN's John Vause reports. (April 9)

As part of the campaign, most of the nation's top domestic PC sellers, including Lenovo and Founder, have pushed to boost their number of PCs sold with legal copies of Microsoft's Windows operating systems already installed.

Other major foreign players in the market, including global leaders Hewlett-Packard (Charts) and Dell (Charts), are pushing similar policies in China.

Full story

US throws the book at China over piracy

The US government yesterday announced its intention to file two legal complaints with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against China to stem the high levels of piracy there and tackle limited market access.

US trade representative Susan Schwab said that insufficient protection for intellectual property rights in China has led to losses of billions in sales for US software, music and film companies.

The US government estimates that piracy costs its economy between US$200bn and US$250bn a year, with up to US$24bn lost alone from sales of pirated goods in China.

Full story

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Retrial for Microsoft piracy case

A Russian court has ordered a retrial of a case against a rural head teacher accused of using pirated Microsoft software in his school.
Last month a lower court in Perm, some 1,000km (620 miles) east of Moscow, dismissed the case as "trivial".

But a higher court has ruled it should proceed against Alexander Ponosov after pressure from the prosecution.

The trial has been seen as a response to international pressure to crack down on piracy in Russia.

Industry experts say Russia ranks second only to China in use of illegal computer software and bootlegged music.

Full story

1.6 million pirated DVDs seized


Chinese officials seized 1.6 million illegal DVDs in southern China in the country's largest anti-piracy haul of the year, a film industry group said Monday.

The midnight raid on the DVD factory and storage center in the city of Guangzhou turned up pirated versions of Chinese, American, Korean and Japanese movies and TV shows, according to the Motion Picture Association, which said it tipped off the authorities.

Full story