Censoring file sharing sites isn't effective at curbing piracy

By on January 9, 2013, 5:30 PM

Research from Boston’s Northeastern University suggests that shutting down known pirate domains is not an effective method for curbing illegal file sharing. Instead, copyright owners should focus their efforts on blocking a site’s ability to process payments from a credit card company or PayPal or simply by offering legitimate services that are more attractive than pirating copyrighted media.

The researchers monitored thousands of popular copyrighted files spanning multiple services in an effort to find the most effective method to combat piracy. They noted that blocking sites or sending DMCA takedown notices has a very short-term effect and are essentially a drop in the bucket.

The sheer number of uploaders far outweighs the number of copyright owners, meaning when a file is taken down on one site, it quickly shows up on several others. Researchers likened it to a game of cat and mouse which seems like a fitting description.

Such activity is actually making the file sharing landscape more diverse and even harder to combat as new sites are constantly being created to facilitate sharing.

They also looked at the number of sites where one could find copyrighted material. Using FilesTube, researchers found around 10,000 different domains and more than 5,000 IP addresses associated with pirated content.

Researchers concluded that innovation will ultimately be the key to slowing piracy. If the music industry was able to overcome the dilemma, surely there’s no reason why other industries can’t do the same.




User Comments: 12

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Littleczr Littleczr said:

Makes a lot of sence, to bad the dumb movie and music industry are too short sighted to realize this. I would make a website with all vailable HD movies and chare like maybe 5 dollars for movies and be able to dwonload and play anytime I want. Kind of like steam but for movies.

Wizz-Fizz Wizz-Fizz said:

Makes a lot of sence, to bad the dumb movie and music industry are too short sighted to realize this. I would make a website with all vailable HD movies and chare like maybe 5 dollars for movies and be able to dwonload and play anytime I want. Kind of like steam but for movies.

I completely agree

A "Steam"-like service would do wonders for the entertainment industry.

I know that I spent well in excess of $200 on the Steam Winter Sale, even on titles that I had never heard of but liked the way the synopsis read.

Guest said:

I use to DL a movie here and there. Netflix has changed that completely. One of the many reasons is netflix, for me, is better than piracy. To pirate a movie I would have to dl it which would take about 10-30 minutes. Netflix takes about 0-30 seconds to start the movie. Well worth the monthly fee. If there was a service that streamed the vast majored of there movies in DTS 5.1 and a higher bit rate I would switch to that in a heart beat.

Wizz-Fizz Wizz-Fizz said:

I use to DL a movie here and there. Netflix has changed that completely. One of the many reasons is netflix, for me, is better than piracy. To pirate a movie I would have to dl it which would take about 10-30 minutes. Netflix takes about 0-30 seconds to start the movie. Well worth the monthly fee. If there was a service that streamed the vast majored of there movies in DTS 5.1 and a higher bit rate I would switch to that in a heart beat.

That, and get rid of stupid Geo-Blocking so we can all enjoy services like Netflix without 3rd party proxies and credit/payment services

avoidz avoidz said:

Makes a lot of sence, to bad the dumb movie and music industry are too short sighted to realize this. I would make a website with all vailable HD movies and chare like maybe 5 dollars for movies and be able to dwonload and play anytime I want. Kind of like steam but for movies.

I completely agree

A "Steam"-like service would do wonders for the entertainment industry.

I know that I spent well in excess of $200 on the Steam Winter Sale, even on titles that I had never heard of but liked the way the synopsis read.

Completely agree. Steam leads the way for consumer downloads. Unfortunately no one is listening in Hollywood.

1 person liked this | PC nerd PC nerd said:

The industry won't adapt. They'll pay for their stupidity.

You can't kill piracy.

NTAPRO NTAPRO said:

You don't say :]

wiyosaya said:

This is the latest installment in a growing line of studies that all indicate, in general, the same thing. One study indicated that users who "pirate" actually buy more music than those who do not pirate. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8337887.stm

Tygerstrike said:

Piracy websites are like cockroaches. You kill one 30 more show up. Until there is a definative way to lock down content, ppl will continue to pirate, because it is free. 90% of the ppl who admitted to piracy always claim two reasons for thier piracy. It was free, and they cant afford to pay for a movie/music. Kinda odd when you think how much they would spend on a PC. Second excuse is that they are "fighting" the MPAA/RIAA/SOPA ect. It still boils down to changes being needed. Either changes in how we as a society view theft. Or changes in the Law dealing with copyright protected materials.

Stickmansam Stickmansam said:

"simply by offering legitimate services that are more attractive than pirating copyrighted media."

This.

I have spent more money on steam games simply because they are so cheap and easy to get with high uptime and reliability.

Jim$ter said:

Once Spotify came around I actually started paying as $9.99 a month for unlimited music is reasonable. In order for movies to do the same they would have to hit $19.99 a month unlimited. I could see a small delay of like a week after DVD release or something. Until they can offer something like that they will continue to suffer. I see that being a long way off yet...they have to suffer a few more years when more people are rebelling than paying...Only then do they give you a reasonable price. I always laughed at people paying $1 or more per song...that is way over priced.

Timonius Timonius said:

Problem with a Steam-like service for movies/television is that the industry is still greedy. You'll definitely need more than one service (we already have this to some extent) and I really can't see the prices beating out piracy for good. Where there is a 'pirate' there is a way.

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