10 days of Copyright & Surveillance: GoT piracy record, Holmes in the public domain, Obama to end bulk data collection, no funds for NSA backdoor searches

  •  Copyright

Game of Thrones‘ season finale has set yet a new piracy record, being downloaded by 1.5 million people in the first 12 hours, with Australia being the show’s top torrenter. HBO doesn’t really give a damn about this situation, which makes some to claim that this means that piracy is becoming acceptable, and infuriates others. Walking Dead producers criticizes HBO for their lax attitude and accuses Google for not doing enough to stop piracy.

Speaking of Australia,  it negotiates a new trade agreement with Korea, called KAFTA (Korea – Australia Free Trade Agreement). As you can already guess, the agreement will influence Australian copyright laws: ISPs will definitely be forced to becomeHollywood’s Copyright Cops” (and everyone is ignoring what the consumer wants: access to content). But the question is what has South Korea to do with enforcing US copyright? As the guys from Techdirt write:

this implementation requirement just happens to match exactly what Hollywood has been demanding for some time must raise the suspicion that the US has had a hand in this on behalf of its copyright industries. That’s yet another reason for demanding real transparency during trade negotiations, so that such shabby deals can be exposed before it’s too late to do anything about them.

Moving North,

    • RIAA has submitted its 50 millionth take down notice to Google.
    • Canada will start its final step of implementing the Copyright Modernization Act, the notice-and-notice system, which will use ISPs to track serial infringers. The system will come into force in January 2015, even earlier.
    • Game publisher Ubisoft states that DRM can’t stop piracy and that developers need to focus on creating better games, with more online features.
    • Youtube is working on a new Spotify-like subscription service. Rumours of blocking artists who don’t sign with the service are not true!
    • Sherlock Holmes has finally entered the public domain. Let the fan fictions begin!
    • City of London Police Commissioner states that their anti-piracy schemes are not working and that

when you’re in a tsunami you can’t push back the water and you have to start thinking very differently about how we protect society. The only way is to work with industry to prevent and to think about the enabling functions of this crime. Enforcement will only ever be a limited capability in this space.

  • Surveillance

A group of US Senators reminded Obama that he can end bulk phone record collection (one of his electoral promises). Moreover, the US House of Representatives voted to stop NSA warrantless and “backdoor searches” of information, cutting the funding of agency’s operators.

Now for some bad news: a new leak revealed that NSA is actually collaborating with a lot more countries than we initial thought in their efforts to access foreign communication information (which they claim is legal). And one more: in UK, a Government policy was revealed, which claims that social media surveillance is totally legal.

Cover image: HBO, Game of Thrones.