MPA Wins Legal Blockade Of Newzbin2 As Hollywood Once Again Wastes Time and Money

1 min read

Newzbin2 LogoThe MPA, Hollywood, and the entertainment industry as a whole have scored a victory of sorts over illegal file-sharing in the U.K. But it’s a plaster being used on a gaping wound, and a waste of both time and money in the longterm.

Newzbin2 Ruling

This week saw a British judge rule that BT had just 14 days to block all access to Newzbin2, a website which indexes content, both legal and illegal, available through Usenet. This follows on from an injunction having been sought in June by the MPA (Motion Picture Association), the international counterpart to the MPAA.

In July the court ruled in favor of the MPA, and this week’s ruling gives the ISP a set time limit to block its users from accessing the site. Furthermore BT is being forced to cover the whole cost of doing so, and has to keep adding URLs and IP addresses leading to Newzbin2 to a blacklist at the behest of the MPA.

Too Little, Too Late

Not only is this ruling the first step towards a form of Web censorship it’s also entirely pointless.

For starters it won’t work. Newzbin2 has already release client software which means its users will easily be able to circumvent the blocking. And if they decide not to use that then they can just move to another website or method for obtaining copyrighted content. Newzbin2 is hardly the only option available.

Lord Puttnam CBE, President of the Film Distributors’ Association, told BBC News, “This is a very significant day for the UK’s creative industries. The law is clear. Industrial online piracy is illegal and can be stopped.” Oh dear. How out of touch can one man be? Stopping one ISP accessing one website will not do a thing to slow or stop piracy.

The Wrong Strategy

The fact is you cannot stop online piracy now: it is too easy and there are too many methods available. The MPA is literally wasting its time and money in this endeavor, time and money that could be better spent looking to the future than trying to hold onto the past.

Use the Internet instead of fighting a losing battle against it. Offer consumers who want digital content a viable and affordable alternative to piracy and they’ll invariably take it. Such as is currently happening with the music industry and streaming services such as Spotify.

Then, and only then, could they claim any kind of victory.

[Via TechDirt]

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