Posts tagged ‘Portugal’

TorrentFreak: The 20 Most Pirated Artists of The Year: A Drop in The Ocean?

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

casThe music industry has witnessed some dramatic changes in recent years, even when piracy is left out of the equation. In little more than a decade the Internet has redefined people’s music consumption habits.

First there was a shift from CDs to MP3s, soon to be followed by a massive increase in paid and free streaming services such as Spotify and YouTube.

Despite the legal offerings the major record labels are still concerned about online piracy. Every day millions of people access music through unauthorized sources, with torrent sites being one of the largest platforms.

Today we take a look at the most pirated artists of 2013, with Bruno Mars leading the chart with more than 5.7 million downloads. Rihanna and Daft Punk come in second and third place, with over 5.4 and 4.2 million downloads respectively.

As can be seen below, over the past year Bruno Mars was most downloaded in the United States, followed by the United Kingdom, Italy, Brazil and Australia. If we look at the number of downloads per Internet users, Portugal would come out top.

Bruno Mars top download locations in recent years

bronostat

The data presented here is provided by music analytics company MusicMetric, which helps artists to get insight into who’s listening to their music. The company was kind enough to share the top 20 most downloaded artists with TorrentFreak, as well as the 20 most played artists on free streaming platforms such as YouTube and Vevo.

Looking at both lists, which are included at the bottom of this article, there’s an interesting observation to make.

For years the top record label executives have been claiming that it’s impossible to compete with free, but YouTube and others appear to be proving them wrong. Compared to these legal plays, the pirated downloads via BitTorrent are a mere drop in the ocean.

For example, Bruno Mars was played nearly 2 billion times in 2013, which comes down to 5.5 million views per day, roughly the same as all pirated downloads in the entire year.

Of course this comparison is not really fair, as pirated downloads include albums, and those who download it may play it many times. But still, it’s quite obvious that the music industry can compete with piracy, through a medium that didn’t exist a decade ago.

Even better, revenue-wise YouTube and Vevo have become a serious source of income. The major labels haven’t been very open about their revenue sharing deal, but EMI Music chief financial officer Paul Kahn said during the LimeWire trial that his label gets half a penny for each YouTube play.

Half a penny may not sound much, but with billions of views it quickly adds up. For example, with 2 billion ad-supported views Bruno Mars would rake in $10 million.

That’s not too shabby, right?

Below is the list of MusicMetric’s estimated BitTorrent downloads in 2013 from January until the last week of December. Other sources of unauthorized music consumption are not included.

Most pirated artists on BitTorrent, 2013
rank artists est. downloads
musicmetric.com
1 Bruno Mars 5,783,556
2 Rihanna 5,414,166
3 Daft Punk 4,212,361
4 Justin Timberlake 3,930,185
5 Flo Rida 3,470,825
6 Kanye West 3,199,969
7 Eminem 3,176,122
8 Jay Z 3,171,358
9 Drake 3,139,408
10 Pitbull 3,138,308
11 One Direction 2,920,445
12 Maroon 5 2,857,652
13 Zed 2,828,764
14 Nicki Minaj 2,681,177
15 Adele 2,594,275
16 Avicii 2,562,151
17 David Guetta 2,441,235
18 Linkin Park 2,352,385
19 Pharrell Williams 2,336,996
20 Katy Perry 2,318,740

The table below shows the most track and video plays on “social media”, as defined by Music Metric. This includes YouTube and Vevo plays, which account for the most plays by far.

Most played artists on Vevo, YouTube etc, 2013
rank artists est. plays
musicmetric.com
1 PSY 2,211,525,973
2 Bruno Mars 1,998,568,878
3 Rihanna 1,562,276,049
4 One Direction 1,543,221,692
5 Justin Bieber 1,226,750,959
6 Gummibär 1,130,446,514
7 Miley Cyrus 1,078,063,309
8 Nicki Minaj 1,058,762,304
9 Eminem 921,595,163
10 Ryan Lewis 876,041,240
11 Super Junior-M 875,604,056
12 Pitbull 851,054,277
13 Katy Perry 805,537,588
14 David Guetta 798,744,318
15 will.i.am 746,419,305
16 Skrillex 679,730,499
17 Avicii 652,465,634
18 Ne-Yo 642,956,631
19 Chris Brown 634,537,325
20 Drake 601,346,518

Source: TorrentFreak, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing and VPN services.

Raspberry Pi: Industrial applications – going postal in Portugal

This post was syndicated from: Raspberry Pi and was written by: liz. Original post: at Raspberry Pi

If you’re in certain bits of Portugal this Christmas and your presents arrive in the post on time, you’ve got a Raspberry Pi to thank.

We’re aware of dozens of big industrial applications of the Raspberry Pi, but generally the companies using them prefer us not to publicise what they’re doing, so they can continue to steal a march on their competitors. So I was really pleased to receive an email from Daniel Ramos at a Portuguese R&D company called Wolfd.com, with some photos of a really big industrial application that they’ve successfully deployed which we are allowed to talk about. When I say “really big”, I mean it. It’s really, really big. It’s the sorting mechanism for CTT, the Portuguese Post Office. (And we get to discuss it here because, as a monopoly, they don’t have to worry about competitors doing the same thing.)

Daniel says that they’ve been working with the Pi for over a year now, and says that given that it was designed for education, its robustness has surprised them. CTT needed some help because the old LCD displays on the sorting machines, which need to be read by humans, were fast becoming unusable with age, as you can see here:

Some of this stuff is neither human-readable nor machine-readable: a real problem when you’ve got hand-sorting going on.

Broken LCD panels aren’t the only problem – the old displays were hard to read in the position they were mounted in, and suffered from very low contrast.

So, in a first wave of replacements, a bank of 24 of these antiquated machines has been refitted with Raspberry Pis and TFT flat panels.

If you’ve ever wanted to watch 24 Pis booting in a row, now’s your chance:

This is a low-power option as well as being much more user-friendly; there’s no need to keep hard drives spinning at each station. The Pis sit behind each screen and are powered by its internal power supply, and are connected through an Ethernet network to a server that provides them with the information they need to display. The software is all written in Python and Pygame.

So if your family and friends in Portugal notice an up-tick in postal reliability, you know who to thank. Thanks so much for showing us what you’ve been doing, Daniel. I’ll refrain from asking you to keep us posted.

TorrentFreak: Portugal Next in Line to Block The Pirate Bay

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

pirate bayThe Pirate Bay is without doubt one of the most censored websites on the Internet.

Courts all around the world have ordered Internet providers to block subscriber access to the torrent site, and this list continues to expand.

This week a coalition of Portuguese copyright trade groups announced they will file for an injunction to prevent ISPs from providing access to The Pirate Bay and other infringing sites.

The groups, backed by the major movie studios, plan to file the necessary paperwork at the Intellectual Property Court in the coming months.

“We still have to solve some technical and legal issues, but we anticipate delivering the injunction to the Intellectual Property Court by the end of 2013,” confirmed Paulo Santos, the leader of the two groups in this matter.

Santos notes that website blocking has proven to be effective abroad, and also in Portugal where blocks are in place to filter out other offensive material.

“Telecom operators and ISPs already use similar filters today to prevent access to pedophile content, or sites that promote violence or racism,” the anti-piracy boss says.

The groups expect that the Internet providers may not be happy with the application, but they are convinced that the court will decide in their favor. This belief is undoubtedly strengthened by court orders against ISPs in other European countries such as the UK, the Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Belgium, Italy and Finland.

“I think the court will accept the injunction. Of course there can always be procedural issues, but we have reason and right on our side,” Santos says.

If the court agrees it will be the first time that Internet providers in Portugal are required to block a website on copyright grounds.

Whether such a blockade will be very successful remains to be seen though, as there are plenty of alternatives and circumvention tools available. This includes VPN services, the many proxies that make up 8% of The Pirate Bay’s total traffic, and TPB’s own PirateBrowser.

These tools appear to be widely used to circumvent censorship. Last month researchers from the University of Amsterdam released a report suggesting that the court-ordered Pirate Bay block has had no impact on piracy rates in the Netherlands.

“Blocking access to TPB has had no lasting net impact on the overall number of downloaders from illegal sources, as people learn to use alternatives to TPB,” the report concluded.

Source: Portugal Next in Line to Block The Pirate Bay

Schneier on Security: Detaining David Miranda

This post was syndicated from: Schneier on Security and was written by: schneier. Original post: at Schneier on Security

Last Sunday, David Miranda was detained while changing planes at London Heathrow Airport by British authorities for nine hours under a controversial British law — the maximum time allowable without making an arrest. There has been much made of the fact that he’s the partner of Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian reporter whom Edward Snowden trusted with many of his NSA documents and the most prolific reporter of the surveillance abuses disclosed in those documents. There’s less discussion of what I feel was the real reason for Miranda’s detention. He was ferrying documents between Greenwald and Laura Poitras, a filmmaker and his co-reporter on Snowden and his information. These document were on several USB memory sticks he had with him. He had already carried documents from Greenwald in Rio de Janeiro to Poitras in Berlin, and was on his way back with different documents when he was detained.

The memory sticks were encrypted, of course, and Miranda did not know the key. This didn’t stop the British authorities from repeatedly asking for the key, and from confiscating the memory sticks along with his other electronics.

The incident prompted a major outcry in the UK. The UK’s Terrorist Act has always been controversial, and this clear misuse — it was intended to give authorities the right to detain and question suspected terrorists — is prompting new calls for its review. Certainly the UK. police will be more reluctant to misuse the law again in this manner.

I have to admit this story has me puzzled. Why would the British do something like this? What did they hope to gain, and why did they think it worth the cost? And — of course — were the British acting on their own under the Official Secrets Act, or were they acting on behalf of the United States? (My initial assumption was that they were acting on behalf of the US, but after the bizarre story of the British GCHQ demanding the destruction of Guardian computers last month, I’m not sure anymore.)

We do know the British were waiting for Miranda. It’s reasonable to assume they knew his itinerary, and had good reason to suspect that he was ferrying documents back and forth between Greenwald and Poitras. These documents could be source documents provided by Snowden, new documents that the two were working on either separately or together, or both. That being said, it’s inconceivable that the memory sticks would contain the only copies of these documents. Poitras retained copies of everything she gave Miranda. So the British authorities couldn’t possibly destroy the documents; the best they could hope for is that they would be able to read them.

Is it truly possible that the NSA doesn’t already know what Snowden has? They claim they don’t, but after Snowden’s name became public, the NSA would have conducted the mother of all audits. It would try to figure out what computer systems Snowden had access to, and therefore what documents he could have accessed. Hopefully, the audit information would give more detail, such as which documents he downloaded. I have a hard time believing that its internal auditing systems would be so bad that it wouldn’t be able to discover this.

So if the NSA knows what Snowden has, or what he could have, then the most it could learn from the USB sticks is what Greenwald and Poitras are currently working on, or thinking about working on. But presumably the things the two of them are working on are the things they’re going to publish next. Did the intelligence agencies really do all this simply for a few weeks’ heads-up on what was coming? Given how ham-handedly the NSA has handled PR as each document was exposed, it seems implausible that it wanted advance knowledge so it could work on a response. It’s been two months since the first Snowden revelation, and it still doesn’t have a decent PR story.

Furthermore, the UK authorities must have known that the data would be encrypted. Greenwald might have been a crypto newbie at the start of the Snowden affair, but Poitras is known to be good at security. The two have been communicating securely by e-mail when they do communicate. Maybe the UK authorities thought there was a good chance that one of them would make a security mistake, or that Miranda would be carrying paper documents.

Another possibility is that this was just intimidation. If so, it’s misguided. Anyone who regularly reads Greenwald could have told them that he would not have been intimidated — and, in fact, he expressed the exact opposite sentiment — and anyone who follows Poitras knows that she is even more strident in her views. Going after the loved ones of state enemies is a typically thuggish tactic, but it’s not a very good one in this case. The Snowden documents will get released. There’s no way to put this cat back in the bag, not even by killing the principal players.

It could possibly have been intended to intimidate others who are helping Greenwald and Poitras, or the Guardian and its advertisers. This will have some effect. Lavabit, Silent Circle, and now Groklaw have all been successfully intimidated. Certainly others have as well. But public opinion is shifting against the intelligence community. I don’t think it will intimidate future whistleblowers. If the treatment of Chelsea Manning didn’t discourage them, nothing will.

This leaves one last possible explanation — those in power were angry and impulsively acted on that anger. They’re lashing out: sending a message and demonstrating that they’re not to be messed with — that the normal rules of polite conduct don’t apply to people who screw with them. That’s probably the scariest explanation of all. Both the US and UK intelligence apparatuses have enormous money and power, and they have already demonstrated that they are willing to ignore their own laws. Once they start wielding that power unthinkingly, it could get really bad for everyone.

And it’s not going to be good for them, either. They seem to want Snowden so badly that that they’ll burn the world down to get him. But every time they act impulsively aggressive — convincing the governments of Portugal and France to block the plane carrying the Bolivian president because they thought Snowden was on it is another example — they lose a small amount of moral authority around the world, and some ability to act in the same way again. The more pressure Snowden feels, the more likely he is to give up on releasing the documents slowly and responsibly, and publish all of them at once — the same way that WikiLeaks published the US State Department cables.

Just this week, the Wall Street Journal reported on some new NSA secret programs that are spying on Americans. It got the information from “interviews with current and former intelligence and government officials and people from companies that help build or operate the systems, or provide data,” not from Snowden. This is only the beginning. The media will not be intimidated. I will not be intimidated. But it scares me that the NSA is so blind that it doesn’t see it.

This essay previously appeared on TheAtlantic.com.

EDITED TO ADD: I’ve been thinking about it, and there’s a good chance that the NSA doesn’t know what Snowden has. He was a sysadmin. He had access. Most of the audits and controls protect against normal users; someone with root access is going to be able to bypass a lot of them. And he had the technical chops to cover his tracks when he couldn’t just evade the auditing systems.

The AP makes an excellent point about this:

The disclosure undermines the Obama administration’s assurances to Congress and the public that the NSA surveillance programs can’t be abused because its spying systems are so aggressively monitored and audited for oversight purposes: If Snowden could defeat the NSA’s own tripwires and internal burglar alarms, how many other employees or contractors could do the same?

And, to be clear, I didn’t mean to say that intimidation wasn’t the government’s motive. I believe it was, and that it was poorly thought out intimidation: lashing out in anger, rather than from some Machiavellian strategy. (Here’s a similar view.) If they wanted Miranda’s electronics, they could have confiscated them and sent him on his way in fifteen minutes. Holding him for nine hours — the absolute maximum they could under the current law — was intimidation.

I am reminded of the phone call the Guardian received from British government. The exact quote reported was: “You’ve had your fun. Now we want the stuff back.” That’s something you would tell your child. And that’s the power dynamic that’s going on here.

EDITED TO ADD (8/27): Jay Rosen has an excellent essay on this.

Raspberry Pi: Ziphius, the Pi-powered aquatic drone, now on Kickstarter

This post was syndicated from: Raspberry Pi and was written by: liz. Original post: at Raspberry Pi

We first came across Ziphius when Rob Bishop went to do some talks and workshops in Portugal. Ziphius is a Pi-powered aquatic drone, equipped with cameras, who displays autonomous behaviour and can also be controlled from your phone or tablet. I say “who” rather than “which” because despite the lack of a face, arms or legs, Ziphius has a very singular character and, once powering through the waves, seems oddly cheerful and friendly. I’ve no idea how team Ziphius have achieved this injection of soulfulness into a drone shaped like an aquatic potato, but they’ve done it with aplomb.

It’s stealthy, like a ninja. A yellow, shoe-shaped, seafaring ninja with bags of personality.

Ziphius plays fetch

Ziphius can tow you on your inner tube, take movies of you while you catch a wave, photograph or film what’s on the sea bed, scout ahead of your fishing party, hold your beer in the pool, play games (it can even retrieve objects thrown to it) and much more. Rob says:

I had an opportunity to visit the team behind Ziphius when I last visited Portugal to speak at IST in Lisboa. We spent a day together integrating the Pi camera into their aquatic drone and discussing their future plans. I’m really pleased to see that they’ve got to this point and hope they succeed in raising the funds they need. Their drone is very impressive in person and I can imagine a number of uses for it beyond simply messing about at the beach (although that did look like fun!). It will also make a pretty cheap platform for any kind of water-based robotics if they manage to produce it at their intended $200 to $250 price point (which includes a Pi and a Pi camera).

We wish the folks at Azorean Aquatic Technologies all the best with the Ziphius Kickstarter.

TorrentFreak: Epic 6-Year File-Sharing Case Over Just 3 Songs Comes To An End

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: enigmax. Original post: at TorrentFreak

When the Portuguese arm of IFPI first decided to bring file-sharing prosecutions to the country, their aims would have been simple – to scare Internet users away from file-sharing networks and into the shops. It didn’t work out that way.

Since 2006, the Portuguese Phonographic Association filed more than two dozen cases with the Attorney General’s Office. Only two bore any fruit at all – one in 2008 and another just over a week ago having dragged on for an epic six years.

The case was brought against a then 17-year-old teenager who allegedly shared hundreds of songs online without permission. However, for “technical and procedural reasons” (read: lack of evidence), those claims were reduced massively and in the end it was decided he shared just three, a pair from local artists and ‘Right Through You’ by Alanis Morrisette.

Now, the Lisbon Criminal Court has finally delivered its ruling in the case. For violating copyright, the now 23-year-old received a two month suspended jail sentence. The Court decided that since the man was just 17 at the time of the offense and has a completely clean record, the sentence should be changed to a fine of 880 euros – 640 euros plus 4 euros in lieu of each day not served in prison.

After having made 40 similar complaints against file-sharers since 2006, the Portuguese Phonographic Association says it will now give up on the strategy.

“At the time, it was believed that, in fact, through the application of existing law we could begin to control the problem of Internet piracy,” said Association president Eduardo Simoes.

Current legal framework, Simoes added, can not cope with online file-sharing. Inevitably he is calling on the government to introduce new laws that do away with prolonged prosecution periods that reduce the deterrent effects of bringing cases to trial. What the Association wants is a “3 strikes” style arrangement whereby file-sharers are sent escalating warnings and eventually punished.

As the local branch of IFPI, the Portuguese Phonographic Association controls 95% of recorded music in Portugal but it is currently facing a crisis. The Association reports that in the last decade profits have dropped by 80%, and in 2011 sales of physical products nose-dived 34.4%.

Interestingly, in addition to blaming the piracy bogeyman and the economic crisis for these reductions in sales, Simoes also cites an undeveloped digital offering and artists’ growing tendency to self-publish as additional factors compounding the problem.

Despite the apparent lack of legal support, Portugal’s movie industry say they are working hard to reduce piracy by other means. According the MPA-backed FEVIP, they shut down 302 local sites offering pirate material during 2011.

Source: Epic 6-Year File-Sharing Case Over Just 3 Songs Comes To An End

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Monty says: MariaDB developer meeting in Athens

This post was syndicated from: Monty says and was written by: Monty. Original post: at Monty says

It’s time for the next MariaDB developer meeting. This time it’s in Athens from 11-November to 14′th of November.

The reason for choosing Athens was that the previous MariaDB developer meetings has been in places like Iceland, Spain and Portugal (all countries with some financial issues) and we thought it was no more than right to support Greece next.

As before, the meeting is open for everyone that wants to attend.

The agenda can be found here. This is also the place where all proposed and agreed to plans will be be posted.

We will try to keep the #maria IRC channel on Freenode up to date about what is happening. If you have any questions about a session, you can ask questions on the channel and we will do our best to answer them.

The main topic of the meeting is to finalise the plans for MariaDB 5.6 now when MariaDB 5.5 is close to completion. (MariaDB 5.3 + MySQL 5.5 -> MariaDB 5.5 merge is done and we are now fixing the final issues found by our test systems so that we can do the first alpha binary release of MariaDB 5.5).

If you have any ideas or suggestions for what we should do in 5.6, please update either the plans page or send an email to maria-developers at lists.launchpad.net list.

TorrentFreak: Private BitTorrent Tracker Admin Will Go To Trial

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: enigmax. Original post: at TorrentFreak

Following two criminal complaints, one submitted jointly by the MPA-affiliated Portuguese Phonographic Association (AFP) and the Federation of Editors of Video (FEVIP), and another solely by FEVIP, four years ago three file-sharing sites – Btuga, Zetuga and Zemula, with a combined 200,000 users – were targeted by the authorities.

The Polícia Judiciária, a police division dedicated to fighting organized and financial crime, terrorism, drugs and corruption, eventually executed six search warrants against the sites in July 2007.

The private BitTorrent tracker Btuga was of particular interest. According to a study carried out in 2005, the site led the national rankings for the total number of hours citizens spent surfing a single website – 478,000 hours – and was the 3rd most-visited site in the country with 110,000 daily users.

The creator and admin of Btuga, Martini-Man (real name Luis Ferreira), was arrested on accusations of copyright infringement and has been awaiting his final fate ever since.

Last week the Lisbon Court of Appeal overturned a 2010 ruling by the Court Of Inquiry and decided that Ferreira should indeed be tried for copyright infringement offenses.

The ruling, which was handed down on April 14th, noted that “the defendant used P2P networks and the BitTorrent protocol for the sole and exclusive purpose of sharing or allow sharing of files protected by copyright.”

The Court said that Ferreira had “sent a clear message to the users, which also included himself, that it was the tracker’s purpose to allow the sharing of movies, music, games and videos of the most recent releases [that] they possessed, so that such an exchange would benefit all users of the network because it would cost nothing monetarily to any of them, namely payment of copyrights.”

Contrary to the earlier ruling from the Court of Inquiry, the Court of Appeal said that Ferreira had “made use of lawful means [BitTorrent] to accomplish unlawful ends”, i.e the sharing of copyright protected material.

The court documents further stated that Ferreira provided “premium services”. This is an apparent reference to giving so-called ‘upload credits’ to improve sharing ratio in exchange for donations, a common practice on many private trackers. In fact, this is how many sites of this type finance their operations.

A TorrentFreak source familiar with the situation told us that a few weeks after Ferreira’s arrest, the source code from Btuga leaked and an identical site reappeared under a new name, BTNext. Unlike Btuga, BTNext is not hosted in Portugal and remains operational to this day.

Source: Private BitTorrent Tracker Admin Will Go To Trial

TorrentFreak: Portuguese Government Creates Honeypot To Combat Piracy

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

beesAmong file-sharers the term ‘honeypots’ is used to describe sites and services that are specifically set up to lure people into downloading copyrighted files. The label is often applied to suspicious looking sites, but proof of the existence of live honeypots is never provided.

People have alleged that some of the pay-up-or-else lawsuits against BitTorrent users came in part from torrents that were uploaded or seeded by the copyright holders themselves, but this hasn’t been proven either.

This does not mean that honeypots are a myth. Indeed, in Portugal their existence is now confirmed, as a previously held back agreement between the Portuguese Phonographic Association (AFP) and the General Inspection of Cultural Activities (IGAC) reveals. This agreement is of special interest, since the latter organization falls under the Ministry of Culture.

The protocol, which was announced a few weeks ago, was initially framed as an attempt to combat piracy under which AFP would provide ‘anti-piracy’ training to IGAC inspection officers. However, the fact that the actual text of the agreement was never publicized led the Portuguese Pirate Party to believe that something more was going on.

And they were right.

After filing a complaint with the authorities, the protocol was finally released by IGAC, as they are required to do by law. The Pirate Party believes that it was kept a secret for a reason, and after their analysis of the contents this suspicion was strengthened.

Among other things, the agreement promotes a honeypot scheme where the music industry will grant the Government organization the right to upload tracks to file-sharing networks. These ‘traps’ will then be used to collect the IP-addresses of Portuguese file-sharers.

The file-sharers who are caught by this honeypot scheme can expect a notification from their Internet provider, which may eventually lead to a disconnection due to a breach of the terms of service. The sad part about this, is that the evidence that the authorities gather is not very solid.

In the agreement it’s stated that IGAC will rely on screenshots to prove which unauthorized material people are sharing. A rather simplistic and easy to forge method of evidence collection, The Pirate Party commented in their analysis. To prove their point, the Pirates offer a simple PHP script that can generate forged evidence on the fly.

Towards the end of the agreement, it is revealed that the main purpose of the collaboration is to influence public opinion through the media.

“The IGAC and the AFP agreed that the results obtained under this Protocol shall be disseminated to the media, particularly on the enforcement actions taken, the number and type of complaints, the number of notifications sent to ISP’s and other important aspects to achieve the objectives of this Protocol,” it reads.

According to the Pirate Party the Ministry of Culture’s IGAC is acting undemocratically and possibly illegally too, while putting the interests of a few music labels before the rights of individual citizens.

That stings.

TorrentFreak

Monty says: Come to Lisbon and meet MariaDB developers

This post was syndicated from: Monty says and was written by: Monty. Original post: at Monty says

The next Monty Program Ab company and MariaDB developer meeting will be in Lisbon, Portugal between Friday 11 March and Monday March 14, 2011.

The topic of the meeting is to go through what has been done in the MariaDB and MySQL code recently and to plan the features for the next main MariaDB release.

The developer meeting is open to anyone who wants to participate. If you want to know about, affect, or participate in future development of MariaDB or if you just want to hang around and have a good time with the MariaDB developers, feel free to come and join us in Lisbon!

We are just now in the process of booking a hotel and will publish the details on our MariaDB Developer Meetings page as soon as it’s decided.

What is still not decided is what restaurants to visit, where to have the actual meetings (we are just now talking with some hotels about this, but we are also open to suggestions) and what to do on the Monday “excursion day’. If you know Lisbon and have a suggestion that would work with a group of 20-40 people who enjoy good food, good company, and want to experience ‘new (unexpected?) things’, please let us know!

You can reach us at ‘community at askmonty dot org’.

TorrentFreak: Pirate Party Slams Anti-Piracy Outfit for Filing ‘Illegal’ Complaints

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

Check out TorrentFreak’s new News Bits feed! .

ACAPOR is without doubt the most active anti-piracy outfit in Portugal. Last year the movie industry representatives made the news when they filed a complaint against The Pirate Bay with the General Inspection of Cultural Activities, a department of the Portuguese Ministry of Culture.

The group asked for The Pirate Bay to be censored in Portugal through an Internet filter, but instead their actions led to the uncensoring of their internal communications. As part of Anonymous’ Operation Payback, ACAPOR was shamed when their website was hacked, revealing hundreds of personal email messages in the process.

Despite this setback ACAPOR is continuing their quest undeterred. Two weeks ago the group announced that it would overload the judicial system with complaints against file-sharers in an attempt to raise awareness of the devastating effect they claim piracy has on their industry. And so it happened.

This week the group personally delivered several boxes of complaints to the Attorney General’s Office, wearing T-shirts with the slogan “Piracy is Illegal.” The movie industry group claims to have gathered 970 IP-addresses of ‘illegal’ file-sharers and is demanding action from the authorities.

In addition, 30 complaints were ‘filed’ containing the IP-addresses that republished the emails that leaked after the Operation Payback hack.

ACAPOR delivering the complaints

acapor

“We are doing anything we can to alert the government for the very serious situation in the entertainment industry,” ACAPOR commented on their actions, adding that “1000 complaints a month should be enough to embarrass the judiciary system.”

However, as with their previous revolt against The Pirate Bay, it may be that ACAPOR are the ones that will be embarrassed. Shortly after the group delivered the boxes to the Attorney General’s Office, Portugal’s Pirate Party came out with a statement claiming that ACAPOR’s actions are illegal.

The Pirate Party says that ACAPOR is not authorized by the National Data Protection Authority to collect IP-addresses as evidence, and has decided to file several individual complaints. In addition the Pirates have filed a criminal complaint for gaining improper access to the Attorney General’s Office.

The Pirate Party argues that ACAPOR’s actions violated the privacy of 1000 ordinary Portuguese citizens and hopes that the responsible authorities will take the necessary actions to prevent this from happening again in the future. ACAPOR was quick to deny the allegations and its President believes that no laws were broken.

Time will tell who’s right.

TorrentFreak: Movie Group Will DDoS The Courts To Have File-Sharing Laws Weakened

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: enigmax. Original post: at TorrentFreak

In September this year, movie rental association ACAPOR filed a complaint against The Pirate Bay with the General Inspection of Cultural Activities, a department of the Portuguese Ministry of Culture.

Blaming the site for 15 million illegal downloads in Portugal every year, ACAPOR demanded that the country’s ISPs should take similiar action to that taken in Italy, and block The Pirate Bay.

In a parallel action, a complaint was also made against Piratatuga.net, a file-sharing site which has proven extremely popular among their countrymen, also blamed for millions of downloads. In this case a criminal investigation was requested.

But having taken action against the sites that facilitate the transfers undertaken by file-sharers, ACAPOR – which recently had its email database hacked as part of Operation Payback – is now widening its approach somewhat. Starting in January 2011, the movie interests group will begin reporting thousands of file-sharers to the authorities.

Their aim? To have punishments for file-sharing made less severe.

According to ACAPOR president Nuno Pereira, only one case has been brought against a Portuguese file-sharer. He believes that this restrained approach is down to the justice system being afraid of the 3 year jail sentences currently on the books for the offense.

Calling the current system “outdated”, Pereira is calling for Portuguese law to be changed to follow the French lead of a graduated response.

“It would be better to replace the prison sentence, which is never enforced and that is excessive, for a breach or a cut in Internet access, like they do in France,” he explained.

Pereira also says that if the current law was applied as required, the criminal courts would become inundated with case of illegal file-sharing.

So, in order to ‘help’ the situation, Pereira has announced a new ACAPOR strategy of – wait for it – inundating the criminal courts with cases of illegal file-sharing.

Starting January 5th 2011, ACAPOR will begin filing “the largest collection of criminal complaints submitted simultaneously in the history of Portuguese Justice” against individuals alleged to have shared movies online.

“From that day on, every month we will file 1,000 new complaints,” said Pereira, adding that although file-sharing is a crime in Portugal, ACAPOR is being forced to act privately because their complaints to the government have come to nothing.

Will the justice system be able to keep up with what is in effect a Denial of Service attack on the courts? Almost certainly not. But this stunt appears to be less about justice and more about pressuring the government and generating publicity to scare potential file-sharers.

Article from: TorrentFreak, Covering Torrent Sites and News since 2005.

TorrentFreak: Movie Rental Outfit Hacked, Emails Leaked, Redirected to The Pirate Bay

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

ACAPOR, a Portuguese organization which represents the interests of local movie rental companies, has been defaced by Anonymous as part of Operation Payback. The ACAPOR website currently shows a message from Anonymous and then redirects to The Pirate Bay. To make the shaming complete, a 640 MB email database of the outfit was leaked and posted to The Pirate Bay.

When the Portuguese movie rental outfit ACAPOR declared war on The Pirate Bay a few weeks ago, it was perhaps inevitable that it would have to deal with the wrath of Operation Payback. ACAPOR wanted to ensure that Portuguese citizens can’t access The Pirate Bay, and filed a complaint against the site.

The movie rental association claimed that The Pirate Bay is directly responsible for about 15 million illegal downloads in Portugal every year. By installing a Pirate Bay block at all ISPs, ACAPOR hopes to decrease the financial damage they claim it causes.

Aside from the complaint against The Pirate Bay, ACAPOR had also announced a separate case against Piratatuga.net, a site that links to various movie, game and music titles hosted on third party sites. With approximately 50,000 Portugese visitors a day this site is as popular in Portugal as The Pirate Bay, ACAPOR claimed.

In recent weeks dozens of outfits involved in anti-piracy efforts have been targeted by Anonymous, especially those who have targeted The Pirate Bay. Most victims suffer a few days of downtime because of a DDoS attack, but for ACAPOR the damage is much worse.

Just a few hours ago the outfit’s website was defaced, presenting the following message from Operation Payback. To make things even worse the website then redirects to The Pirate Bay after a few seconds.

And the trouble for ACAPOR doesn’t stop there.

In addition to defacing the website, the ‘hackers’ also managed to grab a copy of the email database of ACAPOR. Little is known about the content of the emails at the moment, but previous leaks from MediaDefender and ACS:Law have shone an interesting light on their operations.

Portuguese speaking TorrentFreak readers who have more information on the contents of the leaked email database are encouraged to get in touch. To be continued.

Article from: TorrentFreak.

TorrentFreak: Movie Rental Outfit Calls For Nationwide Pirate Bay Block

This post was syndicated from: TorrentFreak and was written by: Ernesto. Original post: at TorrentFreak

After court cases in Denmark, The Netherlands and Italy, The Pirate Bay is now involved in a legal procedure in Portugal. ACAPOR, a Portuguese organization which represents the interests of local movie rental companies, has filed a complaint with the Portuguese Ministry of Culture to demand Internet providers block customer access to The Pirate Bay.

pirate bayIn an attempt to ensure that Portuguese citizens can’t access the world’s most resilient torrent site, ACAPOR has filed a complaint against The Pirate Bay. The complaint was filed with the General Inspection of Cultural Activities, which is part of the Portuguese Ministry of Culture.

According to the movie rental association, The Pirate Bay is directly responsible for about 15 million illegal downloads in Portugal every year. By installing a Pirate Bay block at all ISPs, ACAPOR hopes to decrease the financial damage they claim it causes.

A similar nationwide block was previously ordered in Italy. In a lengthy legal battle that went all the way to the Supreme Court, it was ruled that BitTorrent sites that host torrent files are playing a significant role in the downloading and uploading process of their users.

Aside from the complaint against The Pirate Bay, ACAPOR has also announced a separate case against Piratatuga.net, a site that links to various movie, game and music titles hosted on third party sites. With approximately 50,000 Portugese visitors a day this site is as popular in Portugal as The Pirate Bay, ACAPOR claims.

Aside from requesting a block for both sites, ACAPOR has asked the prosecutor to identify the owners of Piratatuga.net and start a criminal investigation.

Whatever the outcome of ACAPOR’s actions, it is doubtful that the Portuguese movie rental companies will establish the desired outcome. The free publicity will only bring in more visitors to the site. As we’ve seen before in Italy and Denmark, people will come up with workarounds to regain access to the site and the total number of visitors will only grow.

Article from: TorrentFreak.