Warner Brothers Hiring Anti-Piracy Interns To Spy On Pirates

What better way to find pirates than to hire students who are proficient in file sharing. Warner Brothers is recruiting students as interns to locate and spy on pirates in an attempt to shut down their operations. It seems that these interns will be setting up accounts at BitTorrent sites, develop scanning bots, make purchases to trap sellers and other tasks as Warner Brothers deems necessary. This is an effort to locate pirates and prosecute them for piracy.

In a recent article it further states that:

The intern will further have to scour the Internet for illegally posted Warner Bros. and NBC Universal content and gather intelligence on the sites that offer these pirated goods. One of the more boring tasks listed in the job description is the sending of takedown requests and infringement notices to sites and users.

The lucky student who gets the job will receive a £17,500 salary for the 12 month internship that starts July 2010. Applicants are required to study a degree in a computing related discipline and programming experience with Java or JSP and PHP, Perl or Python is seen as a bonus.

We encourage all eligible TorrentFreak readers to apply for this exciting internship and provide us with regular updates on Warner Bros’ anti-piracy efforts. You have to be quick though, the vacancy closes on March 31.

If this is successful one would expect that other movie studios may follow Warner Brothers lead. It would seem that Warner Brothers is serious about catching those who pirate their movies and sell them to others. It will be interesting to see how well these interns do and if the effort does stem the flow of illegal movies being sold on the Internet.

Comments welcome.


Here Is A Unique Take On Pirates: Sell Them Post-Release Downloadable Content

Today must be the day for better ideas. First it was the CEO of Time Warner who wants to actually add value to their services and now EA has come up with a novel way to stop piracy. OK, maybe not stop piracy but to make a buck off of those who pirate. Here is what EA proposes:

John Riccitiello, the gaming-savvy head of Electronic Arts, doesn’t want anyone to pirate games. But those who do, he told Kotaku, present a new market that EA needs to make money from.


By selling people who grab games digitally — without paying for them — post-release downloadable content.

What a novel idea. But do people actually want post-release downloadable content? EA thinks so:

Riccitiello spoke energetically about the popularity of the company’s downloadable content add-ons. Some of EA’s DLC has been free, such as the launch-day offerings of a new town in The Sims 3 or a nudity option in The Saboteur. Others, such as the paid DLC for November’s Dragon Age Origins, generated a million downloads in its first week, according to an EA spokesperson.

“The consumer seems to really like this idea that there is extra stuff,” Riccitiello said, while expressing surprise that some of this DLC is downloaded so soon after people start playing the games. “The consumer wants more, and when you give them more or sell them more it seems to be extremely well received.”

Some of the people buying this DLC are not people who bought the game in a new shrink-wrapped box. That could be seen as a dark cloud, a mass of gamers who play a game without contributing a penny to EA. But around that cloud Riccitiello identified a silver lining: “There’s a sizable pirate market and a sizable second sale market and we want to try to generate revenue in that marketplace,” he said, pointing to DLC as a way to do it.

I sincerely hope that EA can pull this off. It would be great for the software companies who can generate added revenues from those that steal. Plus, we consumers may no longer have to go through hoops when we buy a piece of software only to have a terrible time getting the software registered.

Comments welcome.


Microsoft Vista – The Hacks Continue

Well there was some assumptions that the new Service Pack #1 for Windows Vista would make it harder for pirates to hack. But it seems for some who have already received the first RTM copies of SP1 this may not be the case. With a little research and some minor know how, one is still able to find a hack that still works with SP1.

Before Windows Vista was released to the public, Microsoft was to toting the fact Vista was going to make it hard for pirates to hack. It was also stated that illegal copies would not be updated. Than it was SP1 improved the anti-pirate mechanisms. On one of the forums one person left this comment:

I’m not sure who MS thinks is stealing vista. I don’t put a padlock on my garbage when I put it out to the curb and by some miracle it doesn’t get stolen unless the robbers come just before garbage pickup.

Yipes! That was cruel. But it does make one wonder. It seems like it has been about 7 years or so that Microsoft has been trying to stop the hacking of their software. For every step they take in adding protections, the hackers find a workaround. The only ones they get stuck playing this silly game is we consumers who must tolerate the verification game.

One would think that a company as large as Microsoft with the resources at hand, they could find a simple way to authenticate our software as being genuine once and not every time we want to download a Microsoft fix, patch, update and so forth. This is getting to be almost as silly as UAC with its  nag screens asking me if I am sure or not.

I am sure I am tired of being nagged and I am sure I am tired of having to provide proof my Windows are legal. How about you?

Comments welcome.

[tags] microsoft, vista, hacks, uac, verification, proof, sp1, hacking, pirates, [/tags]

Tales Of Pirates v1.36

Tales of Pirates gives players a fruitful navigating experience while exploring the unknown. This fully 3D designed multiplayer online game is comical in nature and has humorous looking characters and creatures.

Different styles, themes, and architecture spice up the different towns, islands, and dungeons. The multitude of elements designed captivates players and keeps them immersed while they explore all of the different possibilities available in game.

[344.58M] [Win98/ME/2k/XP/Vista] [FREE]

[tags]pirate, pirates, buccaneer, swashbuckler[/tags]

From Russia With Love – Why Russians Pirate – Part #3

This is what Svetlana has to say concerning piracy in Russia. I left her message as she sent it to me unedited. But I am sure the reader will get the point she is trying to make:

“An important comment from Svetlana.

And I was born in Soviet Union and was brought up to help people and share what you have (to be good friends for anybody). Of course here we are not very strong in “properties” we just never had such termin we had our state property but how we always told what belongs state belongs anybody ;)…
What I think about piracy in Russia I think it’s good thing for all people. Who buy this cheap programs people who needs it and can not afford, like students and intelligents. What they will do with all these goods work on it and result? Result! They give to the world this result of their work for free by the way for all! Because that is such type of people.
I guess I just have one question. How many of us would pay one months salary for a copy of Windows Vista Ultimate? I think not many. It is easy to see why other countries who are less fortunate than we are resort to copying software. For them it is a way of life.
You don’t need to condone, piracy, just have a better understanding why it happens in other countries. Offering Vista Basic for $99 I think insults the Russian people. Maybe $29 would be a fair price and MS would still make money.
Comments welcome.

And again, thank you Kyle and Svetlana.

More Photo’s of Russian stores selling copied software:

Svetlana in front of store

Russian family shopping for software

Software vendor on the street

Vista, Xp, and Linux:

More shops

Another vendor

[tags]russia, pirates, software, microsoft, [/tags]

Jack Sparrow Is Not The Only Pirate

I’ve been reading all around the Internet about some kind of a survey that was done by someone or some company, taking a simple poll of only 2600 people, and coming up with a figure of 25 million people who Pirate movies from Internet sources. And having just watched Pirates of the Caribbean – Dead Mans Chest from Netflix, [which by the way, is worth seeing], it made me wonder just how accurate these numbers could really be.

You see after reading these articles, which all use one single company as the source, I tried to locate the companies site and a press release, any article, or anything that described the methodology they used to determine the accuracy of their findings. Why? Because I think the number of Pirates among us is much higher.

Their survey only counted the number of Pirates who downloaded illegal movies, not the Rent and Burn crowd. These are the Pirates who rent movies from Blockbuster, Netflix and so forth and burn a copy to DVD, then return the movie. Or the Pirates who buy the movie then make copies for family and friends.

One only has to take a quick journey around the Internet to find a multitude of Rip and Burn software available. And there are products also available to remove all protections that may be encrypted on the DVD as well. And I only know of a few sites like 123 Studios that have actually been closed down, only to have the software resurrected by another company outside the confines of the FBI.

I don’t have any accurate numbers as to many how many Pirates are among us, but Jack Sparrow might even be surprised !

Comments as always are welcome.

[tags]pirates, movies, dvd, burn, [/tags]

Symantec – Under Attack By Pirates

I found this story of interest since it involved one of the most respected security software companies that many of us have come to trust. Symantec, maker of Norton products, has a vast arsenal of products to protect both consumer and business systems. But if this company is venerable from being attacked by pirates, this should hoist a warning flag for all of us that we must keep our own systems protected and our anti-virus and anti-spyware protections updated. This is why I post weekly update reminders for some of the free software products that I use and trust. Without updating your software with the latest protections, these software products are useless.

And check out my article about Free online scanners.

[tags]symantec, norton, attack, pirates, protect, updates, [/tags]

Microsoft’s Vista and Office 2007: bad news for pirates

It should be interesting to see how will Microsoft will be able to keep pirates in their place with their new technology. But the bad guys are pretty smart and Microsoft will have their hands full. Only time will tell how. This article covers most of what Microsoft is trying to do.
“Can Microsoft’s latest anti-piracy protections really stop the Vista and Office 2007 pirates, or will pirates finally have to walk the plank?

Efforts to stamp out piracy have been with computers since it became possible to make a copy of a program and run it on another computer successfully. Anti-piracy software, code wheels, license keys, hardware dongles and more all failed in some way, either through the use of a master key code, a crack that turned trial software into the full version, removed the check for dongles, or somehow picked the lock of anti-protections.

But now that almost all computers and an increasing array of electronic devices are almost permanently connected to the Internet, or can be wirelessly Net connected in just a few seconds, anti-piracy features that are delivered and updated over the Internet are starting to change this forever.

Copies of Vista and Office 2007 installed from a friend’s CD or DVD will need a valid license key within 30 days or will enter into a ‘reduced functionality mode’, severely limited the ability to use the software. This is actually nothing new, with XP and Office 2003 already having these features for years.

But with the Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) and the nearly 18 month old Office Genuine Advantage (OGA) program in full swing, even if pirates are able to ‘crack’ copies of Vista and Office 2007 to work without activation, if you want to get Vista and Office updates, you’ll be subjected to a Genuine Advantage check. If you don’t pass, you don’t get updates.”

Full story here.

[tags]microsoft, vista, office, 2007, pirates, piracy, license, key,DVD, CD, WGA, OGA, activation, browser, software, [/tags]