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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) is stating that it secured the closure of both the main Popcorn Time fork and the BitTorrent group YIFY, which was behind the popular YTS BitTorrent site.
According to the MPAA announcement, Popcorn Time closed following a court order in Canada and YTS closed following a lawsuit filed in New Zealand. Both have been down for about ten days.
Popcorn Time is commonly referred to as “Netflix for pirates” as it makes streaming pirated films easy. YIFY was the most prolific release group on the planet and its YTS site attracted over 3 million visitors per month. However, Popcorn Time will live on as the project is an open source application and already other pirate groups are launching fake YTS sites to fill the gap left behind by YIFY’s closure.
Next up today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that, in addition to the closure of YIFY and Popcorn Time, Demonii, the largest BitTorrent tracker in the world, will also shutter.
With over 40 million peers currently, Demonii is operated by the head of YIFY, who, as a result of the legal case against him, will be bringing it down shortly. Trackers are used by BitTorrent users to find peers and seeds so they can download files, which are mostly pirated content on Demonii.
The closure is not likely to stop piracy as other large trackers will be able to pick up the slack. However, it may cause slowdowns for BitTorrent users, especially those who relied heavily on Demonii to find peers.
Finally, in a last bit of Halloween-themed copyright news, Neil Harvey at The Roanoke Times reports that tattoo artist Roger Ladouceur has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Macado’s, a restaurant chain in the Roanoke area.
According to the lawsuit, Ladouceur tattooed an image of Frankenstein’s monster wearing a monocle on the leg of a customer. Then, beginning in 2014, the chain began using the image, or a substantially similar one, to promote its Halloween festivities, putting it on glasses and using it for promotional efforts.
However, as many long-time readers of Plagiarism Today will know, Universal Pictures still holds the copyright on the common image of Frankenstein’s monster, offering possibly another dimension to this case.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.