Illicit TV Downloads


An Old Friend
LONDON (Reuters) - [size=-1]Britain has emerged as the world's biggest market for downloading pirated TV, driven by tech-savvy fans who are unwilling to wait for popular U.S. shows such as "Desperate Housewives." [/size]

[size=-1]Britain's status as a TV downloading hotspot, revealed in a study by UK technology consultancy Envisional on Thursday, could pose problems for UK broadcaster BSkyB, which is counting on high-profile U.S. shows such as "24" to draw new subscribers to its satellite TV service. [/size]

[size=-1]According to Envisional, Britain accounts for about one-fifth of TV downloads through file-sharing networks such as BitTorrent and eDonkey, more than any other country, followed by Australia and the United States.

[size=-1]Unless you're a pretty big cybergeek, people are generally happy to watch it on TV," said an executive at one UK broadcaster who asked to remain anonymous. [/size]

[size=-1]Hollywood is not standing idly by. Fearful of a repeat of the rampant downloading that crippled the music industry, the Motion Picture Association of America has forced the closure of several sites that provide the links needed to download movies and television shows. [/size]

[size=-1]If that doesn't work, there is always the threat of lawsuits. When the MPAA shut down a site called LokiTorrent last week, they seized reams of data including logs of user data that could enable legal action against individual users. [/size]

[size=-1]"I'm not sure if the MPAA are going to follow that route," Price said. "The MPAA have found a very worthwhile technique, which is to go after the tracker sites and shut those down, which means the users don't have anywhere to go to get what they need." [/size]

[size=-1]But there is little evidence that Hollywood's counteroffensive crackdown has had any effect, according to Web analysis firm CacheLogic, which estimates that BitTorrent accounts for a staggering one-third of all Internet traffic. [/size]



Creative Writer
The internet has no timezones. If a series is released in the USA or Canada and not simultaneously released in Europe, how can the fans of series hope to converse with brethren around the world?

We are not second class citizens in Europe, we should not be treated as such. The programme makers must hammer out simultaneous release deals for series to avoid these problems happening and also to get a more realistic view on what the fan base is.

The only way i can see p2p usage harming a programmes creation base, is if the series is created and paid for from the USA and then shown first on European TV. If the USA creators show in USA first and Europeans download it to keep upto date and are relying on sales to Europe, then they lose out.

We have seen with movies and television that releasing to different continents at different times causes these problems, the p2p systems do not cause them. Where developers of software/games/music release their products on the internet only or in conjunction with local sales, they see the real picture of their products worth.

Here in the UK we have a law covering Showshifting, where a programme on television can legally be recorded and kept for upto 14 days to watch it, as we all lead busy lives. Unfortunately the law was first hammered out in the USA where Sony stood upto the movie industry when they introduced the VCR machine into the hands of the public. This law was up for review recently and no one bothered to list and sit on it, the law there has now run out.

So, even if the law was in place in the UK, i wonder if Showshifting would cover using p2p to download these tv programs and watch wherever you are in the world? After all, it was put into place before the internet rules came about.

As a summary, movie and television producers must consider worldwide simultaneous release as it's pretty easy to see logically where the problem is concerning pc users watching programmes before they reach their broadcast zone.


An Old Friend
Its not like the technology isn't there. They could do Worldwide simeotaneous releases if the wanted to. Greed is rampant!