It is not going to work and I think the entertainment giant is going after the symptom instead of the cause.
On 20th Feb 2017 News.com.au has reported that Village Roadshow in an announcement to investors pledged an agrressive five-point plan to combat online piracy which includes working with authorities, ISPs and search engines to block, delist or demote popular torrent search sites like Torrentz, IsoHunt and The Pirate Bay.
Other tactics include going after individual infringers through the legal system and engaging in an “education program” to warn pirates against illegal downloading.
In my mind, Village Roadshow needs to take a look inwards and ask the question “Why does Australia have so many online pirates?”
First, lets look at the effectiveness of some of the tactics proposed by Village Roadshow.
Blocking piracy websites does not work. This is easily circumvented by using alternate search engines, a vpn or by changing your DNS settings on your computer. Also, any websites that are blocked can quickly create a new site that gets around ISP-implemented blocks. It has been tried many times and has only deterred the most casual of users of piracy search sites. Yes, ISPs were required to block the sites but since it seems as though the requirement was not supported with funds to implement the block the countermeasure was merely “lip service” to meet the court order. The block was so simple that a quick Google search would reveal how to circumvent the block with a simple change.
Suing infringers will probably not work either since the practice of speculative invoicing is not allowed and the resulting fines could be around the cost of a blu-ray purchase (plus legal fees?). Hardly scary. This of course is only going to nab the casual pirates who don’t (yet) know about cloaking techniques that are very easy to implement.
This apparently is the part of the VR (education) campaign.
Piracy is not the problem, it is a symptom.
Caused by Aussie rights holders failing to explain clearly or address why some content release is delayed after other markets are released (John Wik, Lego Batman) or why the price disparity continues between in particular the US and Aus online media markets, piracy will continue to be a problem.
If Village Roadshow and the like are willing and able to put together a strong case for why these barriers exist or otherwise remove these seemingly artificial barriers then they will go a long way to fixing the very problem they has created.
Remember what happened to piracy when Netflix came to Australia? That’s right! It dropped! This is an example of when you play fair with others, others play fair with you.
Village Roadshow, it is time to take a long hard look at how you are playing the game because you are being treated with the same respect you are showing your audience and it is probably your own fault.
NOTE : Illegally downloading copyright protected content is still illegal. EZiWireless, its owners, agents and associates do not endorse or condone the practice of online piracy.