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RIAA Claims Google's Anti-Piracy Algorithm Update Was Useless, The Pirate Bay Calls Out Anti-Piracy Group for Pirating and an Interesting Anti-Piracy Patent by Sony Surfaces - Week in Review 2/25/2013

February 25, 2013

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Welcome back to V.i. Labs’ weekly update on software piracy and copyright infringement. Last week the RIAA released a report on Google's anti-piracy algorithm, The Pirate Bay called out CIAPC for piracy and a Sony anti-piracy patent from 2011 surfaced. Read on and follow us on Twitter, Google+ and our RSS feed to get the latest news.

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RIAA Claims Google’s Anti-Piracy Algorithm Change is Useless

Last year in an effort to satisfy copyright holders, Google announced a change to its search algorithm that it said would lower the rank of websites guilty of copyright infringement. The RIAA released a report Thursday showing the efficacy on the algorithm change and the results weren’t positive.

In the report the RIAA writes, “Six months later, we have found no evidence that Google’s policy had a demonstrable impact on demoting sites with large amounts of piracy. These sites consistently appear at the top of Google’s search results for popular songs and artists.” The report goes on to say, “Whatever Google has done, it doesn’t appear to be working.”

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The Pirate Bay Calls Out Anti-Piracy Group For Piracy

The Copyright Information and Anti-Piracy Centre or CIAPC - a Finnish copyright protection agency best known for confiscating the laptop of a 9 year old girl - thought it would be clever to create a website that copied the look of The Pirate Bay but instead of searching for torrents redirected the user to various legal downloading services such as iTunes and Spotify.

Pirate Bay Spoof

Ironically, to do this CIAPC copied The Pirate Bay’s layout and CSS file. In response The Pirate Bay reported the suspected crime to the Finnish police, claiming that CIAPC “copied files from which The Pirate Bay is built, to produce a fraudulent parody site.” In a press release the popular torrent site went on to say “While The Pirate Bay may have a positive view on copying, it will not stand by and watch copyright enforcing organizations disrespect copyright.”

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Sony Patent Surfaces That Identifies Piracy By Comparing Load Times

A Sony patent, originally filed in 2011, surfaced this past week describing a “method for validating legitimate media products.” Basically, the patent outlines a way to detect piracy by checking program load times. For example if the load time is within an acceptable range the program executes, if not a secondary check occurs to account for any hardware issues; if both load time validations fail the media fails to play and the user is blocked.

Given the wide range of hardware configurations available on personal computers, it seems very likely Sony had the recently announced PlayStation 4 in mind when this patent was filed.

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Questions, comments? Is there a story or topic you’d like to see covered in depth? Please leave a comment below or visit us at our Software Piracy Initiatives Forum and discuss the topics with experts in the field.

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Victor DeMarines

Post written by Victor DeMarines

Vice President, Products & Strategy at Revulytics

Victor DeMarines brings extensive security product management and marketing experience to Revulytics, where he is responsible for product strategy and direction. He is a frequent speaker and author on topics including piracy, reverse engineering and the protection of intellectual property.