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    Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

    This is a discussion on Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case within the Sky news and announcements forums, part of the SkyUser Announcements category; Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case | TorrentFreak The UK's second largest ISP is about to ...

    1. #1
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      Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case | TorrentFreak
      The UK's second largest ISP is about to hand over the personal details of customers to a company known for demanding cash from alleged file-sharers. Sky Broadband says it will hand over the names and addresses of subscribers to TCYK LLC and warns customers that the movie company will probably ask for compensation.

      Any regular reader of these pages will be familiar with the term “copyright troll”. These companies have made a business model out of monitoring file-sharing networks for alleged copyright infringements, tracking down alleged offenders and then demanding hard cash to make supposed lawsuits go away. The practice is widespread in the United States but also takes place in several countries around Europe. Wherever the location, the methods employed are largely the same. ‘Trolls’ approach courts with ‘evidence’ of infringement and demand that ISPs hand over the details of their subscribers so that the copyright holder can demand money from them.

      During September 2014, TorrentFreak became aware of a UK court case that had just appeared before the Chancery Division. The title – TCYK LLP v British Sky Broadcasting Ltd – raised eyebrows. From experience we know that TCYK stands for The Company You Keep and is the title of the film of the same name directed and starring Robert Redford, appearing alongside Susan Sarandon and Shia LeBeouf.

      While the movie itself is reportedly unremarkable, the response to it being unlawfully made available on file-sharing networks has been significant. In the United States TCYK LLC has filed dozens of copyright infringement lawsuits against Internet subscribers in many states including Illinois, Colorado, Ohio, Florida and Minnesota, to name a few. Those interested in their U.S-based activities can read about them extensively on ‘troll’ watching sites DTD and Fight Copyright Trolls.

      The big news today, however, is that TCYK LLC is about to start demanding cash from customers of the UK’s second largest ISP, Sky Broadband. TorrentFreak approached Sky back in September for information on the case but after several emails back and forth the trail went cold. We can now reveal what has transpired.

      Sometime during 2014 TCKY monitored BitTorrent swarms for individuals sharing their movies without permission. The company went to court to obtain what is known as a Norwich Pharmacal Order which would oblige Sky to hand over the identities of their subscribers to TCKY. TorrentFreak has now learned that an order has been granted.

      In a letter now being sent out to Sky subscribers, the company warns of what is to come.

      “We need to let you know about a court order made against Sky earlier this year that requires us to provide your name and address to another company,” the letters begin.

      “A company called TCYK LLC, which owns the rights to several copyrighted films, has claimed that a number of Sky Broadband customers engaged in unlawful file-sharing of some of its films. In support of this claim, TCYK LLC says it has gathered evidence of individual broadband accounts (identified online by unique numbers called IP addresses) from which it claims the file sharing took place.”

      Sky notes that it cannot vouch for the accuracy of the evidence but notes that the existence of the court order means that it must compromise its subscribers’ privacy. In several other countries ISPs have fought to keep their subscribers’ details secure so we asked Sky what efforts, if any, they took to do the same. At the time of publication we had received no response.

      To its credit, however, Sky is warning its customers of what is likely to come next.

      “It’s likely that TCYK LLC will contact you directly and may ask you to pay them compensation,” Sky notes.


      We’ll clarify something here. When TCYK get in touch their ONLY reason for doing so will be to obtain compensation. Many people will pay up out of fear since TCYK will imply (if not directly state) that a court case could follow if a settlement is not reached.

      It is almost certain that these threats are mere bluster and again, to Sky’s credit, the company outlines potential weaknesses in TCYK’s case.

      “We advise you to read the letter from TCYK LLC carefully. It may be that you are not aware of the things that are being claimed: for example, if other people have access to your Internet connection, or simply because you do not recall downloading or sharing the film.”

      The facts are simple. If letter recipients did not download or share the film or did not authorize someone else to do so (i.e by specifically telling someone else that they can use their connection to download and share pirate content) then the subscriber is not responsible for the infringement and does not have to pay a penny.

      If someone else did share TCYK’s film on the Internet connection in question then it is up to TCYK to identify that person by name. The bill payer is under no obligation to try to help TCYK to do so if they have no idea who that person is.

      Sky conclude by suggesting that letter recipients either contact the Citizens Advice Bureau or a solicitor. TorrentFreak spoke with Michael Coyle from Lawdit Solicitors who has dealt with these kinds of cases previously.

      “I am surprised that the [Court] Order was granted for the release of the names as the High Court has been particularly damning about speculative invoicing ‘claims’ – see in particular the words of HHJ Birss QC in Media CAT v Adams and HHJ Arnold (here),” Coyle told TF.

      “Added to the fact that the Claimant is a notorious troll in the US adds to the mystery and we can only wait and see what the letters are demanding. [Letter recipients] should not panic and above should not pay until as such time as they’ve taken legal advice,” Coyle concludes.

      In any event, recipients should read the following article detailing the Speculative Invoicing Handbook Second Edition, a publication which explains how UK copyright trolls operate and how they should be dealt with.

      At the time of publication Sky Broadband had not responded to our request for comment.


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    3. #2
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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      Lolz.

      While I do no't personally download content, I can see this being hit and miss. My IP has changed several times over the last year, how do I know if it relates to someone else! Also, isn't it only illegal to 'share' content? I.e, if Scubbie Downloads something it's only an issue if she shares it, with say me.

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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      Quote Originally Posted by Angel_Rex View Post
      Lolz.

      While I do no't personally download content, I can see this being hit and miss. My IP has changed several times over the last year, how do I know if it relates to someone else! Also, isn't it only illegal to 'share' content? I.e, if Scubbie Downloads something it's only an issue if she shares it, with say me.
      Sky can tell exactly who owned a specific address at any specific time. You may not remember if you had a particular IP, but it is there in the records.

      With regards the downloading and not sharing. Without exception, when you download on torrents you automatically have to upload at the same time, so you are in fact sharing.

      Scubbie will be quaking in her high heels.

      TomD


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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      lol - Considering that virtually all the content I've ever downloaded has been available through my Sky subscription at some time or the other, or aired on terrestrial TV at some other time, any trial would be hard pressed to win.

      It iis possible to configure your torrent software just to down load or 'leach'. There used to be some packages specifically designed for this purpose. I don't know if they are still available.

      Personally I think that the MPAA and all the rest have over stepped their moral high ground. Many people who do download torrents spend above average on legitimate content through the purchase of CDs, DVDs and Blu-rays or by paying to go to the Cinema.

      The recordings which someone has made by sitting in the cinema tend to be of poor quality. Sure they might be fine for a very small screen, but put them on even a 15" laptop and you'll see how bad most are.

      Personally I love to see the films. I like to see them when the quality is good, hence why I do go to the Cinema, purchase the odd Blu-ray and subscribe to the Sky HD & Movies packs.

      P.S. ....


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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      "These boots were made for Walkin"

      One of my favourites back in the 60s.

      TomD


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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      Will keep mine for when i run low on bog roll
      gymno likes this.

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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      my torrent (all legal ofc) upload is spoofed to report that i upload 5x what i download whilst i actually upload 0 coz i'm da king of the leechers . add that to the fact a file can be called anything regardless of what it actually is, and they cant prove who initiates the download on the pc unless they hack your camera (which is a bigger offence) I will laugh long and hard and enjoy my day out to court if they wanna come for me.

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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      So what happened to the so called 3 strike rule that was introduced back in 2011 that was, if illegal downloads was to of taken place you would receive a letter from your ISP being sky or virgin or other isp's giving you a 3 strike warning. I know some friends at work sometime last year received a letter from Virgin about downloading content and that was from not even downloading the content them self.. So how is this in content of streaming films on paid sites or streaming on so called sites that allow you to watch online without subscription and have films widely accessible or even watching content though YouTube. Is this till classed as downloading content?

      So if I download a game that was on steam I paid for is that classed as illegal or same for film sites such as netflicks if having subscriptions with them and I download and ISP see this as content downloaded is this still classed as illegal download just because of how the content is received even if a subscription is paid for to actually download a copy of it, does this still get classed under being illegal given the fact that content has been paid for?

      So what is classed as pirated because I watch a fair bit of stuff online from paid subscriptions and also stuff on youtube that does not have paid subscriptions but films are widely available though YouTube is this still classed as illegal download or not if watching it via stream.

      I also have people sharing my connection that I found out a few years back due to my connection being unsecured and that was with BE Unlimited that now Sky own. I had made several enquires as to why internet was slow and found to of been un secured network and was in use by 3 or more devices.. So what happens if data was downloaded on that and then they had used on pirate sites for downloading will this sill be my responsibility as when it comes to this sort of stuff I have no idea.

      so confused with all the stuff that has been going on. I do not know where things tand in terms of downloading content buying and downloading or streaming.

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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      I know people that share TB of data, all from seedboxes in countries with strong privacy laws behind at least 2 VPNs that share IP addresses and don't hold any data other than your payment info. If the movie industry was really bothered these are the people they should be using their wealth to try and smash.

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      Re: Sky Will Hand Over Customer Data in Movie Piracy Case

      @mental1 - If you download material from a legal site which you have paid for, that is not piracy. Piracy is when you download and share content, owned by others, usually using torrents. Note that because you might pay for a VPN does not make the downloads legal. Content which the owner wants to control will not be on YouTube, if it is it will be very quickly taken down.

      @coipu - Banning VPNs is basically impossible as they are also used by many firms for contact with their employees. I suppose it is possible for an ISP to ban their use, say without a special license, but this would be difficult to administer.

      TomD


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