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  1. Increasingly, homepages of popular pirate sites are disappearing from search engines. In some cases, however, search engines help pirate brands to stand out. Bing, for example, highlights YTS movies with a fancy poster reel and it even manages to spot some full-length pirate releases on YouTube and the Internet Archive. For years, entertainment industry groups have been frustrated by the fact that “infringing sites” show up in search results. In fact, some see search engines as a fertile breeding ground for new pirates, as they can direct ne
  2. A federal court in Arizona has ordered a local couple to pay $35,000 for sharing pirated copies of the films “Lost Child” and “Saving Christmas.” This includes $5,000 for distributing the movies with altered “copyright management information,” such as the pirate term YTS. The couple failed to defend in court but repeatedly indicated, in rather profane language, that they're not planning to pay a dime. Over the years, hundreds of thousands of people have been accused of sharing pirated movies through BitTorrent. Quite often, these cases end up in private and u
  3. A pirated copy of the documentary "Rise of the Trolls" warns users about the potential dangers of using YTS and ExtraTorrent. The warning, which deserves some nuance, refers to the fact that YTS shared information from its user database with film companies, which was used to target alleged pirates with lawsuits and settlements. In recent years, YTS.mx has become one of the most-used torrent sites, serving millions of visitors every day. The site can be used without registering an account. However, those who sign up get some extra features, s
  4. The makers of the film 'Angel Has Fallen' have filed a lawsuit against seventeen alleged pirates. According to the complaint, several defendants used the VPN service 'Private Internet Access,' which can expect to be subpoenaed. That effort will likely be fruitless as the VPN doesn't keep any logs. However, with help from information shared by torrent site YTS, users are still at risk. Millions of Internet users around the world use a VPN to protect their privacy online. Another key benefit is that VPNs hide users’ true IP-address, making the
  5. Anti-piracy lawyer Kerry Culpepper has failed to secure $250,000 damages claims against sites and apps that used the YTS trademark he obtained. The court dismissed the case as it lacks sufficient evidence to prove that the defendants purposefully targeted the US. Meanwhile, the trademark infringement claims shed an interesting light on related YTS cases that were filed recently. Brands are important for most businesses. They identify a service or product and are often associated with certain qualities. The position is no different in the piracy ecosys
  6. In a new complaint filed at a Hawaii federal court, 19 'John Does' are accused of sharing pirated copies of the film Ava. The defendants, who are only known by their IP-addresses, are described as users of the site YTS. While there is no hard evidence to back up all claims, the accused may still be in trouble. In recent months we have reported in detail how users of the popular torrent site YTS were sued in US courts. In several of these cases, information shared by the site’s operator was brought in as evidence. The user info was obtained b
  7. The operators of several YTS-branded apps and sites may escape a $250,000 damages claim from Hawaiian anti-piracy lawyer Kerry Culpepper, who accused them of trademark infringement, In a recommendation issued to the court, Magistrate Judge Wes Reber Porter notes that there isn't sufficient evidence that the defendants purposefully targeted the US. Earlier this year, Hawaiian anti-piracy lawyer Kerry Culpepper turned some of the most popular piracy brands into a powerful anti-piracy tool. The attorney, who is listed as director of the company
  8. Two movie companies have filed a lawsuit accusing an Arizona couple of downloading and sharing its movies through the YTS website. The husband and wife pair initially appeared to resolve the issue with an out-of-court settlement. However, instead of paying up, the husband lashed out in a tirade against the movie companies' lawyer, while accusing him of spying on their three-year-old kid. Piracy warnings come in all shapes and sizes. While some notices have no teeth, others should be handled with extreme caution. Typically, alarm bells should
  9. Several movie companies have filed a new lawsuit targeting three users of the popular torrent site YTS. The alleged pirates were identified based on data that was previously provided by the site's operator. The three were initially approached for an out-of-court settlement but, according to the rightsholders, they failed to respond. In recent years, YTS.mx has become one of the most-used torrent sites, serving millions of visitors a day. The site can be used without registering an account. However, those who sign up get some extra features,
  10. Last week, 1337x.to decided to ban YTS releases when it became apparent that information from the site's database was being used in lawsuits against file-sharers. Over the past few days, more torrent sites followed this example which, strangely enough, has made them a target as well. Over the past week and a half, we have documented a series of events that the torrent community has never witnessed before. It started when we were able to confirm that the supposed operator of YTS shared information from the site’s user base with Hawaiian anti-piracy
  11. A group of movie companies is demanding nearly $100,000 in statutory piracy damages from US army veteran Mical Mesot. While the evidence is often flimsy in piracy cases, the rightsholders managed to get logs from the popular pirate site YTS to back up their claim. That evidence is corroborated by the operator of YTS, under penalty of perjury. Lawsuits against pirating Internet subscribers are far from new. In the US, they first appeared more than a decade ago. Over the years, the evidence in these lawsuits was regularly contested. In som
  12. The owners of several apps and sites that use the popular pirate brand YTS risk substantial damages being awarded against them. Hawaiian anti-piracy lawyer Kerry Culpepper is requesting $250,000 default judgments against the operators, who failed to respond in court. Interestingly, the most popular YTS site, YTS.mx, is not targeted. Earlier this year, Hawaiian anti-piracy lawyer Kerry Culpepper turned one of the most popular piracy brands into a powerful anti-piracy tool. The attorney, who is listed as director of the c
  13. A group of movie companies has named a US army veteran as a pirating user of the popular torrent site YTS. The site hasn't commented on how the movie companies got access to its user data but the site's operator stresses that people can take several precautions to increase their privacy. In recent years, YTS.mx has become one of the most-used torrent sites, serving millions of visitors every day. The site can be used without registering an account. However, those who sign up get some extra features, such as an option to bookmark titles.
  14. The operator of YTS.ws has agreed to pay $200,000 in damages for using the YTS trademark without permission. While YTS is widely associated with torrent sites, the trademark was recently scooped up by a Hawaiian company that uses it to protect its rights. In addition to paying damages, YTS.ws will soon become unavailable as well. Brands are important for most businesses. They identify a service or product and are often associated with certain qualities. This is no different in the piracy ecosystem. Brands are essential there as well but
  15. A few days ago, popular torrent site YTS was flagged as a potential phishing site by Chrome and Firefox. Today, these warnings have disappeared but not because the problems were resolved. YTS simply switched to a new URL structure, ditching the problematic /movie/ subcategory. The Internet is full of threats. To help people steer clear from trouble, Google launched its Safe Browsing tool in 2012. This service marks problematic websites when there are potential malware and phishing problems. This information can then be used by third-part
  16. A recent DMCA subpoena has ordered Cloudflare to expose the people linked to various popular pirate sites and tools. The request, quietly submitted out of public sight, comes from a group of movie studios attempting to hold site owners responsible for piracy damages. As one of the leading CDN and DDoS protection services, Cloudflare is used by millions of websites across the globe, some of which are notorious pirate sites. The company has taken a lot of heat from copyright holders over the past few years, who want it to expose the operators of these platform
  17. One of the most common recurring questions in respect of downloading, sharing and even streaming, is whether service X or platform Y is 'safe' to use, from a copyright-infringement perspective. Recent developments show that no matter how safe users think they are, security is something that should never be taken for granted. When mainstream piracy was in its infancy two decades ago, the majority of file-sharers had no idea that they were even at risk from snoopers. Thanks to a massive wave of lawsuits from the RIAA in 2003, that perception soon changed. So
  18. Pirate sites regularly get into trouble for breaching copyright law. However, a new case filed in Hawaii is of an entirely different order. A well-known anti-piracy lawyer has filed a lawsuit against several YTS sites because the company he represents obtained a similarly-named trademark this year. The complaint mostly targets 'clones' and the real YTS is not named. The Hawaiian company ’42 Ventures’ doesn’t immediately ring a bell with most torrent users. However, when we say that it owns the trademarks for ‘YTS’ and ‘Popcorn Time,’ interests will pique.
  19. Chrome and Firefox are blocking direct access to the movie download pages of popular torrent site YTS. According to Google's safe browsing report, YTS.mx is a "deceptive site" that may trick visitors into doing dangerous things. The warning is likely the result of malicious advertisements. Google regularly checks websites for harmful and malicious content to help people avoid running into dangerous situations. This Safe Browsing service is used by popular browsers such as Chrome and Firefox. When a site is flagged, they throw up a warnin
  20. Popular torrent site YTS has 'settled' another piracy lawsuit, this time with seven movie companies. The site's operator and an associated business agreed to a consent judgment totaling $1,050,000 in damages. YTS removed the relevant movie torrents from the site but remains online. The site's users are not in the clear though, and risk being sued as well. Traditionally, when copyright holders go after pirate sites their main mission is to shut them down permanently. This strategy has resulted in the demise of thousands of websites over t
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