Weekly News Roundup (November 12, 2017)

Running a bit late today, so the WNR is being released a bit late too. There are a few things to go through, so let’s not waste any time …

Copyright

The piracy rates has been steadily dropping in Australia, previously infamously known as one of the piracy capitals of the world (when it comes to Game of Thrones piracy, at least). And in the most up-to-date survey finds that the number of Australians actively engaged in piracy has dropped again, ever since the rate started in drop in 2015.

Stan Australia

The introduction of legal streaming sites like Stan in Australia has had a big effect on piracy

The piracy rate has dropped from 29% in 2014, that is 29% of those surveyed said they downloaded pirated movie and TV content, to only 16% now.

There might be all sorts of explanations as to why movie and TV piracy started to decline in 2015 on wards, but the fact that Netflix came to Australia in 2015 and Australia’s own subscription streaming platforms were also launched that year, might point to a possible reason.

But despite the clear relationship between the arrival of affordable, legal options and the decline in piracy (which incidentally has also happened with music piracy, after the arrival of Spotify), the group that commissioned the survey, the¬†Australian Home Entertainment Distributors Association (representing the¬†Australian film and TV home entertainment industry), feels that it’s actually website blocking and personal lawsuits that might have been responsible for the decline.

Never mind the fact that website blocking has only just recently started, despite the piracy decline starting in 2015, and the fact that the talk of personal lawsuits is just that, talk, at the moment. It is kind of worrying that even with such clear data showing what needs to be done in order to reduce piracy, some in the industry still fall back to the tried and failed solutions.

That’s not to say that the copyright crusaders haven’t changed. They have, for sure. They started with suing and blocking download sites. Then they changed to sue and block torrent sites. And then streaming sites. And now, it’s about suing and blocking Kodi.

The battle of words against Kodi has started in earnest (and the legal battle having started a few weeks ago), and this week, the MPAA claims that almost 70% of Kodi users are pirates. Of course, nobody actually knows where they got this information from, since not even the makers of Kodi are aware any such data exists about how their users use the software (and this was done intentionally, in order to protect the privacy of users). So just where and how the MPAA obtained their stats is a bit of a mystery, or as the Kodi people would say, it’s either completely accurate or something they’ve just made up.

Assassin's Creed Origin

Assassin’s Creed Origin’s choice of DRM under attack

Speaking of something that may be completely made up (and something I forgot to cover last week), Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed Origin has been in the spotlight for the wrong reason due to its use of Denuvo, and more specifically, using VMProtect on top of Denuvo to make it harder to crack. There were claims that the game’s unusually high CPU usage was down to this controversial setup, wasting resources that otherwise could have been used by the game. Ubisoft then came out and flatly denied that their DRM implementation was at fault, saying the DRM had “no perceptible effect” on the game’s performance.

We won’t know who is telling the truth until the game’s DRM is cracked and a comparison can be made. As for when the game will be cracked, based on recent evidence, it might not take long at all.

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Well, that didn’t take long. I think I may have rushed things a bit because I’m so out of time. I’m sure the qaulity of the artical hasn”t been affected at all! See you next week.

 

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