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Old 28-07-21, 06:03 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2001
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Default Peer-To-Peer News - The Week In Review - July 31st, 21

Since 2002

"When someone says you breached a contract and you start talking about global pandemics you 100% breached that contract." – @The_Law_Boy

July 31st, 2021

Commission Starts Legal Action Against 23 EU Countries over Copyright Rules
Foo Yun Chee

France, Spain, Italy and 20 other EU countries may be taken to court for their tardiness in enacting landmark EU copyright rules into national law, the European Commission said on Monday as it asked the group to explain the delays.

The copyright rules, adopted two years ago, aim to ensure a level playing field between the European Union's trillion-euro creative industries and online platforms such as Google, owned by Alphabet (GOOGL.O), and Facebook (FB.O).

Some of Europe's artists and broadcasters, however, are still not happy, in particular over the interpretation of a key provision, Article 17, which is intended to force sharing platforms such as YouTube and Instagram to filter copyrighted content.

The Commission said it had sent letters of formal notice, the first step of its infringement proceedings, to the countries group asking for explanations. The deadline for enacting the EU rules was June 7.

The other countries are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Finland, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Slovenia and Slovakia.

They have two months to respond to the Commission or receive a warning, known as a reasoned opinion. The next step is a referral to the EU's top court in Luxembourg.

The EU executive also said it had asked France, Spain and 19 other EU countries to explain why they missed a June 7 deadline to enact separate copyright rules for online transmission of radio and TV programmes.

The other countries are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia.

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by Kevin Liffey

Crypto of the Day: BitTorrent (BTT)
Ryan McNamara

Since the rise of the internet, there has always been a way to download copyrighted files, even though it might be illegal. BitTorrent is a peer-to-peer file sharing platform that hosts a censorless market for any individual to post downloadable files. This censorless market can be used for sharing all types of files. That might sound like a streaming service's arch-nemesis, but BitTorrent is actually used by some of the biggest file-sharing websites like Netflix, Google and Facebook.

What is BitTorrent?

BitTorrent is a popular peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing platform used by everyone from independent films trying to pick up a distributor to companies that need to send or synchronize large files worldwide. The BitTorrent protocol saves companies time and bandwidth to update their platform and send data as efficiently as possible. BitTorrent consistently uses the majority of all file-sharing bandwidth online, as it's extremely efficient.

The BitTorrent file sharing service has been around since 2001. After the TRON blockchain network bought BitTorrent a few years back, the BTT token was created to support paid services on the file-sharing platform. BTT is one of the biggest TRC-10 tokens on the TRON network secured through TRON's delegated proof of stake protocol. Incorporating the BTT token in the file sharing platform has gained the project a lot of money and new areas for development.

BitTorrent (BTT) is Up 21% in 24 Hours

BTT made a big splash for the TRON network this year as its price jumped 2700% from February 7 to April 5 at its peak of $0.013. This price didn't last long as it's been steadily falling since then and has recently been sitting around $0.002. This recent 21% gain in the past 24 hours has broken the momentum of the recent downturn and pushed the relative strength index into the upper 50th percentile for the 1st time in 2 months.

Why is BTT Moving?

There isn't any new news about the platform or token that is directly responsible for this price increase. But, because TRON bought BitTorrent and the project has raised millions in public offerings, the development team is well funded and has a lot of incentive to improve.

BTT is one of TRON's most successful tokens. To stay competitive with other networks like Ethereum, TRON will need BTT to continue growing to stay relevant as a smart contract network.

Where to Buy BitTorrent

Unfortunately, BitTorrent isn’t available on most large U.S exchanges. This may be due to regulation, but as BTT grows it may start garnering support from the likes of Coinbase, Gemini or other major exchanges. For U.S investors, Changelly is the best way to buy BitTorrent.

SpaceX Challenged on Broadband Subsidies for Parking Lots
Todd Shields

• Company is among 197 winning bidders to get letters from FCC
• Agency says it’s cleaning up results from auction last year

The Federal Communications Commission is challenging a bid by Elon Musk’s SpaceX for $886 million in rural broadband subsidies, saying some of the money appeared headed for serving parking lots and airports with satellite-delivered broadband.

The company was among 197 winning bidders from an auction last year to be sent letters Monday by the FCC in an effort the agency said was an attempt to “clean up” the auction’s results. Other letter recipients included Charter Communications Inc., which won bids for $1.2 billion in subsidies, and Lumen Technologies Inc. which won $262 million.

The letters offer providers an opportunity to withdraw their funding requests from those places already with service or where significant questions of waste have been raised, the FCC said.

Also Monday, the FCC said it was ready to authorize more than $311 million in broadband funding across 36 states through the fund.

Space Exploration Technologies Corp., as it’s formally known, didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment, and a Lumen representative said the company was reviewing its letters.

Charter earlier told the FCC some of the places where it planned to use the subsidy already are slated for new broadband, and shouldn’t have been included in the auction. “The majority of these locations actually already have a provider offering service today or one that will soon do so,” the company said in a statement. “Support dollars should be preserved for deployment in truly unserved areas.”

The auction, known as the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, is a centerpiece of FCC efforts to help extend broadband to areas with little or no service. The agency on Dec. 7 announced winning bidders to share $9.2 billion in subsidies over 10 years. The FCC considered 417 winning applicants.

SpaceX, among the top winners, had applied for $886 million in subsidies for service from its satellite fleet that’s already aloft. On Monday the FCC sent the company a 131-page list of census blocks. In those places questions had been raised about whether the proposed spending was duplicative or wasteful, the agency said in a letter.

“This program can do great things, but it requires thoughtful oversight,” said FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “That’s why we are refocusing the program on unserved areas and putting winning bidders on notice of their obligation to ensure that support goes to the areas that need it.”

The FCC in a press release about the letters cited “complaints that the program was poised to fund broadband to parking lots and well-served urban areas.”

The auction that began in October was designed to guide officials directing a pot of federal subsidies that are funded by fees on consumer telephone bills. The FCC designated discrete areas, and invited bids. The companies that offered to build broadband for the lowest price emerged as winners of subsidies.

SpaceX was approved last year for its plan to provide service to 642,925 locations in 35 states. But consumer advocates said those locations include places that didn’t fit the program’s goal of bringing service to rural people beyond the reach of broadband networks.

SpaceX’s chosen locations include two slivers by the Harlem River in the Bronx. Other spots selected by SpaceX include the terminals at Newark Liberty International Airport and Miami International Airport, according to research by the policy group Free Press.

The decisions were made with the FCC under Republican control, before the switch to Democratic leadership as administrations changed. Earlier, 160 House and Senate members urged the FCC to scrutinize recipients.

The policy group Free Press calculated that $111 million of Starlink’s subsidy is due to urban deployments. More than $700 million of the overall $9.2 billion in subsidies was awarded for deploying broadband in non-rural areas, the policy group said.

The program “was riddled with errors, waste and insufficient oversight,” the group said in a news release Monday.

Black Widow Surpasses The Tomorrow War as the Most Pirated Movie of the Pandemic Era

Black Widow recently defeated Amazon Prime's The Tomorrow War to become the most pirated movie of the pandemic era.
Joseph C Furnish

Earning a dubious, albeit flattering, award, Marvel Studios' Black Widow has recently taken the no. 1 spot as the most pirated film of the pandemic era. Torrent Freak released a chart of the most pirated films of the week, and Black Widow has now been no.1 for two weeks in a row - putting it in a category of its own. Although the news is not surprising due to the huge cultural relevance that Black Widow has, it does highlight one of the major problems that streaming movies have in the modern era.

Black Widow has been breaking records at the box office in terms of money made during the COVID-19 pandemic. It made a very solid $80 million in its opening weekend in the U.S., while also crushing it oversees. However, it was also the first MCU film to also simultaneously release as a paid premier access film on Disney+. Disney reported that Black Widow made roughly $60 million through its premier access viewings, which if true is quite impressive. Due to the pandemic and an online streaming presence, Black Widow fell drastically at the box office in its second weekend (for Marvel standards, at least). Also, one of the big issues that it has faced is pirating, and now there is proof that it is losing quite a bit of money through piracy.

One of the most notorious problems facing streaming films is piracy. The reason that streaming films face this issue more directly than exclusive theater releases is due to quality. When a film is released for streaming, it is much easier to copy the film and provide an HD version of the film ready to be pirated. Theater films, however, face a lower risk because there is no HD copy of the film - deterring potential pirates. Just look at the top 10 most pirated films of the week: nine out of the ten films exist on a streaming platform. That's why The Tomorrow War was no. 1 for a while despite an arguably bigger film like F9 being in theaters.

Marvel Studios should not fret too much, however, as Black Widow has still made an impressive sum from both theaters and streaming, despite aggressive piracy. It recently passed $100 million at the U.S. box office (by far the fastest film to do so since the pandemic), and is doing very well oversees. Additionally, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has said that Black Widow will likely be the only MCU film to attempt the release strategy. There are still three Marvel Studios films planned for 2021, but all will be released exclusively in theaters. It will be interesting to see how the films do in comparison to Black Widow - specifically the newcomers Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Five Rings and Eternals.

Black Widow is currently playing in theaters (still in IMAX until Thursday night - I highly recommend it) and is also available to purchase on Disney+ for $29.99. It follows Natasha's experiences between the events of Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. It is a must-see for any Marvel fan. Just please don't pirate it.

Disney Criticised for ‘Disgusting’ Response after Scarlett Johansson Sues Studio Over Black Widow Release

Disney criticised for ‘disgusting’ response after Scarlett Johansson sues studio over Black Widow release
Jacob Stolworthy

Disney has been criticised for its response to Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against the studio.

Johansson has alleged that the simultaneous release of Black Widow on Disney Plus as well as in cinemas violated her contract.

The actor’s lawsuit says that her compensation for the movie was “largely based” on Black Widow’s box office performance, and had “extracted a promise from Marvel that the release would be a ‘theatrical release’.’

It continues: “Disney was well aware of this promise, but nonetheless directed Marvel to violate its pledge and instead release the Picture on the Disney+ streaming service the very same day it was released in movie theatres.”

In response to Johansson, Disney released a statement, telling The Independent: “There is no merit whatsoever to this filing. The lawsuit is especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Disney has fully complied with Ms Johansson’s contract and furthermore, the release of Black Widow on Disney+ with Premier Access has significantly enhanced her ability to earn additional compensation on top of the $20m she has received to date.”

Johansson, whose lawsuit says Disney “intentionally induced Marvel’s breach of the Agreement” to prevent her “from realising the full benefit of her bargain”, has been supported in her decision to take action against the studio.

“I don’t care how rich Scarlett Johansson already is,” wrote journalist Tomris Laffly. “She was f***ed over through a breach of contract and she should sue. You can’t really claim that you support professional women to demand what they’re worth and promised and then be like, ‘Except her, she’s doing fine as is.’”

Another Twitter user, who specialises in law, wrote: “When someone says you breached a contract and you start talking about global pandemics, you 100 per cent breached that contract.”

“Disney is worth $130 BILLION dollars and doesn’t want to pay an actress what she rightfully deserves. This statement is SO self-serving, it really disgusts me,” another added.

As it stands, Black Widow is one of the lowest-grossing Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) films to date with global takings of $319.5m (229m), a figure that cinema owners are attributing to the simultaneous streaming release.

The film, which is Johansson’s character’s long overdue standalone outing, is expected to be her final MCU appearance. It was originally scheduled to be released in May 2020, but was delayed until June 2021.

Until next week,

- js.

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