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Old 01-10-21, 06:49 AM   #1
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Default Peer-To-Peer News - The Week In Review - October 2nd, 21

Since 2002

October 2nd, 2021

WVa Internet Customers Urged to Take Broadband Speed Test

West Virginia internet customers are being asked to take a broadband speed test to improve access in the state.

“Data collected from the speed test will be instrumental in making decisions about broadband access in West Virginia moving forward,” state Department of Economic Development Secretary Mitch Carmichael said in a news release.

Information from the tests will be used to create a map identifying where investment in broadband is needed most, the agency said.

The test is available at broadband.wv.gov. Click the red button that says “TAKE THE SPEED TEST” at the top of the page and follow the steps.

A few additional questions about location and internet service follow the test, and the whole process takes about five minutes.

The Broadband Enhancement Council is also involved in publicizing the speed test through a campaign using text messages and digital advertising.

Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market to Get a New Boost | Google, BitTorrent, Microsoft

AMA Research recently released research coverage on Global Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market that evaluates and provides market size, trend, and estimation to 2027. The Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software market study provides ready-to-access and self-analyzed study with significant research data proves to be a useful document for managers, industry consultants and key executives to better understand market trends, growth drivers, opportunities and upcoming challenges and competitors development activities.

Key Players in This Report Include:

BitTorrent (United States), Microsoft Corporation (United States), Google (United States), Ares Management (United States), Sharman Networks (Vanuatu), Drupal Association (Belgium), eDonkey/Overnet (United States), Free Software Foundation (United States), WinMX (United States), Vuze, Inc. (United States)

Download Sample Copy of Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software market @ https://www.advancemarketanalytics.c...oftware-market

What is Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market:

Peer-to-peer file sharing is the process of distribution and sharing of digital media using peer-to-peer (P2P) networking technology. P2P file sharing permits users to access the media files like the books, movies, music, and games using a P2P software program that further searches for some other connected computers on a P2P network so as to locate the preferred content. The peers of such kind of networks are usually the end-user computers and the distribution servers that are not required. Peer-to-peer file-sharing technology has at present evolved through a number of design stages from the initial networks such as Napster, which had once popularized the technology, to the later models such as the BitTorrent protocol. Microsoft also uses it for the purpose to update distribution and also online playing games use it as their content distribution network for the purpose of downloading large amounts of data without gaining the dramatic costs for the bandwidth inherent when providing just a single source.

Influencing Trends:

• Evolving Demographic Need Across The Region
• Technology Advancement in P2P File Sharing

Growth Drivers:

• Increasing Number of Smartphone & Computer User
• Creation of New Business Avenues For Stakeholders

Gaps and Opportunities:

• Rapid Adoption Of P2P File Sharing
• Improved Flexibility Requirement Among P2P File Sharing Services
• Increase In Support From Public Authorities

The Global Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Scope and Break Down are illuminated below:

by Type (Cloud, On-Premises), Application (Commercial Use, Personal Use), Organization Size (Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), Large Enterprises), End-Users (IT and Telecommunications, Retail and E-commerce, Entertainment, Government, Others), Subscription Type (Monthly, Yearly, One-Time), Operating Systems (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Have Customization? Market an Enquiry Now @ https://www.advancemarketanalytics.c...oftware-market

Geographically, the detailed analysis of consumption, revenue, market share, and growth rate of the following regions:

• The Middle East and Africa (South Africa, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Israel, Turkey, Egypt and Rest of MEA.)
• North America (United States, Canada & Mexico)
• Latin America (Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Rest of LATAM.)
• Europe (the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Netherlands Nordic nations, Belgium, Switzerland, Russia, Italy, Rest of Europe)
• Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, South Korea, Thailand, India, Indonesia, Australia and Rest of APAC Countries).

Major highlights from Table of Contents:

Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Study Coverage:

• Evaluate Market Competitiveness; Analysing Major manufacturers, emerging player’s growth story, and key business segments analysis of Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software market.
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Executive Summary: It gives a summary of overall studies, growth rate, available market, competitive landscape, market drivers, trends, and issues, and macroscopic indicators.
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Size by Region Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market, Profiles of players are studied on the basis of SWOT, their products, value chain, financials, and other development factors.

Important Sections Covered in Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Report:

• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Overview, Definition and Classification Market drivers and barriers
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market Competition by Manufacturers
• Impact Analysis of COVID-19 on Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Market
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Capacity and Production*, Revenue (Value) by Region (2021-2027)
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Supply (Production), Consumption, Export-Import* by Region (2021-2027)
• Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Manufacturers Profiles/Analysis Peer to Peer (P2P) File Sharing Software Cost Analysis, Industrial/Supply Chain Analysis, Sourcing Strategy and Downstream Buyers, Marketing
• Strategy by Key Manufacturers/Players, Connected Distributors/Traders Standardization, Regulatory and collaborative initiatives, Industry Road map and value chain Market Factors Analysis.

** wherever applicable

Read Complete Summary and Table of Content @ https://www.advancemarketanalytics.c...oftware-market

Contact US:

Craig Francis (PR & Marketing Manager)
AMA Research & Media LLP
Unit No. 429, Parsonage Road Edison, NJ
New Jersey USA – 08837
Phone: +1 (206) 317 1218

From Net Neutrality to Clickwrap: 10 Major Internet Law Cases Since 2000

The internet has been available to the general public since the early 1990s—and those early days of the web were both rudimentary and fascinating.

There was a time in the not-too-distant past when you needed a phone line and a modem to get online; when Netscape Navigator and AOL were the dominating forces on the web; and when the ping of an instant message was as prevalent as the chirp of a text message today. Luckily, the days of long download times and fuzzy dial-up tones are far behind us. Technology has advanced at a lightning pace over the last few decades, with the evolution of the World Wide Web following suit.

Technology has changed nearly every aspect of managing a business yet nearly every business’ contract management processes remain rigid and time-consuming. Learn more about how contract management software could help in-house legal team free up time and refocus on strategic initiatives.

As the internet has grown and evolved, so has the development of internet law—and the stacks of legal cases associated with it. The 1997 Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union case helped to protect online freedom of speech after an attempt to regulate “indecent” material on the web. Zeran v. America Online, Inc., filed in 1998, cleared the way for website owners to host third-party content without fear of being prosecuted over users publishing something illegal on their websites.

Thanks to these types of landmark legal cases, we now have a clear idea of what we can and cannot do on the web. Yet, the ongoing battles over issues like how information is spread across social media or how censorship plays a role online and on social platforms will continue to refine how the laws are applied to issues with the web.

Ironclad recently reviewed 10 legal cases since 2000 that have helped define how we use the internet. From issues of data privacy to what free speech looks like in the online world, keep reading to learn about 10 major internet law cases.

United States v. Warshak

The United States v. Warshak is a notable case in that it was the first to rule that there is a reasonable expectation of privacy when it comes to emails stored on third-party servers—and that the content within the emails on the third-party server is protected by the Fourth Amendment. It all started with a criminal investigation into defendant Steve Warshak’s shady business practices, in which he and his mother, who helped run the business, were double- and triple-charging customer accounts and providing false information to banks to obtain loans and credit products.

As part of the criminal investigation, the government seized approximately 27,000 private emails from Warshak’s ISP without a warrant—a move the government justified by relying on the Stored Communications Act. The information gleaned from the seized emails eventually helped to convict the defendants on the majority of the 112 counts, but since no warrant had been used to obtain Warshak’s emails, the case was appealed by the defendants.

Surprisingly, the court of appeals ruled that the government had violated Warshak’s Fourth Amendment rights by compelling his ISP to turn over the emails without a warrant, which set the precedent that there is both a reasonable expectation of privacy when it comes to emails stored on third-party servers and that the content within the emails is also protected.

National Cable & Telecommunications Association v. Brand X Internet Services

Net neutrality became a household phrase thanks to the National Cable & Telecommunications Association v. Brand X Internet Services case, which established that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had the authority to classify internet service as either an information service or a telecommunications service, even if that decision wasn’t necessarily aligned with the facts.

The case started in 2002 with a push by cable and telephone operators to have their businesses exempted by the FCC from the competitive requirements of the Telecommunications Act, which requires telecommunications services to sell access to their networks to the public. The FCC obliged, ruling that internet access was not a telecommunications service, which opened the door for telephone companies to have their own in-house operations pricing advantages over outside competitors and exempt them from having to offer access to their data lines with competitors. These policies would be illegal if telephone companies were forced to act as common carriers, and it led to numerous parties challenging the FCC’s ruling in court.

Ultimately, the courts decided via appeals that, yes, the FCC can classify internet service as either an information service or a telecommunications service. As a result, cable companies are free to refuse to share their networks with competing ISPs.

Gil v. Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc.

Juan Carlos Gil, who was legally blind and a longtime customer of the Winn-Dixie grocery store chain, in 2017 filed a lawsuit against the company under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Gil alleged that Winn-Dixie’s website, which let customers refill prescriptions online for in-store pickup, did not meet the requirements of businesses set forth by the ADA. The crux of the issue was that Winn-Dixie’s website was incompatible with Gil’s screen reader software, and therefore “ha[d] not provided full and equal enjoyment of the services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations provided by and through its website.”

In the suit, Gil requested that Winn-Dixie be ordered to update the website to allow access by individuals with visual impairments to the full extent required by Title III of the ADA. Winn-Dixie successfully argued that its website is not a public place requiring accommodation.

The district court that initially heard the case issued an injunction requiring Winn-Dixie to make its website accessible to those with disabilities, but an appellate court later reversed the decision on the basis that websites are not places of public accommodation, meaning that they do not have to adhere to the ADA requirements for businesses and nonprofits.

Feldman v. Google, Inc.

The case of Feldman v. Google, Inc. was filed by Lawrence Feldman, an attorney who purchased advertising through Google, Inc.’s AdWords program. That program placed his ads at the top of the search results page and charged him each time an internet searcher clicked on one of them.

According to Feldman, this led to competitors or pranksters intentionally clicking on his ads to drive up his costs until they reached a total of more than $100,000 over a three-year period. Feldman argued that he was entitled to win his lawsuit because the clickwrap agreement—a common web-based form that requires the user to agree to terms and conditions before using a website, completing an installation, or making an online purchase—did not result in a meeting of the minds between the two parties, and did have notice of and assent to the terms of the agreement, which meant that the agreement was not binding.

The courts disagreed, siding with Google on the basis that these agreements are printable and storable, and that they are written contracts.

Berkson v. Gogo LLC

The case of Berkson v. Gogo LLC, filed by plaintiffs Adam Berkson and Kerry Welsh against defendant Gogo LLC, an in-flight Wi-Fi provider used by travelers in airports and airlines, alleged that Gogo improperly increased their sales and profits by misleading customers into purchasing a service that automatically renewed without adequate notice or consent.

As with the case of Feldman v. Google, a clickwrap was used by Gogo to solicit the agreement from users, whose cards were charged each month for an ongoing service after signing the clickwrap agreement for the service. Unlike the Feldman v. Google, Inc. case, however, the courts did not side with Gogo, ruling instead that Gogo did not do enough during the sign-up process to draw users’ attention to the terms and conditions hyperlink that contained the arbitration clause—and was further problematic because it did not require users to scroll through the terms and conditions before accepting them.

The court ruling meant Gogo could not fairly bind users to its terms and helped to make clear what factors must be present to make a clickwrap agreement legally binding.

A.V. et al v. iParadigms, LLC

The case of A.V. et al v. iParadigms, LLC was another one for the copyright and clickwrap books. In this case, several plaintiffs were suing iParadigms over alleged copyright violations that occurred from using Turnitin, a system used to detect plagiarism in written works submitted to the system by students.

As with a handful of other lawsuits on this list, the agreement with defendant iParadigms was electronically entered into via a clickwrap agreement. The agreement included a clause allowing Turnitin to archive a student’s work upon submission to the system—something done on a regular basis. However, only the schools using the software—not the students—had entered into the agreement permissions for archiving students’ work, leading to a lawsuit against iParadigms alleging copyright infringement based on the archiving of essays and other papers they’d turned in via the plagiarism detection software.

The courts ruled in favor of the defendants, using the four fair use factors to conclude that the website’s archiving of students’ papers was a fair use because it was aimed at detecting and discouraging plagiarism rather than being used in a creative capacity, which is what you’d typically see in a copyright infringement case.

Elonis v. United States

The case of Elonis v. United States had a significant impact on what is perceived as threatening on social media—an extremely important but tricky subject in the digital age. In this case, defendant Anthony Elonis was federally charged with threatening his ex-wife, co-workers, a kindergarten class, the local police, and an FBI agent on social media after his wife left him and he lost his job at an amusement park.

At his criminal trial, Elonis asked the court to dismiss the charges against him based on the argument that his Facebook comments were not “true threats,” and that, as an aspiring rapper, the posts were a form of artistic expression and a therapeutic release for him. The court refused to dismiss the case against Elonis, and the jury convicted him despite his defense.

Elonis appealed the conviction, arguing that “true threats” require a subjective intent to threaten. The appeals court affirmed Elonis’ earlier conviction, reiterating that the law does not require proof of a subjective intent to convict someone of threatening someone else on social media.

Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L.

The case of Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L. revolves around the fallout over social media comments made by a high school student and cheerleader. That individual, known only as B.L., failed to make her high school’s varsity cheerleading team and then posted a picture of herself with an expletive-filled caption to Snapchat the following weekend. School administrators saw the post and suspended B.L. from the junior varsity team for a year. B.L. sued her school in federal court, with the plaintiff claiming her suspension from the JV team had not only violated her First Amendment rights but that the rules of the school and team were overbroad, viewpoint-discriminatory, and unconstitutionally vague.

In a surprise move, the district court ruled in B.L.’s favor, noting that the school violated B.L.’s First Amendment rights by punishing her for off-campus speech. The school appealed, but the appeals court held the original judgment, making it clear that similar posts made to social media while off-campus are protected by the First Amendment.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals v. Doughney

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) sued defendant Michael Doughney after Doughney registered the domain name Peta.org and created a website entitled People Eating Tasty Animals, which was described as “a resource for those who enjoy eating meat, wearing fur and leather, hunting, and the fruits of scientific research”—a clear spoof or parody of the animal rights organization. At the bottom of the website was a text box: “Feeling lost? Offended? Perhaps you should, like, exit immediately,” which included a link to PETA’s actual website.

In the lawsuit, PETA alleged that Doughney had infringed on its trademark with the creation of the site, which used the PETA acronym and was also diluting its trademark and cybersquatting. The district court that heard the case sided with PETA, making it clear that there can be legal consequences for those who intend to profit from using the parodied domain name if the domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the more famous name or mark.

Doughney later appealed the ruling to the circuit court, but the earlier ruling was affirmed.

A&M Records, Inc. v. Napster, Inc.

The case of A&M Records, Inc. v. Napster, Inc. was the first major case to address the issue of copyright law as it relates to peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing—and it changed the face of sharing music as we know it in the process. Napster, a peer-to-peer music-sharing platform, was started in 1999 to allow users to access and download digital MP3s from other users’ machines.

Unlike other music-sharing platforms, however, Napster’s central server was built to index its users’ music files and created a list of music that was available for download for free on the platform, removing the need for music fans to purchase MP3s of the music offered on the Napster platform. This led A&M Records to sue Napster for copyright infringement related to its role in distributing copyrighted works.

Napster’s defense was that it offered users a way to sample the music before making a purchase and that the users already owned the music, which it received via authorized distributions of the copyrighted works. The court agreed with A&M Records, ruling in part that Napster’s P2P file-sharing service was not a fair use of copyrighted works—making it much more difficult for copyrighted music files to be shared by using these types of platforms online.

Scarlett Johansson, Disney Settle Explosive ‘Black Widow’ Lawsuit

The settlement ends a back-and-forth PR battle pitting the CAA-repped star against the studio that was poised to have dramatic implications for all of Hollywood’s majors.
Kim Masters, Tatiana Siegel

Scarlett Johansson and Disney have settled a breach of contract lawsuit over the star’s Black Widow payday, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“I am happy to have resolved our differences with Disney,” stated Johansson. “I’m incredibly proud of the work we’ve done together over the years and have greatly enjoyed my creative relationship with the team. I look forward to continuing our collaboration in years to come.”

Disney Studios chairman Alan Bergman added: “I’m very pleased that we have been able to come to a mutual agreement with Scarlett Johansson regarding Black Widow. We appreciate her contributions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and look forward to working together on a number of upcoming projects, including Disney’s Tower of Terror.”

The explosive suit, filed by the actress in July in Los Angeles Superior Court, claimed that the studio sacrificed the film’s box office potential in order to grow its fledgling Disney+ streaming service. Disney countered that Johansson was paid $20 million for the film.

The settlement brings to a close a back-and-forth PR battle that pitted the CAA-repped star against Disney and was poised to have dramatic implications for all of Hollywood’s major studios. Johansson’s cause received support in the industry, with talent and executives — including Jamie Lee Curtis, Marvel’s WandaVision star Elizabeth Olsen and mogul Jason Blum — speaking out on her behalf.

At the time of the complaint, a Disney spokesperson said, in part, “The lawsuit is especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.” CAA co-chairman Bryan Lourd shot back that Disney “shamelessly and falsely accused Ms. Johansson of being insensitive to the global COVID pandemic, in an attempt to make her appear to be someone they and I know she isn’t.”

In her complaint, Johansson said the Marvel tentpole had been guaranteed an exclusive theatrical release when she signed her deal. She alleged that her contract was breached when the film was simultaneously released on Disney+.

As the coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc on Hollywood over the past 18 months, Black Widow was one of many big-budget movies, also including Warner Bros.’ Wonder Woman 1984 and Disney’s Cruella and Jungle Cruise, that bowed simultaneously on streaming and in theaters. But to date, Johansson is the only major movie star to sue.

“Why would Disney forgo hundreds of millions of dollars in box office receipts by releasing the Picture in theatres at a time when it knew the theatrical market was ‘weak,’ rather than waiting a few months for that market to recover?” the complaint asked. “On information and belief, the decision to do so was made at least in part because Disney saw the opportunity to promote its flagship subscription service using the Picture and Ms. Johansson, thereby attracting new paying monthly subscribers, retaining existing ones, and establishing Disney+ as a must-have service in an increasingly competitive marketplace.”

Black Widow, which has earned $379 million at the worldwide box office to date, debuted at the same time in theaters and on Disney+ Premier Access for an additional $30. But in what was viewed by rival studio executives as a major miscalculation, Disney boasted on July 11 that Black Widow earned $60 million via Disney+ Premier Access, opening the door for a fierce clash. After all, Johansson had been considering litigation for several months, says a source familiar with the suit. Until the afternoon of July 28, she believed Disney would make an offer and that she wouldn’t have to file a suit. But Disney stayed in the mode of, “Let’s keep talking,” the source adds. Johansson was particularly incensed by the announcement, which pleased Wall Street but not the talent and representation community.

According to the complaint, Disney’s move “not only increased the value of Disney+, but it also intentionally saved Marvel (and thereby itself) what Marvel itself referred to as ‘very large box office bonuses’ that Marvel otherwise would have been obligated to pay Ms. Johansson.”

Johansson vs. Disney marked the latest iteration of a profit-participation dispute that is all too common in Hollywood, with actors fighting studios over their backend compensation or the definition of “net profit.” Very few of these battles percolate to the surface; they often come to a resolution before lawyers get involved, or the actor’s contract contains an arbitration provision and the whole process remains confidential. (A source familiar with Johansson’s suit says her contract does have an arbitration provision, but her lawyers were willing to test it.)

“The exception is when there’s so much money involved or if there’s a level of acrimony that has reached a point of no return, and people are going to stand on principle,” attorney James Sammataro tells THR. “That statement by Disney confirmed the latter, but it still is a shocking statement to make — to paint someone as being insensitive and playing the whole, ‘You’re so out of touch’ card. You could probably make the same argument about Disney; ‘Yeah. You’ve been generating millions, if not billions, during the pandemic.’”

In the wake of Johansson’s suit, more than a handful of other A-listers were said to be considering filing similar suits. (Jungle Cruise star Dwayne Johnson was not one of them, given that he has a different compensation structure than Johansson.) But that has not come to fruition yet. Cruella’s Emma Stone closed a deal two weeks after Johansson’s suit to star in a sequel of Disney’s live-action film, offering a sign that Disney was working to secure and mollify talent amid the charged atmosphere.

While Disney has faced criticism for its handling of talent deals during the pandemic, WarnerMedia took a different approach by proactively doling out as much as $200 million to pay a long list of stars whose Warner Bros. films were simultaneously opening in theaters and on its HBO Max streaming service, including Patty Jenkins, Gal Gadot and Will Smith.

Johansson is represented by Kasowitz partner John Berlinski, while Daniel Petrocelli has been repping Disney.

Australia May Enter A New Age Of Piracy As Movie Delays Continue
Leah J. Williams

Long ago, Australia had a massive problem with piracy. In fact, we led the charge for pirating TV shows like Game of Thrones. Since local streaming services made television series and films more accessible, this problem has lessened — but Australia may be about to enter a new phase of piracy as cinemas reopen… sans the latest blockbuster movies.

Australia’s piracy problem has always been about access. The drop-off in piracy following the launch of select streaming services makes that pretty clear. When films and TV shows are accessible and reasonably priced, Aussies are only too happy to fork out to access entertainment. But if films and TV shows aren’t available at all, that’s when the problem surfaces.

As cinemas across Australia’s east coast reopen, moviegoers are expecting to tune into the latest blockbusters, in line with brand new U.S. movie releases. Venom: Let There Be Carnage, No Time To Die and Dune are all set for an October release in the U.S., with Dune also hitting streaming services.

But in Australia?

Venom: Let There Be Carnage is set for November 25.

No Time To Die will release on November 11.

Dune is delayed by a whopping three months and won’t arrive in Australia until December 2.

Given Dune is also launching on HBO Max (a precedent from The Suicide Squad), it’ll likely hit torrent websites the minute it goes live on the U.S. streaming service. For Australians looking forward to the film, weighing a three-month, spoiler-filled wait against committing piracy will be a challenge.

Now, I’m not endorsing piracy at all. In the end, it harms the entire movie industry — and in the case of HBO Max, there is a workaround.

But in an era where spoilers are rampant on the internet and every passing day makes it more difficult to avoid them, asking Aussies to wait an entire three months for Dune (or asking them to fork out for a VPN and HBO Max) is a big ask.

A similar fate awaits The Matrix Resurrections, which is set to land in cinemas and on HBO Max on December 16 in the United States.

It’s arguably one of the biggest blockbusters of the last few years, and it’ll have a rabid, talkative fanbase online. In Australia, the movie won’t release until January 1, 2022, an agonising two-week wait.

As with Dune, the temptation for piracy may prove too much for some.

The unfortunate thing about this whole affair is the solution is simple and we’ve already seen it working in the past: release movies simultaneously around the world. While this year’s situation is complicated by cinema shutdowns in New South Wales and Victoria, change is on the horizon. Plans for easing lockdown in New South Wales mean cinemas will be open in the next few weeks.

Yet none of the new blockbusters will be available in Australia until weeks (or months) after their U.S. releases.

Box office numbers are a major concern for studios and it’s likely the pandemic shutdowns induced these knock-on delays, but as we get back to whatever ‘normal’ is these days, the movie schedule should return to some normality, too. Frankly, it sucks that we’ve slipped back into an era where Australians have to wait ages for the best popcorn flicks. That’s something that should’ve stayed firmly in the past.

If you’re looking forward to any of the upcoming films, you’ll have to stay patient and keep an eye out for news. Release dates could still shift, but unfortunately it’s looking a lot like Australians will get the short end of the stick for movie releases this year.

S.Korea Broadband Firm Sues Netflix after Traffic Surge from 'Squid Game'
Joyce Lee

South Korean Internet service provider SK Broadband has sued Netflix (NFLX.O) to pay for costs from increased network traffic and maintenance work because of a surge of viewers to the U.S. firm's content, an SK spokesperson said on Friday.

The move comes after a Seoul court said Netflix should "reasonably" give something in return to the internet service provider for network usage, and multiple South Korean lawmakers have spoken out against content providers who do not pay for network usage despite generating explosive traffic.

Netflix said it will review SK Broadband's claim, and seek dialogue and explore ways in the meantime to work with SK Broadband to ensure customers are not affected.

The popularity of the hit series "Squid Game" and other offerings have underscored Netflix's status as the country's second-largest data traffic generator after Google's YouTube, but the two are the only ones to not pay network usage fees, which other content providers such as Amazon, Apple and Facebook are paying, SK said.

Netflix's data traffic handled by SK jumped 24 times from May 2018 to 1.2 trillion bits of data processed per second as of September, SK said, riding on the success of several Netflix productions from Korea including "Squid Game" and "D.P."

SK Broadband said it lodged a lawsuit against Netflix for it to pay for using SK's networks since Netflix began using SK's dedicated line starting 2018 to deliver increasingly larger amounts of data-heavy, high-definition video content to viewers in Korea from servers in Japan and Hong Kong.

Last year, Netflix had brought its own lawsuit on whether it had any obligation to pay SK for network usage, arguing Netflix's duty ends with creating content and leaving it accessible. It said SK's expenses were incurred while fulfilling its contractual obligations to Internet users, and delivery in the Internet world is "free of charge as a principle", according to court documents.

The Netflix series "Squid Game" is played on a mobile phone in this picture illustration taken September 30, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji/Illustration

But the Seoul Central District Court ruled against Netflix in June, saying that SK is seen as providing "a service provided at a cost" and it is "reasonable" for Netflix to be "obligated to provide something in return for the service".

SK estimated the network usage fee Netflix needed to pay was about 27.2 billion won ($22.9 million) in 2020 alone, the court document said.

Netflix has appealed against the ruling, court records showed, with fresh proceedings to start in late December.

Netflix said in a statement on Wednesday that it contributed to the creation of about 16,000 jobs in South Korea stemming from about 770 billion won in investments, as well as an economic effect of about 5.6 trillion won.

Ruling party lawmaker Kim Sang-hee said on Wednesday that out of South Korea's top 10 data traffic generators, 78.5% of the traffic came from foreign content providers, up from 73.1% a year earlier, with "Google-YouTube and Netflix that account for the majority turning a blind eye to network usage fees".

In the United States, Netflix has been paying a fee to broadband provider Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O) for over seven years for faster streaming speeds. https://reut.rs/2Y8wOzb

($1 = 1,187.3400 won)
Reporting by Joyce Lee, Additional reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan and Anil D'Silva

Until next week,

- js.

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Jack Spratts' Week In Review is published every Friday. Submit letters, articles, press releases, comments, questions etc. in plain text English to jackspratts (at) lycos (dot) com. Submission deadlines are Thursdays @ 1400 UTC. Please include contact info. The right to publish all remarks is reserved.

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