ArtsWatch: Shuttered Rogue Site Gets Copycat

Isohunt.com fans publish tribute site to "file-sharing icon"
November 04, 2013 -- 7:09 am PST
By Philip Merrill / GRAMMY.com

In recent news ...

The "Game" Of Rogue Site Whac-A-Mole Gets A New Twist
On Oct. 29 TorrentFreak reported that enterprising Web pirates were unwilling to let Isohunt.com die after the notorious infringing website reached an Oct. 17 settlement with MPAA and was shut down. "Isohunt can definitely be called a file-sharing icon," the new site's publishers told TorrentFreak regarding their copycat tribute site, Isohunt.to. "The main goal is to restore the website with torrents and provide users with the same familiar interface." The copycat site surfaced shortly before Halloween, leading members of the media to integrate references to resurrection into their headlines. The creative community has long complained that battling infringing sites is like a game of Whac-A-Mole where new moles keep popping up and this copycat tribute site definitely introduces a new variation.

New FCC Chairman Confirmed By Senate
The Senate confirmed nominations to fill the two open commissioner slots at the Federal Communications Commission on Oct. 29. Tom Wheeler has been appointed chairman and Michael O'Rielly will fill the other open position. Industry and consumer organizations welcomed their confirmation, which returns the FCC to a full slate of five commissioners. In his response to the news, Wheeler highlighted his intention to focus on the Internet. "What excites me about this new responsibility is how we are at a hinge moment of history; the Internet is the greatest communications revolution in the last 150 years," he said. Commissioner Mignon Clyburn received widespread kudos for filling in as acting chairwoman since the previous chair's departure, including praise from National Association of Broadcasters President/CEO Gordon Smith, who said, "We also salute the superb job done by Mignon Clyburn during her tenure as acting chair."

This Year's Round Of Notorious Markets Submissions To USTR
A dozen organizations made submissions to the U.S. Trade Representative's Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets by the Oct. 25 deadline, including the International Intellectual Property Alliance, MPAA and RIAA. RIAA Executive Vice President of International Neil Turkewitz said, "Addressing the conduct of these notorious markets for piracy will go a long way towards promoting the rule of law, fueling creativity and innovation, and maintaining U.S. economic competitiveness." The IIPA's consolidated submission represents a coalition of intellectual property associations and listed more than 75 notorious online destinations, most notably Russia's vKontakte and the Pirate Bay, which is still going strong despite years of enforcement actions and court judgments. One unfortunate standout from the list of notorious physical markets is the "Greater Toronto Area" in Canada. The IIPA submission elaborates that this is "despite enforcement, including seizures of over one million pirated DVDs from flea markets since 2012."

Tablets For Toddlers Is Thriving
On Oct. 28 Common Sense Media released its study "Zero To Eight: Children's Media Use In America 2013," revealing unprecedented screen time and digital media consumption by young children. Research director Vicky Rideout said, "As many little babies and 1-year-olds have used smartphones or tablets today as all kids under 8 had done just two years ago." Almost three-quarters of children have used mobile devices and the average daily consumption is 15 minutes, a number likely to keep growing. "These kids are true digital natives," said Common Sense Media CEO James Steyer.

The Recording Academy actively represents the music community on such issues as intellectual property rights, music piracy, archiving and preservation, and censorship concerns. In pursuing its commitment to addressing these and other issues, The Recording Academy undertakes a variety of national initiatives. ArtsWatch is a key part of an agenda aimed at raising public awareness of and support for the rights of artists. To become more involved, visit Advocacy Action @ GRAMMY.com and sign up for Advocacy Action E-lerts.

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