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[Table] IAmA: We are the guys currently hosting Movie2K. Ask us anything.

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Date: 2013-06-03
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Questions Answers
I often wonder why major companies spend so much money trying to shut down sites like movie2k instead of embracing new technology and putting their movies and shows on their owns sites to be viewed in higher quality with commercials. I assume it isn't as profitable but do you have any further insight? When your business model is threatened a lot of companies tried to preserve it as long as possible. they pay millions and billions of dollars for political lobbying instead of fostering innovative ideas. business models like itunes or netflix show that it is possible to make money as a content delivery network, but many other companies tried to scare users away from filesharing and introduce DRM like steam or origin in order to retain their sales. that may have helped in short terms but we dont think those companies have a future.
As far as studies tell us, there is no harm or damage caused by filesharing.
European Union says filesharing helps artists
American Assembly - Copy Culture Report
many other papers
There is a website on copyright reforms with further information.
Today’s copyright legislation is out of balance, and out of tune with the times. It has turned an entire generation of young people into criminals in the eyes of the law, in a futile attempt at stopping technological development. Yet file sharing has continued to grow exponentially. Neither propaganda, fear tactics, nor ever harsher laws have been able to stop the development.
It is impossible to enforce the ban against non-commercial file sharing without infringing on fundamental human rights. As long as there are ways for citizens to communicate in private, they will be used to share copyrighted materials. The only way to even try to limit file sharing is to remove the right to private communication. In the last decade, this is the direction that copyright enforcement legislation has moved in, under pressure from big business lobbyists who see their monopolies under threat. We need to reverse this trend to safeguard fundamental rights.
Edit: formatting.
When did this happen? What was your first reaction realizing such a big site is a possible ad for your party?:) It happened last friday. We were notified by torrentfreak (see this post) and indeed there was much more DNS traffic than usual on our servers (especially since they gave negative responses that did not get cached). Oh, and various cops also called us and our providers, but this time, they at least didn't take our servers again.
Since there was a massive press shitstorm (probably fired up by the content mafia PR departments) going on against the site, we laid low for a short while, then finally deployed the site today.
The result was this and then it was like this.
I don't have much to ask about movie2k, but I was interested in your party a bit (well, I'm not German) - since you are a single issue party, do you find that your voter base is made up of a collection of different ideological positions? Does one reign supreme? First, we are NOT a single issue party, despite constantly being portrayed as such. We have a comprehensive manifesto covering most areas of politics. We don't just fight for civil rights and an agenda for openness in governments. We also have a lot of positions in regard to e.g. social/welfare policy etc. These are not as mutually exclusive as US politics may make people think - while a welfare state does limit "freedom" in the sense of making you pay taxes and preventing the rich from preying on the poor, it doesn't have anything to do with how much surveillance you have, if you have a free and uncensored internet, etc. We want to protect citizen's rights, both against corporate and government attacks, and make sure every citizen can have a decent, humane life - even if that means "limiting freedom" by making people pay taxes. We certainly have a few members who are more on the extremist end of the spectrum, in all directions. The majority agrees with what was described here, and the problems are limited since the extremists are a pretty small minority that usually quickly lose interest once they notice they cannot take us over to push their agenda. Not that they wouldn't try, but they don't have a lot of effect. We do not tolerate right-wing extremists at all, and if someone tries to spread hate in the name of the Pirate Party, they get thrown out pretty quickly.
For example, one would not find it unusual to see communist, socialist, liberal members, but are there also a 'hardcore' capitalist faction or people on the 'right' who are on board? In general, our politics can be described as "linksliberal", which literally translates to "left-liberal" but these words have different meanings in different countries. It would be the bottom-left quadrant of the political compass. It means we do support a welfare state ("socialist", as US republicans would certainly call us ;)), but we also strongly support personal liberties.
Thanks for the AMA. You answered it in one of questions, but I suppose it'd be nice to have some brief info/links (for the lazy) in your post on what you have done / aim to do as the Pirate Party in Germany. Your link is for the German webpage, do you have any info in English? Short version: openness (open government), copyright reform and civil rights (opposed to anti-terror legislations).
The section on copyright:
> The German Pirate Party (Piratenpartei) does not want to abolish copyright, but we do want to give it a massive overhaul. Private (file)sharing must be legal and must not be hindered by lawsuits or DRM. Protected works must not be withheld from the public domain for 70 years after the death of the author anymore.
> We also want to improve the situation for authors by strengthening their position against the RIAA/MPAA-style organizations (like the GEMA, which is responsible for blocking a significant part of Youtube videos for German viewers).
> You can read more about the copyright policy of the German Pirate Party in the copyright section of our election program (in German\) or the manifesto (english\).
> Note that while most Pirate Parties worldwide want copyright reform, the exact policy may vary. Find your local Pirate Party on Pirate Parties International - nearly every country has one.
> The common aims of the international Pirate Parties are copyright reform, privacy, transparency, and public participation. Find your local Pirate Party on Pirate Parties International - nearly every country has one - and inform yourself about their aims!
> Although the German Piratenpartei sticks up for the rights of Internet users, we are not just an "Internet party". We fight for privacy and civil liberties, both online and offline, be it a privacy for your e-mails or a strong right to assemble and protest. We fight for an unconditional basic income and a general minimum wage. For free access to education without open or hidden fees. For real equality. For a healthcare system for everyone. A drug policy that gives addicts the help they need instead of threathening weed smokers with prison.
> This is just a small excerpt from our comprehensive Manifesto (English translation here) and the even more detailed Election Program for the federal election. (Sadly, many people appear to be unable to read even the table of contents, since there are still people claiming we don't have any ideas what to do or are "just an internet party". Think freely and inform yourself!)
Big fan of copyright reform in general, I hope you guys have success. Would there be any way people in US could help, apart from raising the general awareness. You could support your local pirate party, despite the two-party system they can certainly raise awareness. Also, spread the word, fight crappy laws and treaties like ACTA, which we all killed together. Work with us and discuss our topics and positions.
Currently we try to push the US and Europe to suppport the Treaty for the Blind of the World Intellectual Property Organization which will be voted upon this month. We push for this treaty that would allow blind or visually impaired people to ensure full enjoyment of their basic human rights, the right to knowledge, the right to reading, the right to information. The treaty would promote accessibility instead of copyright restrictions (think of e-readers).
Why not promote decentralized and uncensored file-sharing? Link to www.google.com. In Germany (which is where movie2k was most popular), torrenting non-CC movies/music will get you cease-and-desist letters from lawyers that log IPs (often not very accurately), use some of the new anti-privacy-laws to get your address, and then make millions by sending form letters demanding you pay around 1000 EUR for their "work" and compensation for "unlimited distribution of the protected work" (aka uploading).
We don't need to mention that we think these lawyers should be sitting in prison for fraud instead of sending these letters, do we?
We do support decentralized file sharing and want to legalize it. We just can't recommend it to people who will get themselves hurt. You can use some VPNs, but that requires a level of technical skill that unfortunately many people do not possess. As a sidenote, do not use TOR for downloading stuff, it isn't made for so much traffic and you will make it slow for people who really need it (e.g. in China, Turkey, ...)
My main concern is to get rid of Angela Merkel. So would you recommand electing TPP anyways. And even if you make the 5% and my vote woudn't be lost (it wouldn't be lost anyways, you get money for it and it would represent an opinion), this might lead to a big coalition instead of a possible Red-Green coalition? Of course we recommend voting for the Piratenpartei, if we wouldn't fully support its aims we wouldn't be spending quite a few nights keeping the IT running. If we get into the parliament, we get a lot of useful tools even if we aren't part of the government coalition. For example, we may ask questions formally which the government has to answer ("Kleine Anfrage"), making it possible to uncover corruption and stop bad laws by public shaming. Next time the government tries to get a new anti-privacy law approved with like 5% of the members of parliament present at 2 o'clock in the morning, we can show full attendance and actually reject the law - or at least request a check for Beschlussfähigkeit (a certain number of members of parliament must be present in order to pass laws), stopping the law and drawing public attention.
If you are afraid of a CDU-led coalition (e.g. the "big" black-red or a black-green coalition), take into account we are the only party to strongly oppose a coalition with the CDU (due to their anti-freedom politics) besides the Left party (Linkspartei). However, the SPD said they won't do a "big" coalition source
How many hits does the page have? We get about 100 views a second (360.000 per hour)
Could you provide a link to the local pirate parties on the page? Links to our local pirate parties
5+ im Herbst! Ja, 5+ am 15. und 22. September in Bayern, Hessen und im Bund.
How do you only have 67 questions/comments? We're a bit surprised, too, I guess the former operators and owners of the site would get a lot more attention. While hosting a 200 MBit/s site and being a Pirate Party is interesting, it apparently isn't that interesting.
Wow I'm surprised I found this as it was happening. Is there anyone else we should notify of movie2k's current state? Is there a place to reach the owner and ask more about what's going on? Unfortunately, we don't know anything about the owners of movie2k or movie4k (we don't even know if they are the same person or group, though it seems probable), but there is this twitter account that seems to belong to movie4k so you may be able to reach someone there. Regarding your first question, Torrentfreak has already been told, but if you think your local Pirate Party may be interested (perhaps to get a press release out) or it may be considered a juicy story by your local press, that could be a good idea.
In your opinion, how can a company get it right? i.e. how can they provide a platform and environment where artists/musicians/producers actually earn money from their work and for viewers and customers to not feel "jailed" with DRM and content sharing regulations? After the takedown of "kino.to", one of the largest German streaming portals, some newspapers announced an income between 700,000 and 1.6 million € per year, only from the advertisements. Also, video-hosters like shockshare earn money, because users want an ad-free and fast video stream. So, there is already a working conecpt. A company could provide a platform where users could watch SD movies for free (ad-supported). For higer quality like HD and 3D you have to pay. But if the companies demand outrageous prices that are as high or even higher as the price of a physical copy of the movie, it will not work. Also, selling music as a download only really took of once two things happened: DRM was abolished so you could simply download a MP3 file, and prices were reasonable. Imagine a platform where you can buy your favorite TV series for 1 dollar per episode or 10 dollars per season in 480p or for 1,50 /15 dollars in HD or 3-5 dollars per movie, with a good choice and an easy interface. Once you buy it, you can either stream it (as in "whenever you want, forever", because you "own" a virtual copy of it) or download a DRM-free file of it. Sure people could pirate the DRM-free files. So what? People are already pirating DRM-free files, putting locks on your legitimate customer's copies isn't going to do anything except annoying your customers. Today, the only platforms that come close to such a service have names like "The Pirate Bay" or "PublicHD" various usenet providers and they don't earn the producers any money.
second question: What is your opinion on Bitcoins? To your second question: Bitcoin is an interesting system, but currently there is no official, democratically legitimated opinion on it within the German Pirate Party yet.
Do you know how the website was taken down, and how it could just disapear from the internet? We dont know if it was taken down or how it was shut down, but we expect them to be back. they still own the domains of movie2k and have the power to switch it back to their servers any time.
You were big when it was still some kind of sensation a few years back but now you seem to be permanently somewhere around 2%. I think it is quite possible to get 5% or significantly more in the Bundestagswahl, because months before the Berlin election we were expecting not to get the 5% and in the end, we ended up at 9%. The weeks before the election, when the campagin is fully running and we start getting back into the public mind, really make a lot of a difference.
Non-members have full access to our forums and mailing lists and we have exactly zero moderation on many of them. The federal level one ("Aktive") became so unbearable most active members simply abandoned it, so mostly only trolls are left over. The same happened to some of the state-level lists. Our real life meetings, especially the ones below federal level, are pretty good. I don't think other parties have less of these fights, we just refuse to hide them and actually make them very public. The transparency we practice and demand from each other and the quite low tolerance for anything perceived as "bad" is also what makes it less probable that we become a corrupt bag of corporate shills like some other parties.
Is there any way you can take off the ads that say "download"? It's very confusing and tricky. We are just hosting the info page available there now, not the movie catalogue that was available there and is still available on sites like movie4k, so we have nothing to do with the ads.
Personally, such ads are one of the reasons I use Adblock. If you do, please use it responsibly and add exceptions for sites you like. You may not think you will click the ads anyways, but often at least some of them will be interesting to you and you will click them, especially on reddit.
Besides that, shouldn't ads that say "download" on a site where you go to stream movies (AFAIK, downloading is almost always a premium option if it is available at all) be pretty non-confusing, since there is no reason to click such a button? (But yes, I saw "play" ads on some streaming sites too, not sure if it was the original movie2k.)
Is there anyway this is coming back? I heavily relied on this website for all my movies and TV show catch ups. We don't know, it may come back. In the meantime, there is movie4k.
Who do you think would win in a fight between you guys and a Somali pirate party? I think I'll take the horses instead. ;-)
Interestingly, Somalia is actually one of the countries that doesn't have a political Pirate Party.
Are there any plans to shut down movie4k.to that you know of? Not sure if this is where to ask. We're not involved with movie4k (see OP for details) so we really don't have a clue. Sorry.
Do you guys have any idea who is attacking 1channel/letmewatchthis? Nope, sry.
I hope this free advertisment will be put to good use :D. We hope that's what we're doing with the info page. It should educate people about the situation, and it's certainly getting a lot of hits. Some certainly from bots, but just the traffic from two ressources we originally embedded into the info page from the main site took the main site down temporarily. We'll check next week with the international Pirate Parties if the membership application rates went up.
Did you know there are Pirate Parties in about 70 countries? PPI (Pirate Parties International\) has a list. If you are using reddit, there is a good chance your country is one of them. Many of these desperately need your help!
I thought the PP were a innovative and cool alternative Party once. But then you got destroyed by all these egomaniacs. It's a real shame that you dropped Liquid Democracy from your agenda recently. Now the PP is just a shadow of revolutionary ideas once had... I (can't speak for everyone) agree that it is a shame we got all those egomaniacs, but I don't think the Pirate Party is "destroyed". We simply attracted a lot of cranks, trolls and idiots who we are dealing with now. Participative democracy is sometimes a massive pain in the ass, but we are not giving it up.
Also note that what is happening on the forums and mailing lists doesn't necessarily reflect the majority of the members and what is actually happening. Since many of us refuse any kind of moderation, trolls destroyed quite a few of them, so the productive members left and mostly idiots and trolls remain.
While we decided against using Liquid Democracy (which includes delegations) for official decisions, we did decide to introduce direct online and offline participation of members (without delegations). The decision against Liquid Democracy was a decision against delegations, not against online participation.
On the other hand we continue to operate our liquid democracy tool called 'liquid feedback' as an inofficial tool.
I love the site when will it be back there is no site like yours easy to use with great quality video. As stated above, we are not the ones who ran the original site, we are just hosting the replacement after the original owners redirected it to us. We do not know the original operators. Thus, we don't know if the site will be ever back up to original.
However, we have heared that there is a site called "Movie4k" that is quite similar.
I get so many fucking viruses from that website. I'm certain you aren't getting them from the one we are hosting now, but I can't speak for the streaming site it once was.
Still, if a web site is giving you viruses, you are doing it wrong. You should realize that you are visiting an "underground" web site, which will link you to a lot of different video hosts, some of which are quite shady (the non-shady ones tend not to have that many current movies). Thus, you should expect that at least some of these sites will show you ads from shady sources because they want to make money and don't have a reputation to lose, or get hacked and their sites infected.
I assume you are intelligent enough not to download any software like "flash updates", "codec packs", "players" etc. from these sites. You need to keep your software up to date by installing all updates from reliable sources. Disable Java completely in your browser, keep your browser updated, keep your PDF plugin updated (or disable it and use the built-in one), and most importantly, keep your friggin' flash plugin updated.
This is good advice and you should do it anyways, but if you decide to be careless and drive around in a car with no safety belt and spikes all over the dashboard, at least don't join a ralley with it (i.e. if you are too lazy to keep your system safe, don't go to shady sites).
This doesn't mean the web site has any right to put viruses up, and I find it really shitty they sometimes do, but it is reality, protect yourself.
Like with weed, legalizing filesharing will remove most of these unwanted side effects. Actually, given the damage botnets can cause, that's a good reason to legalize it ;-)
I miss this site so god damn much, fuck corporate. We can't, we're not the original admins. As mentioned multiple times here, there is this movie4k site...
It would be a tragedy if they are gone forever, the library they have is outstanding. I wonder why the redirect. Apparently they like us - the german version of their public announcement explicitly states "ps: Wählt Piratenpartei" ('vote for the Pirate Party') -> Link to www.movie4k.to
But we dont know why or for how long they will redirect this domain to us.
Thanks for the AMA... it seems that stream2k is down for now too (tried to watch Great Gatsby). Do you know anything about that? Nope, sorry.
When will Movie2K be returning? Also what are good alternatives? Edit: movie4k is the new site Answered here.
Could provide a link to your site? Uhm, Link to movie2k.to Although it is technically not "ours", it is just pointed to our servers. (If you are looking for the main web site of the German Pirate Party, that would be Link to www.piratenpartei.de)
Last updated: 2013-06-09 09:11 UTC
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