The Motion Picture Association of America is continuing its campaign to get the founder of streaming site TV Shack, Richard O’Dwyer, extradited to the United States to stand trial for copyright infringement. However in a leaked memo posted by TorrentFreak, it’s been revealed that one of the most “challenging” aspects in the extradition campaign is the mainstream media and the public siding with O’Dwyer. To counter this ‘problem,’ the MPAA is looking to recruit bloggers and news writers to write pro-copyright and pro-extradition posts.
The document says that the organisation is looking to work with “blogs by third-party surrogates,” as well as recruiting “allies and third parties, both in the US and abroad.” As well as this, “We will seek to make sure reporters know about the parallels – and the proof that this kind of copyright theft is illegal in the U.K.,” the MPAA notes.
This, despite the fact that Mr O’Dwyer’s website didn’t host any copyright protected materials, it simply linked to them. Some would argue that search engines like Google present a comparable service. It should also be noted that O’Dwyer wasn’t charged in the UK.
In a similar fashion to the MegaUpload case and its developments, it seems like this one is based more around the idea of what TVShack and TV-Links were, as opposed to what they actually did. It’s been reported that O’Dwyer complied with takedown requests and that Warner Bros. even asked to have some of its content featured on the site to aide promotion.
While the extradition order for Mr O’Dwyer has been signed by the home secretary, he appealed against it, the results of which will determine whether he’s allowed to stay in the UK, or will be sent to the US to stand trial for copyright infringement.
KitGuru Says: Whether Mr O’Dwyer is guilty of copyright infringement or not, the extradition treaty with the US should be used for far more serious criminals than this.And is the MPAA really protecting the interests of copyright owners by spending so much time – and undoubtedly money – on chasing someone that hasn’t run a linking website for over two years at this point, and at worst, allowed people to watch movies without paying for them?