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posted by janrinok on Monday February 05, @12:35PM   Printer-friendly
from the subscription-for-life dept.

https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2024/02/after-14-5m-judgments-console-hacker-paid-nintendo-25-a-month-from-prison/

When 54-year-old Gary Bowser pleaded guilty to his role in helping Team Xecuter with their piracy-enabling line of console accessories, he realized he would likely never pay back the $14.5 million he owed Nintendo in civil and criminal penalties. In a new interview with The Guardian, though, Bowser says he began making $25 monthly payments toward those massive fines even while serving a related prison sentence.

Last year, Bowser was released after serving 14 months of that 40-month sentence (in addition to 16 months of pre-trial detention), which was spread across several different prisons. During part of that stay, Bowser tells The Guardian, he was paid $1 an hour for four-hour shifts counseling other prisoners on suicide watch.

[...] Nintendo lawyers were upfront that they pushed for jail time for Bowser to "send a message that there are consequences for participating in a sustained effort to undermine the video game industry."

[...] Bowser also maintains that he wasn't directly involved with the coding or manufacture of Team Xecuter's products and only worked on incidental details like product testing, promotion, and website coding. Speaking to Ars in 2020, Aurora, a writer for hacking news site Wololo, described Bowser as "kind of a PR guy" for Team Xecuter. Despite this, Bowser said taking a plea deal on just two charges saved him the time and money of fighting all 14 charges made against him in court.

[...] Now that he's free, Bowser says he has been relying on friends and a GoFundMe[https://www.gofundme.com/f/garyopa-restarting-his-life] page to pay for rent and necessities as he looks for a job. That search could be somewhat hampered by his criminal record and by terms of the plea deal that prevent him from working with any modern gaming hardware.

Despite this, Bowser told The Guardian that his current circumstances are still preferable to a period of homelessness he experienced during his 20s. And while console hacking might be out for Bowser, he is reportedly still "tinkering away with old-school Texas Instruments calculators" to pass the time.

Alternate source with GoFundMe link (added to the story above): Nintendo Sued a Man So Severely That He Can Only Survive on GoFundMe

Similar on SoylentNews:
Denuvo Promises to Kill Nintendo Switch Emulator Piracy With New Protection - 20220828
Nintendo Confirms Breach of 160,000 Accounts - 20200425
Nintendo Wins Lawsuit Against ROM Sites, Defendants Agree to Pay $12.23 Million - 20181114
Nintendo Sues ROM Sites - 20180723
Nintendo Begins Locking Out Switch Hackers From Online Services - 20180523
Hacking Group Fail0verflow Shows Linux Running on the Nintendo Switch - 20180213


Original Submission

Related Stories

Hacking Group Fail0verflow Shows Linux Running on the Nintendo Switch 16 comments

Nintendo hopes that "every single person" will own a Nintendo Switch, and that it can prolong the life cycle of the console to beyond 5-6 years.

Maybe Linux on Switch could help?

[Hacker] group Fail0verflow has claimed to have found a Nintendo Switch hack.

The group has posted the picture of Switch booting a Debian GNU/Linux installation. The picture also shows a serial adapter connected to one Joy-Con docks. Notably, Fail0verflow is the same group that hacked Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3.

What makes this Nintendo Switch hack special is that it can't be patched in the currently released consoles. This is because the exploit was found in the boot ROM process of Nvidia Tegra X1 chips that can't be patched with software or firmware updates.

That's not all. This hack to run Linux doesn't even need a mod chip to run.

Also at TechCrunch.

Previously: Nintendo Switch Homebrew Mode Coming Soon Due to NVIDIA Tegra X1 Exploit

Related: Nintendo to More Than Double Production of Switch; Success Rooted in Wii U's Failure
Nintendo Switch is Fastest-Selling US Home Console


Original Submission

Nintendo Begins Locking Out Switch Hackers From Online Services 15 comments

Nintendo Switch hackers are being banned from online services

Not long after its March launch last year, it was revealed that a GPU exploit in the Nintendo Switch could be used to run unofficial software, like pirated games and homebrew ROMs. Since then, the Switch's hacking community has grown, and the discovery of a new 'unpatchable' exploit last month has only made the console more attractive to pirates and homebrew fans.

Nintendo isn't taking the assault on its walled garden lightly, however, and is taking steps to crack down and dissuade users from taking advantage of the security holes.

The Japanese company has begun banning hacked consoles from its online services, sending error notifications when users attempt to log in. According to the message, "The use of online services on this console is currently restricted by Nintendo," and users will need to "Contact Customer Support via the Nintendo Support Website".

Also at Nintendo Life.

Previously: Nintendo Switch Homebrew Mode Coming Soon Due to NVIDIA Tegra X1 Exploit
Hacking Group Fail0verflow Shows Linux Running on the Nintendo Switch
The "Unpatchable" Exploit That Makes Every Current Nintendo Switch Hackable [Updated]

Related: Nintendo Switch is Fastest-Selling US Home Console


Original Submission

Nintendo Sues ROM Sites 26 comments

Nintendo to ROM sites: Forget cease-and-desist, now we're suing

Nintendo's attitude toward ROM releases—either original games' files or fan-made edits—has often erred on the side of litigiousness. But in most cases, the game producer has settled on cease-and-desist orders or DMCA claims to protect its IP.

This week saw the company grow bolder with its legal action, as Nintendo of America filed a lawsuit (PDF) on Thursday seeking millions in damages over classic games' files being served via websites.

The Arizona suit, as reported by TorrentFreak, alleges "brazen and mass-scale infringement of Nintendo's intellectual property rights" by the sites LoveROMs and LoveRetro. These sites combine ROM downloads and in-browser emulators to deliver one-stop gaming access, and the lawsuit includes screenshots and interface explanations to demonstrate exactly how the sites' users can gain access to "thousands of [Nintendo] video games, related copyrighted works, and images."

Also at Tom's Hardware.


Original Submission

Nintendo Wins Lawsuit Against ROM Sites, Defendants Agree to Pay $12.23 Million 18 comments

Nintendo wins $12m lawsuit against ROM sites run by a married couple

Nintendo has won a legal battle against pirate ROM websites LoveROMS.com and LoveRETRO.co. The judgement from the Arizona court has resulted in the owners of the now-defunct sites having to pay the Japanese game developer $12.23 million in damages.

The ROM site owners are married couple Jacob and Cristian Mathias, who registered the two sites under their company, Mathias Designs. Their legal troubles started this past summer when Nintendo filed a complaint with the federal court against them. In order to avoid a drawn-out legal battle the couple took down the two websites in July and put up a notice that said they were under maintenance.

As TorrentFreak notes, however, the couple soon owned up and admitted to both direct and indirect copyright as well as trademark infringement of Nintendo's games and other copyrighted content. The two ROM sites the Mathias couple ran offered pirated copies of Nintendo's retro games, including Super Mario World, Mario Kart 64, Super Mario All-Stars, and many more. People were able to download these pirate copies and play them on PC and other platforms they weren't intended for with an emulator, thereby bypassing Nintendo's hardware ecosystem entirely.

As the paperwork obtained by TorrentFreak shows, both parties – the Mathias couple and Nintendo – have now reached an agreement after the dispute was raised this summer.

Also at Motherboard.

Previously: Nintendo Sues ROM Sites
EmuParadise Removes ROMs After Nintendo Sued Other ROM Sites


Original Submission

Nintendo Confirms Breach of 160,000 Accounts 9 comments

Nintendo Confirms Breach of 160,000 Accounts:

Over the past few weeks, Nintendo gamers have been reporting suspicious activities on their accounts. According to the complaints, aired out on Twitter and Reddit, unauthorized actors were logging into victims' accounts and abusing the payment cards connected to the accounts to buy digital goods on Nintendo's online stores, such as V-Bucks, in-game currency used in Fortnite.

In a Friday statement, Nintendo said that attackers have been abusing its NNID (Nintendo Network ID) legacy login system since the beginning of April to hack into the accounts. NNID was primarily used for the Nintendo 3DS handheld and Wii U console (both now discontinued). This is different from a Nintendo account, which is used for the Nintendo Switch (Nintendo's most recent gaming console, released in 2017).

A NNID can be linked to a Nintendo account and used as a login option. If attackers were able to access a linked NNID, they could then access the linked Nintendo account. From there, they'd have access to payment methods (via PayPal or payment cards) necessary for making in-game purchases.

Nintendo did not provide further detail about how attackers had accessed NNID accounts other than to say they were "obtained illegally by some means other than our service." It has now disabled the ability to log into a Nintendo account using NNID.

In response to recent incidents related to some Nintendo Accounts, it is no longer possible to sign into a Nintendo Account using a Nintendo Network ID. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Please visit our Support website for more information: https://t.co/GMrXr5OHW0

— Nintendo UK (@NintendoUK) April 24, 2020

Attackers may have also been able to access users' nicknames, dates of birth, countries and email address information, all of which were associated with the NNID, Nintendo warned. Credit card data was not accessed.


Original Submission

Denuvo Promises to Kill Nintendo Switch Emulator Piracy With New Protection 18 comments

https://torrentfreak.com/denuvo-promises-to-kill-switch-emulator-piracy-with-new-protection-220824/

Anti-piracy company Denuvo has announced a new product that aims to prevent pirated copies of Nintendo Switch games from being played on PC-based emulators. Denuvo says that 'Nintendo Switch Emulator Protection' will have no impact on the gaming experience and will ensure that anyone wishing to play a game will have to buy a legitimate copy.

DenuvoMost video gamers will be familiar with the concept of an end-of-level or end-of-game 'boss'. They take many forms but tend to present as an escalated challenge designed to prevent gamers from progressing any further.

[...] Providing there's no obvious reuse of copyrighted code or trademark abuse, emulation software is mostly immune to legal attack. Emulators that mimic gaming hardware are mostly legal to develop, legal to distribute, legal to own, and even legal to use.

In reality, most emulator gamers like to gloss over that last bit. In the time it takes the minority to shout "HOMEBREW", the rest will have downloaded several hundred MAME ROMs, a few Nintendo Switch games, and will be playing them on a PC.

Nintendo is concerned about all piracy, but emulator piracy is special in that gamers don't need to buy games, and they don't need to buy a console either. Denuvo announced today that it has a new product to bring this to an end.

[...] Denuvo says its solution integrates "seamlessly and automatically" and works by detecting differences in the way a game behaves compared to what it was designed for.

"In this way, our software can tell that your game has been tampered with – and will make it unplayable." Denuvo says its solution will stop Switch games from being pirated and help to secure income for developers. As for gamers, they will "simply have to pay" if they want in on the action.


Original Submission

Emulation Community Expresses Defiance in Wake of Nintendo's Yuzu Lawsuit 3 comments

https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2024/02/emulation-community-expresses-defiance-in-wake-of-nintendos-yuzu-lawsuit/

Nintendo's recent lawsuit against Switch emulator maker Yuzu seems written like it was designed to strike fear into the heart of the entire emulation community. But despite legal arguments that sometimes cut at the very idea of emulation itself, members of the emulation development community I talked to didn't seem very worried about coming under a Yuzu-style legal threat from Nintendo or other console makers. Indeed, those developers told me they've long taken numerous precautions against that very outcome and said they feel they have good reasons to believe they can avoid Yuzu's fate.
[...]
"This lawsuit is not introducing any new element that people in the emulation community have not known of for a long time," said Parsifal, a hobbyist developer who has written emulators for the Apple II, Space Invaders, and the CHIP-8 virtual machine. "Emulation is fine as long as you don't infringe on copyright and trademarks."
[...]
And others feel operating internationally protects them from the worst of the DMCA and other US copyright laws. "I have written an NES emulator and I am working on a Game Boy emulator... anyway I'm not a US citizen and Nintendo can kiss my ass," said emulator developer ZJoyKiller, who didn't provide his specific country of residence.
[...]
Chief among those differences is the fact that Yuzu emulates a Switch console that is still actively selling millions of hardware and software units every year. Most current emulator development focuses on older, discontinued consoles that the developers I talked to seemed convinced were much less liable to draw legal fire.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by looorg on Monday February 05, @01:17PM (5 children)

    by looorg (578) on Monday February 05, @01:17PM (#1343113)

    $14.5 million he owed Nintendo in civil and criminal penalties. ... Bowser says he began making $25 monthly payments toward those massive fines even while serving a related prison sentence.

    So in about 50000 years he will have repaid them at this rate if they don't charge him any interest. The amount is so ludicrous it's not even funny.

    Why even bother paying. He is at the bottom of the barrel and have nothing they can take. Even after serving time in prison he is sentenced to a life at the bottom.

    • (Score: 2) by aafcac on Monday February 05, @03:25PM (1 child)

      by aafcac (17646) on Monday February 05, @03:25PM (#1343133)

      It's only a 14 month sentence. The bigger thing here is that he paid the money with the proceeds from working as a slave. So, Nintendo is apparently OK accepting slave labor money.

      • (Score: 2) by aafcac on Monday February 05, @03:28PM

        by aafcac (17646) on Monday February 05, @03:28PM (#1343134)

        Oops, I mean 40 months, but same basic thing.

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by Freeman on Monday February 05, @05:01PM

      by Freeman (732) on Monday February 05, @05:01PM (#1343157) Journal

      His sentence isn't about what makes sense. It's about revenge and deterrence.

      From the article:

      According to The Guardian, Nintendo will likely continue to take 20 to 30 percent of Bowser’s gross income (after paying for “necessities such as rent”) for the rest of his life.

      --
      Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
    • (Score: 2) by darkfeline on Monday February 05, @08:00PM

      by darkfeline (1030) on Monday February 05, @08:00PM (#1343199) Homepage

      It's not about the money. It's about sending a message.

      --
      Join the SDF Public Access UNIX System today!
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Monday February 05, @08:46PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Monday February 05, @08:46PM (#1343207)

      I suspect the payments serve to validate the debt and probably accelerate his release by showing he acknowledged the debt..

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
  • (Score: 5, Touché) by Opportunist on Monday February 05, @01:28PM

    by Opportunist (5545) on Monday February 05, @01:28PM (#1343115)

    Nintendo should be happy if he doesn't sue them for using his name as the villain in their games.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday February 05, @02:59PM (4 children)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday February 05, @02:59PM (#1343128)

    he was paid $1 an hour for four-hour shifts counseling other prisoners on suicide watch.

    If anybody can convincingly tell others that it's possible to keep living and not commit suicide, it's someone being paid a slave wage to work in a prison he's doing time in for hacking a fucking Nintendo console, and having to give away his meager earnings to Nintendo for absolutely no good reason other than making sure the guy feels the spite.

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @03:14PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @03:14PM (#1343130)

      ... for hacking a fucking Nintendo console

      As far as I know they have not actually arrested or caught anyone that did any of the actual code or hardware side. They managed to nab the talkers and the organizers. There are already new projects out that are assumed to be from the same people that was behind this. So all they did manage to do was ruin this poor sobs life. For more or less running some webshops and a couple of online forums. Was what he did illegal? Sure, all things point to yes by current laws. They can talk all they like about backups or homebrew or whatnot, but it's software piracy for sure. But the people caught was the low hanging fruit that amount to nothing.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday February 05, @04:51PM

        by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday February 05, @04:51PM (#1343154)

        Was what he did illegal? Sure, all things point to yes by current laws.

        Just and legal are two very different things.

      • (Score: 4, Funny) by JoeMerchant on Monday February 05, @10:36PM (1 child)

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Monday February 05, @10:36PM (#1343227)

        >They managed to nab the talkers and the organizers.

        IMO the talkers and the organizers are the most culpable in the whole deal. The code jockeys should have known better, but quite possibly had no idea how their work was being used to defraud / subvert / profit / etc.

        Fraud is fraud.

        --
        🌻🌻 [google.com]
        • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday February 07, @03:00PM

          by Freeman (732) on Wednesday February 07, @03:00PM (#1343513) Journal

          The "code jockeys" as you say are doing this for fun and/or profit. There's no coincidence that they've not been caught and are likely located in countries that don't have an extradition treaty with the USA.

          --
          Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by loonycyborg on Monday February 05, @03:05PM (14 children)

    by loonycyborg (6905) on Monday February 05, @03:05PM (#1343129)

    How come courts even approve such plea deals? It doesn't make sense to extract such insane amount of money from a person who didn't even profit to such a degree. It doesn't make sense to send people to prison for theoretically reducing a corporation income for 1% or so. Court of law shouldn't abuse government's facilities to help a corporation shape the way people use computers to their liking.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by PiMuNu on Monday February 05, @03:46PM (10 children)

      by PiMuNu (3823) on Monday February 05, @03:46PM (#1343141)

      > Court of law

      The court does not make the law nor sets the punishment. It is the legislature that sets the law.

      • (Score: 2) by crafoo on Monday February 05, @04:14PM (8 children)

        by crafoo (6639) on Monday February 05, @04:14PM (#1343148)

        they instituted the plea deal system, which I believe is entirely evil and unconstitutional. with this method you are not judged by 12 of your peers but an almost certainly corrupt judge and gaggle of bureaucrats. an actual jury would bring common sense into the process and allow the populace to disregard laws they feel are unjust. as was intended.

        • (Score: 2) by PiMuNu on Monday February 05, @04:56PM (4 children)

          by PiMuNu (3823) on Monday February 05, @04:56PM (#1343156)

          Fair point; although one is not required to make such a plea, it is always a possibility to fall back on the court.

          • (Score: 2, Interesting) by anubi on Tuesday February 06, @10:06AM (3 children)

            by anubi (2828) on Tuesday February 06, @10:06AM (#1343311) Journal

            Consider the fine print in those "contracts of adhesion" that many businesses demand agreement to ( usually in the "Terms and Conditions" behind the "agree" button when visiting a business on the web ) where you agree to "binding arbitration" aka "Kangaroo Kourt" and waive any right to a jury trial.

            When I see that kind of business talk in a contract, all sorts of red flags go up, almost as if they were flat telling me they have already prepared for my disappointment should I buy their offering.

            --
            "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
            • (Score: 2) by PiMuNu on Tuesday February 06, @10:22AM (1 child)

              by PiMuNu (3823) on Tuesday February 06, @10:22AM (#1343313)

              Hmm, I have never noticed that and I do (sometimes) read the T&Cs. But perhaps it is one of those USian things? I couldn't find much detail about it from a UK point of view.

              • (Score: 2) by PiMuNu on Tuesday February 06, @10:25AM

                by PiMuNu (3823) on Tuesday February 06, @10:25AM (#1343314)

                ps: OTOH TFA refers to US case so UK or elsewhere law is somewhat irrelevant.

            • (Score: 2) by tekk on Wednesday February 07, @12:18AM

              by tekk (5704) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 07, @12:18AM (#1343423)

              A lot of those, hilariously, have been getting removed from contracts. To ensure the correct ruling, it's written in there that the corporation will pay for the arbitration.

              ....turns out if you get a class-action amount of people demanding that the company pay for arbitration, that costs the company a whole lot.

        • (Score: 3, Informative) by PinkyGigglebrain on Monday February 05, @10:55PM (2 children)

          by PinkyGigglebrain (4458) on Monday February 05, @10:55PM (#1343231)

          ... an actual jury would bring common sense into the process and allow the populace to disregard laws they feel are unjust. as was intended.

          Those usually picked for juries wouldn't know "common sense" if it came up and smacked them in the face. Both the Prosecution and Defense usually excuse any juror that shows any kind of intelligence or critical thinking ability. They want the jury stacked with those who can be easily manipulated by a good emotional argument rather than a factual one.

          And sadly the Right of a juror to nullify [wikipedia.org] is, to the best of my current knowledge, only in the United States of America, and even then most of the US population are unaware of that power as knowledge of it is no longer included in the briefing/instructions given to jury when they are sworn in and the subject never gets taught anywhere outside law schools.

          --
          "Beware those who would deny you Knowledge, For in their hearts they dream themselves your Master."
          • (Score: 3, Informative) by tekk on Tuesday February 06, @12:06AM

            by tekk (5704) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 06, @12:06AM (#1343244)

            As far as I'm aware that'd be possible in any system of juries. "Jury Nullification" is simply another word for passing a not-guilty verdict regardless of the person's guilt. In Scotland they have a 3rd option which is a bit cleaner: Not Proven. Basically "We weren't convinced by the prosecution."

          • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Tuesday February 06, @03:55PM

            by tangomargarine (667) on Tuesday February 06, @03:55PM (#1343333)

            And sadly the Right of a juror to nullify [wikipedia.org] is, to the best of my current knowledge, only in the United States of America, and even then most of the US population are unaware of that power as knowledge of it is no longer included in the briefing/instructions given to jury when they are sworn in and the subject never gets taught anywhere outside law schools.

            In fact, supposedly that "do you have any beliefs that would prevent you from ruling in accordance with the law" (or however they phrase it) question when questioning the potential jurors is specifically to nail you if you say "no" and then bring up jury nullification later as perjuring yourself.

            CGP Grey - The Law You Won't Be Told [youtube.com]

            --
            "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
      • (Score: 2) by Beryllium Sphere (r) on Monday February 05, @07:07PM

        by Beryllium Sphere (r) (5062) on Monday February 05, @07:07PM (#1343186)

        Judges are no longer required to follow the sentencing guidelines, if memory serves. There's also, according to Popehat, lots of room for vigorous argument about where someone lands on the sentencing guidelines in the first place. Judges decide which side is right.

    • (Score: 2) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday February 05, @05:01PM (2 children)

      by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday February 05, @05:01PM (#1343158)

      It doesn't make sense to extract such insane amount of money from a person who didn't even profit to such a degree.

      That's one of the differences between the US justice system and most European countries' for instance: if someone wrongs you in the US, you can sue for punitive damages well in excess of what you suffered financially. That's how the two Georgia election workers' lawyer managed to extract millions of actual dollars out of Trump for a defamation case. In most of Europe, damages are primarily calculated to compensate you for your loss, not to punish the loser.

      • (Score: 2) by drussell on Monday February 05, @08:22PM

        by drussell (2678) on Monday February 05, @08:22PM (#1343201) Journal

        Giuliani, not Trump...

        Trump hasn't yet faced any repercussions for his lies, though it is a part of the pending Georgia case.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @08:34PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @08:34PM (#1343204)

        Actually in most civilised countries, even if there are punitive damages, they are paid into consolidated revenue. Compensation for the loss is paid to the victim, but the State reserves the right to inflict punishment.

  • (Score: 3, Touché) by Opportunist on Monday February 05, @03:53PM (3 children)

    by Opportunist (5545) on Monday February 05, @03:53PM (#1343143)

    But if I was in his boots, I'd be penniless and bankrupt when it comes to Nintendo.

    And selling Nintendo hacks through a shell company on the side.

    Screw Nintendo. With a stolen dick if necessary.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday February 05, @05:17PM (2 children)

      by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday February 05, @05:17PM (#1343162)

      A well-know movie studio that shall rename nameless threatened to sue me a few years ago because I had downloaded some shitty movie of theirs from the 80s with a torrent, that couldn't even be found or purchased legitimately. They lawyers sent me a "Pay $500 or we'll drag your ass in court" letter. I paid up, because they definitely had proof, and I have better things to do with my life.

      However...

      That pissed me off so bad I've been downloading and distributing the LIVING SHIT out of all their movies since then - of course covering my ass much better than I did when I got caught. I made it my duty to pirate the hell out of everything they have and make sure as many people as possible get it without paying a cent to them.

      They got $500 from me, but they sure didn't win any money by doing this - quite the contrary.

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @06:37PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05, @06:37PM (#1343178)

        The last time I got one of those letters I just put it in the trash where it belonged. I can't even recall what I had downloaded but I'm sure I had done it.

        • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday February 07, @03:04PM

          by Freeman (732) on Wednesday February 07, @03:04PM (#1343514) Journal

          Litigating every single one of thousands, if not more of those that have downloaded pirated content would be a huge waste of money. On the other hand, sending a 35 cent letter to every "pirate" and only getting 10% of them to give you $500 each is probably still worth it.

          --
          Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 4, Informative) by Beryllium Sphere (r) on Monday February 05, @07:11PM

    by Beryllium Sphere (r) (5062) on Monday February 05, @07:11PM (#1343189)

    This may have been under the Inmate Financial Responsibility Program, which the BOP says is voluntary and which they punish people for not signing up. https://federalcriminaldefenseattorney.com/prison-life/inmate-financial-responsibility-program-ifrp/#encouraging-inmates-to-participate-in-the-voluntary-program [federalcriminaldefenseattorney.com]

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