Popcorn Time Users Threatened by Anti Piracy Group

Aug 27, 2015 08:00 PM EDT | By Mikey Blanco

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Popcorn Time, the "Netflix of Pirates," is facing retaliation from pro-copyright groups. A crackdown in three countries is now underway, US, Denmark, and most notably Norway. The Rettighetsalliansen Norge (Rights Alliance) informed the state-owned NRK that it had in its possession thousands of IP addresses which it intends to use to identify copyright violators.

The International Business Times reports that Willy Johansen of Rettighetsalliansen Norge said, "We are sitting today with a record of some users of [Popcorn Time] in Norway." He adds, "These are records we can lawfully use, and it could be that someone gets a little surprise in the mail in the form of a letter. It's probable that something will happen in the fall."

The increased pressure on copyright infringement by Norway comes amidst rampant use among the Norwegian population of sites like Popcorn Time. It is estimated that 15% of the population had viewed pirated content in the past 12 months. In July alone 750,000 individuals accessed illegal content over the web.

According to Rettighetsalliansen Norge, a good 250,000 of those are now on Popcorn Time on a weekly basis. The Norwegian government is backing up the initiative which spells trouble for Norwegian patrons of Popcorn Time.

"There are very few who think it's ok to steal a DVD in the store, but to use such illegal streaming services is practically the same as stealing a DVD," undersecretary of the Ministry of Culture Bjørgulv Vinje Borgundvåg told NRK.

He adds that legislation is there to protect copyright laws and that, "Two years ago, Parliament adopted an amendment providing Rights Alliance and the people who own these intellectual property right to take action, and to the court to ask for compensation for abuse of their intellectual property."

"We are now considering further whether we must make several legislative changes to protect intellectual property that is being abused online."

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