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  (Source: Wired's Threat Level)
Firefox extension Linked Users to Same Product at The Pirate Bay

Internet pirates were in for a brief surprise Wednesday: art students from the Netherlands launched “Pirates of the Amazon,” a Firefox extension that linked Amazon.com product pages to their equivalent listing at The Pirate Bay. The following day, however, the website hosting the project took it offline after it received threats from Amazon.com lawyers.

The add-on’s authors are thus far anonymous, identifying themselves only as students of a Media Design M.A. course at a Netherlands-based university. Their website currently describes the project as a “practical experiment on interface design, information access and currently debated issues in media culture.”

“We were surprised by the attentions and the strong reactions this project received,” reads the site. “Ultimately, the value of the project lies in these reactions.”

A description of the add-on before it was taken down said its authors wanted it to be a “counterpart to the current models of media distribution,” and to “redistribute the wealth.”

Indeed, within a day of the add-on’s launch, its authors received a takedown request from Amazon.com’s legal department.

WHOIS records and what appears to be an artzilla.org posting indicate that the domain is held by artist Timo Klok, and that the add-on is to be publicly exhibited at an art festival at the end of next week.

Dslreports.com user “funchords” notes that the add-on retreives the “download 4 free” image from it’s home site, allowing administrators to monitor the extension’s spread through web server logs. It is unknown as to whether or not the add-on was designed with this in mind.

According to TorrentFreak, the add-on’s authors are not affiliated with The Pirate Bay – despite evidence that the add-on’s code transmits its queries to The Pirate Bay under the user-agent string “Pirates-of-the-Amazon”. The DSLreports posting describing this behavior posits that it was simply a “cute thing to do.”

Amazon.com did not respond to repeated request for comment from Wired’s Threat Level.

While the add-on is no longer available from its original page, a working mirror is available from TorrentFreak.



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By Conficio on 12/5/2008 11:49:21 AM , Rating: 0
How about staying with the black thing that is the print when you are reading? (Sorry I must have my ueber sarcastic day. Sorry you are on the receiving end here)

I have nothing written about the US in general or my feelings about it. I did though comment on a some ideas about punishment, that are rather common here (yes I live in the US) in this country. All things listed are recent events or common practice and they strike me as counter productive or in other words the punishment does not fitting the crime (I believe another legal principle of the US justice system).

There is a country wide sentiment of security solutions that make only sense when looked at at the micro (business) level. Protect me! But the consequences when applied to all are just devastating on a society level. With the violence accepted and promoted in the US society (movies, popular culture, tough guy image, the worlds police image, etc.) I think it is no wonder that we see personal revenge rampages that lead to many innocent deaths. And the knee jerk reaction is to increase these kind of punishments to make the university campuses, businesses, etc. more secure. Go figure.

P.S.: I did not mention anything about piracy. I did not utter any opinion about it. I have no glue where you would read this from.


"Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine." -- Bill Gates











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