“Massive” movie and TV shows hacking * TorrentFreak

Mpa LogoPreventing the general public from accessing movies and TV shows without paying for them is a massive undertaking that seems, if anything, more daunting than it did 15 years ago.

In addition to the hundreds, possibly thousands of torrenting and streaming sites, copyright holders also have to grapple with the growing threat of premium IPTV, which grants access to every type of live TV under the sun at relatively low prices.

Somewhere in this organized chaos, movie and TV show companies are trying to tackle piracy apps. Mostly Android and iOS based, these consumer-friendly tools present content in easy-to-navigate interfaces, pulling content not only from their own sources but in many cases from third-party file hosting and IPTV/streaming TV providers, such as pirates. Others sites do that too.

MediaBox HD is targeted by MPA

MediaBox HD is one of the most popular tools in this growing field. Available for both Android and iOS, the app is in demand by those looking to access premium content on their phone or, as is increasingly the case, an Android tablet or set-top box.

Mediabox Hd

MediaBox HD’s popularity lies in its many features. Aside from a large free library of movies and TV shows, it supports services like Real-Debrid for more reliable streaming, has Chromecast support, can offer subtitles and even allows offline viewing. However, for groups like the MPA, these are all reasons to discontinue the app.

MPA submits copyright complaint to Github

While MediaBox HD contains Own siteAt the time of writing, it was impossible to access the Android variant of its app from there. Instead of hosting the APK in the same location, the developers of the app chose to host the software on Github instead, which meant it was easily vulnerable to removal.

A team working under the Motion Picture Association (MPA), Paramount, Sony, Universal, Warner, Disney and Netflix has sent a copyright complaint to Github, calling on the platform to remove the piracy-facilitating software.

“We are writing to inform you and request your assistance in addressing the widespread copyright infringement of motion pictures and television shows that is occurring thanks to the operation of the Mediabox HD APK software, which is hosted and available for download from your repository Github.com.”

“Specifically, at the URL, the repository hosts and offers to download the APK, which in turn is used for massive infringement of copyrighted motion pictures and TV shows.”

MPA is calling for MediaBox HD to be removed under the DMCA

The Movies & TV Shows collection, attached to the MPA’s complaint but not posted by Github, provides screenshots that it claims show MedaBox HD streaming copyrighted content to audiences resulting in “gross infringement.”

While providing various examples of alleged infringement, the MPA says these are only the tip of the iceberg because the program goes much further by flagrantly violating other content owned by its members and copyrights held by others.

On this basis, the MPA states that the infringement “is clearly the prevailing use and purpose,” citing case law including MGM v. Grokster (2005), the Arista Records v Usenet dispute from 2005, and the 2009 lawsuit between Columbia Pictures and operator isoHunt Ex Gary Fung.

The MPA suggests that it doesn’t really mind on whatever basis Github removes the app, whether it’s under the DMCA’s takedown provisions, repeated infringement rules, or Github’s acceptable use policy. Interestingly, however, he points out that he’s not trying to claim that the app’s code infringes copyright, just that it’s sole purpose is to infringe.

Please note that, with this notice, MPA members are not addressing the copyright ownership of the APK’s lines of code; rather, they are addressing the use of the APK as a whole to provide unauthorized, infringing access to streaming video content, and request the removal of Or disable access to the APK as a whole in your repository,” the notice adds.

Github complied with the request

Unlike the controversy currently engulfing youtube-dl, which has put Github at odds with the RIAA, there seems to be no such confusion here. At the request of the MPA, Github has removed the MediaBox HD app As a result, the software is no longer available from the official sources.

While MediaBox HD will likely resolve this issue in due course, the MPA’s interest comes after the streaming software came to light in two previous legal matters.

In September 2019, after a recall from the makers of the Hellboy movie, third-party app store TweakBox made the decision to remove MediaBox HD (as well as Popcorn Time and CotoMovies) from its platform.

A month ago, a Pakistani man who ran a website showing MediaBox HD, Showbox, Popcorn Time and similar software agreed to pay a $150,000 settlement to the companies behind the films The Hitman’s Bodyguard, London Has Fallen and Hunter Killer.

His site, the now-defunct latestshowboxapp.com, was forced to remove MediaBox HD and similar tools, despite not being a developer for them. The MPA has not yet shown any public signs of looking for a settlement from the MediaBox HD developers but given the past history, it may only be a matter of time.