Virgin Media, Sky and BT broadband customers will no longer be able to access around 15 piracy websites, which in the past six months have been visited by hundreds of millions of people. The latest crackdown on illegal free streams of movies and TV shows come after a High Court injunction was issued that compelled six major internet service providers (ISPs) in the UK to block these piracy portals. Sites which no longer are available to access include hurawatch.ru and soap2day.video, which received 30million and 28million views respectively in August, as well as 123moviesfree.love which received 14million visits in September.
The 15 websites, which were operating from 17 domains, were blocked after the latest legal action from the Motion Picture Association (MPA).
Plenty of Hollywood heavyweights – such as Netflix and Disney – are members of the MPA who has been at the forefront of the fight against piracy, and have regularly obtained court orders to block streamers from visiting sites that offer illegal access to paid-for movies and TV shows.
Just last month Express.co.uk reported that the MPA had obtained an order to block dozens of websites that offered illegal access to copyrighted content.
According to a post by TorrentFreak, with the latest batch of blocks none of the affected websites hosted the offending content themselves. Instead, these piracy websites feature embedded videos to pirated content hosted on third-party sites.
The 15 websites had reportedly been served with copyright infringement notices before the matter went to the courts. Access to the websites and domains has been blocked by six major UK ISPs – EE, BT, Plusnet, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and Sky.
Here is a list of all the affected domains: 0123movies.net, 1-2-3movies.com, 123moviesfree.love, cmovies.ac, cmovies.online, flixhq.ru, fmovies.co, gototub.com, hurawatch.ru, sflix.to, soap2day.video, tvshows88.com, watchserieshd.ru, zoechip.com, 123movies.vu, 123-movies.gy, onionplay.se.
The full High Court decision on the latest piracy website block can be found here.
In it, Justice Adam Johnson explained all of these sites had infringed copyright by communicating copyright works to the public.
The decision said: “The streaming process causes the user’s computer or device to create copies of the content in the memory of the device, which is an act of infringement under section 17(1) CDPA”.
It goes on to add: “I am satisfied as a matter of discretion that I should make the Order sought. It is necessary to prevent or reduce damage; it should not be costly or difficult to implement; it is the most effective means available of impeding the infringing activity; and any interference with the rights of the Respondents or of the public is justified by the legitimate aim of preventing copyright infringement”.
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