Feeds

TorrentFreak seeking copyright report’s mysterious author

Update: Sphere Analysis report now published

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

A report that pump-primes the idea that Australia is a nation of inveterate pirates is starting to unravel, with a report on TorrentFreak questioning the bona fides of the report’s author.

The study, which alleged the usual extreme extent of Internet piracy – a billion-dollar burden on the economy destroying thousands of jobs – was picked up uncritically by Australia’s Fairfax press, given both a short news piece and a long feature article in the Sun Herald (a two-page spread in the print publication).

However, according to TorrentFreak – and confirmed by this author – the authors of the report, Sphere Analysis, is much harder to find than most consulting firms. Its business name first entered Australia’s business names database last October, but the company has neither a Website nor any easily-discoverable address.

Its nearest relative, as identified in the TorrentFreak article, appears to be Sphere Property Corporation, which without a Website is difficult to find. The Register notes that it appears to have an office in Oxford Street, Bondi Junction.

Also noted by TorrentFreak is an apparent association between the report and a brand-new lobby organization, the Australian Industry Content Group. While it is also a new voice in the debate, it already appears to have contacts in the Federal Government.

Not only does TorrentFreak say the study was cited by Attorney-General Bob McClelland in February, the Australian Industry Content Group is already represented in Canberra by a lobbyist. The dully-named Salmon Odgers Family Trust, according to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet’s lobbyist register, represents the AICG along with the Housing Industry Association, ambulance-chasing solicitors Slater & Gordon, Standards Australia and a few other organisations.

Could it be that with the gloss wearing off the public face of AFACT (the Australian Federation of Copyright Theft), the content industries are prepping their next stalking-horse? ®

Update: The Sphere Analysis report has now been published. It's available from the Business Software Alliance, here. Thanks to Crikey for the link. It may not be worth your effort, however, unless you like reading mash-ups of old, and sometimes deeply criticized, piracy reports.

If I had to nominate a favourite item, it would have to be the prediction that the National Broadband Network (NBN) will lead to eight million Australians becoming pirates by 2016. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.