Exclusive Interview: Nate Glass from Takedown Piracy

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According to Google, Takedown Piracy is now the search engine’s #1 reporter of copyright infringements. In the month of July, Takedown Piracy moved ahead of large corporations Microsoft Corporation, NBC / Universal, and Lionsgate to claim the top spot on the list of 1,195 reporting organizations. The anti-piracy company reported nearly half a million URLs in July. The Recording Industry Association of America, Inc. is a distant second for the month.

“Targeting search engines allows our clients to receive the visibility they deserve without competing with piracy sites for traffic to their own content,” states Takedown Piracy owner Nate Glass. “Google continues to be extremely compliant and timely in removing links leading to pirated content. We’ve developed a great relationship with the search engine, allowing our clients to see immediate results and feel secure.”

Takedown Piracy’s new SEO program, Search Clean™, is responsible for eliminating infringements from even the largest search engines, like Google. Combined with its custom tool, the Aikido Program™, Takedown Piracy is removing hundreds of thousands of copyright infringements at an incredible speed.

Created by Nate Glass in 2009, Takedown Piracy is known for its highly effective and affordable services, while always operating with the utmost integrity. Whether harnessing the power of its one-of-a-kind customs tools or following up on an individual file reported through its free piracy tip page, Takedown Piracy has been responsible for the removal of over eight million copyright infringements.

We caught up with Nate Glass to discuss how Takedown Piracy works, the benefits of it’s software and what industry he’s salivating to rid of thieving scurvy pirates.

Tell us a little about what Takedown Piracy does.

Basically we represent a lot of different copyright holders. We got our start with the adult industry because they’re an early adopter of taking different approaches to things. We’ve branched out to many types of mainstream work as well. What we do for our clients is find things that have been uploaded online to different types of torrent sites, file hosting sites or tube sites and then issue takedown notices. These notices tell whoever owns the site that the content is the property of a specific copyright holder and they have to take it down. I started doing this out of curiosity and we’ve now had over eight million copyright infringements removed. It really just snowballed. Once I figured out how everything worked I realized it was a problem that could actually be tackled. You don’t have to throw your hands up and say there’s nothing you can do about this. There are definitely things you can do.

So this started out of your own curiosity – to see if you could make a difference?

Yes. I was working for Shane’s World and they had me traveling around the country in an RV meeting retailers. I literally spent about three years on the road, living in an RV with my fiance. Retailers kept telling me they were buying less and less product and the main reason was because they felt their customers were getting everything online for free. Some customers would even tell them they were downloading it for free. I told my bosses what was going on and said we should do something about it. Some people I told about it just repeated what they heard other people say: “There’s nothing you can do” or “You have to be a lawyer.” They would just throw their hands up. The more I researched the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) I realized it never says you have to be a lawyer. There’s a pretty clear-cut procedure for getting things removed. I asked my boss if I could work on getting some of this stuff removed on their behalf. I had a lot of free time sitting in RV parks with my fiance and a bunch of senior citizens! It wasn’t a real vibrant night life! I worked on it to pass the time and make some of these pirates miserable.

When I first started I realized that stuff did go down and it didn’t go right back up. The catalyst for this whole project started with a forum that used to share a lot of Shane’s World and Hush Hush Entertainment titles. I was getting them taken down and a guy posted “I was gonna post the new Hush Hush title but that fag Nate will just get it taken down so I’m not gonna bother.” Wow. This was working! That’s what I wanted the pirates to do. They realized we protected our content. It exploded from there. Once we had some success with Shane’s World and Hush Hush, other studios starting rolling in.

How did the whole process of monitoring content evolve?

When I first started out the process was very rudimentary, very basic. I would go to sites and literally hand type the names of the movies and do a search. When I just had one or two studios that seemed fine to me. As I added more studios and became aware of more piracy sites I really had to up the game. We’ve continued to evolve the software and our procedures as we add new clients. We added sites for our mainstream clients – software companies, movie companies. We developed the Aikido program. It’s true to it’s name. It takes your opponent’s strength and uses it against them. We take sites that are designed to aid in piracy and turn them around to our advantage. The Aikido program exploits certain types of piracy aggregators. We’ve developed processes that automate things up to a point but there really comes a point where you need to have human eyeballs on things. You can’t use a really broad search term and automatically send a takedown notice to someone. You just can’t automate everything.

The thing with piracy that really has a long-term effect is how it destroys the sense of value media has – be it DVDs, CDs, software, books.

I post a thing on Twitter every now and then called “Shit Pirates Say” where I post actual quotes from emails or comments they post online. Someone actually posted “Who says that only the content creator or the distributor gets to distribute it? The internet and my computer give me that right.” What? The nerve to say they own content because they have a computer and the internet? That’s bullshit. That’s the perception out there. People think they can do whatever they want because they have the internet and a computer. It kills me that the people that think “sharing is caring” and all information should be free don’t have any problem trampling the rights of others. It really shows the selfishness of our society today that they feel entitled to those things.

My little brother turns 13 this year and we have debates back and forth online. He feels any law that stops piracy stops freedom of speech. There’s no freedom of speech for stealing shit! (laughs) Nowhere are you entitled anything for free. I think you’re bastardizing freedom of speech by distorting it like that. That’s all the younger generation has ever known. They will never understand the camaraderie of something like standing in line to buy a new record. It’s a “Generation Me” mindset.

Tube sites have always baffled me. Studios know they’re out there and some license their content to them but do the studios really want entire DVDs posted on a tube site?

There are solutions but it’s really hard to get people on the same page and take action. I have a client, Pink Visual, who is big on digital fingerprinting. Youtube does this and some of the adult sites were forced to do it because they were usually being sued. I never find Pink Visual content on tube sites. They understand the technology behind it and then work to make sure their content doesn’t wind up on tube sites. We’ve taken down about 70,000 tube videos. There are so many studios out there that are so apathetic. It drives me crazy! Why don’t they do anything? They just don’t care. There’s a few studios that are so apathetic towards piracy that I consider them to be part of the problem. They’re basically providing these sites with free content.

Because some studios are hurting so badly you’re seeing some of the girls becoming their own brand. We’ve talked with Tanya Tate, who is one of our clients, and she knows which studios do and don’t protect their content. She doesn’t like working for studios that don’t protect their content. Why would she shoot for this studio or that studio when she knows it will just be out on the tube sites within a few days? She has her own members area she wants to protect. It lessens the chance someone would want to join her site if they could watch her full scenes somewhere for free. I think as the girls become hip to that and understand what’s going on it will reduce the chances they will work with certain studios.

I’ve dealt with a couple of music companies and the musicians don’t want their stuff out there for free but you have to go through the record label and get approval. Then you have to go through their lawyers. If they’re not getting paid then they’re not going to sign off on it. I look at what I’ve done for my clients and I wish I could do the same thing for Sony, Universal, Warner music. I wish they would take solutions that solve the problem and not necessarily see dollar signs as a result of lawsuits or whatever. It’s hard with those big companies. It’s amazing that I see so much music content on these torrent sites that I could get taken down right now. Why doesn’t a company like Universal move on something like that? What are they waiting for? You don’t know their plans behind the scenes but there are really simple things they could do right now that would disrupt the piracy scene. I salivate at the opportunity to get my hands on Warner Music’s catalog or something like that – just to see the phenomenal numbers we’d get from a big mainstream music label. Those guys have so much stuff out there. They’ve really relied on litigation up to this point. If they would look at companies like mine they would be very surprised and very pleased with the results. I would look forward to the amounts of headaches we would give these pirates!

To report a copyright violation using Takedown Piracy’s tip page, visit TakedownPiracy.com/tips/.

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