It’s sad that something that brings as much enjoyment to our lives as the entertainment industry is also one of the primary forces trying to ruin the Internet, all in the name of copyright protection. The industry takes extreme measures to stem the tide of online infringement, many of which not only make the Internet less safe, they don’t even do anything to stop or prevent piracy.
While it’s not entirely clear when the theory first appeared, the notion that cutting the head off one file-sharing site results in the creation of several others has been in circulation for many years. The analogy, regularly referred to as the file-sharing ‘hydra’, is often deployed in response to action taken by entertainment companies and local authorities. Tripping off tongues somewhat easily, the defensive reaction paints anti-piracy measures as a futile waste of time. Nevertheless, the outrage these measures often provoke suggest that they do have some impact, if only the raising of blood pressure and gnashing of teeth among site users. Whether or not they reduce overall piracy rates long-term remains to be seen, but right now these strategies are almost certainly undermining the safety of Internet users.