The Record Industry Association of America (RIAA) has been busy submitting reporting pirate links for removal on Google, recently topping its 50 millionth URL. The RIAA and music studios report millions of links each month - most of them directed to Google - with the filestube.com search engine receiving two million requests alone.
Google acts quickly to remove infringing links from the massive search engine's index, but the RIAA has voiced numerous complaints about the process. It's a difficult battle to deal with for the RIAA, because foreign websites ignore takedown notices, or slightly alter the URL and go back online immediately.
Just a few months ago, the RIAA take down requests number sat at 10 million, with the trade group always scanning for online music piracy locations.
Nintendo has been seeing great headlines lately, with a 400% surge in Wii U sales thanks to Mario Kart 8. Not only that, but Mario Kart 8 has helped Nintendo push Sony up against the wall in Japan when it comes to console sales.
There was a rumor that Nintendo was poised to unveil a next-gen console at E3, something that never happened, but now we have the Nintendo of America President, Reggie Fils-Aime affirming that Nintendo is sticking to the Wii U. The Nintendo America boss says that the Wii U "has a very long life ahead of it. It's got great content coming that will help define the platform".
Nintendo has Sony as its only next-gen competitor in its home country of Japan, as Microsoft hasn't launched its Xbox One in the country just yet. The Xbox One lands in Japan on September 4, which isn't too far away. Nintendo seems to be doing better this year with the help of Mario Kart 8, but the company still has Hyrule Warriors, Super Smash Bros. and Splatoon to reach the Wii U, something that Fils-Aime says will have similar sales effects to the Wii U that Mario Kart 8 had.
The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), the leading movie copyright group in the United States, wants to invest $20,000 in research towards an "unbiased" report focused on online piracy. Following past published reports that claimed piracy harms sales, there was a public backlash that the trade group reportedly wasn't expecting.
"We want to enlist the help of academics from around the world to provide new insight on a range of issues facing the content industry in the digital age," said Chris Dodd, former U.S. Senator and MPAA CEO, in a statement. "We need more and better research regarding the evolving role of copyright in society. The academic community can provide unbiased observations, data analysis, historical context and important revelations about how these changes are impacting the film industry and other IP-reliant sectors."
It's refreshing to hear the MPAA wants to better analyze the current state of online piracy - a shift in strategy, when just a few years ago the MPAA was hesitant to embrace online solutions. However, past efforts to crack down on piracy only led to confusing legal legislation and ineffective, costly strategies.
Battlefield 4's upcoming DLC, Dragon's Teeth, will see gamers killing each other on top of a floating restaurant. The restaurant is part of the destructive, Frostbite 3-powered world, where games can drain a lake that pushes a restaurant into the water.
Dragon's Teeth will include four new maps: Lumphini Garden, Pearl Market, Propaganda and Sunken Dragon. These new maps see gamers traversing across Asian cities, through alleyways, the rooftops of Pearl Market, and on canals "in the pristine park to get the upper hand in the battle of Lumphini Garden".
The new DLC for Battlefield 4 is due out in the summer, which will include 10 assignments and a new game mode known as Chain Link. Chain Link will allow players to create chains by linking up capture points in order to win. Dragon's Teeth will also roll out five new weapons: the Ballistic shield, and the heavily armed, remotely operated ground vehicle, R.A.W.R.
After a week of Ubisoft fighting a losing battle about watering down the PC version of Watch Dogs, EA is on the offensive for PC gamers. First, offering up Titanfall for free for 48 hours, second - unlocking all of the weapons and gadgets in its beta of Battlefield: Hardline, and now - stating that the PC version of Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare is not a console port.
Justin Wiebe, the game's Creative Director, took to PopCap Games' (which is owned by EA) developer diary today, where he explains: "It's not a port. Everything from our UI to how the mouse-driven controls are going to work - everything has been looked at from PC gamers' POV". When Garden Warfare launches on PC, it will include a new map, Jewel Junction, which features a world event that affects gameplay.
In this map, a train runs down the middle of the map, which should be an interesting turn for the game. Jewel Junction will be a timed exclusive for PC. Right now, you can pre-order Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare on Origin - with the Standard Edition costing $29.99, while the Digital Deluxe Edition costs $34.99. Garden Warfare launches in just three days time, on June 24.
EA only just announced it had extended its beta of Battlefield: Hardline until next Thursday, but for the next few days you'll be able to enjoy the Visceral Games developed first-person shooter with all of its gadgets and weapons unlocked.
EA has unlocked everything on the PC and PS4 version of the game, something that includes the ballistic shield, breaching charge, and decoy gadgets. EA and Visceral have promised that all of the weapons that gamers see in the beta "are just a taste of what fans can expect" when the game launches on October 21 for Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4 and PC.
There's a patch for the PC version of the game that is rolling out right now that improves some of the audio issues and netcode. I think it's good that we're seeing Visceral attempting to squash any issues quickly, and this really feels like a better test so far than the mess that was Battlefield 4. Of course, we won't know the full story until October 21.
For fans of Dead Rising, you might be surprised that the zombie game is being turned into a "full-length digital feature" That will first hit Sony's service, Crackle. There's no director tied to the project just yet.
Legendary is producing the film, but it will not be hitting theaters, with the company's Chief, Tom Lesinski explaining: "Dead Rising has a built-in fan base and rich characters and plotlines that are ideal for digital storytelling and on target for Legendary's brand. Crackle and Content are adept at distributing cutting-edge digital content and we look forward to delivering a highly engaging and cool series for a global audience".
Once the Dead Rising movie has hit Crackle, it will move on to disc media, TV and VOD. Most people are probably thinking "ugh... why" - but a theatrical release of this movie might have not been that great, a smaller budget and the movie being a "digital feature" might play in its favor. It means that the movie doesn't need to target a mass audience to make its profits, meaning it could be gorier (it is a post-apocalyptic zombie game after all) with all of the things that have made the Dead Rising games so much fun.
Fresh from the news that Godzilla director Gareth Edwards is to helm the second of the announced 'Star Wars' spin off movies, Looper director Rian Johnson is to direct Episode VIII and IX (that's 8 and 9 for you numeral-haters), which will follow the 2015 release of the as yet untitled 'Episode VII' under director J.J. Abrams.
Whilst Johnson only has three prior features to his name; the little seen 'Brick' and 'Brothers Bloom' alongside the higher profile 'Looper', he also has helmed multiple episodes of TV's 'Breaking Bad' and 'Terriers'.
Episodes VIII and IX have not yet been officially dated, but are expected to launch in 2017 and 2019, respectively. It's crazy to think that over a span of nearly 30 years we only have six 'Star Wars' movies today, yet there's a further five movies in various stages of production. Whatta world.
Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden rejected a request from German officials to sit down and discuss NSA spying activity targeting Germany. The U.S. government reportedly spied on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and several German intelligence agency officials, and former cabinet members, Snowden revealed.
"The [parliamentary] investigation committee must respect Edward Snowden's decision not to make himself available as a witness, even for an informal meeting," Roderich Kiesewetter, committee lawmaker on an eight-member investigation committee, told the media. "It's surprising that Mr. Snowden doesn't want to respond to the investigation committee's questions in detail, but rather just sees his role as one of an expert with specialist knowledge."
It seemed unlikely that Snowden would agree to an in-person meeting, but German officials still hope to chat with him via telephone or video conference.
The World Cup has been great for Facebook, because members are discussing the soccer tournament using the social media website more than the Super Bowl, Sochi Olympics and Academy Awards combined. So far, more than 141 million users have "liked," commented or shared posts/photos about the soccer tournament, Facebook said.
The 2014 Super Bowl had 50 million Facebook users engaged, and the Sochi Olympics saw 45 million people, while the Oscars garnered attention from 11.3 million. However, Facebook wants to keep users engaged with as much content during the World Cup, using its platform to deliver news and real-time conversations among users.
"We always see a large level of conversation on Facebook around big sporting events," said Justin Osofsky, Facebook VP of global operations and media partnerships. "But what we're witnessing around the World Cup has been extraordinary."