- “Nites” got relaunched on a new domain, possibly by the same operators who ran the original site.
- Now, ACE and MPA want Cloudflare to hand over the identities of the operators, and filed a DMCA subpoena for it.
- It is doubtful that Cloudflare will have the true identity of the pirates, and this is a general problem in the field.
On April 19, 2020, Nites.tv went offline, and all that the visitors of the once-popular pirate streaming platform could see was a notice of seizure from the ACE (Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment). The operators went to Twitter and declared they were ready to comply with the laws, so the service would irrevocably shut down. However, a couple of days ago, Nites appeared again using a new domain on “Nites.is.” The theming of the site, the logs, the style, and the content were all identical to the original. This is what led people to believe that the persons behind it are the same.
Additionally, the new domain was registered a few days after the seizure of the original took place, using the privacy-respecting “Njalla” service. It means that the ACE and MPA cannot knock that door to get the new (or the same) operator’s identity, so they had to turn to the hosting provider, Cloudflare. Their action took the form of a DMCA subpoena filed at a California Court. At the same time, the following list of infringing URLs was submitted as an exhibit to support the official complaint.
MPA and ACE are now requesting the court to order Cloudflare to give away the personal details of the people behind Nites.is, including names, physical addresses, IP addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses, payment information, account updates, and account histories. Even if the court approves this request, it is doubtful that Cloudflare will have anything useful to share with the MPA and ACE, but it does make sense as a first step for them to seek whatever they can from the American internet giant.
At the time of writing this, “Nites.is” is offline again, so we may see the serving bouncing elsewhere, or maybe not. We still don’t know if the operators of Nites.tv signed a settlement agreement with the MPA and ACE the last time, so this is all weird. Also, the Nites Twitter post could be just a diversion to make the rightsholders believe that the original team will remain outside the piracy scene. We don’t even know if the people behind Nites.is are the same as those who were operating Nites.tv. This is the detail that gives them (or anyone else) the freedom to move and relaunch the service as many times as they please.