View Finder: Hacking Netflix for piracy and prison
And can streaming save Twitter from death by 140 characters?
Over the weekend, a hacker group calling itself "thedarkoverlord" uploaded the unreleased fifth season of Orange is the New Black to piracy networks around the world. The first 10 episodes of the 13 episode season were uploaded, with the hacker claiming it also has copies four other unreleased shows from the US networks ABC, Fox, National Geographic and IFC.
The source of the hack is apparently a post-production company, Larson Studios, and while the breach is a fine example of the idiom that your security is only as strong as your weakest link, it also explains why the hackers only released the first 10 episodes of OITNB, as the final three episodes had yet to reach post-production.
The goal of the whole exercise from the hackers' point of view was extortion. In a series of tweets that included a "press release" that has since been removed, the hacker criticised Netflix for not just giving them a heap of money.
"We're quite ashamed to breathe the same air as you. We figured a pragmatic business such as yourselves would see and understand the benefits of cooperating with a reasonable and merciful entity like ourselves," the statement read.
It's not the hacker group's first extortion attempt, but you have to wonder why they would actually think Netflix would pay up? Despite the fact the leak will undoubtedly have an impact on Netflix revenue, the streaming giant's entire business model is to make paying for content more attractive than piracy. While many users may have signed up to the service because of OITNB, there's enough great content to justify the monthly cost regardless, and the fact a show leaks early is unlikely to persuade anyone to cancel their subscription.
But really, who can understand the mind of a criminal?
Twitter may have lost the rights to the NFL's Thursday Night football to the deep pockets of Bezos and Amazon Prime Video, but that doesn't mean it's giving up on its dream of becoming a streaming video powerhouse. Last week the social platform announced its plans to launch 24/7 video streaming, with an emphasis on news and live sports.
It's not going to happen overnight. During an interview with Buzzfeed, Twitter COO and CFO Anthony Noto claimed that there was a lot happening on the path to 24/7 video streaming, but no timetable for the rollout was given.
One sport he did mention in the interview as a prospective target was the UFC, claiming that the natural uptick in Twitter activity whenever there's a PPV match mans it's a natural target for live video content around the match.
Of course, the biggest advantage of Twitter as a video streaming service is its global audience, and the opportunity to reach a truly global audience. That's probably not going to help Aussie sports, but for sports fans around the world, it could be a massive hit.
Trailer of the week: Defend Twin Peaks
It was a pretty amazing week for streaming trailers. It's impossible to go past the first real trailer for Marvel's Defenders on Netflix, where we get to see DareDevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist throw down for the first time as a ragtag team.
Then there's the exciting new trailer for the return of Twin Peaks. It doesn't give much away, but it does show how a bunch of the original stars have aged over the past 25 years, and that's got to get you excited for the 22 May launch.
- Still looking for something to watch? Why not check out our full round-up of the shows launching in May?
Each week, View Finder rounds up the latest news in TV and movie streaming in Australia.
- How to stream Australian Open tennis live and for free
- How to stream tennis live online in Australia
- How to live stream One-Day International cricket in Australia
- Australians are really obsessed with Marie Kondo’s Tidying Up
- This week in streaming: The Punisher returns and a new True Detective is born