Part 1 Piracy, IMAGiNE, and UTN

T P S
We are Society.
Apply for membership

cherwonk

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
78
Location
Western NY USA
Gold
4,970
Good morning ladies and gentlemen,

I'd like to thank you for the warm welcome. There is so much to tell and do here and I'm sure we've got plenty of time. But let me start out by answering a few questions and hopefully filling in some of the blanks.

When they first came and raided my house back in May of 2010 they took 6 computers, after personally hounding the local ICE office for 3 months straight I got 3 of them back. What had taken so long was the ineptitude of the techs at our Buffalo Office. They had trouble searching the files of 6 unencrypted computers. Obviously they needed more training because 2 of the computers they gave back had counterfeit Windows on them.

At this time I decided to stop all the R&D I was doing, you see a year before that I got sick of watching poor quality video with cam sound. I decided to go out and give back to the community that I had been a member of for the 10 previous years. I went out and starting getting line audio, at first from Drive ins for under $40 I set up a recording system that actually got really sweet audio. With the price of a ticket I could get 2 movies a night. But with my area having a winter, I knew I had more work to do. So I did research and because of the The Americans with Disabilities Act the theaters here in the US need to have a secondary audio source. At one time it was a few seats in the last row with headphone jacks. Its hard to find them these days.

But technology being what it is, I managed to find just the tools I needed. I started out with infrared, the sound quality varied from theater to theater. But really, poor line is better than good cam. After 3 or 4 different devices and close to $300 I finally settled on a nice $110 pendant that you wear around your neck. Add in the line in MP3 player and a ticket... sweet clean line audio. So a few of the IMAGiNE crew got these and we were off. The only problem was of course most of Hollywood's movies sucked! We were literally falling asleep in the theaters :lol:

So.... a little more research and I found most major cities have at least 2 theaters that broadcast on the FM frequency. Its on a low range than our radios can pick up, so of course another $125 and I got a sweet 6 channel FM receiver. The only pitfall with that it wasn't stereo. But it had a huge advantage, you need not be in the theater to pick up the signal. I could park my car outside and set up the receiver and my recorder, lock my car up and go walk in the local stores. Or sit in the Mall and read. Funny thing about that was when they actually arrested me they had a picture of me sitting in the Mall reading the Hobbit. They wanted to know what I was doing there?? Duh I was reading.

This brings us up to May 8th 2010, I was heading out to the Drive in... of course to grab some audio. I live out in a rural area, you tend to notice things that don't belong. Needless to say when a black van started following me through the back roads of corn fields I knew something was up. After a few quick turns and then a U-Turn I jump out of my car with my bat and headed for the corner. I wish I could have seen the look on the agents face when he saw me coming at him :lol: But the tinted windows prevented that. At 6am, May 10th they hit my house.

I'll stop here for now, don't worry I will continue.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Omen

Resident ass bandit
Dark Pirate
Joined
Dec 23, 2008
Messages
1,670
Location
The dark smoky corner
Gold
1,463
Dude ! You saw the party van and you didn't hide all your stuff ?
Come on, you wanted to be arrested do you ? Or you just became too unwary after some time ?

Looking forward for the rest of your stories (I bet you have plenty to share with us).

When they raided my house, I didn't see a van because it was in the city and the van was a common white one.
When they hit me they were like 10, with dogs and shit, and it was like 6 in the morning too, except I was awake because of my habits of not sleeping. I heard them when they were in the stairs and got enough time to throw it all away.
They found nothing but I still did 2 months behind the bars because the judge decided he didn't need evidence... That was fucked up.
The 2 months I made were for 'détention provisoire" which means here that it's not really jail that you're doing (even if it's jail, but it's not considered like real time... Justice is fucked up), it's just to keep you from talking to your crime buddies about the investigation. Meh.

Glad to see a member of iMAGiNE here, welcome, pirate. ;) (I didn't even see your intro post, I'm heading there right now).

And what was that with UnleashTheNet ? I mean, having your own tracker AND being a famous P2P release group... Tsk tsk tsk, you drew too much attention buddy.
 
Last edited:

cherwonk

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
78
Location
Western NY USA
Gold
4,970
I failed to give ICE the credit they deserved in its ability to get a search warrant with no evidence. My bad, but I was in the process of sterilizing my 2 computers, on was clean ...the other not so much. But both had non genuine windows. As far as the site... I'll get to that.
Thanks for the welcome.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Omen

run930

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
May 14, 2015
Messages
103
Gold
1,028
Wow that's fascinating. Looking forward to hear the rest. Thanks for sharing.
 

freedomshadow

Captain
Captain
Joined
Mar 30, 2014
Messages
545
Location
North America
Gold
16,709
I cant believe they gave you 3 computers back after only 3 months. Maybe they wanted you to continue so they could try again. Did you notice if they added any software or scripts in them? Thanks for sharing by the way.
 

cherwonk

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
78
Location
Western NY USA
Gold
4,970
I cant believe they gave you 3 computers back after only 3 months. Maybe they wanted you to continue so they could try again. Did you notice if they added any software or scripts in them? Thanks for sharing by the way.
As soon as they came home I wiped all 3 and updated the bios. First thing I thought of when I got them back. Besides 2 of them were my kids. By then I had built a new one for myself.
 
  • Like
Reactions: freedomshadow

Omen

Resident ass bandit
Dark Pirate
Joined
Dec 23, 2008
Messages
1,670
Location
The dark smoky corner
Gold
1,463
I failed to give ICE the credit they deserved in its ability to get a search warrant with no evidence. My bad, but I was in the process of sterilizing my 2 computers, on was clean ...the other not so much. But both had non genuine windows. As far as the site... I'll get to that.
Thanks for the welcome.
Sterilizing a computer.
You take a hammer and hit all your HDDs while they're on, and put them back in place.
AND:
A bucket of water and you throw it on with the power on.

Guaranteed to make your data worthless and the feds raging. :p

Fuck the pigs, I'd rather lose all my data and computers than doing time or seeing a judge again.
 

othersna

Well-Known Member
Ex Staff
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
15,933
Location
California
Gold
4,821
Interesting read on how to get in-line sound on CAM movies. Sorry you had to pay the price for it. The Feds don't make a fuss about the casual downloaders , but that kind of thing is pretty risky. However, those who downloaded your stuff thank you. ;) Looking forward to hearing more of this "insider" stuff. :)
 

cherwonk

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
78
Location
Western NY USA
Gold
4,970
I will listen to the rest of your story with interest.
Trust? I'm not looking for nor need you to trust me. There are no files to download here, I dont have any axx to ip's.
One other thing... I didnt spend 30 months in the Federal system to come and have to worry about people trusting me. I have the respect and trust of those that remained and continued to give the rest of OUR Community the audio and video you watch and listen to. Those are the ones that matter, they matter because they are out there putting their asses on the line every damn week. They arent sitting in a forums discussing snitches or pay to leech sites. If it wasnt for people like them and myself you'd be doing needle point right now.
You hit a nerve. One thing I can say is read the rest of my story then tell me you cant trust me.
 

othersna

Well-Known Member
Ex Staff
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
15,933
Location
California
Gold
4,821
If it weren't for guys like cherwonk we'd be getting all our music off iTunes, subscribing to HBO to watch "Game of Thrones," and going to Best Buy to get all our Blu-Ray discs, and being good boys and girls just the way the RIAA and MPAA would want us to behave.

These guys put their asses on the line so the casual pirates can get free stuff. The risks for the "providers" is exponentially higher than that of the "users" in this world.

P.S. I and the rest of the staff make sure TPS is a safe and legal site. We are just as legal as TorrentFreak or the subreddit at Reddit talking about trackers. There is nothing illegal about discussing filesharing, and we have nothing copyrighted on our servers nor do we have any direct links to copyrighted material.
 

AsaMyth

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Jun 11, 2015
Messages
80
Location
China
Gold
3,093
I see a war which is in the shape of encirclement and counter-encirclement from your story. You guys are the backroom boys of the pirate world.
Looking forward for the rest of your stories.:)
 

othersna

Well-Known Member
Ex Staff
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
15,933
Location
California
Gold
4,821
Well there are a few :eek:
By the letter of the law, some of the picture links here may violate copyright, and if I get a DMCA takedown notice, I'll take them down. In addition, I think the letter of the law says not to copy/paste entire news articles, so if I'm asked I'll take those down as well. (Never has happened) . The kind of direct link which will cause trouble is, for example, a link to MEGA or similar cloud link where you can download a copyrighted song, TV show, or movie. To my knowledge we don't have those. Direct links to torrent files are a gray area, so we don't allow that either.

The only time we ever got a DMCA notice was when a scammer was able to access a beta section of the server and posted ads to fake medications and we got a takedown notice from the pharmaceutical company which makes the real medication.

No rightsholder group has ever come after us, ever. Once a former server host went after N3v3R claiming TPS was an illegal site but after he talked to them they backed down because N3v3R was right and they were wrong.
 
  • Agree
Reactions: thedeh

mrtoke09

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Jul 27, 2013
Messages
59
Location
pirate sea
Gold
9,213
Trust? I'm not looking for nor need you to trust me. There are no files to download here, I dont have any axx to ip's.
One other thing... I didnt spend 30 months in the Federal system to come and have to worry about people trusting me. I have the respect and trust of those that remained and continued to give the rest of OUR Community the audio and video you watch and listen to. Those are the ones that matter, they matter because they are out there putting their asses on the line every damn week. They arent sitting in a forums discussing snitches or pay to leech sites. If it wasnt for people like them and myself you'd be doing needle point right now.
You hit a nerve. One thing I can say is read the rest of my story then tell me you cant trust me.
damm bro always good to see you around bt :p ;) :bow:
 
  • Agree
Reactions: hybrid1 and deathro

oklahomaboy

TPS Radio Team
Radio DJ
Joined
Jun 4, 2015
Messages
3,636
Location
Thailand
Gold
49,616
Thanks cherwonk for the things you did, and being so open about it.
I also had no idea how some of those things were done, so it's been a great read.
 
  • Agree
Reactions: deathro

SHA-1

Active Member
Buccaneer
Joined
Dec 6, 2010
Messages
436
Location
Europe
Gold
19,852
Exciting stuff, glad you're here to tell it and not in some jail/prison cell... Couldn't imagine feds coming in my house and taking my stuff, I'd be scared shitless. Although I'm just a smalltime user that's not in any way a blip on the justice league radar :p

Many thanks, looking forward to the next part!
 

nkka

Shipmate
Shipmate
Joined
Nov 9, 2014
Messages
152
Location
Queen Anne's Revenge
Gold
2,193
Its pretty awesome you are here sharing all the details of how its achieved and your personal story, I had absolutely no idea how any of this was done but I have often wondered.
 

Memcon

Ex Staff
Ex Staff
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
893
Gold
33,745
The audio setup is definitely something I wouldn't of thought of. Very interesting.
 
Top