Update (April 24): Usenet-Crawler appears to be back online.
When NZBmatrix shut down over piracy concerns in December, hundreds of thousands of Usenet junkies were looking for an alternative indexer.
A large number eventually ended up at Usenet-Crawler.com, which offered a decent alternative.
Unfortunately for them, the fun didn’t last. Protecting the rights of various entertainment industry companies, the Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN contacted the site’s hosting company, asking it to pull the site offline.
In an email the group explains that the site “is offering a choice of popular titles in the area of films, and music that are made available without the required prior permission of the rights owners.”
Since the site owner hasn’t responded, BREIN wants the host to shut it down instead. This request was successful as Usenet-Crawler is no longer working.
This practice is not uncommon for BREIN, who have shuttered thousands of (mostly smaller) file-sharing sites through similar threats over the years.
Below is the email Usenet-Crawler’s host received, which is currently published on the site’s home-page.
Dear Sir, Madam,
The BREIN foundation acts against piracy of entertainment content (music, film, eBooks, computer games and other interactive software) on behalf of rights holders and interested parties such as authors, performing artists, publishers, producers and distributors. Together these rights holders represent the lionÂ’s share of the intellectual property rights on entertainment content worldwide.
We have found that one of your customers operates the illegal website http://www.usenet-crawler.com/ (IP 184.108.40.206). The website is offering a choice of popular titles in the area of films, and music that are made available without the required prior permission of the rights owners. The website constitutes a platform for its many users to offer and share these titles which are known to be protected by copyright and neighbouring rights (e.g. Wreck It Ralph; Rise Of The Guardians; Finding Nemo; see screenshots). This is unlawful.
The website is structurally making use of the availability on internet of unauthorized files with entertainment content without taking into account the interests of copyright and neighbouring rights holders. Such conduct is in conflict with the due care proper in social traffic and is unmistakably unlawful with respect to the rights holders whose interests are taken at heart or represented by BREIN. The website is causing extensive damage to these rights holders. The website is being maintained by one of your customers.
The owner of the site has not ceased the abovementioned illegal activities upon demand. My request to you is to arrange for the immediate closing down of this illegal website.
In the event you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.