For once, last week, the music industry could watch as another creative industry got to grips with a new, slick online piracy threat. Movie streaming service Popcorn Time went viral, got shut down and then reappeared as the project of a torrenting site in the space of a week. While live, the site was a Spotify-esque desktop client for browsing and streaming movies available on torrent sites: essentially a super-user-friendly front end for pirate streams. Its Argentinian creators shut it down despite claiming that “Popcorn Time as a project is legal. We checked. Four Times.” and some drum-banging for its significance: “We became the underdog that would fight for the consumer… tons of people agreed in unison that the movie industry has way too many ridiculous restrictions on way too many markets… Piracy is not a people problem. It’s a service problem. A problem created by an industry that portrays innovation as a threat to their antique recipe to collect value.” Now torrent site YTS has taken it over, although we suspect it’ll be fielding legal letters from studios sooner rather than later.

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