RODENT PROPAGANDA FACTORY, the Disney organisation, is being shaken down by ransom demanding hackers that have a copy of 'Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales' and want to release it through unofficial channels.
Those channels are ironically pirate themed ones, but we don't suppose that this means much to Disney. This POTC has got to be the 27th in a series of worsening productions from the firm that once had the good idea of turning a non-interactive funfair ride into a film.
To be fair, the first one is not bad. The others are sequels and with rare exception they are never as good as the original. As we say, this one is the 84th in the irrepressible collection and it is not officially supposed to be out until later in May.
The Hollywood Reporter does its thing and reports that Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger told Disneyites the bad news during a town hall meeting. He told them that the hackers were charging a large ransom and were threatening to release the firm in 20 minute chunks once the deadline had passed.
Disney is reportedly not going to pay, so if you want to watch a film where a man pretends to be another man pretending to be drunk while pretending to be a pirate, early then you are in luck.
Mark James, security specialist at ESET, suggests that this kind of thing is starting to become as synonymous with the cinema as popcorn and telling teenagers to shut their effing cake holes, and that Disney may be choosing to not pay so that it is not seen to be funding criminal activity.
"Anything that has a value will always be a potential victim of theft, either digital or physical. If someone has it and someone wants it then in theory there's a market for it," he said.
"Disney has refused to pay the ransom and rightly so. If you're going to download the film from an unofficial or dodgy source anyway then a month before or a month after is not going to make much of a difference. The film industry has been plagued with piracy issues and this isn't going to change anytime soon. Paying the ransom or indeed any ransom is generally frowned upon for many reasons. Funding other criminal activity, rewarding the bad guys or funding future attacks are all good reasons to not pay as chances are it's going to get released anyway."
For what it's worth Mr Disney, we won't be watching it however it is released, and if it has delayed production on the John McAfee movie - rumoured to be starring Johnny Depp - then we actively hate it. µ
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