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Plex today announced on its forums that it is planning to shut down the Plex Cloud service as of November 30, 2018.

Plex introduced the Plex Cloud option back in the fall of 2016, providing Plex users with a way to store their media in the cloud to make it accessible from anywhere without the need for a local server.

plexcloud-800x482.jpg

Since its launch, Plex Cloud has suffered from issues, which led Plex to stop allowing new Plex Cloud servers in February to address performance, quality, and user experience problems.

According to Plex, it has not been able to solve its Plex Cloud problems in a cost effective manner.
We hold ourselves to a high standard, and unfortunately, after a lot of investigation and thought, we haven't found a solution capable of delivering a truly first class Plex experience to Plex Cloud users at a reasonable cost.
Starting on November 30, 2018, Plex Cloud users will no longer be able to access their Plex Cloud servers. Plex Cloud worked through a connection to services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive, so all content will remain available to users through those services. Plex also plans to unlink all third-party cloud storage services from Plex Cloud on November 30.

With the discontinuation of Plex Cloud, Plex media content will be accessible only through local libraries, with the company recommending that people store former cloud content on a NAS. Plex says that the end of Plex Cloud will allow it to focus on improving core functionality and adding new features and content.

Article Link: Plex to Shut Down Plex Cloud Service on November 30
 

OldSchoolMacGuy

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Jul 10, 2008
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I think they're afraid of getting in trouble for hosting pirated content. Terrarium TV is shutting down too.

Though we do frequently see that companies underestimate just how much people will store when you give them unlimited cloud storage. Crashplan just discontinued their consumer service (to focus on business services). This was because a small number of users (less than 5% from what friends who work there have said) stored numerous terabytes of backups. This made the consumer service financially unviable for them (when you factor in all the other costs like support, infrastructure, bandwidth, and more) when they were charging $99 or less per year for their service. There will always be those that push things and ruin them for the larger majority.
 

vegetassj4

macrumors 6502
Oct 16, 2014
396
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I think they're afraid of getting in trouble for hosting pirated content. Terrarium TV is shutting down too.
I'm suprised it lasted this long, and that the copyright gestapo/police/mafia enforcers aren't going after user hosted content as well.
 
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adamjackson

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Jul 9, 2008
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Since its launch, Plex Cloud has suffered from issues, which led Plex to stop allowing new Plex Cloud servers in February to address performance, quality, and user experience problems.

I'm pretty sure the issue I always read about was that Amazon kept killing user's drives when they found copyright (pirated) content. They'd scan for stolen movies, find a ton and just delete the drive. This impacted a lot of Plex customers using Amazon for storage.
 

OldSchoolMacGuy

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Jul 10, 2008
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I'm pretty sure the issue I always read about was that Amazon kept killing user's drives when they found copyright (pirated) content. They'd scan for stolen movies, find a ton and just delete the drive. This impacted a lot of Plex customers using Amazon for storage.

Makes sense. Plex clearly knew what their users were going to use the storage for. It was silly of them to think they could get away with allowing users to host pirated content through Amazon cloud storage.
 
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profets

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Mar 18, 2009
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I use Plex quite heavily, and tried this at the time to share some home videos with family. It was pretty rough. Streaming from dropbox was so slow. Was so much simple to just share from my local computer running Plex server.
 

rhett7660

macrumors G5
Jan 9, 2008
12,815
2,774
Sunny, Southern California
Well let's hope they can take care of some of the bugs that have been plaguing the system for some time now. If you go to the forums you will see plenty of them and some have gone on for quite some time.
[doublepost=1536695119][/doublepost]
I use Plex quite heavily, and tried this at the time to share some home videos with family. It was pretty rough. Streaming from dropbox was so slow. Was so much simple to just share from my local computer running Plex server.

This is what I did also. Much easier to do and has actually been pretty darn stable.
 

DipDog3

macrumors 65816
Sep 20, 2002
1,190
691
Plex Cloud was never going to work without buy-in from the cloud services. In the beginning, Plex made it sound like they had some partnership with these Cloud services, but that was clearly not the case because user were getting their cloud accounts deleted, especially on Amazon.
 

KazKam

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2011
496
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Makes sense. Plex clearly knew what their users were going to use the storage for. It was silly of them to think they could get away with allowing users to host pirated content through Amazon cloud storage.

To be clear though, the term "pirated" is a loaded term. I don't consider movies I ripped from DVDs/BRs that I purchased as pirated, I consider them fair-use copies (regardless of what the MPAA thinks, and this topic has been discussed ad nauseam). However, movies in peoples' libraries that came from torrents or other file-sharing services (if they didn't own a copy on another medium) I consider truly pirated.

Problem is, there's almost no way to distinguish between the two, and Amazon and other cloud services know this and obviously err on the side of the movie industry with their large cadre of copyright lawyers. Yes, Plex should've known this would be an issue.
 

thisisnotmyname

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Oct 22, 2014
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I think they're afraid of getting in trouble for hosting pirated content. Terrarium TV is shutting down too.

Though we do frequently see that companies underestimate just how much people will store when you give them unlimited cloud storage. Crashplan just discontinued their consumer service (to focus on business services). This was because a small number of users (less than 5% from what friends who work there have said) stored numerous terabytes of backups. This made the consumer service financially unviable for them (when you factor in all the other costs like support, infrastructure, bandwidth, and more) when they were charging $99 or less per year for their service. There will always be those that push things and ruin them for the larger majority.

And video is huge so it would consume space like crazy, I would expect more so that most people's backup strategies by a long shot. Then you look at the big boys like Netflix needing vast CDN capabilities to store media close to the last mile and you're not going to be able to duplicate that for personal collections without getting back into your first point about potentially distributing pirated content (by matching up hashes and providing one copy on CDN for massive numbers of users). Yeah, that was pretty much doomed from the start.
 

Sackofnickels

Suspended
Jul 13, 2018
285
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I think they're afraid of getting in trouble for hosting pirated content. Terrarium TV is shutting down too.

Though we do frequently see that companies underestimate just how much people will store when you give them unlimited cloud storage. Crashplan just discontinued their consumer service (to focus on business services). This was because a small number of users (less than 5% from what friends who work there have said) stored numerous terabytes of backups. This made the consumer service financially unviable for them (when you factor in all the other costs like support, infrastructure, bandwidth, and more) when they were charging $99 or less per year for their service. There will always be those that push things and ruin them for the larger majority.

I was thinking the same thing. Hosting thousands of libraries with ripped movies, I wonder if they could be held accountable?
[doublepost=1536697896][/doublepost]
To be clear though, the term "pirated" is a loaded term. I don't consider movies I ripped from DVDs/BRs that I purchased as pirated, I consider them fair-use copies (regardless of what the MPAA thinks, and this topic has been discussed ad nauseam). However, movies in peoples' libraries that came from torrents or other file-sharing services (if they didn't own a copy on another medium) I consider truly pirated.

Problem is, there's almost no way to distinguish between the two, and Amazon and other cloud services know this and obviously err on the side of the movie industry with their large cadre of copyright lawyers. Yes, Plex should've known this would be an issue.

That may be what you think, but the FBI thinks otherwise.

maxresdefault.jpg
 

BeatCrazy

macrumors 68040
Jul 20, 2011
3,056
1,842
Plex Cloud was never going to work without buy-in from the cloud services. In the beginning, Plex made it sound like they had some partnership with these Cloud services, but that was clearly not the case because user were getting their cloud accounts deleted, especially on Amazon.

The “cloud” part of Plex Cloud was really the compute/server piece, not the storage. And everyone assumes the storage part (which is out of Plex’s control) is what brought this whole thing down.

A couple of weeks ago, I made my own version of Plex Cloud, using a $5/month AWS virtual server + Google Teams drive for storage. Works well! Here’s the how-to I followed to set it up: https://www.techperplexed.ga/2017/04/part-1-creating-infinite-plex-server.html?m=1
 
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oneMadRssn

macrumors 603
Sep 8, 2011
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Europe
That may be what you think, but the FBI thinks otherwise.

View attachment 780703
That FBI warning is such BS. While it is technically true that infringement without monetary gain could be criminally illegal, it's a crazy narrow standard. The most common criminal infringement by a huge margin is through monetary gain. I studied this while in law school for a journal article I was helping write: I could not find a single instance of a conviction based solely on 17 USC 506(a)(1)(B) or (C) - they were all based at least in part on (A) which requires financial gain. Granted I was only looking at searchable databases on LexisNexis, so it's possible there are guilty pleas or something I couldn't easily find. Nevertheless, the FBI's threat to investigate criminal infringement that doesn't involve financial gain is laughable.

Also, there are a few cases (some that post-date the MPAA) that have held it is fair use to make archival copies of CDs or DVDs for the purposes of having a backup in case the original is destroyed (e.g., making a copy of a disk and never using it until the original is destroyed). Notably, more convenient use is not fair use (e.g., using a rip on a NAS because loading disks is inconvenient).

At the end of the day, I think most people that make personal copies don't have to worry at all. The harm is so de minimis that nobody will ever care.
 

aaronhead14

macrumors 65816
Mar 9, 2009
1,155
5,153
I'm happy about this. Plex Cloud was slow and virtually unusable in my testing. But having a personal Plex server at home is the best thing ever! It's much faster and more reliable than Plex Cloud. Glad that's what they're continuing to focus on.
 

smirk

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2002
685
50
Orange County, CA
Crashplan just discontinued their consumer service (to focus on business services). This was because a small number of users (less than 5% from what friends who work there have said) stored numerous terabytes of backups. This made the consumer service financially unviable for them (when you factor in all the other costs like support, infrastructure, bandwidth, and more) when they were charging $99 or less per year for their service. There will always be those that push things and ruin them for the larger majority.

At the risk of getting flamed, I had several terabytes of data backed up with Crashplan, but I didn't consider that as "pushing things"; they offered unlimited storage so I paid for the service and used it. I didn't exploit any loopholes or anything like that, it was all above board. It seems like if they couldn't maintain profitability with that policy then they should have charged more for additional storage, you know?

But Crashplan had other issues, too. They had that sluggish Java UI, and for years they kept promising a native Mac client without delivering. I've since moved to Backblaze and don't miss Crashplan at all.
 

Jaekae

macrumors 6502a
Dec 4, 2012
711
441
I think the subscription cost is what turned off most people. Too many of them nowadays.

Yeah even phone apps started with it, and many low costs subs become quite big monthly costs together.. horrible for consumers and the software companies. Have now adobe cloud and 3 streaming services and one sub for audio plugins. And thats the limit for me so all others that try sub pricing will never get a buy from me and think its same for others
 

KazKam

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2011
496
1,686
That may be what you think, but the FBI thinks otherwise.

View attachment 780703

Another loaded term: "unauthorized". The DMCA is contested over and over again on this point and with mixed results because "fair use", yet another loaded term, is so ambiguously defined. This is a matter for the courts, and so far only on a case-by-case basis, so the FBI and the MPAA are entitled to their interpretation, and so am I. My conscience is crystal clear on this matter.

Are you buying the right to watch a movie that happens to be on a particular medium, or are you buying a piece of media that happens to have a movie on it? I personally believe it's the former, and the studios show their hand by selling DVD/BR/DC multipacks, practically admitting that the medium is irrelevant to the rights. Problem is, DRM is a funky freakin' mess.
 

SeattleMoose

macrumors 68000
Jul 17, 2009
1,960
1,670
Der Wald
There was still a debate raging a couple years ago about the legality of ripping disks you own LEGALLY and paid for.
Anyone know if it is now legal to rip your OWN disks? And does anyone have the right to delete your ripped movies if you store them in the cloud?
 
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