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February 22nd, 2012

Pirate Bay heads for (further) rough seas following UK High Court ruling

Pirate Bay heads for (further) rough seas following UK High Court ruling

Pirate BayFile-sharing site The Pirate Bay, aka as TPB, or ‘the galaxy’s largest BitTorrent network’, is likely to be walking the plank very soon, following a ruling by the UK High Court that the site breaches copyright laws. As a result it’s very likely that TPB will be blocked in the UK.

The court case resulted from a collective of record labels – including EMI, Polydor, and Warner – demanding that UK Internet Service Providers (ISPs) such as BT and Sky stop consumers from accessing the BitTorrent network to download and share copyrighted music.

In a written statement, the High Court’s Mr. Justice Arnold said: “The operators (of TPB) do authorise its users’ infringing acts of copying and communication to the public. They go far beyond merely enabling or assisting. I conclude that both users and the operators (of TPB) infringe the copyrights of the claimants.”

At this point TPB is not blocked and there is no injunction ordered. But the ruling is a clear indicator that it’s very likely to be blocked.

The blocking of file-sharing sites via ISPs is not a new path and nor is it a new path to Mr. Justice Arnold. Just last year he gave BT 14 days to block file-sharing site Newzbin2 after ruling infringement of ‘copyright on a grand scale’ in a case brought by a number of studios including Columbia, Disney, Fox, Paramount, Universal and Warner Bros.

This is a hot topic – whether you’re familiar with the players or not, everyone online witnessed the recent (and ongoing) war of words and website blackouts over the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA).

TPB’s owners were not in London or the court for the hearing. Earlier this month Sweden’s Supreme Court ruled that it would not grant leave to appeal in a criminal trial against TPB. This left Fredrik Neij, Peter Sunde and Carl Lundström, who ran the site, facing prison sentences and fines, despite the fact the site itself was not the focus of the trial and remains operational (for the time being). In early February the site changed its domain from ‘.org’ to the Swedish suffix ‘.se. According to TorrentFreak this was to prevent possible seizure of the domain by US authorities.

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June 18th, 2008

The AP Must Want Fewer Readers

The AP Must Want Fewer Readers

If there’s one main lesson that companies of all sizes need to learn about the evolving internet, it’s that you should never ever underestimate the power of angry bloggers. Dell learned this lesson the hard way a few years back, but has rebounding miraculously by engaging with the angry bloggers.

Well now bloggers have found a new enemy in none other than The Associated Press. Last week The AP sent notice to the Drudge Retort, a social news forum where any user can submit content, to remove multiple pages due to a surprisingly strict take on quotations. The letters from The AP pushed for the removal of some items with as few as 39 words of its material quoted.

The massive oversight by The AP is that sites like the Drudge Retort actually drive traffic to the original content. It comes as little surprise that this upset bloggers immensely and as quickly as the story broke, TechCrunch took a firm stance by banning any AP content from the site. TechCrunch’s Mike Arrington wrote, “here’s our new policy on A.P. stories: they don’t exist. We don’t see them, we don’t quote them, we don’t link to them. They’re banned until they abandon this new strategy.”

The AP recently followed up with a revised plan, but I’m afraid to link or quote them, so you’ll need to find the rest of this story on your own.

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