A long-running legal battle between Dutch ISPs and the local anti-piracy organization BREIN over blocking The Pirate Bay has concluded with a ruling in favor of BREIN. The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) said yesterday The Pirate Bay could be blocked because:
“Making available and managing an online platform for sharing copyright-protected works, such as ‘The Pirate Bay’, may constitute an infringement of copyright”
That summary, from the CJEU’s press release, doesn’t capture a key aspect of the case, which is that The Pirate Bay is not storing any copyright-protected works on its site, merely hosting links to torrents.
Pirate Bay founder Peter Sunde has a new privacy-oriented startup. Today he launches the domain registration service Njalla, which offers site owners full anonymity, shielding them from the prying eyes of outsiders. “Think of us as your friendly drunk (but responsibly so) straw person that takes the blame for your expressions.”
At the end of 2014 Swedish police confiscated dozens of servers which many believed to belong to The Pirate Bay. The authorities later confirmed that an investigation involving copyright crimes was ongoing, but not much progress has been reported since. According to the prosecutor, the case isn’t getting any stronger, as the statute of limitations for several key crimes is expiring.
Poorly crafted court orders threaten the open Internet, Cloudflare says. (…)
“This is part of the danger you get into when you start to censor the Internet or you get orders to pull things down,” Kramer said. “It may not be so easy to limit access to a specific domain,” or to make sure a block applies only in a certain country.
Today Svea Hovrätt (a regional court in the Swedish three-level court system) began the case about the domain names piratebay.se and thepiratebay.se. The government (represented by public prosecutor Fredrik Ingblad) is making its’ case to seize the two domains. The case also concerns the domain name administrator – Stiftelsen för internetinfrastruktur (IIS) – as a possible accomplice to copyright infringements.
Last spring the district court of Stockholm decided that Pirate Bay founder Fredrik Neij no longer has the right to the domain names. However, it did not seize them for the government, but left them in the care of IIS. Nor did it find that IIS had been part of criminal activities.
An interesting point is if a domain name can be deemed to be a tool for criminal activities — or if it’s just a name, an address.
The trial will go on for two days and a verdict will be read in a few weeks time.
The streaming technology freshly embedded into The Pirate Bay is under fire from the Hollywood-backed anti-piracy outfit BREIN. Torrents-Time is an “illegal application” according to BREIN’s lawyer but in a response the group behind the software warns the Hollywood-funded group to back off or face criminal proceedings for extortion.
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