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The Pirate Bay's leadership were sentenced by a Swedish court to a year in jail and over $3M USD in damages for assisting copyright infringement. The defiant leadership announced a press conference, pictured here, to discuss their planned appeal of the verdict.  (Source: rstmfnvideo/Flickr)
Despite a spirited fight, Sweden's most high profile pirates get sent to the jail

The Pirate Bay was the world's largest torrent site; feeding millions of users downloading legally obtained and illegally infringed works.  It was the latter that cause the admins’ home nation of Sweden to drop the hammer and announce conspiracy charges and other charges against the feisty pirates. The parties involved included Peter “brokep” Sunde Kolmisoppi, Gottfrid “anakata” Svartholm, Fredrik “TiAMO” Neij, as well as Carl Lundström, who hosted the site via his company, Rix Telecom.

The groups once had dreams of founding their own country, but the proud pirates fell, facing the legal fight of their lives.  From telling the lawyers of the
International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) who were assisting Swedish authorities to "go screw themselves" to releasing intriguing figures that 80 percent of their torrents were legal, the pirates put up a spirited fight indeed.  For a time, it seemed they had the prosecution on the ropes -- they had to alter their charges against the group, faced with difficulty proving their current case.

However, in the end it was not enough, and the Stockholm district court found the four pirates guilty of assisting copyright infringement sending them to a year of hard time in jail.  To add insult to injury, the court also ordered them to give up their bounty, ordering SEK 30 million ($3.59M USD) in damages.

The three week trial concluded with a somewhat surprising victory for the prosecution.  The verdict stated that the Pirate Bay leadership was guilty of "promoting other people's infringements of copyright laws."

The Swedish officials have discovered that their plans to place the feisty group behind bars might be put on hold though, as the group plans an appeal.  The Pirate Bay states, "This will not be the final decision, only the first before the losing party will appeal. It will have no real effect on anything besides setting the tone for the debate."

Mr. Kolmisoppi (brokep) twittered this morning urging Pirate Bay fans to stay calm, and noted that there would be no interruption in their service or their fight against the charges.  He wrote, "Nothing will happen to TPB, us personally or file-sharing whatsoever."

The leadership held a special press conference for the media at the Museum of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden.  At the conference were Rasmus Fleischer of Piratbyrån, Sara Sajjad of Piratbyrån, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg (aka Anakata), Peter Sunde (aka Brokep) and Magnus Eriksson of Piratbyrån. Fredrik Neij (TiAMO) and the fourth defendant Carl Lundström were not in attendance.

A defiant Mr. Warg challenged Sweden's leadership to try to stop the site, stating, "What are they going to do? They have already failed to take the site down once. Let them fail again.  It has its own life without us."

As to the order to surrender his supposed bounty, he states, "I already have more debt in Sweden than I will ever be able to pay off. I don’t even live here. They are welcome to send me a bill. I will frame it and put it on the wall."

Asked if he viewed his campaign as fight for technology, Mr. Kolmisoppi responded, "I think it is something in between actually. We have a personal liability for this, we have a personal risk which has some impact on our feelings. But definitely it’s not defending the technology, it’s more like defending the idea of the technology and that’s probably the most important thing in this case - the political aspect of letting the technology be free and not controlled by an entity which doesn’t like technology."  

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RE: All I can think of is...
By artemicion on 4/17/2009 3:33:37 PM , Rating: 2
Can't fault the industry for selling what people are buying. You may think Fergie and Spears are crap (not saying your wrong either), but people are buying it, so I hardly think that the record industry is doing poorly because of Fergie and Spears.

And while you're launching your highly subjective hate missles at Fergie and Spears, why not send some toward Sesame Street. I always thought their jingles were rather simplistic and infantile. Surely nothing as masterful as Dylan or the Beatles. Shame on every person who buys a copy of Elmo's Christmas songs when they could be spending that money on Abbey Road!

RE: All I can think of is...
By Reclaimer77 on 4/17/2009 4:49:56 PM , Rating: 2
You may think Fergie and Spears are crap (not saying your wrong either), but people are buying it


Dude the last time Britney sold anything, I was in HIGH SCHOOL. Over 10 years ago. Fergie and Spears sales are in the tank. What are you talking about ?

RE: All I can think of is...
By artemicion on 4/17/2009 6:54:27 PM , Rating: 3
Ok replace Fergie and Spears with whatever pop artist you hate that is currently at the top of the charts (Miley Cyrus? Akon? I neither know nor care). Excuse me for continuing to use the example that was originally put forth by the previous post in order to maintain continuity.

RE: All I can think of is...
By sheh on 4/18/2009 11:32:53 PM , Rating: 2
Spears' last album (end of 2008) sold something like 2 million copies, and the tour that followed has already made 25 million US$.

RE: All I can think of is...
By SiliconDoc on 4/25/2009 6:41:54 AM , Rating: 2
Remember when people kept telling us news has become entertainment, and they are just giving the people what they want...
Now the news is dropping like a rock...the traditional channels are dying, the traditional papers are dying, magazines, dying...
IMO what happened was their sickening corruption and lying ways were exposed - and that is leading to their destruction and death.
Must be the same in the music industry - the old powerful heads like wall of sound hairball Phil was in court for murder - the communications age brought the lies and tricks and walls and shenanigans to the attention of the music lovers, and they rejected the pravda top 40 and the control of the giant labels.
Their evil, lying eyes sold them out - and people became disgusted with them -
Same thing for our government here in the USA - they really, really blew it - their 20 year subprime crime spree was followed by another insta crime and coverup spree that has been rocking the entire world - and exposing that they were all in on it together - the entire world that is - the top tier...
Downside looks like in the case of the biggest criminals and the biggest, costliest, in our face crime spree humanity has ever known or been witness to on a worldwide basis, they are going to get away with it, and when doing so, lock in a good 20 more years of crime...
Fergie and Spears might lose power and sway and get replaced, but real disgraces at the helm feeding us all this crap, it appears, shall remain.

"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer

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