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Say what you will about The Pirate Bay and its admins, but you can't say they lack a sense of humor.  (Source: The Pirate Bay)
Arggh, the ship isn't sunk yet!

Many times the good things in life just don't last.  That may yet be the case with The Pirate Bay.  For years internet users worldwide used the site to get their music, TV, and movie fix.  Some of the torrents were legal, others were orphaned works (technically illegal to share), and still others were blatant examples of infringement.  But all these torrents had one thing in common -- they brought people across the world together through enjoyable experiences.

However, yesterday the legal woes of the world's largest torrent site forced it to temporarily go offline, signalling a potential end to those happy times.  The site's legal crisis first began when Swedish courts found the site's admins guilty of copyright infringement and ordered them jailed and fined over $3.6M USD.

The site was purchased by Sweden's Global Gaming Factory, which made a bid to make the site legit under a rather nebulous plan.  Now it appears that bid -- and the site -- may be in jeopardy thanks to the aggressive legal action of copyright protection organizations.

The MPAA, RIAA, and IFPI sued the ISP that provided service to The Pirate Bay's ISP and won.  That ISP was ordered on Monday by a Swedish court to take down the site or face daily fines of $70,000 USD.  The site was quickly taken down Monday, only to pop back up after a few hours, only to be taken down yet again.

The site owners, who are currently appealing the original judgement, write, "The good people at the MAFIAA decided to sue. Not TPB [The Pirate Bay], not the owners of TPB. Not even TPBs ISP. They decided to sue TPBs ISPs ISP.  And you know what? They won. They made a court believe their #lies and they made them force the ISPs ISP to shut down access to TPB."

"
The MAFIAA has spent millions of dollars and endless amounts of time to get this ban in order.  Our guess is that they also bribed a bit to get it since it violates so many laws not only in Sweden but also in the EU, not to mention violations against human rights. And what do they have to show for it? [Three] hours of partial downtime."

The Pirate Bay admins refer to the MPAA, RIAA, and IFPI, collectively, as MAFIAA due to the organizations' reputation for resorting to at times thuggish legal tactics.  Whatever name you know these organizations as, it is clear that they're on a roll, with massive jury verdicts over U.S. citizens Jammie Rassett-Thomas and Joel Tenenbaum, and securing an order to takedown of the world's largest torrent site.

However, The Pirate Bay admins remain defiant and determined.  As of this morning the site was back online, with no apparent service interruptions.  The admins are now offering a new T-Shirt for sale on the home page mocking the copyright protection organizations.  The shirt reads, "I spent months of time and millions of dollars to close down The Pirate Bay and all I'll get is this beautiful t-shirt!"

Further, the true impact of the takedown and other potential future takedowns may be minimized by the spread of a recently released, easily accessible, archive of the entire site, including all its torrents, written in SQLite3.


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RE: my 2 cents
By gstrickler on 8/25/2009 3:36:58 PM , Rating: 2
While I agree with most of your post, I think you're off of your numbers.

quote:
that by paying $1.30 a song on iTunes

A typical CD has an average of 10 tracks and sells for $10-$18 USD. Buying 10 selected tracks ($.69-$1.29 each) on iTunes is $6.90-$12.90, or $$9-$10 for most albums ($6-$20 range). Not only is that 1/2-2/3 the price of a CD, you get to pick and choose which tracks you want. How many CD's have you purchased for 5 or fewer tracks?

quote:
In a world of digital media where physical product and the associated distribution/production costs don't exist, there is no reason a digital album should cost more than $5.
The costs of recording/mixing/engineering are still high, as are the costs of advertising/promotion. The cost of operating a data center with sufficient storage and bandwidth to handle the downloads is also high. I don't know specific numbers, but I suspect $5 for an album is on the low side when all the costs are accounted for if you still want the artists to get paid. $6-$8 is probably closer, but that's just my guess (and I'm not in the recording industry, so I could be way off).

While it's certainly not as high for an album that sells a lot of copies, the recording/mixing/engineering costs are fixed and fairly high, so they lose money on a lot of albums that don't sell a lot of copies and have to make up for it on ones that do sell well.


RE: my 2 cents
By griffhamlin on 8/27/2009 3:18:46 AM , Rating: 2
i , for one, always listen the entire album i bought.
simply because i don't like shit , and i have ears .


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