The Pirate Bay Loses Appeal, Admins Sentenced to Prison Time
November 29, 2010 11:06 AM
comment(s) - last by
Fredrik Neij (right) and Peter Sunde (center) fought the law, but the law won. The pair have been sentenced to prison time by a Swedish appeals court for their role in creating the immensely popular site, The Pirate Bay.
The Pirate Bay remains one of the world's top torrent sites and is as active as ever, despite the media prosecutors' efforts.
To the brig, with ya, matie!
The bid by administrators of the world's largest torrent site,
The Pirate Bay
, to escape time in Swedish prison is at an end. An appeals court
a new ruling that is seen as largely unfavorable for the group and guarantees that they will serve prison time, if they stay in Sweden.
The ruling comes after nearly two years of legal conflict, which began when prosecutors filed charges against Fredrik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm, and Peter Sunde, who ran the site; and Carl Lundström, a Swedish businessman who through his businesses sold services to the site. The men were charged with promoting massive copyright infringement and crime, much as their site's name might suggest.
At the trial the group put up a spirited defense, but eventually were defeated in a court ruling. The results were unsurprising, given information that would later come to light. The presiding judge in the case was a
former member of a copyright protection organization
and reportedly receiving compensation in the past from media organizations.
With the judge firmly in their pocket, the plaintiffs -- Swedish subsidiaries of leading music and film companies, including Sony BMG, Universal Music, EMI and Warner Brothers; and international copyright attack-dog the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) (the parent of America's RIAA) -- secured a guilty verdict. The accused were
sentenced to a year in prison
each and ordered to repay 32 million crowns ($4.57M USD).
The Pirate Bay
leaders scoffed at the charges, saying that even considering the net value of their servers, that they had nowhere near the amount demanded. They quick appealed, on the grounds that the judge in the case had an inappropriate conflict of interest.
A Swedish Court of Appeals finally reached a ruling last Friday and delivered a relatively harsh final sentence against
The Pirate Bay
creators. It stated, "The appeals court, like the district court, finds that the service Pirate Bay has facilitated illegal file sharing in a way which is punishable for those who carried out the service."
The sentences of two of the admins and the site's financier were all reduced. Fredrik Neij's prison time was cut to 10 months, Peter Sunde's to 8 months, and Carl Lundstrom's was cut to four months. However, their fines were raised even higher to 46 million crowns ($6.57M USD). Like the recent verdict against U.S. citizen Jammie Thomas-Rassert, that punitive judgment virtually ensures that the accused will live in poverty for much of the remainder of their lives, if they remain within the nation (the exception being Lundstrom, who has substantial wealth).
The IFPI's battle against
The Pirate Bay
in Sweden closely mirrors its battle (via the RIAA) against
in the U.S. In October a U.S. court ordered
permanently taken offline
If there's a bit of good news for supporters of
The Pirate Bay
, it's that the verdict has seemingly done little to achieve the prosecutors' goal of damaging the site. The site is still online and is
as active as ever
. It is now registered in the Seychelles, an island nation known for its lose copyright laws. And rather than a small set of individuals, which could be prosecuted, the site is now run by a larger organization.
The leadership of Europe's Pirate Party, which supports loosening copyright laws, mocked the verdict. Pirate Party leader Rick Falkvinge while implying court corruption said that the ruling would do little to stop piracy. He states, "This case was politically motivated from the start and (the problem) must be solved politically. This doesn't mean anything for The Pirate Bay and it doesn't mean anything for similar sites. File sharing is increasing every day and the only thing this means is that more and more people will try to hide what they are doing on the Internet."
And recent data on piracy worldwide indicates that he's right.
In short, big media may get to chuckle at the misfortune of the piracy ringleaders who will soon be in the brig, but at the end of the day it's the millions of pirates worldwide who are enjoying the last laugh.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Moore's Law and Piracy
11/29/2010 5:25:34 PM
Agreed, star athletes are not doing anything obscene. They are simply getting their fair slice of the huge professional sports entertainment pie.
However, the analogy is still useful I think. The pro league sports (MLB, NFL, NBA, and I suppose you can include the NHL) got big solely because the means of broadcasting their games was limited. Limited airtime meant there was interest in finding the top players in the country, making teams, and pitting them against each other. The size of the tip of the pyramid which got broadcast was proportional to the amount of airtime.
As more bandwidth developed, college sports started seeing more TV time. Now that we have a cornucopia of broadcast bandwidth (via the Internet), people are starting to do things like record and broadcast things like high school games. Sure the players aren't as good, but the games are just as important to the kids who go to those schools and their parents; meaning the market for these types of broadcasts is nearly as large as for pro sports. People only have a finite time to watch sports, so as more attention is diverted to these smaller teams, it's going to come at the cost of the pro teams.
The same thing is going to happen to music/movies. The days of the global superstar publicized by global media mmoguls/studios are drawing to a close. More and more content is going to be produced independently by the "independent contractor" or "small business" equivalent of the music/movie studios. I already have a small cadre of webcomics and Youtube productions like "The Guild" which I follow.
“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith
Limewire Fought The Law, And The Law Won
October 27, 2010, 10:14 AM
Hurt Locker Suit, Web Takedowns Have No Effect on BitTorrent Traffic
July 6, 2010, 12:21 PM
Pirate Bay Trial Judge Admits He Was Member of Copyright Protection Org
April 24, 2009, 9:43 AM
Swedish Court Sends Pirate Bay Leaders to Brig, Takes Their Bounty
April 17, 2009, 9:30 AM
San Francisco's Market Street Receives Free Outdoor Wi-Fi
December 17, 2013, 11:14 AM
Facebook Announces Auto-Play Video Advertising in Your News Feed
December 17, 2013, 10:00 AM
NSA Debates Granting Snowden Amnesty if He Keeps His Mouth Shut, White House Says "Nope"
December 16, 2013, 1:17 PM
Amazon's New "Pantry" Service to Compete with Costco, Sam's Club
December 13, 2013, 11:26 AM
Quick Note: Former Googler Becomes Director of U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
December 12, 2013, 10:42 AM
AT&T Launches U-verse with GigaPower Network in Austin, Texas
December 11, 2013, 5:14 PM
Most Popular Articles
Report: Windows 8.2 Revives Start Menu, Runs Metro Apps in Desktop Mode
December 10, 2013, 2:56 PM
Chinese Media Puts Positive Spin on Its Smog Problem, Touts 5 "Benefits"
December 11, 2013, 12:39 PM
China's Lunar Rover Enters Orbit, Prepares for Historic Sat. Landing
December 13, 2013, 5:00 PM
The History of Normandy: How Nokia Plotted a Low-End Android Line
December 11, 2013, 8:12 PM
Metro-Enabled Firefox Browser Expected to Land After Two Years of Work
December 12, 2013, 5:21 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
Global Cyber Espionage Concerns Reveal Growing Cyber Armies
Nov 29, 2013, 11:04 AM
Is The Period Becoming an Expression of Anger?
Nov 26, 2013, 2:02 PM
NSA and Congress -- You Will Never Kill the Constitution, It's an Idea
Nov 10, 2013, 2:00 PM
AT&T Explores $100B+ USD Deal to Acquire Vodafone's European Operations
Nov 4, 2013, 7:34 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2013 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information