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Pirate Bay Trial Ends In Jail Sentences

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the even-non-commercial-use dept.

The Courts 1870

myvirtualid writes "The Globe and Mail reports that the Pirate Bay defendants were each sentenced Friday to one year in jail. According to the article, 'Judge Tomas Norstrom told reporters that the court took into account that the site was "commercially driven" when it made the ruling. The defendants have denied any commercial motives behind the site.' The defendants said before the verdict that they would appeal if they were found guilty. 'Stay calm — Nothing will happen to TPB, us personally or file sharing whatsoever. This is just a theater for the media,' Mr. Sunde said Friday in a posting on social networking site Twitter." Update: 04/17 12:16 GMT by T : Several updates, below. Thanks to all the readers who have sent in various other links related to this news, including the dozens who noted the BBC's version of the story. Reader a_n_d_e_r_s submits a link to the verdict itself (large PDF, in Swedish), and writes "The sentencing is not unexpected (max verdict is 2 years in prison) and the damages is about 1/3 of what the companies that has requested damages had requested. Notice that no punitive damages is applicable." Reader yendor writes, "More details are coming and The Pirate Bay will be holding a press conference at 15.00 CET.

HakanRoswallGoatse points out that besides the jail term imposed (and barring the results of planned appeals), "the four men will have to pay $3,6 million in compensation for lost sales to 17 media companies. Among them are: Warner Bros. Entertainment, MGM Pictures, Columbia Pictures Industries, Twentieth Century Fox Film, Sony BMG, Universal, EMI, Blizzard Entertainment, Sierra Entertainment, and Activision."

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first (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609275)

first

Let me be the first one to say it ... (4, Insightful)

itsme1234 (199680) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609277)

... it sucks.

Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609299)

Word! It totally sucks. But on the bright side, TPB shall live on! They will never stop it!!! There's millions of us willing to run servers and go to prison if need be!

Free the software! Free yourself! Fight for your right to party!

Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (5, Insightful)

Rou7_beh (1528491) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609305)

Well it was pretty predictable. This is what judicial systems are made for! Putting people the state does not like in jail.

Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (5, Insightful)

crosbie (446285) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609501)

One could imagine a trial in New York, 90 years ago that would probably find a similar crew guilty of directing tourists to speakeasy clubs, i.e. assisting in the sale of liquor.

Prohibition was abolished 14 years later.

Not long now...

The questions that come to mind (5, Interesting)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609371)

The questions that come to mind:

1- Will Google be sued next (filetype:torrent anyone?)
2- Where can we donate to help pay the fine?

Re:The questions that come to mind (4, Insightful)

oneirophrenos (1500619) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609513)

2- Where can we donate to help pay the fine?

You really want to subsidize the recording and movie industries with your money?

Re:The questions that come to mind (1)

Cesa (972909) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609537)

There's no need to donate yet, this is just the first instance, the case will most likely not be completely over for another couple of years.

Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (4, Interesting)

notionalTenacity (1526919) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609439)

From tfa, they were found guilty for "providing a website with ... sophisticated search functions, simple download and storage capabilities, and through the tracker linked to the website." Brin and Page and the others at Google better not go to sweden.

Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609441)

Not really. In fact I would say that it couldn't be better. There is an EUelection comming up soon and if file sharers gets the same punishment as a sombody that robs you in the street, people may change their votes, and vote for parties that care for personal freedom.

It would of course be sad if they need to go to jail, but there will of course be an appeal so that is not decided yet. As for the fines, I guess there will be some kind of fund set up for this where you can contribute. My guess is that it would be possible tor raise more money than the fines among people who care for freedom on the internet and in your life.

Retaliation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609449)

Let me be the first to say this is when I start showing my grandmother and everyone I know how to torrent. No prefixed verdict can change that.

a little too sure? (1)

cpicon92 (1157705) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609283)

How can they be so sure they're not going to jail? With the amount of money being put into making sure that they do it seems more than likely that they will even if they appeal.

sigh (1)

malkir (1031750) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609287)

even if it is just for the media, it's a bummer they had to be treated like criminals

Re:sigh (0, Flamebait)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609549)

No the real bummer is that so many people like you think that they are not criminals. Last time I checked, its illegal to take something that is not yours and you didn't pay for. And it has been that way for thousands of years.

And to any response saying "But they are only providing the links". Give me a fucking break. You fully well know what they are trying to accomplish with their site. Don't pretend like its something its not. It is for encouraging piracy plain and simple.

RE: Usenet (0, Offtopic)

Archon-X (264195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609289)

I'm still constantly surprised to see people using TBP for their downloads - especially when this buts up against articles like: "Malware bundled with torrents".

I've been using http://www.bitnabber.com [bitnabber.com] for the last year, downloading at 2MBit over SSL. Usenet for the win..

Re: Usenet (2, Informative)

Ma8thew (861741) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609309)

Most people encrypt their bittorrent traffic these days. My client is set to allow only secure connections.

Re: Usenet (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609511)

WTF does that have to do with malware-infected torrents?

Re: Usenet (4, Informative)

Xest (935314) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609539)

And that achieves what exactly?

The MPAA/RIAA/Police can still join the filesharing swarm you're connected to and see that you're sharing the copyrighted materials.

At best encrypting it just stops your ISP from easily seeing what exactly you're transferring.

SSL USENET allows you to connect to a trusted source and no one else (and that's the key difference, P2P software means you're connecting to untrusted sources) whilst allowing your connection to be encrypted and hence the contents invisible to your ISP too.

The only weakness with USENET is whether the MPAA/RIAA are successful in going after long established USENET providers like Giganews too like they have The Pirate Bay but at least whilst they don't you're safe as an individual whereas with P2P on public swarms you are not safe as an individual.

Re: Usenet (5, Funny)

badfish99 (826052) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609343)

The first rule of Usenet is: you do not talk about Usenet.

Re: Usenet (1)

Archon-X (264195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609405)

Aw snap :|
That said, it's been getting some attention recently (suits filed against NZB sites). Reality is though, the big Anti Piracy ISPs.. are all propagating usenet ;)

First round of Pirate Bay Trials (2, Informative)

luftskibet (1529919) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609291)

According to Dagens Nyheter the sentence is not only jail as claimed, but also a fine of 30 million euros.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609315)

30 million swedish kroner, which is aprox 3 mill euro

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (5, Informative)

Xest (935314) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609317)

No, it's 30 million Swedish Kroner, that's just under 3 million Euros.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1)

luftskibet (1529919) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609333)

True :) Got my currencies wrong...

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1)

notionalTenacity (1526919) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609323)

I read 30 million kroner, which is about 2.7million euro. Still, if you are just a couple of random guys either is plenty big enough to bankrupt you.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609379)

One of them is a millionaire, the other three have at least some assets from the companies they own. But even if they don't have the cash to pay it, who cares? Boo hoo.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (4, Informative)

vivaoporto (1064484) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609331)

Not euros but Swedish crowns, what converts to about $3.58 million, or 2.7 million euros

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609351)

Make that 30 million Swedish krona's, or ~2.7M euro's.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1)

Rou7_beh (1528491) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609407)

torrentfreak puts it at $3,620,000, around 3 million euros.

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1)

redcaboodle (622288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609437)

30M Swedish crowns - not Euros. In Euros it's something like 1.3M - still ridiculous, but they are going to appeal anyway.

Do you think TPB can get a government bailout or weren't they wilful enough for that?

Re:First round of Pirate Bay Trials (1)

a_n_d_e_r_s (136412) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609467)

Its not a fine but a restoration of damages. All the money will go to the companies owning the rights to the files that was part of the court case. They had asked for 110 MSEK but got about 30MSEK or about 3.5MUSD.

Good tactic ? (2, Insightful)

snfnstm (1534657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609297)

Can someone explain how keeping the site alive would be a good strategy for winning the appeal? Especially the "Nothing will will happen to file sharing" part.

Re:Good tactic ? (5, Insightful)

silentace (992647) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609357)

If you take the site down then your admitting you did something wrong. I don't know much about the case, but thats how i see it.

Re:Good tactic ? (1)

meist3r (1061628) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609457)

No one proved to them that they actually endorsed or supported illegal filesharing activity. The examples that the prosecution used were either proven to not use the piratebay tracker at all or were simply researched so badly that they had to be dropped as evidence altogether. From a legal perspective no one has made ANY points against the piratebay so far. There are so many holes in that verdict it will be like cutting swiss cheese.

Theatre? (5, Insightful)

MosesJones (55544) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609313)

Are they getting a bit delusional? Calling it theatre after being sent to prison for a year doesn't sound like theatre it sounds like hard time and the $2.4m fine doesn't look too much like theatre.

Whether you agree or not with the judgement its very hard to describe imprisonment and multi-million dollar fines as theatre for the media. I worry that they've drunk a little too much of the Kool-Aid.

Re:Theatre? (5, Interesting)

dedioste (797427) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609433)

Ok, everybody was dreaming thet they were going to be considered "innocent" and such.
But i personally see this outcome as a *big* win.
If the so colled four "bosses" of the Internet file sharing, accused by the industry of Billion dollars of losses and working as a team, can get away with first verdict of a year in jail and a fine of 750k $ each, this means that the court perfectly recognized the extreme differences between the Industry concept of damages due to not buying the records and the real thing ("Not every downloaded copy is a copy non sold")

From this verdict, we should think that a single individual, with a normal downloading activity, will be never hold responsible for any damage to the music/video industry.

Re:Theatre? (2, Informative)

Erik Soderstrom (727264) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609557)

I believe he meant that THIS verdict is just a theatre for the media because this verdict is not acted upon until all the instances has been worked through. This was "TingsrÃtten", next is "HovrÃtten" (which is where they can appeal), and if that fails, they can apply for a ruling by "HÃgsta domstolen" (The Supreme Court), and The Supreme Court will need to get clarifications and additional comments from the European Court of Jusice (EU) which Sweden is a member of. So; this verdict is not the final outcome of this story...

YEAH!! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609321)

Finally those pesky kids are in jail! We will have monstrous profit this year!!! No more STEALING of our property! ... Next we will sue any blog that does spoilers or bad movie reviews as they can harm our buiseness, even more. Bad movie reviews can STEAL from us almost $78.9bn every year!! We must act quickly!!

Re:YEAH!! (0, Redundant)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609409)

If you actually bothered to read the article you would have noticed that they were found guilty of copyright infringement, not stealing.

Re:YEAH!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609443)

WOOOSH

Re:YEAH!! (1, Insightful)

AlterRNow (1215236) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609445)

Despite not infringing any copyright. Grrreat.

Re:YEAH!! (4, Informative)

a_n_d_e_r_s (136412) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609495)

Actually they were found guilty of helping to commit copyright infringement and not infringement per se.

Re:YEAH!! (1)

beowulfcluster (603942) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609471)

Your post is a whoosh one but even then, if you'd read the article you would have noticed they were found guilty of helping others commit copyright violations, not copyright infringement.

Re:YEAH!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609531)

Hey, you've noticed that whooshing sound?

Re:YEAH!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609561)

No, they were convicted of INCITEMENT to copyright infringement. Which is another level of ridiculousness in itself.

appeal? (2, Insightful)

advocate_one (662832) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609325)

they'll find it hard when right on the tail of this guilty verdict, there'll be a motion to seize their assets freeze the bank accounts and close the domain down... and they'll have to fight it all from behind bars with very limited access to the external world...

Re:appeal? (5, Informative)

boaworm (180781) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609377)

Both parties have already made statements that they will appeal if lost, even before the verdict came. This was the first level of Swedish legal system, now it will progress upp to "HovrÃtten", and from that very likely to the Supreme Court.

This case really has to go all the way given that it is the first case of its type, and that a prejudicating ruling must be available for the future.

Re:appeal? (5, Informative)

skulgnome (1114401) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609403)

Doesn't work that way. Even if they didn't appeal, the Swedish prisons are full -- you actually have to queue to serve your sentence, and violent criminals always skip ahead of the queue.

Besides, they're going to appeal. During that time the sentence cannot be implemented as this wasn't something like murder or treason where immediate implementation would be appropriate. And as you say yourself: putting someone in jail severely hinders their chances of appealing.

Come down from your stupid-ass trip. It makes you look silly.

Re:appeal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609411)

not really since if their intention appeal is filed in timely fasion (within the next 24-48 hours) they can tag an injunction on it to stop all that happening

Re:appeal? (1, Informative)

Zedrick (764028) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609451)

Behind bars? They're going to appeal. They won't serve any jail time or have to pay anything until after this case have been decided by Högsta domstolen, or Hovrätten if it goes that far. And that will take years.

Disgraceful (5, Insightful)

Crookdotter (1297179) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609327)

but expected. A good question is - will this stop anyone from filesharing at all?

Re:Disgraceful (1)

dpeters1 (1021959) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609359)

I will have to change the homepage on the home theater PC from piratebay to mininova : (

Re:Disgraceful (1)

JJP (26494) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609551)

Yeah, great idea. And where do you think mininova gets the majority of its torrents from? Right, the piratebay!

What the fucking fuck? (3, Insightful)

Oxygen99 (634999) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609509)

The people who run the Pirate Bay have been jailed for "assisting making available copyrighted content", meaning that they linked to copyrighted material? Fuck. That's the very basis of the internet. How can this judgement stand? If this is upheld, none of us are safe. Not Youtube, not Google, not anyone. Regardless of the rights or wrongs of file sharing, how can people be jailed for just linking to material? This is about the worst decision the courts could have made. Fuck you Sweden. Fuck you IFPI and fuck you all the recording artists that are signed to the companies who belong to you. I hope you all rot. It hurts but I'll never give you another unit of my hard earned currency again. I had no issue with paying for music I liked as long as you didn't make me pay for music I didn't. The internet allowed me to do that with greater freedom than ever before and now you jail people who facilitate my search for good music. You've already shut down the OLGA resource, denying thousands of would be guitarists a valuable resource for learning, you've already ripped thousands of music videos from youtube, and now you do this. Well thankyou. A better illustration of the way corporate whores set the legal policy of elected governments I could not find. Not that you'll care because you've brainwashed an entire generation into thinking your reality is the only reality. A generation who grow up believing sharing is wrong. Well. Good luck with that. Eventually you and all your kind will bleed yourself dry and when that happens, I'll make a point of playing poor quality MP3s of popular chart music over your graves and laugh at the irony of the damage you've wrought to the internet in order to protect the artistic integrity of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera.

Jesus. I made a joke on here a few days ago using a line from an Alanis Morrisette song. I'll probably be next up for a stint in the big house.

Re:Disgraceful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609527)

but expected. A good question is - will this stop anyone from filesharing at all?

Actually, I'm gonna fileshare more, as a compensation.
Every honest man should.

Good (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609335)

But only because the Pirate Bay act like obnoxious little pricks constantly. If they really are on a crusade to liberate the world of "the shackles of copyright", then perhaps they should consider conducting themselves in a more mature manner, so as their cause can be taken more seriously.

Is there possibly anything we can do? (2, Interesting)

SolitaryMan (538416) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609341)

OK, now I'm really, really pissed off!!!

But the real question is: what can I do? What can *we* do?

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1)

VShael (62735) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609393)

If all 20 million users on the pirate bay coughed up 50 cents, we'd deal with the fine.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (2, Interesting)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609397)

For starters maybe we can all donate a little bit to pay their fine. I hope there's some way to do it at least.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (3, Informative)

abigsmurf (919188) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609413)

Unless you have/gain Swedish citizenship; Very little, Just as it should be.

This is a Swedish court making a judgement under Swedish law. As much as we may not like it, we don't have a right to dictate what other countries should be doing.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609517)

As much as we may not like it, we don't have a right to dictate what other countries should be doing.

I thought that was what the US have been doing for several years allready ?

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1)

Haiyadragon (770036) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609421)

We can ban major commercial movies and music. Neither buy, nor go the theatre nor download. Completely switch to books, free/small films and free music.

If enough people do it (which won't happen), it could make a significant impact. Maybe it could even change some minds. Of course it'll also kill the pirate movement, but that's a small price as far as I'm concerned.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1)

Pecisk (688001) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609507)

Run for parlament in your country and make people aware about copyright industry aka mob. It is just simple.

Yes, it requires more job than just downloading newest movie via torrents. Even starting with ignoring mainstream multimedia stuff would rock. Make aware to your favorite bands that unless they have some sane independent publisher you won't have deal with them. Etc.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609521)

Buy things instead of refusing to pay for them?

I feel like some kind of revolutionary when I have to say that.

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (1)

migla (1099771) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609529)

1. In Sweden you can buy your broadband from bahnhof, who says they won't be able to provide names of infringers since they don't keep the logs: http://www.thelocal.se/18882/20090416/ [thelocal.se]

2. You can also vote against the bourgeoisie in the next elections. The biggest party, Moderaterna, promised something along the lines of that they would not "chase an entire generation of youth". The ipred law is imo an obvious breaking of that promise by the right alliance parties.

3. Share using usb sticks, mediaplayers, phones, whatever, whenever and wherever. What are they gonna do about the sneakernet?

Re:Is there possibly anything we can do? (3, Informative)

muuh-gnu (894733) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609555)

If youre living in europe, go out and vote for your local Pirate Party this summer in the european elections.

If youre motivated, become a paying/donating member. If youre even more motivated, donate your spare time and become a Pirate party activist, talk to people in streets, get them to care, get them to vote.

We cant win if we're state-forced to play by media industry financed/bought rules and laws. The current worldwide situation regarding copyright and for-profit censorship is absolutely unsatisfactory. The reason for this is the organisation and funding advantage the media industry has over ordinary citizens. This way, they are able to simply buy laws we as citizens then have to abide, laws designed to make them money. Its ridiculous but it works simply for the fact that they are waaaay more organized and ruthless than us.

So whatever you do, get fucking organized. Not locally, large fucking scale.

The pirate party (at least in europe, where we have a actually working multi party system, sorry US) is one possible way to reach a meaningful state of organisation, if you have a better solution, spread the word.

Further info on the verdict (5, Informative)

arkhan_jg (618674) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609345)

Frederik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Carl Lundstrom and Peter Sunde were sentenced to a year in jail each. They were also ordered to pay 30m kronor total ($3.6m) in damages. The damages were awarded to a number of entertainment companies, including Warner Bros, Sony Music Entertainment, EMI, and Columbia Pictures. The news was broken early by Peter Sunde aka brokep [twitter.com] via twitter, from a "trustworthy source".

A round-up of the arguments in court has already been discussed [slashdot.org] on slashdot, and the BBC has some thoughts [bbc.co.uk] on what happens next.

The site itself is on servers outside Sweden, and has sufficient funds to remain operational for some time. In combination with the appeal against the verdict already pledged by the men, the site itself should remain operational for now.

Re:Further info on the verdict (1)

averner (1341263) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609525)

and the BBC has some thoughts [bbc.co.uk] on what happens next.

This was always about awareness and education.

More like attempted brainwashing. If people become truly aware of what's going on then I doubt the MAFIAA will be too happy.

A sudden gust of reality (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609347)

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Reality 1, Armchair Lawyers 0.

Couldn't have happened to nicer people.

Where can we read the actual ruling?

KM.

Industry wins in court of law (2, Insightful)

Presto Vivace (882157) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609353)

loses in the court of public opinion. The entertainment industry is continuing with a policy of thud and blunder. It does not have to be this way. Even for those such as myself who consider that they Pirate Bay crowd is unable to draw the distinction between free speech and free beer, this victory will not go past the court room. As for the file sharing community, this whole idea that changes in technology makes laws obsolete needs to go.

Google does the SAME thing, but no one cares. (5, Insightful)

VShael (62735) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609361)

Search in google "filetype:torrent Wolverine" and see what it gets you.

From the article, the guys don't seem worried. Appeals are forthcoming.

Google (5, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609365)

Damn! Now all TPB users will have to use Google to find their torrents.

And then Google will fall too and...

Re:Google (1)

the_one(2) (1117139) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609481)

The trial wasn't really about the searching for torrrents bit of tpb. It was more about the trackers.

They claimed they made little money from it... (1, Insightful)

carvell (764574) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609373)

From Torrentfreak [torrentfreak.com] : "Neither has it been shown that Fredrik made any money from the site argued Nilsson. There was some advertising revenue generated by the site, he said, but this went to cover the site's operating costs."

The court doesn't hand out fines that can't be paid back - it's not in the court's interest.

Considering the $3.5m fine, were the founders perhaps not telling the whole truth about how much money they made from the site?

Re:They claimed they made little money from it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609431)

http://thepiratebay.org/special/2009epicwinanyhow.php

I can see both sides (1)

Shrike82 (1471633) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609375)

I mean technically TPB doesn't actually host any copyright materials at all, and technically the system can be used to exchange legal files for honest purposes.

On the other hand, TPB is used mostly (almost exclusively I'd say) to exchange music and videos illegally. There are methods in place to remove illegal material, but for every torrent you remove ten more rise in its place. No-one should be able to say "TPB was designed to facilitate legal file-sharing" without adding "...but in reality it's just a site to get movies and music for free".

Whatever your views, this ruling (unless successfully appealed) has just set a huge precident for future court cases. I'm sure the prosecutors are already taking aim at other large torrent sites...

Re:I can see both sides (1)

Narcocide (102829) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609455)

Yea totally. They should have named it thefortobaccouseonlybay.org.

Re:I can see both sides (1)

beowulfcluster (603942) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609545)

On the other hand, TPB is used mostly (almost exclusively I'd say) to exchange music and videos illegally.

Do you know this for a fact? One of the defendants said during the trial that this is actually not the case. I can't find the quote now and it was in a swedish article anyway so make of that what you will. I just think you should be careful about stating things you don't really know enough about as facts.

Snrk... (5, Funny)

800DeadCCs (996359) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609383)

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8003799.stm [bbc.co.uk]

Laughed hard at this:
"Speaking to the BBC, the chairman of industry body the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) John Kennedy said the verdict sent out a clear message.
"These guys weren't making a principled stand, they were out to line their own pockets."

Oh yeah, and he isn't?

So, basically... it's the end of the web (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609391)

So, let's say I run a website on which users could provide a link [theglobeandmail.com] to copyrighted material [theglobeandmail.com] , and then a user goes ahead and copies that material in a way that violates that copyright. Furthermore, I make it easy for users to search for those links or associated information describing them, and I make some money from the site by having advertisements on it. At that point I could be charged and face potential jail time?

Wow. Will there be any websites hosted in Sweden after this?

Start a petition to make linking legal again (5, Interesting)

noddyxoi (1001532) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609401)

Anybody wanting to start a petition to the european parliement to revert the decision/(make linking legal) ?

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/parliament/public/staticDisplay.do?id=49 [europa.eu]

"One of the fundamental rights of European citizens: Any citizen, acting individually or jointly with others, may at any time exercise his right of petition to the European Parliament under Article 194 of the EC Treaty."

Re:Start a petition to make linking legal again (1)

MtlDty (711230) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609535)

Seemed like a great idea, until I read this:

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/parliament/public/staticDisplay.do?id=49&pageRank=4&language=EN [europa.eu]
It cannot, however, override decisions taken by competent authorities within Member States. As the European Parliament is not a judicial authority, it can neither pass judgement on, nor revoke decisions taken by, the Courts of law in Member States. Petitions seeking such courses of action are inadmissible.

I'm definately wanting to get involved though if someone can find a good approach.

Is there any more information on the verdict? (5, Interesting)

Xest (935314) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609417)

During the trial it was pretty clear the prosecution had no idea about what they were actually accusing the defendants of because they simply didn't understand the technology. Effectively throughout the trial they were unable to prove their case at all. What I'm interested to know is why - despite the prosecution failing to really prove their case, only to speculate on various things - this decision was reached.

In a way I kind of expected them to lose before the trial began because I presumed big media had spent the time and effort to find countless valid legal arguments, evidence and technicalities to get them on, but once the trial started it seemed much less likely as the prosecution was clueless and provided neither of these three things which is again why I'm baffled about the outcome. The decision doesn't appear to have been made based upon the court case at all hence why I'm interested to know if there is any further information from the court to explain how they came to this conclusion based on the court case.

I think I know what the answer probably is, that it really was about political pressure or bribery, but I'd like to give Swedish courts the benefit of the doubt first and see the reasoning behind the decision. Does the Swedish legal system make this sort of thing available?

Re:Is there any more information on the verdict? (2, Insightful)

KokorHekkus (986906) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609523)

I think I know what the answer probably is, that it really was about political pressure or bribery, but I'd like to give Swedish courts the benefit of the doubt first and see the reasoning behind the decision. Does the Swedish legal system make this sort of thing available?

I'd say it's very improbable that it's polital pressure or bribery behind the verdict since Sweden is one of the least corrupt countries in the world (according to Transparency International) and judges aren't elected, they are civil servants. I think the reason is that the court isn't familiar enough with these new developments and might be lacking the ability to comprehend them. After all, there's a reason they're sitting in the first judicial instance and not judging in the appeals court.

The full court opionion is probably already out but it will take some time for people to read and analyze it. So keep your eyes open for more information.

Re:Is there any more information on the verdict? (1)

Andtalath (1074376) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609565)

This is exactly my thought as well. I care little for these four men, however, I care about justice being served. And, the court ruling shouldn't be based on information obtained outside of court.

Sweden's loss (3, Informative)

mariushm (1022195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609419)

They'll appeal, and they should win an appeal.

The trial itself was very bad, the prosecutors were ridiculous, they couldn't prove anything and they just showed they don't know anything about the technology.

Either way, this "assisting or facilitating copyright infringement" is ridiculous and if can hurt a lot of legitimate business.

For example, a music company could sue Twitter because they let people type lyrics on it or links to rapidshare files with music. Same for any other website that allows user submitted content.

If the don't win the appeal they still have the European Court Of Human Rights (http://www.echr.coe.int/echr/) to complain to, if they feel the trial and decision were not fair.

I know at least my country loses trials there and gets fined millions of euros all the time, because the judges pressured politically and some even corrupt.

In the worst case, that 1 year sentence will probably converted into probabation or something, because it's their first offense - I doubt they'd do more than 30 days in jail in the worst case.

boycott! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27609425)

Ok. I really think the entire community should boycott products from the various plaintiffs in this case. The only way that the industries will ever stop beating up on downloaders is when they learn that it actually hurts their bottom line.

Note: have never used pirate bay myself, but have always considered their efforts laudable. When I see a movie I really like from Netflicks, or music over net radio then I go out and purchase something from the artists. I probably purchase 4 times as much stuff this way -- and stuff I really like as opposed to whatever the current media hype is all about. No, I think I am going to boycott the obnoxious greedy bastards!

And so... (1)

scubamage (727538) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609427)

I suppose this truly marks the end of our beginning?

commercially driven (5, Interesting)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609461)

You know, it's great that those people, who commit illegal acts because they are commercially driven, are always brought to justice, no matter what their country of origin is.

Of-course there is a small matter of agreeing what exactly it means for something to be 'illegal'. There also should be an exact description of what 'commercially driven' is, after all, if you download something instead of buying a paid version, you are commercially driven - you want to avoid paying money. There is also this small matter that a corporation based in one country, can force changes upon the law of that country, which seems to propagate itself almost magically to all these other countries, this seems odd.

It's great to see that politicians are not commercially driven at all, when they pass laws that somehow seem to benefit commercial entities much more than private individuals. Citizens they used to call them, now they are all consumers, not citizens. Term 'citizen' has an implication that you have obligations and rights at least within your country. Consumers have 'rights' but really it's mostly obligations, and it has nothing to do with countries. The obligations are to the commercial entities - large firms.

It is nice to see that those politicians, who are violating the trust of citizens to act in their best interest, those politicians that are really just fronts for commercial enterprise end up paying dearly for their transgressions. You know - jail sentences, fines...

It is nice to see that commercial enterprise and their leaders are always brought to justice when they are found in breach of any laws, especially when the breach is 'commercially driven'.

It is nice that governments don't start commercially driven wars and that if they do, they end up in jail.

It is nice that governments don't take bribes and don't change the rules, so that large commercial structures benefit and private citizens suffer. Like the US federal reserve that was created by government officials so that private commercial enterprises would benefit so much (the JP Morgan, the John D Rockefeller, who then can take cheap loans at lowered interest rates and which eventually lead to the current economic disaster after the monopolies built with these cheap money destroyed the small business and moved to the cheaper manufacturing lands), it is nice that Nelson Aldrich was found guilty of conspiring against the citizens of the US and was sent to jail for his role in devaluing the US currency.

It is nice that people responsible for profitable wars in Vietnam, African countries, Middle East, Asia, South and Central America, that all those people paid heavy prices for their crimes. .......

Wait, wait, are you telling me that all these things didn't really happen? So what is happening here then?

Let's be honest - they aren't innocent neither... (3, Funny)

Pecisk (688001) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609463)

...but we support them mostly just because we don't like fucked-up law and industry around it. We can't fight the industry (every year income in bilions), so we play pirates game. Sooner or later, 'pirates' gets cought. But powerless feeling remains. So, where we going from here? When people will stop screwing with law and instead fight lobbies and industries? When people will stop being politically ignorant? When they will understand that more they want to avoid to be connected with all it, the more they feel powerless and it kills them slowly.

Jail time is part of the bargain. (5, Interesting)

Civil_Disobedient (261825) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609465)

From Letters from a Birmingham Jail, by Martin Luther King, Jr:

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

"Now, what is the difference between the two? How does one determine whether a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas: An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal law and natural law."

"One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly, lovingly, and with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law."

Stay strong, guys.

Appeals Procedure ? (1)

Zoxed (676559) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609473)

Does anyone know how the appeals procedure works in Sweden ? How long can a case drag on (I assume there will be no jail-time / fines enforced until the procedures are exhausted ?)

Not Unexpected (1, Interesting)

squoozer (730327) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609475)

I wouldn't in anyway say that I am a supporter of the music or movie industry and in particular their out of date business models but I can't help feeling that this was probably the correct outcome.

I realize that TPB didn't actually host any copyright material but there can be no argument that they were blatantly assisting people in commiting copyright infringement. I struggle with deciding if this should be illegal behaviour but I feel it is certainly immoral. The problem with making it illegal is deciding how many steps away from the offence one needs to be in order to not be commiting a crime. Would liking to TPB become a crime?

IMHO the music industry has got everything it has deserved the film industry less so. Most films can now be picked up a very reasonable price as long as you are willing to wait a little while which, for me at least, is a fair compromise.

BBC and Reg have it too (1)

BertieBaggio (944287) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609483)

BBC tech news [bbc.co.uk] and The Register [theregister.co.uk] also have the story, as usual. It might have been useful to actually link to Sunde's twitter page [twitter.com] as well. I have to say, I liked his statement:

Really, it's a bit LOL. It used to be only movies, now even verdicts are out before the official release.

I have to say I am surprised by the verdict. I really thought they would avoid jail time at least. Maybe that was just me wanting to believe that, and so I believed the propaganda. It does seem a harsh sentence, although I guess that is due to the finding that they ran it for the money. You have to wonder how much of the decision is politically motivated like the raid was.

Also, the IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) practically came in their pants over the decision. Some choice quotes from John Kennedy:

"Today's verdict is the right outcome on all three counts. The court has also handed down a strong deterrent sentence that reflects the seriousness of the crimes committed,"

"This is good news for everyone, in Sweden and internationally, who is making a living or a business from creative activity and who needs to know their rights will protected by law."

"These guys weren't making a principled stand, they were out to line their own pockets. There was nothing meritorious about their behaviour, it was reprehensible."

"There has been a perception that piracy is OK and that the music industry should just have to accept it. This verdict will change that,"

(emphasis mine)

Get the fuck over yourself. This won't change anything in the long run. You might win a battle here or there, but if you don't change, you're screwed. And maybe we'll start listening to you when you stop lobbying to have copyrights extended even further than their already ridiculous length; and when your brethren stop selectively suing defenceless people on flimsy evidence. Until then, I think I speak for most civilised people around here when I say: go fuck yourselves.

Let the fundraising begin! (1)

Cap'nPedro (987782) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609487)

$3.6 million? I wonder how long it will take the community to donate that amount?

Wikipedia can generate a few million when it needs to so I don't imagine it'll take a miracle for TPB to get $3.6mil. They'll probably have it by the time they get released!

Download tax in the Netherlands (1)

onceuponatime (821046) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609493)

In the Netherlands a tax is applied to all cd sales and given directly to the media maffia on the assumption that you will steal from them. So when I buy cdroms for my photographs I'm paying this organised crime racket that the government is in on.

PS. I've never downloaded any illegal media in my life, but I still pay the racketeers. Dirty smelly corrupt politicians.

What are jail-worthy crimes? (5, Insightful)

bigberk (547360) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609503)

Yeah so we've known for some time that running a file sharing site for illegally redistributed content is bad news from a legal liability standpoint ... but I am still surprised by what kinds of activities in our modern age get you jail time.

Is the fundamental issue "loss of money"? Well, the executives of the big banks in the world -- men like Charles Prince (Citigroup), Angelo Mozilo (Countrywide - collapsed), Alan Schwartz (Bear Stearns - collapsed) -- have lost far more money. They have lost money for investors, customers, and more recently taxpayers and even your children and your children's children. The damage caused by the systems they were responsible for is far greater han any of these file sharing misdemeanors. This is like comparing an out of control leaf fire in someone's backyard to the carpet bombing of a city.

But what happens to investment bank executives who lost ridiculous sums (we're talking trillions) and ruined the lives of many? Probably nothing... hell, the previous Goldman Sachs CEO was put in charge of the US Treasury Department (Paulson) where he proceeded to redistribute public money to colleagues. Some may argue that men like Paulson, Greenspan, and Bernanke are committing acts of treason by taking money out of the national treasury and diverting it into the hands of the wealthiest elite, the top 1% of society.

But don't expect to see any of these men in jail any time soon. Because in this world, the people who commit the grandest acts of financial theft and destruction are rewarded with lavish salaries and pensions, while the jails are filled with pot smokers, shoplifters, and guys who run file sharing web sites.

It isn't just 'links' though is it? (1)

neiltrodden (981196) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609543)

It's an actual file that facilitates you connecting to their *own* tracker. And without that tracker you wouldn't be able to download the file via bittorrent.

They aren't just telling people about files that are available, they are colluding in the distribution of them. They are naively pretending they are ignorant of the types of files they are facilitating the downloading of yet a simple search of they own site tells you *exactly* what files are being shared. How are they supposed to know what "Wolverine-Workprint.avi" is, they only have the name.... well when thousands of people download a torrent for it under your movies category, I'd say it was clear what it was.

Stop with the legitimate business line (1, Insightful)

MosesJones (55544) | more than 5 years ago | (#27609559)

A couple of responses here have said things like "this could impact legitimate businesses" or "what about legitimate filesharing".

The first rule surely here to learn is naming it "Pirate Bay" did tend to indicate exactly what the intention was of the site, it wasn't to enable legitimate business, it wasn't to enable legitimate file sharing it was to enable video/music piracy... the fairly unsubtle clue was in their freaking name.

For those who talk about them "not hosting content but just storing lists" lets shift to the real world. Lets say that someone "just" has a house into which all drug dealers can go and buy stuff off all the drug smugglers but the actual exchanges are done down the road in a car park... are the people with the house completely and utterly innocent of setting up "The Drug Exchange" because no drugs actually enter their house? Hitting the supply chain is one of the easiest ways to disrupt drug distribution and this is the equivalent for copyright "piracy".

As much as people like to dress it up in complexity as to why these folks are innocent it does come down to a rather easy thing

1) Sharing copyright material is not allowed
2) They set up a site to PROMOTE and SUPPORT the piracy of copyright material
3) They named the site after the "crime" of piracy
4) They kept saying "nah, nah, na, na, nah, can't catch us"

This has nothing to do with a legitimate business and no impact on legitimate businesses or file-sharing, this was a site set up explicitly to promote the sharing of copyright materials.

Stop bloody dressing it up as anything else

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