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Hollywood Battles Swedish Pirates

Posted on Feb 16, 2009

The founders of The Pirate Bay, one of the biggest names in file sharing, face up to two years in a hard-core Swedish prison if they can’t convince a judge that their unfortunately named Web site isn’t legally responsible for 115 million kronor worth of media piracy.

The advent of Bit Torrent software, when paired with file sharing sites like The Pirate Bay, has made downloading movies, music, TV shows and software super easy and fast for those in the know. Naturally, that has infuriated and alarmed the entertainment industry, which has so far handled the situation about as badly as possible (like suing a single mother for millions of dollars because her teenager may have downloaded—then deleted—a few pop songs).

Eight years after the death of Napster, Hollywood is still fighting this war in courtrooms, and not on store shelves and online shopping carts. After all, $40 for High School Musical 3 is enough to make anyone think illegal thoughts.


“File-sharing services can be used both legally and illegally,” defence lawyer Per Samuelsson said.

Frederik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Peter Sunde Kolmsioppi and Carl Lundstorm have portrayed themselves as digital libertarians and say that they cannot be prosecuted for copyright theft because none of the content is hosted on their computer servers.

The men are accused of “promoting other people’s infringements of copyright laws”, according to charges filed by senior public prosecutor Haakan Roswall.

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By appleknocker, February 20, 2009 at 2:30 pm Link to this comment
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What’s a “hard-core Swedish prison” like?

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By Toussaint, February 17, 2009 at 2:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This would almost be interesting if it wasn’t for the fact that the webmasters for TPB hadn’t already beaten several dozen of these situations. What they are doing is not illegal in Sweden. American copyright and intellectual property laws do no apply in Sweden. Unless a company has registered their products in Sweden, they have legal protection against peer to peer sharing that is hosted in Sweden.

But trust American media, which doesn’t realize their thinking is 20 years behind the market, to not know this is a fight they cannot win.

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By geobushono, February 17, 2009 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

so what happens to people using starbucks’ wifi to download film?
It’s all reeks of musky anarchy.
Bring it on-

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By emit, February 17, 2009 at 11:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

TPB have been going through this for quite a while, and have been threatened up the wazoo by every media company in the world.

Oddly I cannot see the difference between TPB, which I use only occasionally, and renting DVD’s and CD’s for free from my local library, that I rip ad nauseam for my own use, which I use on a daily basis.

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By tonyf69, February 17, 2009 at 9:34 am Link to this comment


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