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LeaseWeb Loses Appeal to BREIN
July 4, 2008
Thomas Mennecke
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The Bittorrent situation in the Netherlands is becoming increasingly hostile, as the Amsterdam Court of Appeals has ruled that LeaseWeb must divulge the personal information of those operating the BitTorrent site Everlasting.nl. The ruling comes after a protracted legal battle between the web hosting company LeaseWeb, and the local copyright traffic cop BREIN.

Last year, BREIN stepped up its attacks against Dutch based BitTorrent websites. BREIN won an injunction against LeaseWeb, compelling the company to divulge the personal information of those running the site Everlasting.nl. A Dutch court sided with BREIN's demands, and ordered the site be shut down and the personal information released. Although BREIN strutted with the announcement, obtaining the information would not come quick.

Two weeks later, LeaseWeb announced they would not comply with the order. With an intent to appeal, LeaseWeb indicated they were prepared for an extended fight.

"Leaseweb is to file an appeal against the preliminary injunction relating to the 'Everlasting' bit torrent site hosted by Leaseweb. This means that the court of appeal in Amsterdam will hear the full case against the Brein foundation again."

LeaseWeb has become an unforeseen battleground in the struggle to contain file-sharing. It was the original home of Demonoid, one of the largest invite only/private trackers during its height. Like Everlasting.nl, BREIN demanded the personal information of those behind the more powerful and popular Demonoid. However, by the time LeaseWeb received BREIN’s demand, Demonoind has already packed up and left the Netherlands for Canada. With no customer left to fight for, LeaseWeb divulged the information to BREIN.

While LeaseWeb tried to hold its ground in an effort to protect its customers' identities, it was compelled by the mounting legal pressure to force many remaining BitTorrent sites off their servers. In November of 2007, LeaseWeb wrote an email to its remaining BitTorrent sites and strongly encouraged them to find alternative web hosting.

“In a recent case at the Amsterdam District Court, LeaseWeb was ordered to take down such sites. Although LeaseWeb has filed an appeal and will keep fighting for its client’s rights up to the highest court, LeaseWeb regrettable (sic) has no choice but to obey the court order and take down sites that list (bittorrent/edonkey) files.”

Unfortunately for LeaseWeb, the wishes of BREIN have finally caught up to them. The Amsterdam Court of Appeals has ruled in BREIN’s favor, and the information identifying the owners of Everlasting.nl will be divulged. LeaseWeb did not respond to our inquiries at the time of publication.

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
Legal/Courtroom :: Court Rulings/Decisions

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