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Pirate Bay/IFPI eDonkey Show Continues…
August 15, 2008
Thomas Mennecke
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In the Dark Knight, the Joker describes his epic battle with Batman as being the result of an immovable object meeting an unstoppable force. The real world provides a similar parallel, with The Pirate Bay being the immovable object and the IFPI being the unstoppable force. The silliness between the two continues, as this time, the IFPI has launched a counterattack against The Pirate Bay.

If you recall, last week The Pirate Bay found itself blocked in Italy, a result of the Italian government clamping down on what it felt was rampant copyright infringement. The Pirate Bay called this enforcement "fascism", a bit of a serious charge to throw at the Italian government. Regardless, The Pirate Bay claimed that the motivation for blocking their tracker revolved around Silvio Berlusconi, a powerful media mogul who apparently influenced the prosecutor's office to block the BitTorrent tracker.

The Pirate Bay responded by changing their IP address, which helped approximately half of those resume their BitTorrent deeds. As for the other half, The Pirate Bay has been working diligently to restore their tracker access. However, the other half of the Italian population is still blocked, and as of today, citizens of that country found a new message posted while trying to access The Pirate Bay.

The Pirate Bay, the apparent victim in this escapade, remarks that traffic is being diverted to “” – a site owned by the IFPI.

“It’s quite interesting. It says that this site is blocked by the police in Italy and so forth, but check who owns the IP. It’s in the UK, not in Italy. And check the reverse of that IP - A site owned by Ifpi in the UK,” a post by The Pirate Bay’s Peter Brokep states.

So let’s take a step back a second and analyze what’s going on here. On one side we have The Pirate Bay, a BitTorrent tracker that’s prided itself in defying the copyright industry, and by publicly humiliating those who try to enforce their intellectual property rights. Conversely, we have the IFPI, an international trade organization that protects the copyrights of its member companies. Since The Pirate Bay is an international network, it's little surprise the Italian government, whether controlled by the media or not, has worked with the IFPI to enforce its members' copyrights. Can we actually claim this is censorship or some other devious act? Is it any worse than being publicly humiliated? Die hard BitTorrent fans will agree with The Pirate Bay, while owners of intellectual property will take sides with the IFPI.

For the rest of the world who doesn’t use BitTorrent, it’s difficult to see how any resolution to this conflict will ever be achieved. Will the IFPI give up on its obligation to protect its members' copyrights? Of course not. Will The Pirate Bay throw in the towel and abandon its user base? Not a chance. So instead, we have two opposing forces on a collision course, with each side truly believing what they’re doing is right. Looking at the situation from a legal perspective, the IFPI may be right, but even if that were the case, that doesn’t necessarily make The Pirate Bay wrong. Throughout history, illegal acts have been committed to the furtherance of a righteous cause (such as wars of independence). Then the question becomes whether The Pirate Bay’s cause is righteous.

But there’s no answer to those questions, at least from those who are lobbing attack after counter attack. As for those not involved in the conflict, many are left to wonder when the dog and pony show will end, and when GigaNews will up their retention to 365 days.

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
BitTorrent :: Trackers/Indexers

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