The Pirate Bay are a large bittorrent tracker. That means they provide tracking data so you can download bittorrent files, which are streamed from other people’s computers. They made a documentary recently about their experience with the Swedish police and the US government.
In a nutshell, by Swedish law they are providing nothing more than metadata for people. Any files downloaded are pulled from participants computers, not The Pirate Bay. Think of Pirate Bay as a phone book, maybe. So the MPAA (evil) calls up the Whitehouse and says “These Swedish kids are hurting our profits. Help.” So Uncle Sam threatens Sweden with TRADE SANCTIONS! unless they shut down The Pirate Bay. The story goes on.
I posted the other day about MediaDefender files being leaked. The Pirate Bay have found evidence in the leaked e-mails that they’re now using to sue some little companies:
* Twentieth Century Fox, Sweden AB
* Emi Music Sweden AB
* Universal Music Group Sweden AB
* Universal Pictures Nordic AB
* Paramount Home Entertainment (Sweden) AB
* Atari Nordic AB
* Activision Nordic Filial Till Activision (Uk) Ltd
* Ubisoft Sweden AB
* Sony Bmg Music Entertainment (Sweden) AB
* Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Nordic AB
Don’t paint me broadly as anti-copyright. I’m anti-extortion, and pro fair-use. How many bands, artists, movie makers, authors have you heard of that feel like their children have been ripped away from them? (If you don’t understand what I’m talking about, start reading.) If movie and record companies have used illegal practices to attack others, I see no reason why they shouldn’t be prosecuted under full extent of the law. A law that’s pretty flawed… I might add.
Influenced by Trent Reznor, I feel that I should release all my music (once I create some) for public re-mixing and re-use. I think that’s great. Someone hold me to it.