Pirate Bay Gets Marooned
On January 31st, 2008, charges of copyright infringement were brought against four of the Swedish designers behind The Pirate Bay, the world's largest Bit-torrent tracker.
The media has thus far treated the case as a circus act. The Swedish press has covered the developments incessantly, and scalpers hawk tickets on the courthouse steps for what is already a full house.
On May 31st, 2006, Swedish police raided The Pirate Bay headquarters, seizing their servers and various other pieces of hardware. The incident was in no way isolated to Sweden, however. The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) had been working with various international governments for years, trying to destroy the Pirate Bay for what they perceived to be illegal file sharing.
In September of 2007, an anonymous hacker discovered that various companies affiliated with the MPAA, Universal, Parmount and Sony included, had been attempting to assemble their own team of hackers in order to disassemble and destroy The Pirate Bay. The company struck back with a lawsuit, and further legal tension ensued.
The defendants claim that they are merely software developers, and that they should in no way be held responsible for what The Pirate Bay clients choose to download. We'll soon know whether that defense holds water or not: the verdict is expected to be reached on April 17th.
Image: "The Pirate Bay Logo", by Notinet. Courtesy of Creative Commons License.