Home Pirate Bay Found Guilty: Jail Time for Founders

Pirate Bay Found Guilty: Jail Time for Founders

Today, a court in Sweden found four members of the Pirate Bayguilty of breaking Swedish copyright laws and sentenced them to a year in prison and a $3.6 million fine – a third of what the prosecution had asked for. The Pirate Bay and its lawyers will, of course, appeal the verdict, and the site will continue to function normally during the appeals procedures.

While the Pirate Bay is quite infamous for its defiant answers to legal threats, the Pirate Bay team has been unusually quiet about the ruling (besides calling it a ‘crazy verdict’ on its site). You can, however, find an improvised interview/’press conference’ with Peter Sunde, one of the co-founders of the Pirate Bay, on the service’s site. In the interview, Sunde compares his site to Google, as the Pirate Bay has always argued that it only offers the ability to find torrents, but doesn’t host any illegal information itself. The Swedish court, however, argued that the site’s purpose was solely to disseminate copyrighted material (an argument that isn’t hard to make when you look at the top 100 shared torrents on the site right now).

The entertainment industry, as Mike Masnick points out on Techdirt, will celebrate this as a major victory in the fight against piracy, but in reality, shutting down the Pirate Bay will do little to deter filesharers and won’t help the entertainment industry regain any lost market share or find a new business model.

It is also important to note that even though the Pirate Bay may be the most visible torrent-sharing site right now, others like Mininova host almost as many torrents.

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