posted by Thom Holwerda on Mon 16th Feb 2009 14:06 UTC
IconIn a textbook example of "dweilen met de kraan open", the landmark trial against Torrent website The Pirate Bay will take off today in Sweden. The founders of the torrent website are charged with aiding millions of internet users gain access to illegal content. Basically the entire entertainment industry is amassing against The Pirate Bay, making this one of the biggest trials against internet file sharing in history.

During a press conference, the Pirate Bay team was defiant and ready to go. "What are they going to do? They have already failed to take the site down once. Let them fail again," said Gottfrid Svartholm Warg. The team added that the site itself isn't in danger. "It has its own life without us," they said.

Which is of course the key point. The Pirate Bay is just one of many, many torrent sites out there, and even if it were to fall apart, countless others will just take over as if nothing ever happened. It's Napster all over again; before the trail against Napster had begun, the internet had already switched to Kazaa. When Kazaa was in danger, Gnutella was the next best thing. The internet is too fast-paced for the "old-world" entertainment industry to follow.

In other words, this trial seems more like a show trial to scare off other file sharing institutions; the entertainment industry knows full well that bringing down The Pirate Bay will do little to stop the file sharing nature of the web. "[We] do not believe The Pirate Bay will be a major player in five years. But [we] think BitTorrent technology will improve. File sharing will always exist. [We] think people will tire of the debate," the team stated.

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