Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 31st Jul 2009 15:46 UTC
Legal Yesterday, the Dutch online community was surprised by a verdict from a judge who declared that The Pirate Bay had to make itself unavailable in The Netherlands. This verdict was cast in a case the Dutch RIAA/MPAA-like organisation BREIN had started against The Pirate Bay. With it being a widely known and established fact that downloading copyrighted content off the internet - even if the upload was illegal - is not illegal in The Netherlands, where does this verdict come from? Is it truly a win for the entertainment industry, and a loss for Dutch consumers? Not really - the situation is much, much simpler than that.
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Where is TPB hosted?
by Luis on Fri 31st Jul 2009 18:39 UTC
Member since:

I wonder, if TPB is hosted in Sweden (I don't really know, but lets assume it is), what does it mean that it must be unaccessible in the Netherlands, that they should close it there?

Are Dutch ISPs the ones responsible for "shutting" it down, for blocking the access, and the ones who will pay that fee if not?

I'll put an example. Let's say that guns are illegal in The Netherlands. And let's suppose (it is not true, AFAIK) that they are legal in Sweden. So a Dutch citizen travels to Sweden and buys a gun in a shop. Can a Dutch court rule against this shop and ask it to close for Dutch citizens?

IOW, Dutch citizens are "traveling" (virtually) to Sweden to get their torrents. What The Netherlands can do it establish a control in the "frontier" to make sure they don't return with these illegal(?) torrents. And that control must be carried out by the authorities with the help of the ISPs. TPB can't be hold responsible for anything. If Dutch customers go there, there's no reason why they should block them.

When Turkey blocks Youtube, the Turkish courts don't rule that Youtube must block access to Turkish citizens or pay a few millions of $$ fee. That would be stupid. Same when China blocks many sites. It is their own responsibility, not the one from the site owners who are in another country.

Maybe the judge from this case doesn't even know what the internet is and believes that TPB is actually in The Netherlands?

Reply Score: 3

RE: Where is TPB hosted?
by frajo on Fri 31st Jul 2009 19:49 in reply to "Where is TPB hosted?"
frajo Member since:

Maybe the judge from this case doesn't even know what the internet is and believes that TPB is actually in The Netherlands?

On the contrary. They hope that "unavailability in the Netherlands" is equivalent to "total unavailability". They just don't phrase it this way.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Where is TPB hosted?
by JacobMunoz on Fri 31st Jul 2009 20:31 in reply to "RE: Where is TPB hosted?"
JacobMunoz Member since:

Maybe the judge from this case doesn't even know what the internet is and believes that TPB is actually in The Netherlands?

At least he didn't call it "a series of tubes"...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Where is TPB hosted?
by dmantione on Fri 31st Jul 2009 19:59 in reply to "Where is TPB hosted?"
dmantione Member since:

The judge simple hasn't come to the point to establish wether TPB is active in the Netherlands. They didn't show up, nor did someone representing them show up. Thus BREIN got all that they asked, it is as simple as that.

This is a verdict against the people behind TPB, not against ISP's. ISP's don't need to do anything.

Next step is a swedish court confirming the verdict for Sweden. They will not look at the itself, just wether it matches the EU treaties for confirming verdicts of other member states. After that Swedish authorities will ensure the verdict is carried out.

Only solution for TPB is to appeal, show up, and defend themselves. They have plenty of possibilities: Not only downloading is legal, Kazaa was also ruled legal by the Supreme Court.

Edited 2009-07-31 20:05 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Where is TPB hosted?
by LB06 on Fri 31st Jul 2009 20:20 in reply to "Where is TPB hosted?"
LB06 Member since:

I seriously doubt the Dutch DA or the judge don't know TPB is Swedish.

But other than that you raise an interesting point.

Take for example the Dutch softdrugs policy. This policy aims to reduce the abuse of softdrugs and its negative side-effects by regulating it instead of prohibiting it. Notwithstanding negative criticism by ignorant and/or uninformed people like Dr. Phil, our policy mostly succeeds in achieving its goals. Regulating drugs actually greatly reduces the appeal it has to many people and prevents side-effects by bringing everything out in the open.

There's one glaring weakness in our policy though. It doesn't work for people who are not from the Netherlands... By far most of the drugs related problems we have are coming from the French (at least in the south).

But I'm not here to discuss our liberal drugs policy. I mentioned it because the problem is very much similar to the point you raised. Obviously the coffeeshops (our legalised softdrugs PoS) are all located within the borders of the Netherlands. Question is, could we legally prevent foreigners from acquiring drugs in the Netherlands? Or better, could a French court prohibit Dutch coffeeshops to sell drugs to French people? I highly doubt it. All they can do is make try to make sure no-one has drugs on them when they cross the Belgian-French border. Even if we ourselves would want to do this (there are plans), I doubt it would be possible given that Lady Justice is blind and nobody is allowed to discriminate other (EU) citizens (freedom of travel, goods, work etc).

Same goes for the PB case: is it legal/constitutional to deny certain groups of people access to a service or good, without proving that each and every individual of the group is guilty as charged in a place where all people (including foreigners) are equal under the applicable law? Is it legal to do this on the basis of nationality? Can this be enforced by a foreign (Dutch) court? In my layman's opinion Brein has to convince the court that the answer to all these questions is a definitive 'yes', if they want to enforce this.

Reply Parent Score: 3