Due to a slew of threats from a local anti-piracy group, Sweden's Pirate Party had to let go of The Pirate Bay. The local anti-piracy group, Rights Alliance, told the Swedish Pirate Party that if they continued to work with The Pirate Bay beyond today, they would be faced with legal action. What makes the Right Alliance more scary than they seem is that they are backed by large movie and music companies throughout the entire world.
A federal court in Illinois has handed down the largest fine ever levied against a file sharer in a BitTorrent piracy case. The judgment was placed against defendant Kywan Fisher and orders the man to pay $1.5 million to an adult film company called Flava Works. The man was found guilty of sharing 10 of the company's films via BitTorrent.
Google has been fighting in French courts against the music industry group SNEP. Google has been hit with a setback in its legal battle with the French Supreme Court ruling that Google can be required to censor the search terms Torrent, RapidShare, and Megaupload. According to the courts, Google indirectly helps copyright infringement by failing to filter these specific search terms.
If you are one of the folks that happened to have pirated the movie from Voltage Pictures called Hurt Locker and thought you were in the clear, you may have been wrong. The makers of the Hurt Locker film have returned and are targeting 2514 alleged pirates that downloaded the film via BitTorrent. The goal of the movie makers is to recuperate some of the millions of dollars they claim to have lost from pirating.
Not long ago the hosting company based in Virginia where Megaupload stored the 25 PB of data customers have uploaded sought relief from the courts. While Megaupload and its founder Kim Dotcom had been battling in court, the hosting company claims it is spending $9000 a day to retain the massive amount of data. The hosting company, Carpathia, had previously sought to get the courts to offer it some relief from the massive costs until the court case was decided.
News Corporation has been linked to high-profile hacking cases in the past. New allegations have surfaced that a News Corporation company called NDS hired a hacker to dig up the set-top pay-TV codes of a rival in the digital smartcard business called ITV Digital. The allegations come from a man named Lee Gibling that operated website in late 1990s called the House of Ill-Compute and was also known as Thoic.
The legal fight to extradite Kim Dotcom, the main man behind Megaupload continues to rage. Dotcom and other principles at the file storage site are facing multiple charges ranging from copyright infringement to racketeering and money laundering. As part of the legal campaign, the website was shut down leaving users with no access to files they had saved there.
Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom has been fighting extradition from New Zealand to the United States. The US government wants to extradite Dotcom and three other associates who helped run Megaupload while it was operational. The three associates include Mathias Ortmann, Bran van der Kolk and Finn Batato.
This week the co-founder of Megaupload, Mathias Ortmann has been freed on bail after his arrest along with the rest of the Megaupload inner circle nearly a month ago. Ortmann's trial date was supposed to have taken place on the 26th of January but his own estimates on his finances did not match up with cash earned from basic Megaupload funds between 2005 and 2011 - while he noted he's made $17.5 million from the service over the past 6 years, he'd had $3.5 million more than that completely unaccounted for. This morning it appears that they've been able to explain the discrepancy because Ortmann has been released on bail.
It's certainly not a good day to be a founder of The Pirate Bay. The legal saga centering on the founders of the file sharing site Fredrik Neij, Peter Sunde and Carl Lundström has been ongoing for several years. So far, the founders of been appealing the court decisions further and further up the Swedish legal ladder, and eventually they made it to the final rung with the Swedish Supreme Court.