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News | Wednesday, 03 March 2010 Issue. 153

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Melita Cable ‘loses’ Pirate Bay

An Italian court’s ruling that ordered the black-out of P2P site U-Torrent Pirate Bay has affected all Melita Cable internet subscribers, as access is obtained through an Italian provider.
Hundreds of subscribers have complained about the inaccessibility of the site, even though downloading is strictly illegal, but a spokesman for Melita has told MaltaToday that the company is in discussions with its supplier about this matter.
“Melita does not block this website. As an internet service provider, Melita provides the gateway to the internet for thousands of customers in Malta and Gozo.
“Italy‘s Supreme Court has ordered the blocking of this site and since Melita obtains access through Italy, its supplier there is blocking the site to abide by the Court’s decree.” The spokesman said.
Swedish owned PirateBay.Com is run by Gottfrid Svartholm and Fredrik Neij who have both been charged with “assisting in making copyrighted content available” due to their involvement in site.
On May 31, 2006, the website’s servers in Stockholm were raided by Swedish police, causing it to go offline for three days. According to the Los Angeles Times, The Pirate Bay is “one of the world’s largest facilitators of illegal downloading”, and “the most visible member of a burgeoning international anti-copyright or pro-piracy-movement”.
On November 15, 2008, The Pirate Bay announced that it had reached over 25 million unique peers. As of December 2009, The Pirate Bay has over 4 million registered users, although registration is not necessary to download torrents.
The Pirate Bay has been involved in a number of lawsuits, both as the plaintiff and as the defendant. On April 17, 2009, Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm and Carl Lundström were found guilty of assistance to copyright infringement and sentenced to one year in prison and payment of a fine of €3 million after a trial of nine days.
Other lawsuits have been initiated in Italy, France, Germany and the UK.


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