back to article Pirate Bay founders host paedophilia site

A Swedish company owned by the founders of controversial torrent tracker site The Pirate Bay is hosting a site that defends paedophilia. PRQ, co-owned and operated by Fredrik Neij and Gottfried Svartholm Warg, has refused to take the web page down, citing the principle of freedom of speech. The company says it doesn't share …

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  4. N1AK

    Oh Come On

    Nice choice of title </sarcasm> Ofcourse it's just as unfair as say the BBC saying "El Reg is source of paedophilia news and links" (you gave more than enough information to find the site).

    I had hoped the Reg would take it's normally cynical view, and apply it to the "paedophiliasteria" in the UK. You are three times more likely to be struck by lightning than be sexually abused by a stranger as a child.

    I haven't seen this site, and I am not inclined to. The hosts are however right that if it is only a place of discussion and no illegal material is allowed it should be allowed. If we are going to learn how to deal with this issue, we are going to have to start looking for the root causes, and encourage people to seek help. But this won't happen as long as the ignorant masses want to bring back public lynching.

  5. John A Blackley

    Easy to be upset

    (Obligatory comment here about being personally outraged by the mere idea of paedophilia.)

    I imagine there will be the necessary outrage at PRQ for hosting a paedophile website but this article is not clear on whether or not PRQ is actually hosting illegal content.

    I don't know anything about Swedish law and so I don't know if discussing paedophilia is illegal there. A little background to lend clarity would be welcome.

  6. Michael Martin

    You're missing some details

    First off, there is no mention of actual pornographic images being hosted, as I'm sure the moment that happened, PRQ would drop the site like a hot potato and probably report them. Second, there's the idea that by hosting their website, there is in essence a repository of identities of people who would be watched carefully, thus potentially preventing actual instances of child abuse.

    It is also completely within the realm of plausibility that their commentaries on the websites fall under free speech. As long as they are expressing opinions (as loathsome an opinion as that may be), they are not breaking any laws. If PRQ wants to maintain an image of being an impartial host, they have to permit this sort of thing - and then they can point out that Pirate Bay isn't as bad as this one other site they're hosting, and the cops aren't on their backs about the other site...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Criminals?

    There's nothing in the article to suggest that these people are criminals. It says they're paedophiles, not child molesters.

    It's certainly true that when paedophilia is raised, all sense goes out of the window. People should read George Orwell's '1984' and understand the idea of thoughtcrime.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Freedom of speech...

    Freedom of speech is given world wide. It's a part of our general human rights in the free world.

    It's also lawful to arrest anyone who, with reasonable doubt, are criminals.

    Saying that, if we allow these sick bastards a forum then they really only cut their own throats. The second they share this filth they break international laws. Admittance to owning or obtaining this filth also seals their fate.

    It's bad enough when a website outs a pedophile and then the community takes action to "Deal" with them (because the police see fit to release them back into society knowing FULL WELL that they will commit crimes again) but this is just too much.

    The Internet is accessible by ANYONE. How would we feel if our kids stumble on this shit!!

    Hang them and hang them high!

  9. Dillon Pyron

    Freedom of speech

    As long as all they do is talk (and not explicitly), they are breaking no laws. Now, if they host a site with pictures or storied or any of that crap, off with their heads (both of them).

    NAMBL gets away with plenty of crap because they are very careful in what they say and publicly do. It's what they advocate and do in private that makes me sick.

    I may disagree with what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You are all misinterpretting the article

    The article states they host a paedophile site not a site which contains childporn or other such noxious data.

    I haven't visited the site but from what I can gather from the article the site is for pedophiles to express themselves and therefore yes it does fall under freedom of speech.

    And before anyone gets on their high horse and starts spitting flames at me, I worked with abused children for many years as well as assisting police in child pornography cases in multiple countries, so I have no love for these people. But they are entitled to freedom of speech, so long as what they are saying is not breaking any laws (such as inciting a crime or publishing illegal images).

    So everyone needs to stop the knee jerk reaction being illustrated by the comments to this story, and look at the situation from an intelligent perspective.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pirate Bay + Kiddie Fiddling? Surely not!

    It all stands to reasons - once you get into bed with a bunch of crooks you're a bit fucked really. Pirate Bay are based on the very premise of breaking the law so this shouldn't come as much of a surprise. I'm pretty sure there is no "free speech" defence in law if you're encouraging people to break the law, I believe it's known as incitement.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why shouldn't they be allowed to speak?

    The other day, there was a news item on TV where a teary-eyed father described how his 14 year old daughter had run away with an "18-year old man". With the current hysterical approach to paedophily, who's going to disagree with him? Certainly not the news cast. Certainly not the editor. Or anyone else.

    Yet to anyone with half a brain cell, the idea that an 18-year old could be tried for pedophily *as the perpetrator* is completely ridiculous. There is clearly a lot of room for improvement in the law and the morality of paedophily.

    This is yet another case where free speech is being hindered and this stops a debate to clarify what's right and wrong, and so leaves the door open to even more misinterpretations (it's not like we don't do that even with open debate).

    Free speech only ever hurts liars, crooks, and bigots. Which one of these are you?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re: Freedom of Speech? Bollocks!

    "The Pirate Bay is supporting criminals"

    Last I checked, the term 'paedophile' meant an adult sexually attracted to children. Only if that adult commits a crime, such as abusing a child, does he or she then become a criminal. If that person chooses not to commit a crime, then they remain a paedophile but not a criminal. In this case they certainly do not deserve the kind of rabid, offensive and disgusting abuse exemplified in "...their shrieking as they get castrated before locking them up for life."

    On the contrary, perhaps that poster would care to think about how difficult it would be to deny oneself sexual satisfaction for a lifetime. It strikes me that non-criminal paedophiles could probably do with all the support they can get, if we are to encourage them to make the decision to deny the satisfaction of their innate desires by not interacting sexually with children.

    I confess, I have not visited the site in question - I think it probably counts as NSFW - so I don't know if this is its purpose. However, either way our society could do without the hatred poured out above.

  14. Aitor

    Free of Hypocrites

    Someone said: "I hate what you are saying, but I would die defending your right to say it". That is freedom.

    You might or you might not like what they defend (I think that they are despicable), but I really think they have the right to defend their principles as much as we have the right to defend and express ours.

    In Spain we had that very same problem. We had some minority political parties whose principles where against the constitution. Now thay are banned, but, how can we call ourselves democratic when we say "You can freely express yourself, but only if your thoughts and beliefs are not very different from my own".

    That is the start of a dictatorial regime: you cannot dissent. And we are accepting it more and more each day, because some politicians have convinced us that it is a good idea to exchange freedom for safety. Only that by being less free we also lose safety.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Title

    I'm commenting on this because i think their side needs some light, and we all need to look at the retrograde advances in criminal law.

    paedophilia has recently been redefined to include pictures of 16-18 year olds, it was <16 before.

    we (males) have a strong selection pressure to choose a young but sexually mature mate, so in what way is 16-18 perverse? (actually not my cup of tea, - and there is also selection pressure to choose a mate who can cope with parenthood, and with the female heirarchy, and many more)

    this is also a thought-crime, (ok it is sick,, but..) - there are already strong measures in place for conspiracy and intent, -based crime, but this is new. I don't have an alternative, but i also think its a step into dangerous territory.

    The other complicating factor is that internet porn is a huge business, and much like the drug-dealers of yore, it is in their interest to get you hooked on the harder stuff. - do we need to consider the term "expoited" in some cases as well as "depraved"?

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  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Some House rules - moderation guidelines

    I have removed three comments and rejected two more that advocate extreme violence against paedophiles.

    Any comment advocating lynch law or violence - even for comic effect - e.g. bars of soap / prison rape - will be rejected by us.

    Drew Cullen

    El Reg

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Piece of trivia for you

    When the British police first investigated internet news forums to see if they posed a threat, one of the suggestions they came up with was to create an Armed Robbery newsgroup where armed robbers could inadvertantly shoot their mouths off on the record, pun intended.

    This is why I don't see any threat to a peadophile discussion group that is publicly accessible.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The law is an ass anyway...

    Sex is legal at 16, but the same 16yr old can't buy a movie of themselves making love.

    Different people mature at different ages - a "limit" is in place, but perhaps it should remain a guideline only, and not a definitive answer.

    The 14yr old example is probably pushing the envelope a little, but I doubt there are few males out there haven't thought "...she'd get it..." about what would appear to be a woman (who legally remains a child) dressed in short skirts, heels, and a bit of make-up.

    The problem remains, so should all children - male and female - be fitted with a chastity belt with a time-encoded electrified lock to eliminate the clumsy learning process we all went through ? - No, it simply couldn't, and wouldn't work.

    Let the law stand as a guideline, but allow a little latitude for those who think they know their own mind. Some will make the wrong decision, but life is a learning process, and no-one has the same trip - that's what being human is about.

  20. heystoopid

    But Then Again!

    But then again , the world wide web is full of people who are pretending to be what they are not , and the many places of deliberate entrapment!

    Or how soon we forget , our past recorded centuries of histories of the well documented cases of the child bride to elder males !

    Now what did Dr Sigmund Freud , say about the root cause of man's repressive feelings?

    The age of the illogical hysteria is upon us , but should we not seek out the hidden agenda's of those that cry wolf the loudest?

  21. Ole Juul

    Reality is confusing

    I'm glad to see that there are at least some level heads posting here. There seems to be a kind of witch hunt mentality these days. Certainly, there is a lot of bad stuff on the net. Particularly when it comes to violence. One can see outright fascist sites which don't get a lot of press. Pictures of people getting mamed, children included, don't seem to raise an eyebrow either. Reality is really confusing when it comes to these things.

    I also note that no one appears to have checked out the actual site being discussed here. Well I just did, and let me say that it is pretty "soft core". The reason that Dagens Nyheter came out with the story is obviously because it will get people going. To me the site looks like a little sensible philosophy mixed with an imature, or misguided, understanding of children and society. It is all text, and there is nothing which a child is likely to even have the patience to read, so I don't thing that there is a direct danger to children. The question is, does it promote or encourage unacceptable, or illegal behavior? That's a really hard call. Perhaps it's better to let these people discuss their situation so as to maby help them figure it out.

  22. tim chubb Silver badge

    any different from the brasseye 'special'?

    the reaction was the same thing there really

    i think paedophilia is one of those topics where a balanced and proportionate view can never be given in public discussion, due to the strong emotions and feelings of disgust it deservedly evokes.

    As far as PRQ stand they are damned if they do and damned if they don't, as the sad truth is whether the site exists or not they can and do communicate with each other. though how many of them would be stupid enough to create an account, if the servers arn't physically confiscated, u can bet they will get hacked to shreds, or so heavily policed/flamed as to be unusable...

    I think however even if the site remains, it will get the shit sued out of it from people having careers and lives ruined by a maliciously created profile e.g. F in maths, teacher gets a profile

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Terminology

    The term for the psychological disorder that involves sexual attraction for children is "paedophilia erotica" or "erotic paedophilia".

    While the word "paedophile" in itself does also mean a lover of children, the love involved is philos. Philia means friendship, liking, or at worst an irrationally favorable disposition toward something. It is only when the word erotic is paired with it that it gets a sexual connotation. Those using the word otherwise are themselves guilty of perversion - of the English language.

    A francophile is an admirer of things French, but are probably not sexually attracted to them. While the subject of admiration is different, the same holds true for an anglophile. Thus, logic dictates that while every aunt and grandmother that crooned over you as a child was a paedophile, only the ones that were sexually attracted to you because you were a child were erotic paedophiles.

    Moreover, only the ones who hurt you - whether sexually or otherwise - were or are guilty of anything.

  24. Rich

    Terminology 2

    Given your helpful comments on terminology: Is a "paedophobe" someone who wishes the keepers of the annoying brats in row 23 would keep them in their birth country until they're old enough to play quietly on a PSP for 12 hours?

  25. Monty Lovering

    Freedom and perversion

    First of all, in most of Europe and the USA one can write about being sexually attracted to people under age, even to the extent of writing fictional stories.

    No matter how gross we all might find it, it is legitimate freedom of speech and 'artistic expression'.

    Second; a paedophile (I think the 'erotica' can be taken as read) is soley or mainly attracted to pre-pubescents. No one is going to argue that that is nasty.

    A hebephile or ephebophile is attracted soley or mainly to adolescents. As the Western ideal of beauty is of a girl at the edge of womanhood (please refer to most fashion magazines and pornography to bear this out), we live in a bizzare culture. I think very few men could claim they do not suffer from ephebophiliac tendencies to some extent, and those that do I'd like to see walk past a Secondary School at home time with one of those gizmos that record where you are looking...

    Paedophiles are the new witches. Little thought is given to the many paedophiles who never molest; it's far easier to think of them as ugly monsters on the fringe of society. The probability that as least as many fight such attractions succesfully as give in is too disturbing to delve into for most people. If you're freinds with a mental-health professional, you get interelsting insights.

    Unlike other attractions or paraphilias that can have an outlet with a partner, a paedophile cannot ever have a consensual partner, as children cannot give informed consent.

    So, people with no legal outlet, many of whom never offend, many who avoid ever admitting it to anyone because this would effectively destroy ther lives...

    ... in a society where we obsess about youth and force many women into ill-heath we are so obsessed with the image of the skinny adolescent as the acme of beauty.

    Quite frankly I think paedophles are better being allowed into the open without a witchhunt, to hopefully deal with their problem and avoid harming a child, than being forced underground even further.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yeah, but...

    I keep seeing sites which are hosting discussions among audiophiles. When are we going to do something about those filthy scum?

  27. Bill Lambert

    Devil's advocate

    In Sweden, PRQ/PiratByran are actually quite appreciated by the populace as they are kind of playing Devil's Advocate against overreaching laws and taking advantage of various countries' more liberal systems. In a big way they're saying "Look! We're pirating software en-masse! Is it destroying the world ? No!"

    Others have pointed it out already: Pedophilia is not the same child abuse. Being attracted/aroused by children and acting upon those urges are two very different things, the same as a hormonal/tempermental guy like me can think about acting (extremely) violently, yet I can keep it under control and live a normal life.

    If anything, having an open forum to discuss controversial issues can be a good outlet for people to get educated on the topic, and maybe even help deal with it. Many pedophiles know they're messed up, but society's knee-jerk approach makes it practically impossible for them to talk about it without being lynched. It's a bit like the mental anguish suffered by in-the-closet homosexuals, who don't know who they can trust with their innermost thoughts.

    As long as PRQ doesn't let this devolve into something abusive, I'll back them up. Those fellows are some very smart cookies!

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I think the obvious point is...

    ...that the music and movie industry just LOVE to prove that using torrent and other Peer to Peer software to illegally share your media funds terrorism, child pornography, global warming, belly button fluff, static shocks and out of date mayonaisse.

    If they can show a website which is owned by the same people who bring you (mostly) pirate copies of stuff then it MUST be true!

  29. Ian

    ...and once again The Reg lies to put down the Pirate Bay

    Last time it was the accusation of links to right wing extremist nazi's or whatever The Reg tried to infer, when the reality was that it was just funding from someone with right wing political beliefs (which isn't necessarily wrong).

    Now The Reg is pulling the old paedophile stunt to try and infer The Pirate Bay hosts child porn images and supports child abuse.

    We know what's next don't we - give it a month and The Register will be telling us The Pirate Bay runs, funds and supports Al Qaeda, terrorism is about the only thing The Register hasn't yet accused The Pirate Bay of.

    The only news I'm really interested in hearing about The Pirate Bay from The Register now really is what did TPB do to make whoever at The Register is writing this crap cry so hard about them?

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My god

    Some people are dumb.... if these guys want to set up a site to help themselves NOT be criminals and to try and understand what it is to be themselves then fine by me.

    Most people who want violence against pedo's are usually the same people who will go out and buy magazines with hot models in school girl outfits on the cover or watch music videos with the same sort of sexy youth crap and are like "oh yeah, I'd tap that!!". In my mind, people who do that are hypocrites and should look at themselves.

  31. William Lee

    Paedophilia and Fictional Writings and the Reality

    Right, lets start this off saying I dont agree with molesting children, and if the site had any kind of information or pictures or anything like that it should be closed down, and the people involved in the display of the content that is illegal arrested.

    But having peadophillic thoughts about liking children is something you can control its just the way you feel, you have to supress those sexual urges, in just the same way someone walking down the street has to supress the urges to jump on an attractive member of the opposite sex walking down the street, and the people who do supress these urges must be given every single bit of enouragement they can have, because the more help they get, the much less likly they are to do anything illegal to a child. So give them this forum, let them discuss there feelings and how each one has learned to control, but have strict moderation on the site so that anything "illegal" in any terms is posted then it is stopped. Forced marriages happen all around the world where people that are 14 - 15 are being married off to people who can range upto 30 or more, wheres the public outcry wheres the inquires to this, they arnt anywhere because they are excepted by the public of the regions these marrigaes happen. I do not agree with peadophillia in anyway but this kind of contradiction strikes me as shocking.

    Someone in an earlier post said about peadophilia accepted in ficitional writings, this is true I have recently read a book where a marriage was described both being of people under legal age (woman about 16 man into 30s), so the act would be of peadophilia also of a man "admiring" a woman who was no more than 14, which is also technicaly peadophillia. There was no restricitions on this book, no public outcry no people saying its wrong it was just accepted, does this now mean that each medium is allowed different things and judgements?

    Finaly on the case of the 14 year old and the 18year old, ok 14 is a bit young but its only a 4 year age gap, isnt the marriges between people with 30 year age gaps (50 year old marrying 20 year old) not the same or worse, i know the other person in question isnt technically a child, but they are young enough to be the child of the other partner, and these people are still allowed to make websites about there life and talk to there friends.

    I say if these people want to conduct reasonable conversations and it helps them bring a greater understanding of themselves fine, as long as they dont do anything illegal or implement it thats fine, but shouldnt that rule apply to everything not just this website?

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OMG! Where have you guys all been?

    Ive been reading the register for a good number of years now and have always enjoyed its content. This is my first time reading the comments section of a news item and my first time posting a reply to one,

    Im warmed to find so many people who share my balanced view on this subject. Too many people form irrational arguments whenever this subject is raised, I usually get more than my fair share of verbal attacks for airing many of the views discussed above. Its good to see that the registers readers are as good as its content.

  33. Brian Ribbon

    Re: Comments

    I noticed people suggesting that paedophiles should receive "therapy." While this is rather more polite than many comments posted elsewhere, it still somewhat misses the point that an attraction to children is just as natural for a paedophile as an attraction to adults is for adult-attracted people.

    It may seem like a weird or abnormal attraction, but unless that person actually engages in sexual activity with children (or is intent on doing so), there is no need for therapy, especially considering that therapy involves little but dehumanisation and destruction (I've chatted with people who have been through such "therapy.")

    Brian Ribbon,

    anu.nfshost.com

  34. James Cleveland

    Paedophiles

    DONT deserve freedom of speech, because they target the most vulnerable major category of the world and this makes them irredeemable.

  35. James Cleveland

    Also

    This headline is irresponsible alarmist bollocks, I insist that it be changed.

  36. James Cleveland

    Oh

    I take my first comment back. While child molesters deserve to be locked up, outcasting paedophiles completely can only increase the problem, and rehabilitative approaches may be taken.

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