Censoring in the EU
We in the EU sound off our disgust when the Chinese, Burmese & Iranians censor their countryies internet content and now it is going to be happening within Europe, I hope this doesn't set a precedent........ Disgusting........
The record industry's anti-piracy lobby has won a court victory to force Tele2 Denmark, a large ISP, to block access to the Swedish BitTorrent tracker site Pirate Bay. Danish IT rag Computerworld reports that Tele2 has agreed to follow the order. The firm accounts for about four per cent of the country's broadband market, and …
I wonder what the Danish courts will make of this? It's effectively censorship. There is far worse information on the internet (some of it deemed illegal by courts, not knee-jerk reactions) which aren't blocked by ISPs.
It'll be interesting to see if there's a media backlash against ISPs that take these measures. You'd hope so - otherwise it's the start of a slippery slope.
So one ISP is taking it out of their DNS records?
I'm sure most people reading this already know, but just bookmark 220.127.116.11 and thats that little "censorship" rendered useless.
And how long before they just set up dyndns names, kick.me/to addresses, and mirrors all over the place.
"won a court victory to force Tele2 Denmark, a large ISP, to block access"
"The firm accounts for about four per cent of the country's broadband market"
4% doesn't sound very large to me - unless there are hundreds and hundreds of ISPs in Denmark? and if there are, that means fearce competition making it very easy for users to switch, no?
also - are the Danes as a country really such a large user of the PirateBay?
large enough, that by blocking 4% of them from accessing the site, that'll make any difference when compared to everyone else in the rest of the world who uses it?
It really seems about time that record companies and the like quit this stupid war of attrition, spending money on court procedures and illicit 'legitimate' DDoS services to disrupt torrents.
Don't they get it? People are happy (although I tend to wait) to torrent low-quality versions of movies. Doesn't this say 'yes fine, sell your blu-ray discs in the shops to those who have no wish to use the internet for this service, and make a cheap lower-grade copy to download?' The BBC's iPlayer is a great example of how that could work - it's even FREE and it works! The picture quality is not that great (yet) but it's watchable for the majority of people who are not tied up on what'll come after 1080p...
In a world where people are making a profit band-wagon of the environment, taking this non-evolutionary, neanderthal approach to file sharing is daft. Give the ISPs power to offer a slightly more expensive broadband line that includes a streaming/torrenting tax to cover the copyright? Anyone else who wants broadband for email/shopping can have a lower speed and would not be able to stream. I'd buy it!
It is a victory for them, which opens a floodgate into EU, unfortunately the ISP's are not fighting back, and just complying, the injunction is only intended as a temporary means until the case is tried in the 'real' court system, however the precedent is there, AllOfMp3 was blocked in Denmark in the same manner, but because the ISP's never did take the case to court, then the temporary injunction has become permanent. The rest of the ISP's in Denmark are now waiting for IFPI to contact them and ask them to block the pirate bay.
It all started with the introduction of a child pornography filter in Denmark, the idea of which is morally sound, unfortunately it violates the constitution of Denmark, which forbids any censorship of any kind. However since it was possible to take the high moral ground with that particular bit of censorship, Censorship has now been introduced into Denmark. Sites are censored, without being tried by the justice system - on the word of a private organisations, because legally the government cannot condone censorship. The filter was introduced voluentarily by the ISP's and therefore the censorship was enforced by private parties, and therefore not subject to the anticensorship laws, the police is involved in listing the sites that are to be blocked, which is supposed to give some kind of security against blatant abuse, however already several innocent sites have been blocked by that filter, though they do not link to or contain any illegal content, some of them have been removed from the filter again.
Originally when that particular bit of censorship was introduced it was said the filter would never be expanded, however it is slowly expanding to include sites which some people don't like, others deem to be illegal, but all without the sites being able to defend them selves in the justice system, or indeed even informed that they are censored.
However the introduction of the first bit of censorship, which is easy to argue for, and impossible to argue against, because the warnings of the possible erosion of civil liberties, that this could cause, seemed very weak compared to the protect children against abuse argument.
Now that Censorship is in place, and tolerated by nearly all, and supported by the vast majority, It is now easy to expand the censorship, by claiming sites to be illegal, which is what IFPI is doing now.
So Denmark has no official Censorship, and the Censorship is considered voluntary, controlled by private interest groups, and the government can wash their hands, saying they're not doing it, and they can ignore the anti-censorship laws.
If a country with explicit anti-censorship laws can introduce censorship, it creates a precedent for introducing censorship in other countries, for instance countries like the UK where there are already content censorship, it will be easier, now that they have underminded the constitution in one country.
However civil liberties groups in Denmark are mainly like toothless dogs which you rarely hear from, which IMO the reason why Denmark has been picked out for this action, I hope civil liberties groups in other countries are more effective in fighting this creeping erosion of freedom.
The local lobbying groups are trying the same in Sweden and Finland. Using Denmark as a precedence, of course. Finland already has a blacklist that ISPs use to block child porn (that has been shown to block non-child-porn). It has already been suggested that the same list could be used for blocking online gambling and copyright violations.
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IANAL by any respect; but if the censorship is 'voluntary', i.e. not legally enforceable, as that would be seen as state backed censorship. Then surely it will be subject to the open market, as in one of the ISP's will try and cash in on some extra customers from the ones who are blocking the Pirate Bay by marketing itself in some form as file-sharing friendly.
For those of us running any version of unix(or lookalike) on our network, this really isn't an issue, since we most likely already run our own bind set up as a cache (and rarely notice when the ISPs flaky dns fail). For those without a local uinx, download VMWare player, and one of the pre-made linux images on their site, then set up a caching dns there. right click and property your way into the network settings, and enter the IP to your virtual unix-server there. Problem solved. Then, go out and change isp. If they say "you've got XX months left on your contract", simply tell them "my contract is for internet. You are delivering filternet. Release me NOW, or I'll take you to court for wrongful advertising, since you're advertising a product you're not selling". They will release you, because they REALLY fear the result should users bring their business practise into the court room. Guess why.
"We in the EU sound off our disgust when the Chinese, Burmese & Iranians censor their countryies internet content and now it is going to be happening within Europe, I hope this doesn't set a precedent........ Disgusting........"
As this is blocking a site that openly displays contempt for the law and makes no pretence of it, it is no comparison to what is happening in China etc. It won't stop illegal copying and piracy, but its bloody funny seeing these sites that think they "can't be touched" get brought down. Ah, the arrogance of the young. Not long now till TPB is finally stuffed - then on to the next one... Better than Fox Hunting and no harm done to animals.
The customers of Tele2 could sue them for censoring their access. After all just browsing PirateBay is definitely NOT illegal - however censorship apparently is.
Are class action suits possible in Denmark?
Of course another approach might be for every single tech site & forum to say "oh no we can no longer access anything - downloading is dead" and continue as normal and hopefully the clueless bastards will believe their strategy will work.
Stupid is as stupid does !
What a total pack of idiotic self wanking wowsers to implement this form of gross stupidity and incompetence ! One wonders do they really have a single functioning brain cell left given the ease such a ban can be circumvented with very few keystrokes ?
A new torrent file tracking service has recently arrived on the scene it is not a torrent file data base but a search engine which simultaneously searches across a minimum of ten torrent file data bases for the file you seek at the same time it is called "youtorrent.com"
Sigh ! , we were warned about these idiots back in the late sixties of those who were mostly clinically brain dead promoted into positions beyond their ability to think rationally with their single functional brain cell !
"As this is blocking a site that openly displays contempt for the law and makes no pretence of it,"
I'm sure that BBC News et al "openly display" contempt for Chinese and Burmese law and make no pretence of it.... that doesn't mean it's right does it? US or British law and culture does not have automatic moral superiority... and as we've seen the Pirate Bay is perfectly legal within the laws of Sweden... so I'm not quite sure what your argument is...
If you don't fancy BIND, you can use Tree Walk also.. Seemed to work fine for me.
But sticking a redirect in your hosts file is probably the easiest thing.
Seriously, what a pointless move. It's like trying to bring down a criminal organisation by taking their number out of the phone book.
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