back to article O2, Be Broadband axe Pirate Bay access

Telefonica, which owns the O2 brand and fixed-line provider Be Broadband, is implementing a High Court order to block conventional web access to file-sharing search engine The Pirate Bay. O2 confirmed to The Register that it will join BSkyB, Virgin Media and Everything Everywhere by cutting off from its …


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  1. Spades

    Please will the ISPs call it censorship

    First time poster and long term TalkTalk user - despite their awful faults handling process I've remained loyal due to their attitude towards and willingness to fight against the media industries.

    However - I hope that one of the ISP will create an honest page to present users who access these sites. I'd like to see the word "Censored" appeared. "This site has been censored by order of the *courts/UK government on *behalf of/due to legal action by <insert media organisation here>".

    *delete as applicable.

    1. Keep Refrigerated

      Re: Please will the ISPs call it censorship

      +10 for "censorship" substitution. That is what it is, there's no PR reason for ISPs to use a friendly word either - after all Be in this case are making it clear enough that they don't agree with it but must comply.

      Next, I'd like to see which ISP has the balls to offer the following optional extras, free or paid doesn't matter:

      * Automated alternative DNS setup (eg. OpenDNS, Google)

      * VPN service

      * Open Wifi access setup (can be confirmed by ISP for plausible deniability)

      * Proxy tools

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    must have done it through their dns as it's working here.

  3. mark 63 Silver badge

    well I guess your average freetard dosent know what a proxy server is , but *may* just be capable of doing a bit of a search and find some discussions pointing out new URLs

    1. Gaz Jay
      Thumb Up


      Non-tech savvy people usually learned of torrents and the Pirate Bay from their more tech savvy friends. By this method they will also learn about alternate URLs, Proxys and Tor to bypass this restriction.

      Plus TPB has also said it is fully prepared to play "whack-a-mole" with these ISPs.

      1. janimal

        Re: Agreed....

        It is obviously a clever scheme to increase the technical knowledge of the average UK internet user, including all the paedophiles who can now almost legitimately ask in forums how to evade a Cleanfeed block without being identifiable as a kiddy fiddler.

        They obviously didn't think of the children when they ordered this.

  4. Kevin Gurney

    Be Broadband

    As a Be customer I appreciate that they have to comply with court orders.

    Given that Be is regarded as a "techy" ISP, most of their users will either be using another BT search engine or know how to get around the block anyway.

    Does anybody even still use TPB anyway ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Be Broadband

      To answer your question,

      5.755.128 registered users Last updated 14:30:08.

      27.865.633 peers (21.417.497 seeders + 6.448.136 leechers) in 3.771.644 torrents

  5. Danny 5

    oh noooooo

    now that everyone's cutting off TPB, i can no longer get torrent downloads! it's so unfair.

    Oh wait, there's 50000 more where the TBP came from.

    Oh wait, is that an open proxy?

    oh wait, is that a new URL?

    heck, i didn't know there was a

    for every door that closes, 10 new ones open.

    What i fail to understand, is the reason for these bans? surely the enforcers must know this solves little to nothing, so why waste so much time and money on it?

    1. King Jack

      Re: oh noooooo

      It's the thin end of the wedge. Expect more sites to be censored in the coming months. Soon there will be a white list of 'approved' sites that we will be allowed to surf to and nothing else.

    2. Graham Dawson Silver badge

      Re: oh noooooo

      It isn't their money being wasted and they get paid for the time spent. No incentive to be smart about it.

    3. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart

      Re: oh noooooo

      What i fail to understand, is the reason for these bans?

      Because it gives the copyright mafiaa the impression that they are doing something, i.e. trying to protect their monopoly, it also creates a bogyman for them to blame, i.e. sales are falling due to piracy and not due to the fact that in worsening economic situation, people are less likely to buy formulistic, shit, boring, mass-produced, muzak filled records.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: oh noooooo

      "What i fail to understand, is the reason for these bans? surely the enforcers must know this solves little to nothing, so why waste so much time and money on it?"

      I would hazzard a guess it's so they can legitimately say "there you go - done what you wanted". They (whether your'e talking about the courts or the ISPs) know it achieves nothing, but they've ticked the box for (the courts for the film/music industry, the ISPs for the courts) to show they've done what's requested.

      Perhaps the film and music industry will be wondering if it was worth all the effort?

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: oh noooooo

      .ru? Wouldn't trust it.

  6. janimal

    Still accessible for me

    I am on Be and can still access PB at the moment.

    I just checked I am actually using OpenDNS so maybe Be simply modified their DNS rather than using a cleanfeed style solution?

    1. Steve Evans

      Re: Still accessible for me

      Read sentence 3

      "We have no option but to comply with this order and will be doing so overnight,” an O2 spokeswoman said today.

      Come back tomorrow and report.

      1. Haku

        Re: Still accessible for me

        I'm confused about the timing though, the blog post on Be saying they were going to comply with the order overnight was dated 6th June, today is 7th June so shouldn't it have happened already?

        1. janimal

          Re: Still accessible for me

          Well today is yesterday's tomorrow & it is still working this morning. Maybe they did just go for DNS poisoning (I use alternative DNS servers), or they failed to successfully implement their block.

  7. Anonymous Cowherder

    Other torrent sites area available

    This block achieves nothing, if a person was inclined to torrent and are a bit lacking in skillz but had stumbled across piratebay they will see the blocked page, go to google and find other torrent sites.

    If the person is a practiced evil downloader they will already be using multiple sources for getting their content and will not see the piratebay's blocked page.

  8. adnim



    Never visited Pirate Bay.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Usenet

      I go one step further and have a VPN to my usenet provider. Try blocking that.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Usenet

        VyprVPN for torrenting? don't bother, they keep records, and do send you DMCA notices when they receive them from the people employed by the **AA to log US IP addresses in torrent swarms.

        Although from what I've read, DMCA notices of this kind mean diddly squat, even the American torrenters are ignoring them.

        But too many DMCA notices whilst using VyprVPN will get your Giganews account cancelled, meannig no usenet no dumptruck no VPNs. Still, there are plenty of VPNs out there that don't keep logs...

        1. janimal

          Re: Usenet

          There's no need to do the torrent through a VPN or TOR. It is only TPB which is blocked. So once you have downloaded the magnet hash quit the VPN & carry on as normal.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Usenet

            @janimal: they're not torrenting through VPN, they're downloading direct from a news provider. This has the advantage of not requiring the data sharing that torrents do, thus removing the "you shared X" accusations, and the added advantage of faster speeds. Steady 3MB/s, which was near the limit of the connection, is not a problem. That's a TV episode in about 7-8 mins if you were so inclined to undertake such heinous and illegal activities. See how usenet and NZB works for more info on how much better it is.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Usenet


          No, not VyprVPN for torrenting. VyperVPN to tunnel to usenet. Torrents are for kids and noobs.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Taking business elsewhere

    Presumably those who are taking their business elsewhere will be either

    a) individuals with strong anti-censorship ideals who wish to protest at a British ISP complying with a legal judgement


    b) the anti-copyright sort who are getting out before other forms of access to DRM free downloads is threatened by the ISP and where likely to be using up bandwidth downloading the latest Hollywood stinker.

    1. Hieronymus Howerd

      Re: Taking business elsewhere

      I suspect they just want to download more illegal stuff.

      You may be overthinking this one.

  10. Steve Evans

    Some Be Broadband customers hit back by claiming they would take their "business elsewhere".


    Dunno quite how to break this to you, but unless you are planning to emigrate, you are going to discover finding a UK ISP that hasn't (or isn't about to) block TPB is a little tricky.

    Options are:

    1) Emigrate as previously mentioned (not a bad option to be honest!)

    2) VPN

    3) Use a private tracker that's kept its head down.

    4) Wait 5 minutes for a different, unblocked domain/IP to appear. Use it for 6 months whilst the wheels of the court go round and round. Once blocked, wait another 5 minutes. Repeat until Music industry resort to using contract killings on pirates with HM Govt blessing.

    Changing from one UK ISP to another will not have the slightest influence on the above, except BT moving at their typical glacial speed is actually a slightly beneficial to the end user just this once!

    1. LinkOfHyrule
      Paris Hilton

      The Pirate Bay should...

      ...start a UK ISP company! That'd be funny - an ISP told to block its own website!

      Paris 'cus she's partial to a Jolly Roger!

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Time will tell?

    I look forward to seeing what difference, if any, this has on the sales of music and movies in the UK.

    Will the blockade work (in the sense of better sales)?

    Will it be worth the time & money spent on it by all sides to the UK's economy?

    Wile the music industry gets my thumbs-up for offering DRM-free music from a few resellers (OK, ten years later than they should have), will the movie industry change to offer me what I want (play-anywhere file as its not hobbled with DRM)?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Time will tell?

      Any increase in sales will be put down to the wonders of blocks and used as evidence to speed up blocking of more sites and loosening the laws around it.

      Continued decrease in sales will be put down to not blocking enough and used as evidence to speed up blocking of more sites and loosening the laws around it.

      1. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart

        Re: Time will tell?

        Should be easy to check, what was the huge jump in sales when Oink was closed down???

    2. Joe Montana

      Re: Time will tell?

      If anything, i expect this block will increase use of TPB by effectively advertising its existence...


      I don't pirate music anymore, now that its available drm-free in a usable format its not worth the hassle... Not that i ever bought or pirated much music, i generally just listen to the radio.

      I don't pirate software because i'm a linux user, and everything i use i can get legitimately for free anyway.

      I DO pirate tv shows, i also pay to subscribe to a service that lets me watch them on tv, but the paid services offer an inferior product to the pirates... I can download a drm-free copy of a tv show and watch it wherever, whenever and on whatever device i choose. That tends to be on my phone, netbook or tablet, while commuting on a train (where there is often no internet connection). Shows also tend to air in the US sooner than they do here, although that has improved in recent years. I feel no qualms about downloading a superior copy of something i have already paid for.

      I've also seen a few movies lately at the cinema and wished i hadn't, with a small handful of exceptions most of the movies released lately have been garbage... Of course the movie industry is too arrogant to realise that a combination of lousy movies, unpleasant (filthy, smelly, noisy) cinemas, onerous drm schemes and the recession are to blame for weaker movie sales... They just try to use pirates as the scapegoats for their own incompetence.

  12. Zombie Womble

    The Pirate Bay has announced that it has over a hundred IP addresses ready and waiting, when one is blocked it will simply release another. Considering that in some countries it will take a separate court order to block each new address I wonder who will give up first.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Right or wrong

    Its censorship.

    VPNs ahoy!

    1. Steve Evans

      Re: Right or wrong

      Next week's news:

      Music business flood all media channels with propaganda. Within 2 months 90% of the population believe VPN is an acronym for "Virulent Pirate Nastiness" and campaign groups spontaneously (with backing from mysterious benefactors) spring up to outlaw such heinous systems.

      Next year's news:

      VPNs and all encrypted transport systems have been found to be used for 49% piracy and 50% terrorism, and all forms of encryption now carry stiff custodial penalties.

      1. janimal
        Black Helicopters


        I'm pretty sure the banks and online retailers would fight that, although maybe they will introduce a system of authorised only encryption tunnels anything else gets you 10 years in jail in case you're a kiddy fiddler or piwate.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Right or wrong

        Obviously a BBC news broadcast.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Right or wrong

        Year after that news.

        An uncensored data exchange layer has been found beneath the exchange of cute kitten pictures and facebook updates. Courts decide to pull the plug all together on this troubleson new internet thingy.

  14. Bad Fish

    I can't get it to not work

    I'm a Be customer, and I can't get the block to work. I can browse the Pirate Bay without any trouble.

    What am I doing wrong? I was looking forward to seeing this "blocked" message, so that I could have the pleasure of working round it in less than 30 seconds. But now I'm annoyed that it's not blocked. Can anyone help me to get it properly blocked, please?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seems to be working here

    Working here as of 12:08pm on Thursday - however it could be that my DNS is set to OpenDNS and GoogleDNS rather than O2's own servers so I don't know if that's making a difference.

  16. janimal

    Ah overnight - Tonight!

    So it will be blocked tomorrow, I see.

    Fail icon for me!

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The internet is much safer, that has made all the difference.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Does this mean we can oil out of any contracts with our ISP?

    1. Hieronymus Howerd

      Re: Contracts?

      Depends. Did you have any contracts explicitly stating that your ISP would violate High Court orders in order to help you continue to illegally download pirated material?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not a torrent user...

    In fact I'd go as far to say that I'm against what they are used for by the majority. Theft is theft afterall, but this is too much. I am currently an O2 customer and I'll be looking at my contract to see if this action breahes it. This is a step on the slippery slope of state mandated censoring and gives a precedent that could be abused at the expense of net neutraility.

    Anon, because fuck the 'establishment' - the entertainment and software industries are fat, lazy, and greedy.

    1. Chad H.

      Re: Not a torrent user...

      Actually, I think this can work in our favour. Next time the BPI/MPAA/Whatever go to court to demand a site block, the ISPs can turn around and say "look, this doesn't work, here's the proof".

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not a torrent user...

      I should think that you contract has a clause that means they can't be blamed if they do something to comply with the law of the land.

      Might be covered by "force majeure"

    3. John G Imrie

      Theft is theft...

      and Copyright Infringement is Copyright Infringement.

      Please do not get the two confused, no matter what FACT say.

    4. CmdrX3

      Theft is theft??

      Really? I don't recall having seen or heard of anyone being prosecuted for theft for downloading (or uploading). I have one or two attempts at fraud related prosecutions, which failed miserably, but none for theft. Completely agree with the rest of your statement though, other than with a few exceptions within the E&S industries.

    5. Tom 38

      Re: Not a torrent user...

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      Copyright infringement is not theft.

      What? The movie industry seem to have brainwashed people into believing falsehoods by repeating things over and over again, thought I'd give it a try, but with the truth. Who knows, might catch on.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @tom 38

        From your post it sounds you're trying to brainwash yourself.

        The economic damage from free downloads is clear. It is less than copyright lobbyists like to claim but it is substantial. Nobody invests in music because of the free downloading.

        1. Tom 38

          Re: @tom 38

          Who said anything about downloading music? Copyright infringement is not theft. This is not a personal opinion or argument, it is a legal definition.

          The various trade bodies would like copyright infringement to be treated as theft - a criminal offence - rather than copyright infringement, which is a civil offence. To try and achieve this, they have repeatedly lied to consumers, to try and insert this 'fact' into the communal conscience. This behaviour is abhorrent.

          FYI - although not that it is relevant - I pay for all my media, one way or another, and do not upload or share media with anyone.

          Lets look at the damage to the music industry, in terms of global revenue over the last 6 years.

          2006 ($60.7 billion),

          2007 ($61.5 billion),

          2008 ($62.6 billion),

          2009 ($65.0 billion),

          2010 ($66.4 billion),

          2011 ($67.6 billion)

          Really looks like they are struggling there. So why are they moaning so much? Lets look at a breakdown. This is global revenue from physical sales:

          $33.1 billion (2006),

          $30.6 billion (2007),

          $27.5 billion (2008),

          $24.6 billion (2009),

          $22.2 billion (2010),

          $19.9 billion (2011)

          Aha. Now it makes more sense. Even as revenue has increased, their old stalwart of physical sales - where they bilk the highest margins from the consumer - has been decimated.

          This is the same argument being peddled by the porn barons. The internet has changed how we consume media. We as consumers are no longer prepared to fork out obscene amounts of money for shiny discs, and they need to adapt rather than slavishly holding on to their old ways and trying to legislate/sue people so that nothing changes.

        2. King Jack

          Re: @tom 38

          "Nobody invests in music because of the free downloading."

          Tell that to Simon Cowell. He is invested in The X-Factor and The X-facor USA. He also runs Syco a music publishing company. Last time I looked he was being driven around in a Limo.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not a torrent user...

        Of course, you are right. But calling this copyright infringement is disingenuous. Downloading TV shows, film and music that you have not licensed, and in the vast majority of cases have no intention of ever paying for, is intellectual property theft, not copyright infringement. Your version of the "truth" is one that is perpetuated by freetards like yourself. As ever, the fact lies somewhere between the "truth" as professed by the entertainment industry and your over entitled freetard version of the "truth".

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Censorship Virus....

    seems to be spreading rapidly

    so glad i'm not with any of the "Main Big isp's" then, and it all works fine, been seeding for a week :)

    on a side note its always the bpi that gets mentioned, never the fact that tpb is not only for music but a damn good source for alot of other rare hard to find stuff e.g. old ebooks and tv ep's that would otherwise be unobtainable

    im in no way defending music backups, i am simply stating everyone should not be forcefully blocked from a website simply because they "Might be downloading music"

    and remember folks, "home taping is killing music".......

  21. Maxson

    Take their business elsewhere?

    To Where?! Every ISP will soon block TPB....Personally I'm not all that bothered, there are other torrent search sites. I agree that it's a potentially slippery slope as this could pave the way for blanket bans of other websites, but TPB doesn't really have a use other than piracy, and it IS the right of an IP owner to protect their work and their cashflow. That's just business.

    1. Chad H.

      Re: Take their business elsewhere?

      No, only the ISPs named in the suit have to block it. Is the BPI going to spend the money to roll out the verdict to every small boutique ISP out there?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Take their business elsewhere?

      I doubt all ISPs will be blocking. We no longer provide broadband to our customers, but used to. If we were still doing so I very much doubt anyone would have noticed whether we did or did not block it - I haven't seen any court order saying we have to block it.

  22. David Given

    Can anyone who's on one of these ISPs try it and tell us how it's implemented?

    For example, the classic minimum-compliance-with-bone-headed-court-order level of compliance is to spoof the DNS to return a specific IP address for the blocked domain. This, of course, is trivially workaroundable by just using a different DNS server (such as Google's

    Blocking IP addresses is rather more work --- as you have to keep up-to-date with TPB's IP address changes, plus of course the risk of collatoral damage by other uses on a shared address --- and if I were an ISP being legally required to do something I didn't want to, I'd probably consider doing this to be too much effort if the easy approach satisfied the requirements.

    1. janimal

      tell you tomorrow

      I am on Be - they will be implementing the block overnight tonight.

      Blocking the IP would also block any other sites hosted on the same server and spoofing the DNS is trivial to circumvent & against the RFC.

      Apparently VM used Cleanfeed to filter the url, not sure how this works maybe DPI to filter the URL?

      1. Hieronymus Howerd

        Re: tell you tomorrow

        > "sites hosted on the same server"

        Do you think that TPB use £5.99 pcm shared hosting?

        1. janimal

          Re: tell you tomorrow

          they could do if they wanted, they don't host any content. The entire contents of the TPB would fit at least 4 times over on my shared hosting.

          The point is the possibility exists for companies to get sued for blocking access to non-censored site.

    2. Annihilator


      Cleanfeed. I'm pretty sure the court order even references it (or did in the Newzbin one anyway). Speaking of which, anyone figure out quite why BT need more time to organise it? didn't they comply with the Newzbin block pretty sharp-ish? It's a line in the Cleanfeed blacklist FFS.

      It works at the IP level, by routing to a proxy which then does a bit of DPI to inspect which site its heading for.

  23. mrmond
    IT Angle


    Well I found out an alternative ip for the main site and it worked for a day,but then it timed out after.

    Changed dns settings to opendns and still doesn't work (on BSkyB)

    However no problems using a proxy or using a Tor browser,starting the download,then closing tor to speed up the connection.

    Just wondering why using opendns isn't making any difference.

    1. Blacklight

      Re: workaround

      "Just wondering why using opendns isn't making any difference."

      OpenDNS = just DNS with bells on, all it does is return an IP for a site.

      If your ISP ONLY "blocks" at the DNS level (by handing you the IP for a webserver with "Stop being naughty" on the homepage) then "any other DNS provider" should work.

      However, if your ISP block at the IP level, then you won't get out. Or, if they engage DPI, and look for a known hostname (which may change IP address) then that'll be blocked too.

      It's trivial for your ISP to force route your web and/or DNS traffic via a proxy for inspection. Hell, I run DNS interception at home to ensure all machines (regardless of local config) use OpenDNS via my router, and DHCP option 252 to shunt all non-HTTPS web traffic via my home proxy (with adblock).

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sort their own content delivery out

    I decided I wanted to play Mass Effect. I looked it up online to see if it could be streamed to me, and found that for some reason it was cheaper if I bought a physical copy. So I bought it, downloaded it off of TPB and played it happily. It arrived in the post a few days later, so I put it on a shelf...

    I then decided I wanted to play Mass Effect 2. I looked it up online to see if it could be streamed to me, and found that for some reason it was cheaper if I bought a physical copy. So I bought it, downloaded it off of TPB and played it happily. It arrived in the post a few days later, so I put it on a shelf.

    I then decided I wanted to play Mass Effect 3....

    Couldn't they spend their time and money sorting all this out rather than taking everyone to court and talking bollocks about lost sales...?

  25. Alan 6

    Open DNS

    That is all

  26. Anonymous Coward

    The point here..

    ... is not that TPB effectively died a few years back anyway, but rather one of censorship - it really doesn't matter what site it is.

    Don't blame the ISP's, blame our legal system for allowing record company dinosaurs to win this legal battle. Dinosaurs who really just don't get exactly what to do with this damn internet thingy - even though it's been over a decade since napster.

    The genie was out the bottle already, the horse hadn't only bolted, it had sired 3 generations of wild horses.

    In the meantime, the new digital model, with Apple at the helm, is doing rather nicely thank you.

    No doubt the industry will view this censorship as a victory, which only goes to show just how incredibly clueless they are.

    It's whack-a-mole with 100,000 moles to their single hammer - completely pointless.

    But now a new genie has been unleashed - UK censorship of websites.

    Right now, it's just a gesture more than anything else - it's not illegal (as far as I know), to circumvent this censorship using proxies - but how long before it is?

    Will ISP's update their Ts&Cs to protect their own arses - will the buck be passed to the consumer?

  27. Grahame 2


    Be had an issue with their DNS cache servers a while back, which meant a lot of people switched away from Be's internal service to OpenDNS or Google as has already been mentioned.

  28. phlashbios

    Sod them...

    Up until recently, despite being a regular Torrent user, my preferred tracker site was never The Pirate Bay. However, since these ridiculous bans came into place, I am now making a point of using TPB (via the ToR network) instead of my previous preferred tracker indexing site.

    Congratulations to the people who brought this issue to court, you have now added a user to TPB who was never one before.

  29. Druid Power

    Well done with all the smart "I know how to get around this" posts. This is the thin end of the wedge and the next wave of censorship comes around and more port based controls are imposed and proxies are blocked then what? Keep pouring on the fuel guys. . .

    1. DJ Smiley
      Thumb Down

      Hows that work blocking all the pedophilia in the world going?

      Oh, you mean you just use it to source the IP's so you can arrest people instead, but now your IP feed is turning up all sorts of random people including grannies and 4 year olds? And it never actually stopped it anyway, just made it more annoying to find?

      You can't full block things on the itnernet without going entirely the other way (Great firewall of china) and even then that doesn't work, you need extra things like factories so you can lock your workforce up.... sorry, I mean provide them with accommodation.

  30. Druid Power

    Well done with all the smart "I know how to get around this" post. This is the thin end of the wedge and the next wave of censorship comes around and more port based controls are imposed and proxies are blocked then what? Keep pouring on the fuel guys. . .

  31. Spudbynight

    I can still see it...

    Be punter here and I just checked and I can reach The Pirate Bay

  32. Spudbynight

    The reason I can see it....

    Just remembered I use Google as my DNS provider.

    I guess this is why I can still see "The Bay" without any issues.

    1. Annihilator

      Re: The reason I can see it....

      You've got the "fail" icon ironically correct. The block isn't applied until tonight (score 1) and the block will be implemented via the Cleanfeed system which has nothing to do with who provides your DNS (score 2).

    2. janimal

      Re: The reason I can see it....

      They are implementing it tonight not last night.

      opendns won't work for you tomorrow I am pretty sure.

  33. Gordon Pryra

    Good old corruption

    Until the death penalty comes out for corruption, we will always have rich people writing their own laws. Even if they are busted, they don't get more than a slap on the wrist. There is no reason for them not to fill their pockets. look at Rupert and our PM for a good example right now.

    Pity we cant get to see the bank accounts of the various Politicos and Judges who took backhanders along the way, I would love to know just how much getting a law passed for specific private company's actually costs. 5-20 million? More?

    Anyway, thanks for the BPI for taking us one step closer to zero democracy and totally non-free-market economy.

  34. Anonymous Coward


    "...Guys, we will close comments for this article if you keep trying to post workarounds..."

    Now, that's what I call "biting the hand..."!

  35. DMJ



    Guys, we will close comments for this article if you keep trying to post workarounds."

    Wow, now The Register is threatening to start censoring, wtf!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: ???

      How silly. We are legally obliged to ensure that such links are not published.

      You can find links elsewhere, if you want. How is this censorship?

      1. Benny

        Re: ???

        Are you?

        Since when was El Reg an ISP that was hit with the courts ban hammer?

    2. Chad H.

      Re: ???

      Are you sure you're legally obliged? El Reg isn't named in the court order, and neither are the customers...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Legal status

        You post, we publish - our responsibility.

        We are liable to action under UK* law if we publish ways of accessing copyright infringing material.

        *The Scottish angle appears to be a red herring - no substantive differences between the two codes on copyright here, that I can see.

        1. Chad H.

          Re: Legal status

          Except you're not.. You're linking to a site that links to a site that might link to a page that has infringing content.... How many degrees of separation does it take to be safe?

          Also, the Scottish response was relevant to the question it was posted to. A purely Scottish ISP would need to see a case through the Scottish courts... not just an extension of the current one.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Re: Legal status

            Allowing guys to post workarounds on the grounds that we'll most likely get away with it ... hmm. That makes sense.

            On Scotland, the courts would rule the same as in England and Wales. One might gain a little breathing space by moving to a Scottish-only ISP. But if enough people did this, that's all one would gain: a little breathing space.

        2. Marty

          Re: Legal status

          if el-reg did not moderate any of its posts at all, then they cannot be held responsible for the comments of posters.

          The second they even correct a spelling mistake, or correct punctuation, or remove the private telephone number of Prince Charles then they have moderated the forum and are legally responsible for every post contained on the site. ..

          There is lot to be said for having a unmoderated forum and the resulting open discussions you can have, but it only takes 30 seconds until it reduces to personal abuse & flame wars mixed in with spam posts for boner pills...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Re: Legal status

            Unmoderated forums are legally much safer in the UK than moderated forums. Your last par explains why we choose to moderate.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Legal status

              "Unmoderated forums are legally much safer in the UK than moderated forums. Your last par explains why we choose to moderate.' Really? Your moderators are shit then.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Re: Legal status


        3. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Down

          Re: Legal status

          You could always try growing a backbone, or standing up for what you profess to believe in. You've filled enough column inches over the years, lambasting everyone from Google to the Chinese government for either imposing, or failing to resist censorship of the internet. Now you're cravenly self-censoring, just because of a court order which has absolutely nothing to do with El Reg, whatsoever.

          Talk about arm-chair generals!

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IT babe magnets speak

    its not actually that clever to come on here boasting about how you can get round it . keep it to yourself.

    The ISP's are just complying with a court order so no need to lash out at them like an imbecile either.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hmm, yet again the English Court system overrides the legal rights of other parts of the UK.

    1. Chad H.


      No it doesn't. Setup a Scottish ISP and you'll be fine

  38. JP19

    URL please

    I don't use torrents much and don't recall ever visiting TPB.

    What is a URL that is supposed to be blocked so I can't check how censored the net is for me.

  39. Haku

    First wave of censorship

    I see this as the first wave of censorship because everyone who knows how to torrent knows how to circumvent these measures (or can find out in a few seconds with a search engine), making them ineffective.

    I'd put money on the 'powers that be' who forced this on the ISPs knowing that this situation will happen and it's a strategy of theirs to then turn round and say "we need stronger blocks because this isn't working", which will end up making things just a little bit worse for everyone.

  40. Anonymous Coward


    T'would have been nice if, for once, the British courts didn't bend over and 'adopt the position', when their masters in Hollywood snapped their fingers. Perhaps TPB's own response to a threatening email from Dreamworks' lawyers might serve as a template:

    DREAMWORKS: In accordance with the DMCA, we request your assistance in the removal of infringements of the Shrek 2 motion picture from this web site and any other sites for which you act as an Internet Service Provider.

    TPB: As you may or may not be aware, Sweden is not a state in the United States of America. Sweden is a country in northern Europe. Unless you figured it out by now, US law does not apply here.


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: TPB

      Doesn't look like a "threatening" email at all.

      Unless you have a different dictionary to me....

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Bootnote

    Why are we forbidden from posting work-arounds? None of them are illegal or expressly forbidden by the court order.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    ohhhh an its back again.

    This just kind of proves the ignorance of the law makers, its all about back slapping, back handed deals, political FUD or just general cock fighting behaviour.

    Now im not saying TPB is good, im just saying that this idea of censorship and trying to play politics with something they clearly have no idea about, does nothing except open the door to more worrying issues, troubling times indeed....

  43. flearider

    would it not be better to use a programe that does not have a central server ???


    but does have hundreds of web sites feeding it ...

    just saying ..

  44. JimmyPage Silver badge

    To all the smug posters

    look what happened when "legal highs" started to outstrip government ability to control them. We got a "ban first, ask questions later" law.

    I wonder how long before the law is changed so that sites can be blocked *before* court action.

    Still, VPN all the way.

  45. Dan 55 Silver badge

    At last, a reason to move over to IP6

    That is all.

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Conceal My Donkey!, anyone?

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm not saying you should google this but

    Unblock Pirate Bay ;)

    So that's thousands of pounds wastes on lawyers then.

    1. janimal

      Re: I'm not saying you should google this but

      No need I just got back from the Bay and saw no sign of a blockade. I thought they were implementing it at 0100 this morning.

  48. GMarket

    Software Piracy In Numbers

  49. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's only going to get worse for TPB

    It's bad enough that these folks are socially irresponsible, but to flaunt their violations of copyright laws will result in a lot more losses than gains.

  50. Winkypop Silver badge

    What next?

    Banning "talk like a pirate day" ???

  51. Zombieman

    Negative side effect of blocking

    At the moment, all these blocking are sounding like they're at consumer level ISPs?

    What are these consumers going to do? My guess, if they're not already doing so, is using their work computers, if the business network hasn't performed a "soft block" on the domain name (and those can be EASILY worked around).

    So what then? Are the court orders going to be issued against the corporate level ISPs providing leased line or other such Internet access?

    Here's the problem though... Businesses with ANY intellectual property do actually need to be access these services so they can investigate and send cease-and-desist letters else the courts can potentially say that the business are not actively defending their IP.

    Pushing this further and further underground is just getting closer to the situation of having a "dark Internet" where the piracy lives without being visible to anyone using the "open Internet" as it is...

    Don't make the illegal activities invisible!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Negative side effect of blocking

      If these "consumers" are found using work computers to download material that isn't work-related from the internet aren't they going to find themselves "employmentally challenged"?

  52. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    No, still working fine.

    Are they going for the search engines next?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Blocked?

      the google search engine webcache of a swedish website that I posted yesterday, which was deleted by the moderators, was not allowed to be published under the uk legal environment, as perceived by the operators of el'reg website forums. So yes, the search engine results are censored in Britain, even if only by threat of possible action, rather than directly by a phone call by the Lord Chamberlain's office.

      What Iraq war?, it never happened!

      Cash for questions? some other country

      abuse of parliamentary expenses?, Google has no record of this

  53. StripeyMiata

    Tried this morning and it's blocked, I'm an O2 not Be customer. Took 8 seconds to get around it, can't say how as the Reg doesn't want people to, but it wasn't rocket science.

  54. janimal


    use an ISP that isn't named on the court order

    1. janimal
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Just

      So apparently this perfectly legal 'workaround' is let past by the moderators, but the other perfectly legal 'workaround' that I posted isn't?

      You should at least be consistent in your moderation. Already this thread contains methods x,y and z but apparently method y is censored?

      1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

        Re: janimal

        TBF the 'workaround' is pretty close to 'move to another country'. Where do you draw the line? Answers on a postcard to the High Court.


        1. janimal

          Re: janimal

          Surely the same place as the court drew it?

          The fact is that Telefonica has blocked as they were ordered to. I believe there are still plenty of smaller ISPs who have not been legally obliged to block access to this URL. So changing your ISP is a perfectly valid, if long and tedious and potentially 'workaround'

          However it is no different semantically from the other ways in which you can easily circumvent this block so surely you are put in the same legal position?

          As far as I know know one has said it is illegal to discuss alternative methods of arriving at TPB, if they have please share?

          I would have thought that The fact that the cleanfeed block can be circumvented instantly without any use of proxies or VPN would be newsworthy in itself?

          Perhaps you should be writing a scathing article on the uselessness of even using DPI to block the site due to the fact that certain essential internet technologies exist to prevent DPI? This is supposed to be a technology site after all right?

          Instead you increase the level of censorship on the internet in the UK when you are too scared to publish opinions and perfectly legal discussion on the subject.

          It makes a mockery of your stance on the Great Firewall of China and other censorship issues.

          Have you spoken to a lawyer about the legality of publishing readers methods of reaching TPB? Perhaps you could at least publish an article on that, or ask You seem to get the rest of your legal news from them

          1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

            Re: janimal

            Your argument falls apart on the censorship point: we're not stopping you from finding a solution to the blocking. In fact, we assume everyone knows, anyway. The ban on workarounds isn't permanent, just a precaution for now.


  55. Gavin 8

    Control Freaks

    I regularly buy content: music, movies, and TV shows. I have, against my better judgement been using itunes to purchase their DRMd media even though at times as a paying customer I've not been able to copy it between my own devices, this is not something I am happy with.

    Then, last week Game of Thrones season 2 ended, and I wanted to watch it, really badly. Looked in iTunes, nothing. Searched google to purchase the series, nothing. If I really really want to watch Games of Thrones season 2, the only option I have is to download the series illegally.

    What really annoys me, is the politicians and courts give in to the whims of these content owners, going as far as censoring non infringing public websites, when the lazy bastard content owners can't even be bothered to sell us their content. How is that balanced?

    I'm all up for protecting content owners right to sell stuff, but if they refuse to actually let me buy it and I can freely download it, then I will, path of least resistance and all that. I really have no sympathy for these people who are kept in coke and limos by another bunch of of self serving hypocrite elites who are lecturing the public to not act in a self serving way.

    I totally get that there are complex licensing issues, but I don't give a crap, it's not my problem when I can download it for free any time I desire whether the courts block a handfull of websites or not. The real crux of the licensing issues are that various greedy middlemen are trying to suck as much profit out of each other as possible. They managed to go through the hoops of getting it on TV in several countries so I'm sure they can bloody work out how to sell the series on dvd or as an itunes download.

    The fact is that the distribution model has changed, times have moved rapidly on, and the contents owners are so slow to change they are losing out. In a proper free market these businesses would go bust, but somehow they have the ear of the ruling elites who think it's better to protect a bunch of lazy, complacent, greedy, incumbents than let consumers and real market leaders move things on to a better place. I wish them all good luck competing against emerging economies in the real free market where they have no control. These people have no chance.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Control Freaks

      "Then, last week Game of Thrones season 2 ended, and I wanted to watch it, really badly. Looked in iTunes, nothing. Searched google to purchase the series, nothing. If I really really want to watch Games of Thrones season 2, the only option I have is to download the series illegally."

      No, there are other options, the most obvious one being patience. Instead of being an self entitled spoiled brat, you could wait until the series is released and you can legitimately buy it. Another option is to pay for the satellite/cable service so that you don't miss it in the first place - it's available on Sky anytime catch-up at the moment. So there you go, options, you don't have to like then, but they exist.

  56. Anonymous Coward


    Going to BE spoof the connection with this response to the normal port 80 http request.

    GET / HTTP/1.1


    HTTP/1.1 403 Forbidden

    Connection: close

    Content-Type: text/html

    Content-Length: 1100


    <title>The page you're looking for has been blocked. </title> etc.....

    Going to the ip address has the same effect

    SSL worked this morning, but now instead of pretending to be like with port 80 instead the router upstream from me responds with ICMP

    Type: 3 (Destination unreachable)

    Code: 13 (Communication administratively filtered)

    Trying to talk to the server, just opening connections to the real IP of using other ports and no conversation the spoofing server gets confused and responds with

    ..... .....'.........HTTP/1.0 400 Bad Request

    Connection: close

    Date: Fri, 08 Jun 2012 18:30:10 GMT

    Server: lighttpd

    Things that it doesn't understand get closed with the above, SSL 443 it says the content is being filtered by way of an RFC message from an upstream router, http 80 it tries to show the webpage and spoofs the piratebay IP.

  57. Tony Paulazzo

    Hey instead of wanting to break the law, how about we change the laws:

    Join, make your voice be heard!

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Tell them Bob sent you.

This topic is closed for new posts.

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