BPI Threatens To Sue UK Pirate Party Leaders Personally Due To Internet Proxy

from the wac-wac-wac'ing-that-mole dept

With the BPI (the UK equivalent of the RIAA) successfully getting access to The Pirate Bay blocked via many UK ISPs, it's apparently turned its quixotic sights to the UK Pirate Party for daring to set up a proxy -- as if there aren't hundreds, if not thousands, of other existing proxies out there, and plenty of ways for people to get to the site if they really want to. And, rather than just threaten legal action against the Pirate Party UK (PPUK), the BPI has lovingly sent threat letters to six members of the PPUK National Executive, suggesting that it is ready to sue each of them personally. The BPI is claiming that it has to do this, since it can't sue the party directly, and apparently takes offense at some claims that this is an attempt to bankrupt the leaders of the PPUK. Of course, that's hogwash. Being threatened with a personal lawsuit -- especially by an organization that represents a group of multinational, multibillion dollar companies -- is, without question, a threat of being bankrupted. The BPI does have another choice: give up this silly game of whac-a-mole, stop trying to censor the internet, and teach its member companies how to adapt with new and smarter business models. But, apparently, it's easier to bankrupt your critics.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:20am

    More terrorism from the copyright maximalists, trying to send the message that joining the pirate party is dangerous to your finances.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:23am

    I don't know if you were going for the pun with "turned its quixotic sites", but the bits on a gun are called the sights.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:25am

    'The BPI does have another choice: give up this silly game of whac-a-mole, stop trying to censor the internet, and teach its member companies how to adapt with new and smarter business models.'

    i do wish you would watch your language, Mike. swearing at an entertainment industry like this and inferring that it has a brain or common sense could easily get you into serious trouble!!

    the update on torrentfreak:
    'BPI’s Adam Liversage told TorrentFreak that they had no other option than to go after individual members as the Pirate Party is not a “legal personality.” No direct threats were made to bankrupt any of the members.

    “Our solicitors then wrote to PPUK’s National Executive seeking legal undertakings that they would remove the proxy. ‘Pirate Party UK’ as an entity cannot give undertakings – it has no form of legal personality and it isn’t incorporated – so the proper legal course is to write to the members of PPUK’s National Executive personally.”

    “The subsequent allegation made by Loz Kaye that BPI has “threatened” him or other party officers with ‘bankruptcy’ is completely untrue. BPI has not threatened Pirate Party UK officers with bankruptcy.”

    Liversage further said that BPI first tried to resolve the matter amicably for a number of weeks. However, Pirate Party UK continued to make clear that they had no intention of removing the proxy.

    if there are no threats here, then i dont know! if someone told the BPI or any other of the industries to shut down a proxie that gave access to movies to, say, the people in China, they would tell whoever to piss off!

     

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  4.  
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    Zakida Paul (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:26am

    Censoring a political party. Did we really need anymore proof that organisations like these would love to see the end of Democracy (what little is left of Democracy)?

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:32am

    The BPI does have another choice: give up this silly game of whac-a-mole, stop trying to censor the internet, and teach its member companies how to adapt with new and smarter business models.

    That's pretty much your message in a nutshell. It's incredibly over-simplistic and silly, but there it is.

     

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  6.  
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    Dannie blaze (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:34am

    I'm a PPUK member. I and several other members have donated towards legal fund dedicated to fighting this absurd and censorious legal threat.

    I hope that we can see off this ludicrious legal posturing and expose the BPI for the outdated and desperate institution they really are.

     

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  7. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:38am

    What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Not a question of free speech but of deliberately and knowingly linking to infringing content. Of course here at Techdirt, Pirate Mike and his fanboys dodge stating the facts so can pretend to high-minded and moral justification.





    Click here for Mike "Streisand Effect" Masnick!
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect
    Help make Mike the #1 quipper on the net! -- Click one for The Quipper!

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:44am

    If by trying to resolve it amicably for a number of weeks you mean sending one letter asking for it to be removed then one letter saying were gonna sue you then they are right.

     

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  9. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:46am

    @ "wac-wac-wac'ing-that-mole" & "whac-a-mole"

    It's amazing that an alleged Ivy League grad can MISPELL a common word two ways in one short piece! W-H-A-C-K, Mike. You are both wacky and "whacking"-off.

     

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  10.  
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    Cory of PC (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:51am

    Please Leave...

    First, "alleged?" How can you be "alleged" if you're an Ivy Leaguer? Unless you fake being one, but still...

    Second, he's referencing the game, you blockhead! You're calling Mike out on a spelling error, compare to your growing number of grammar and spelling errors. Funny...

     

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  11.  
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    Cory of PC (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:52am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Why should we take you seriously? You're not funny, and you have no purpose other than to derail everything, and all over a stupid Wikipedia link.

    Hey, try using TV Tropes's link! That way, you're wasting your time over there as opposed to using the same link every single time!

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:52am

    Re:

    Explain how it is over simplistic?

    Its not difficult to make money on the internet in this day and age.

    In fact the BPI members had to be dragged kicking and screaming into MP3 downloads which now account for the majority of their revenue.

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:54am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    OOTB

    "deliberately and knowingly linking to infringing content"

    Wrong! That is not how a proxy works, there is no linking involved. Please try again.

     

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  14.  
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    Baldaur Regis (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 7:58am

    Re:

    The best ideas are usually the simplest. We are well into the 21st century; if the BPI et al wish to remain relevant, it would behoove them to educate their clients - the rights holders they claim to represent - on the world as it is, not some fantasy 'copyright is a weapon' world that never existed.

     

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  15.  
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    Zakida Paul (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:01am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    You like links? Here's one that should teach you what a proxy is and how it works.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proxy_server

     

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  16.  
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    DannyB (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:01am

    Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Don't confuse OOTB with facts about proxies. A proxy can be used to access infringing content. Therefore a proxy is a tool of piracy. Just as an optical mouse or a keyboard is a tool of piracy and the makers of such should be personally bankrupted.

    That keyboards, mice and proxies have vast non infringing uses should not be used as an excuse.

     

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  17.  
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    Planespotter (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:03am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    ootb once again proves that he is actually a ghost from the 1800's...

    "knowingly linking to infringing content"... Can you please post a link to a film available to download directly from the Pirate Bay's servers.

    Oh you can't because there exists no actual infringing content on the Pirate Bay, merely little lines of numbers and letters.

     

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  18.  
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    Planespotter (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:05am

    Re: @ "wac-wac-wac'ing-that-mole" & "whac-a-mole"

    Hey look everyone, the local nutcase has nothing better to do...

     

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  19.  
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    JWW (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:05am

    Re:

    The Pirate Party really needs to get this information in their promotional material. This publicity could really help them expand.

    It will be nice to see the Pirate Party get some representation in parliament, so they can really start fighting back against these maximalist assholes.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:11am

    Re:

    @ #6

    i too have donated and i too want what the entertainment industries are doing exposed for what they are really doing, ie, trying to make a load of money without doing anything themselves. the trouble is, the UK government has too many friends in that industry and will back it to the hilt, whilst also ordering (behind closed doors, of course) that the courts do whatever the industries want. let's face it, look at what the UK courts have done to those running websites that only link to other places on the net, a practice that has not been changed to illegal as far as i know. those people have been imprisoned simply because the judge has basically 'made the practice illegal' and decided to rule accordingly, in favour of the industries charges

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:11am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    If The Pirate Bay was in any way a haven of criminal activity of infringement on a massive scale then surely the website would have been seized and shutdown by now. It can't be that impossible for the Swedish authorities to shutdown one of their very own Swedish .se webdomain names can it, right? By locking up the founders of The Pirate Bay has it stopped the massive infringement of copyright the copyright holders are screaming about, NO it hasn't because the website is still operational. Surely by shutting down the website would stop the massive infringement of copyright? It is absolutely pointless for the BPI or any other copyright holder to shutdown the pirate party proxy or even shutdown proxies because that is not going to put an end to the massive infringment of copyright that the copyright holders scream about because whilst The Pirate Bay is still operational people will still be able to access it directly or indirectly through a proxy or VPN. Only by shutting down The Pirate Bay website will it stop The Pirate Bay being accessed too. By not shutting down The Pirate Bay website proves 2 things, 1. That the website is not illegal or 2. That it is impossible for the Swedish authorities to shutdown one of their own Swedish .se web domains.

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:16am

    Re: Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    All ISP's are facilitating copyright infringement on a massive scale on a daily basis as they allow people to access to the copyright and these ISP's are profiteering from copyright infringement on a grand scale by making/taking money from people to use their service to commit copyright infringement.

     

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  23.  
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    Tim Griffiths (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:42am

    Re:

    http://www.pirateparty.org.uk/press/releases/2012/dec/14/bpi-threatens-legal-action-against-pirate-p arty-ex/

    "Throughout, the party and I have been open to dialogue. Contrary to reports I offered to meet Geoff Taylor for discussion, but this has been rebuffed..."

     

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  24.  
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    gorehound (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:52am

    Re:

    Copyright Maximalists need to die !!!

     

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  25.  
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    gorehound (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 8:53am

    Re:

    I wish all of you Good Luck ! Many of us here in the USA hate our Government and hate the MAFIAA.
    MAFIAA You Must DIE !

     

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  26.  
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    vilain (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 9:16am

    up the anti on crazy

    And by threatening MPs, the next step is for all the Board members of BPI can be pulled into local police stations and questioned about ALL their activities around this threatening behavior. Police interrogation and the information used to assemble a case against BPI for the UK equivalent of racketeering. Love to see these guys behind bars.

     

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  27.  
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    Ninja (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 9:30am

    If anything they will succeed in making people hate them even more. When people loathe copyright enough there will be changes.

    Keep shooting MAFIAA, your foot is starting to get unsteady.

     

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  28.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 9:51am

    Re:

    You might think it's overly simplistic (although I disagree -- there's nothing simplistic about it), but any other approach pretty much just guarantees that the companies the BPI and other such organizations represent will lose.

     

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  29.  
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    Mason Wheeler (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 9:55am

    Re:

    Meh. What else is new. We see it all the time here in the US. Republicans try to censor Democrats and Democrats try to censor Republicans. It's SOP in modern democracy.

     

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  30.  
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    Chosen Reject (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 9:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Can we just be done and say that copyright holders are facilitating copyright infringement until the they come up with unbreakable copy protections AND ensure that all of their newly created works (no matter what stage in the creation process[1]) are locked up in that unbreakable copy protection?

    [1] Remember, internal leaks account for almost all pre-released infringing content, and a lot of post-release infringing content as well. So every step of the process needs to be unbreakably copyprotected. Sure, it's going to be hell to create stuff when a group of creators can't easily copy their work to each other, but that's what you get for wanting entitites further and further away from the actual infringement to be held responsible for facilitating said infringement.

     

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  31.  
    icon
    The Groove Tiger (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 10:10am

    Re: @ "wac-wac-wac'ing-that-mole" & "whac-a-mole"

    "The Whac-A-Mole game trademark is owned by Bob's Space Racers. Machines with similar gameplay are sold under other names. Whac-A-Mole has also been the basis for a number of internet games and mobile games that are similar in gameplay and strategy."

    Idiot.

     

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  32.  
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    MrWilson, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 10:37am

    "We didn't threaten to kill them, just riddle their bodies with holes from bullets that are launched at high velocity from the barrels of our guns."

     

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  33.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 11:35am

    Re:

    That's pretty much your message in a nutshell.

    And your message is what? Waste time, money and effort on plans that have been shown over and over and over again not to work? Or to do what I'm suggesting and do what actually does work.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 12:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Well, let he find out that LLC's are actually legal proxies but for business and they are used extensively by 2 known groups, the entertainment industry and criminals.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Used extensively by more honest businesses too but that really helps the point I think.

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 18th, 2012 @ 5:01pm

    We never said nuttin

    Mr Joe Schmoe here says we threatened to hospitalize him.
    We never said nuttin like that, foirst we tried to rezun wid da guy. We told him to clear outa town. When he wasnt willin' to do dat we tolds him if he was still around by da weekend we wud break both his legs, but we didn't say nuttin about hospitals da only time we said anything that cud be miscontrused in any ways was when big frank told him that hospital food is hard to eat wit no teeth.

     

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  37.  
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    Duke (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 6:12pm

    Re:

    [Commenting in an entirely unofficial capacity here. I have very few more details than are public knowledge.]

    "Our solicitors then wrote to PPUK’s National Executive seeking legal undertakings that they would remove the proxy. ‘Pirate Party UK’ as an entity cannot give undertakings – it has no form of legal personality and it isn’t incorporated – so the proper legal course is to write to the members of PPUK’s National Executive personally."

    This is entirely true.

    "The subsequent allegation made by Loz Kaye that BPI has "threatened" him or other party officers with ‘bankruptcy’ is completely untrue. BPI has not threatened Pirate Party UK officers with bankruptcy."

    This is open to interpretation. The BPI have accused officers of the Party of acting illegally, and told them they were instructing solicitors to write to them. There is a clear implied threat of litigation there. Litigation in England is very expensive (£100,000+ for a first instance decision), and I imagine that is enough to bankrupt most of the people involved.

    "Liversage further said that BPI first tried to resolve the matter amicably for a number of weeks."

    My understanding is that they sent an email (which was leaked to the press before the Party had a chance to read it) asking that the proxy be taken down. The Party said no. They then emailed that they were sending in lawyers. Whether that is "trying to resolve the matter amicably for a number of weeks" or not is another arguable point.

     

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  38.  
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    Duke (profile), Dec 18th, 2012 @ 6:14pm

    Re: Re:

    Damnit, rookie law student mistake there.

    "This is entirely true."

    I am not in a position to say what their instructions to their solicitors were, or what the content of the letter they sent was, only that the Party doesn't have separate legal personality, and cannot give undertakings, which are real things.

     

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  39.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 19th, 2012 @ 2:33am

    MAFIAA Thugs

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 19th, 2012 @ 3:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    The only almost unbreakable copy protection is to put the ONLY copy on a rocket, and send it off towards some other star. This assume that the creator of the work is the only one to have seen it, and that they are prevented from creating another copy (they might object to the extreme measures needed to guarantee this).
    Any copyrighted work needs to be available to the person who bought it, and so they can copy it using various techniques. Any encryption used to try and enforce copyright has one huge flaw, the audience and attacker are the same person.

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 19th, 2012 @ 7:28am

    Re: Re:

    And your message is what? Waste time, money and effort on plans that have been shown over and over and over again not to work? Or to do what I'm suggesting and do what actually does work.

    Utter bullshit. Copyright has been working for centuries and it's still working quite well today. The ones messing it up are the selfish scumbag pirates that you spend day after day defending. Good grief, even your silly book club uses books produced under the copyright model. Stop pretending like your alternative methods have proven themselves so worthy that we can just chuck the current system. You are far, far, far away from that point. Keep up the great work in exploring the alternatives, but please stop being such an angry douche about the fact that the vast majority of the world disagrees with you.

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 19th, 2012 @ 11:18am

    Re: What's the purpose of Pirate Party's proxies? -- Infringement.

    Oh dear. Trollface has struck again. Getting very tiresome.

     

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  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 19th, 2012 @ 11:21am

    Re: @ "wac-wac-wac'ing-that-mole" & "whac-a-mole"

    Reckon someone should find out who this Blue charmer is and have him painfully destroyed. Should get a life, it would seem.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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