by Mike Masnick
Thu, Apr 9th 2009 8:01am
I didn't bother writing up the story from a couple weeks back about a The Pirate Bay feature to easily share links to torrents on Facebook, because it wasn't particularly interesting. But, you knew that someone would overreact negatively. The question was whether it would be the entertainment industry or Facebook first. It looks like Facebook may have won. Rather than dealing with it intelligently, it overreacted and has blocked any and all links to The Pirate Bay, noting that due to the ongoing lawsuit and "controversy" it's basically decided to assume all links to The Pirate Bay are infringing and a violation of Facebook's terms of service. Now, it may very well be true that the majority of content shared via The Pirate Bay is unauthorized and infringing. But, even so, this seems to go too far. There are plenty of legitimate uses for The Pirate Bay, and there is a significant number of legitimate offerings on the site. Furthermore a link should not be considered infringing by itself. No copyright is infringed by a link alone. There were plenty of more reasonable ways that Facebook could have handled this, and it chose the sledge hammer approach. And, as David Title points out, the likely end result is merely that an arms race has begun, where The Pirate Bay will create a workaround, and Facebook will have to block yet again...
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