Judge In Pirate Bay Case Appears To Have Ties To The Copyright Lobby

from the ooops dept

Via Martin Thornkvist, we find out that Swedish Public radio has discovered that the judge in The Pirate Bay case apparently has some ties to the copyright lobby (that's a Google translation -- if you know Swedish, the original is here). Apparently, he's a member of a few organizations that work towards strengthening copyright laws, and even holds a board position in one of those organizations. The lawyers representing the entertainment industry also belonged to one of the pro-copyright organizations in which the judge is a member. Experts quoted in the article note that this is highly irregular, and the judge should have recused himself for conflict of interest. The judge, of course, claims that he doesn't believe he was biased at all, but others note that any hint of bias is a problem in such a legal case (let alone such a high profile one).

Filed Under: conflict of interest, copyright, copyright lobby, judge, sweden, trial
Companies: the pirate bay

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  1. identicon
    Ben Matthews, 23 Apr 2009 @ 10:57am

    Confused about the conflict of interest

    I actually don't see a problem with this. The trial wasn't about whether copyright laws are valid or not, it's about whether or not the Pirate Bay broke those laws. Right?

    This judge focused on copyright law, wouldn't it make since for him to be involved in those organizations?

    I think people are mistaking the case to be about whether or not copyright needs reworking. It wasn't, the case was about whether or not the Pirate Bay broke the laws already in place, which I think a judge who is very involved in copyright would be a good choice to preside over. He isn't associated with anyone that would benefit from the Pirate Bay being convicted.

    Again, I don't see this as a conflict of interest.

    I am totally for the idea of the entertainment industry finally realizing they need a new distribution model and rethinking how to monetize that, which a lot of people are focusing on, but I don't think that was what the case was about.

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