City Of London Police Arrest Creator Of Anti-Censorship Proxy Service Based On Hollywood's Say So
from the out-of-control dept
As we were just pointing out, while the City of London Police seem to think it's "obvious" what is and what is not a "pirate site", oftentimes it's not at all easy to figure that out. That was made clear last week when the organization helping the City of London Police reposted an entire BBC article about their cooperation (soon after our post went up, that company's post disappeared quietly with no notice). And now, TorrentFreak is reporting the City of London Police have "seized" an open proxy service called Immunicity, that was set up as an anti-censorship tool. Not only that, but they've also arrested the operator. The site itself is engaged in no copyright infringement at all. But its entire website has been replaced thanks to a bogus claim by the City of London Police.
The police even seem to brag that they're in the bag for the legacy entertainment companies:
According to Chief Inspector Andy Fyfe, the arrest is a prime example of a successful partnership between the copyright industry and local law enforcement.So, yes, it's the police "partnering" with a legacy industry that has a long and demonstrated history of bogus attacks on new technologies that challenge its business model. And rather than actually view such claims with skepticism, the police lap it up and take down websites without anything even approaching a court order.
“This week’s operation highlights how PIPCU, working in partnership with the creative and advertising industries is targeting every aspect of how copyrighting material is illegally being made available to internet users,” Fyfe says.
And to show just how confused they are, the main "industry" representative helping the police here basically admits to the belief that any proxy service must be illegal, because the industry doesn't like it:
Commenting on the arrest, FACT Director Kieron Sharp argues that these proxy sites and services are just as illegal as the blocked sites themselves.Of course, based on that reasoning, the very same VPNs that many of us use to protect our internet surfing from surveillance would be equally considered "illegal." Basically anything that challenges the business model of these legacy companies must be illegal and the City of London Police seem to think they can arrest those associated with them. Talk about going way overboard and creating massive chilling effects...
“Internet users have sought ways to continue to access the sites by getting round the blocking put in place by the ISPs. One of the ways to do this is to use proxy servers. This operation is a major step in tackling those providing such services,” Sharp notes.