Pirates of the courtroom – game over for file-sharing in Scandinavia?

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155px-Piratpartiet.svg[Sweden] It’s not looking good for the pirates in Sweden. The usually pirate loving country that spawned The Pirate Bay and the world’s first Pirate Party, is now pursuing illegal file-sharers like it’s 1790 and the outlaws need to be gunned down.

A recent court order has forced ISP Teliasonera to choose between either coughing up 750,000 SEK (about 72,000 euro) or giving out the names and addresses of the founders of torrent site Swetorrents. The verdict has been made possible because of the so called IPRED law, which was passed in April this year. According to the law, ISPs must give out contact details of file-sharers to copyright holders if they ask for them. Interestingly enough, Internet traffic in Sweden dropped by 33 percent shortly after the law was passed.

However, it might not be the courts who’ll kill off the Swedish pirates. Spotify and similar services have probably already swayed most of the non-ideological pirates to abandon ship. There’s a philosophy of file-sharing and Internet freedom in the Nordics, which is the ideological foundation for a lot of the pirates. Of course, not everyone’s in it for ideological reasons and if freemium solutions are easier to use and negate the increasing risk of ending up in court, then why keep breaking the law.

On a lighter note the founders of the Pirate Bay have managed to bring their case to the Swedish Court of Appeal and will yet again argue that they didn’t make any profit from running the torrent site.

It’s not only the Nordic representatives for the film and music industry who are worrying about piracy. According to market analyst Gartner, the number of counterfeit mobile phones in the world have risen by two thirds during the last year. One of the companies with the most pirated gear is none other than Finnish Nokia. If plagiarism is the sincerest form of flattery, then perhaps the company isn’t doing so bad after all.

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