From Iceland — Uploaders To Be Charged

Uploaders To Be Charged

Published July 25, 2016

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
RentVine/Creative Commons

Some of those who uploaded torrents to may soon be facing charges for violating copyrights.

Vísir reports that the television and film copyright holders company FRÍSK, alongside other copyright holders, will file charges against Deildu. At the same time, some registered members of the site will be facing charges themselves, for creating and uploading torrents for Icelandic television shows and movies.

FRÍSK reportedly hired an unnamed third party in their investigation of the site and its users.

As reported, last year copyright holder organisations and Iceland’s major ISPs reached an agreement to block their customers’ access to the Icelandic-language torrent site and the Pirate Bay. This agreement follows a Reykjavík District Court ruling made the year previous.

The agreement alleges the ISPs will block access to the sites regardless of what domain the site is hosted under. However, The Grapevine has tested for access to both sites via any of the thousands of proxy server sites available on the internet, and was easily able to access both websites. Both Nova and Vodafone internet access were used for the test. In addition, there are hundreds of websites providing free proxy service exclusively for Pirate Bay, which can be found simply by searching for “Pirate Bay proxy”. The Grapevine was also able to easily access many other major torrent sites without a proxy, and there are untold numbers of such sites to choose from.

Pirate Party MP Ásta Guðrún Helgadóttir has harshly criticised the access ban at the time, Vísir reports, calling it “censorship” in the form of a “public-private partnership”, wherein “a private organisation, in this case copyright holders, are making an agreement to do something that the judicial or executive branches of government only should oversee.”

The move also sets a dangerous precedent, she warned.

“It seems to me the ruling will set a precedent for blocking access to websites without taking the matter to trial first and proving [the torrent sites] have hurt anyone,” she said. “And it has been shown – repeatedly – that blocking access to sites such as this simply does not work.”

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