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New bias suspicions in Pirate Bay legal battle

New bias suspicions in Pirate Bay legal battle

Published: 21 Sep 2009 14:48 GMT+02:00
Updated: 21 Sep 2009 14:48 GMT+02:00

It is thought that one of the lay judges set to hear the case is currently employed by Spotify, an online music service and alternative to illegal file sharing.

Several large recording companies are also known to share in partial ownership of Spotify.

"I don't wish to state whether there is a problem, however we have definitely judged this a circumstance that both parties need to be informed of given that Spotify is a company that provides music online," judge Ulrika Ihrfelt told Sveriges Radio.

On Friday, Ihrfelt sent a letter to the relevant parties informing them of the lay judge's employment at Spotify. If either party argues that the lay judge's position poses a conflict of interest, the court of appeals will investigate the issue.

This is not the first time a suspected conflict of interest has come up in the Pirate Bay case. Following the infamous trial earlier this spring, it was revealed that judge Tomas Norström was a member of several organizations with a vested interest in copyright laws.

One of these groups was known to take contributions from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), an organization protecting the rights of the music industry and involved in the case against the Pirate Bay.

While the defence called for Norström's ruling to be thrown out, the judge was eventually acquitted of any suspicion following a court investigation. The four men behind The Pirate Bay were sentenced to one year in prison and ordered to pay damages in the amount of 30 million kronor ($4.3 million).

The judgment was appealed and is set to be tried in the appeals court in November of this year.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:16 September 21, 2009 by eZee.se
The chance of the TPB 4 getting an honest-to-god trial is next to impossible here, the justice system has been far too corrupted and blatantly so.

Just a quick note to other spotify users… its actually one of the BEST pirate apps out there for music, find the song you like and since its streaming you can record it to your computer (plenty of softwares for windows, for Mac use something like wiretap pro), best of all if you do record from Spotify its undetectable by your ISPs and any moronic anti piracy company (i think, against spotify's TOS though :P )

Using (for example) wiretap pro you can 'record' the stream and save it as an MP3 file (or some other format you like) then play it on your favorite MP3 player (including ipods/iphones). You can even specify the bitrate so you get a pretty good quality music file, I daresay better than iTunes quality.

If you want the album art (which i never bother with) there's always google images…

The biggest bonus (imho) is the kick in the teeth for the music labels.
01:49 September 22, 2009 by bob3000
@eZee

Lots of people know about this, but don't feel the need to shout it around town.

The question is why? If you have a free subscription to Spotify, you can listen to free music 24/7 - free - why would you need to pirate it?

Even if you want to take it on your player (iphone, ipod touch, android) - for 99 SEK a month, (a CD's price) - you can sync the music on your player and take it with you.

Why is free unlimited music not good enough for you?

I'm beginning to think you are a RIAA stooge.

You're obviously trying to publicly pressure Spotify into making this more difficult, on behalf of the record companies?
07:29 September 22, 2009 by EtoileBrilliant
@eZee

Ditto. I'm wondering whether you are just seeking martyrdom for its own sake. The Spotify service seems to provide a good compromise between TPB and the current distribution model. I can't help but think, that in the long term term, your suggestions will only dismantle the good work that will has been done.
07:36 September 22, 2009 by hilt_m
ummm bob3000 i think you answered your own question, for 99 SEK a month.

that is not free, also you ca't join spotify for free in sweden without an invite, so the best you can do is beg some1 for an invite or pay for an account, again not free.
11:47 September 22, 2009 by bob3000
@hilt_m

You got no friends? boo hoo.. or initiative it seems..

Take a 1 month subscription, you get 2 invites, send an invite to yourself (different email address). You get the bonus of a free subscription for next month and you can pretend you have a friend.

Send the second one, you get a friend - maybe.

Not rocket science.
15:24 September 22, 2009 by eZee.se
I show you a way to get all the music you want,in a decent quality that is 100% undetectable by the anti piracy companies,without the hassle of a 'p2p download' or a VPN connection..and i'm an RIAA stooge.

Good thinking mate :)

You might want to check out vvvvvv.eZee.se to see more stuff that you might consider "RIAA friendly" :D

Why do i 'need' to pirate it? Because subscription services should fail,artists don't get anything from Spotify other than exposure but the labels are raking it in,there was a related article right here on TheLocal about how the labels are making more money from Spotify than itunes…thats just feeding the beast.

99kr a month for a year is nearly 1200kr, and what do you have to show for that in the end? how many songs? NONE.

For your 99kr can you play these songs on your mp3 player? your car stereo on the way to work?lend a friend a song?email a song to a friend that they they can listen to on their mp3 player?

In short can you play these songs(that you have paid for) anywhere else other than a computer(or iphone that you paid a princely sum for)??

Using the method i described above,the songs are on your hard drive to listen to, share etc just like if you just ripped it from the CD, and let me mention it again, 100% undetectable unless someone **physically** searches your computer.
16:21 September 22, 2009 by BrittInSweden
I really honestly do not get the issue here. Piracy is illegal. TPB helped people do that. You may as well say someone who knew a robbery was going to take place but didn't take part should not be penalised for it. Pleading innocent to having a site they knew what people used it for and even shoved it in the faces of the copyright owners by ignoring requests to take down torrent links means they don't and shouldn't have a leg to stand on. These 4 guys got let off too easily.

Anyone that says "information should be free" deserves a slap. That information wouldnt exist if someone didnt take time, effort and money to create in the first place. You have no rights to claim you deserve it for free no matter how much you try to justify it.

For goodness sake people. Get some morales and pay for content you want. Is 99 SEK a month really THAT much for basically unlimited music? They aren't making content to give away free because its fun. They are charging for it because its a service and they are a business out to make money. I can only wish that people that support piracy have a job where people can take what they want for free and put you out of a job, see how much piracy is of benefit then.

@eZee.se

"For your 99kr can you play these songs on your mp3 player? your car stereo on the way to work?lend a friend a song?email a song to a friend that they they can listen to on their mp3 player?"

If you have iPhone then yes, if you have iPhone and connector for your car stereo then yes, yes you send a link from Spotify (and since 99 SEK gives you Spotify invites you can send them that too), yes if they too have an iPhone and subscription to Spotify.
17:29 September 22, 2009 by eZee.se
@BrittInSweden,

I really dont like to keep repeating what i have posted elsewhere but you seem like a civil guy so I'll be civil and reply to your comment.

Contrary to what many people think, I really do think artists should be compensated, but the labels should just die. The labels are the ones who have been screwing the public for decades, as well as the artists. The labels are the ones who are campaigning for perpetual copyright and who violated the original terms of copyright but we are supposed to keep our end of the bargain by respecting copyright.

Its gotten to a state that when an artist creates something, the artist no longer has the rights to it... but the labels.

Most people including me, have no problem paying the artists... i still pay hard cash for concert tickets as well as buying music in MP3 or CD format from indie groups and labels.

Piracy is illegal, true, but TPB didnt help people do that anymore as a street sign with directions to the bank helps bank robbers rob the bank. And neither should they be any more responsible than Smith and Wesson should be responsible for the people their guns kill or...etc

As for ignoring takedown requests, hosting a .torrent was/is not illegal in Sweden, thats like a Chinese person shouting at you to STFU about Tibet because its illegal in China...you're gonna want to make fun of this person as well. Torrent files are not illegal, i can carry the entire TPBs torrents on a flash drive in my pocket and it wouldnt be illegal.They are nothing but "hashes", check wikipedia for more info.

"If you have iPhone then yes"

Very cool, so you are locked into a 7000kr piece of hardware that wont even allow you to share pictures via bluetooth,requires you to have an external piece of software to even delete music tracks,does not have a user changeable battery,a device controlled by Apple that can delete applications without your approval,has a crappy camera,until recently didnt allow MMS,does not work with most bluetooth headphones,has no user expandable memory like a flash card.. I can go on. (and yes, i did buy an iphone recently.. then resold it) plus your friend also has to have a spotify account(another 99kr) and they too cant really "own" a song the way we all have since before the LP.
17:57 September 22, 2009 by hilt_m
bob3000 your missing the point, it ain't free mate, FREE do you get it now, stop trying to pass off Spotify as free for all, because it's not!
18:07 September 22, 2009 by eZee.se
@hilt:

Free invite for you mate:

http://smexdesign.se/spotify-invites/
00:37 September 23, 2009 by bob3000
@hilt_m

You sound like a born griper - if EMI delivered their entire catalogue to you with a big ribbon on the top - you you'd probably complain the box was too big or the ribbon was the wrong colour.

So that free invite from eZee is not free? Can you or can you not now enjoy free music 24/7?
02:46 September 23, 2009 by eZee.se
In all fairness Bob,

1. Hilt did not have that invite when he wrote his reply, i just offered it to him

2. The method used to get an account via the link I posted above is skirting the way Spotify invites are handed out in Sweden, its meant for the UK market but using a clever method you can still get the service while not in the UK. I wouldnt be too surprised if its against the terms of service.

To bring up an older point that i forgot earlier:

"if you have iPhone and connector for your car stereo then yes"

I used to work in computer support, and had loads of calls from people puzzled on how to even setup their printer(there are a lot of technologically challenged people out there).. just the fact that they have to do any "connecting" is enough that many people wont bother with getting their iphone to work in their car... while MP3 players have no such problem and basically: person rips the songs they want, burn to cd, play cd as they have been doing for years.

Which solution is simpler? And cheaper? It gets even better/easier if your car stereo accepts a usb stick...
11:53 September 23, 2009 by bob3000
@eZee - Hi

It was kind of you to spoon-feed him - no question.

But, presumably he could have google'd and found that link - I did.

Even without the help and if he still refused to use any initiative and had to take a 99SEK subscription (that's about 4 coffees), he would only need it for a month - so an unlimited subscription for 99SEK and over the course of a year - 99SEK works out at 8.25SEK/month. Over the course of Spotify's operating life, it keeps getting better (cheaper) - that is unarguably good value.

You complain that spotify is a subscription service and you do not have anything to show for your money;

Analogous; I'm surprised you are not out ram-raiding ICA, Tempo, COOP and every restaurant in town - they sell food, that you eat and eventually have to put down your Gustavsberg - at the end of the year you have no food in your fridge for the money you spent. Swindlers!

The food chains abuse foreign workers, pays them nothing, then over charges us - on your logic we should simply not pay for food - on your logic we would have the moral right.

You say artists get screwed by the record companies and spotify by association, but I'll tell you, $ for $ they make more from the record companies/spotify than TPB and anyone who ever used the trackers ever paid any artist. Using the argument that the innocent suffer to punish others - seems at best self-serving, at worst hypocritical.

In all fairness to you, you have picked positions and made reasoned better, in the past ;-)
15:22 September 23, 2009 by eZee.se
Coming from an IT background i know a lot of people use the wrong keywords when googling,and sometimes it just does not strike everyone to google for free invites.

As from my posts you might have guessed, i like to share.. so i did, everyone has to learn and if you call that spoonfeeding, all i have to say is we were all spoonfed at one time or another.

you kind of lost me, what do you mean 8.25SEK/month? I revisited the site just to make sure and i dont see anything for
02:08 September 24, 2009 by Guy with a big whang
Thanks for the link and the recording advise ezee, i didnt know that!
03:45 September 24, 2009 by eZee.se
For some reason my comment got cut off, here is it in its entirety again:

Coming from an IT background i know a lot of people use the wrong keywords when googling,and sometimes it just does not strike everyone to google for free invites.

As from my posts you might have guessed, i like to share.. so i did, everyone has to learn and if you call that spoonfeeding, all i have to say is we were all spoonfed at one time or another.

you kind of lost me, what do you mean 8.25SEK/month? I revisited the site just to make sure and i dont see anything for
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