Wal-Mart used the anti-copyright site to market DVDs of the ‘Office Space’ movie, as well as ‘The Simpsons’, ‘Desperate Housewives’ and ‘The Sopranos’ television series.
The Pirate Bay has previously received legal threats from companies such as Microsoft, DreamWorks, Apple and Warner Bros, who all accuse the Swedish-based organisation of breaking copyright laws by making their products available for download free of charge.
Wal-Mart’s banner ads were placed on the site by Israeli ad agency Targetpoint.
According to the company’s website, Targetpoint “enables agencies and pay-per-click search engines (“PPSE”) to expand their reach and present their ads in the most appropriate location.”
Variety notes that “Wal-Mart’s ad ‘The Simpsons’, for example, was served along with search results that included downloads of the series.”
The Pirate Bay was briefly closed down after raids by the Swedish police last May. After initially moving to the Netherlands, the site returned to Sweden in June.
Swedish authorities have been put under pressure to do more to stop the site. The Motion Picture Association of America, the Swedish Anti-Piracy Bureau and the US government have all lobbied for The Pirate Bay’s closure.