Pirate Bay Is Liable for Copyright Infringement, E.U. Court Says
LUXEMBOURG — In a landmark ruling by Europe’s top court, file-sharing site The Pirate Bay has been found to be liable for copyright infringement.
The Luxembourg-based European Court of Justice in a preliminary decision today said The Pirate Bay's role as a host meant it may be liable for piracy. The decision could signal the demise of the platform and many like it that are based in the European Union.
File-sharing sites such as The Pirate Bay have rocked many entertainment industries, including the porn business. Untold millions of dollars of revenue have been lost to those illegally sharing adult content.
The ruling came after The Netherlands-based industry group Stichting Brein (BREIN) asked a Dutch court to order ISPs XS4LL and Ziggo to block Pirate Bay. The Dutch court subsequently asked for the European Court of Justice’s guidance.
In its decision, the European Court of Justice said that "making available and managing an online platform for sharing copyright-protected works, such as The Pirate Bay, may constitute an infringement of copyright," judges said.
"Even if the works in question are placed online by the users of the online sharing platform, the operators of that platform play an essential role in making those works available," the court said.
The preliminary ruling can be viewed here.