back to article Another investigation into Pirate Bay child porn

Swedish prosecutors have launched another invesigation into suspected child pornography, shared through the controversial bittorrent site The Pirate Bay. However, this time police aren't theatening to blacklist the Swedish website. "The Pirate Bay are not suspects," prosecutor Cathrine Rudström told Swedish newssite The Local. …

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Not there place?

Not their place to judge if its immoral? For god sakes, it is their site! Ofcourse it is their place, so they are effectively endorsing child pornography.

Forget immoral, its illegal and do they think there isn't a victim at the end of the camera? Its shameless.

If thats the prevalent attitude in Sweeden its shocking.

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Stu

@Bob Jones

Seeing as pretty much everything on Pirate Bay is illegal in some way or another I don't think that's much of an argument. Pirate Bay maintain that they are a search engine not a content provider and as such cannot provide censorship - there's plenty of questionable material to be found via Google too don't forget.

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Anonymous Coward

@Bob Jones (as well)

As Stu pointed out, their defence is that they claim not to be the content provider, merely the search engine. If they intervened, by censoring some links but not others, that defence would be weakened.

Yes, I do think this is a reprehensible position to adopt with regards to such questionable material, and I am sure that they are not exactly over the moon about it; realistically they have painted themselves into this corner.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Stu

Yup - you're right, they're more of a search engine than a content provider, and how can they expect to spot things arriving on their site when there are that many new files all the time, by magic?

I think their stance is just, and i hope that instead of taking it down, they just provide the authorities with the IP addresses they need so that rather than having to censor their site, they can be proud that no paedophiles use it and content like this is not to be found.

Remember torrents only remain active if someone is seeding, so it can't be that difficult to find the originator. If nobody downloads it, then it disappears presumably.

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Anonymous Coward

Good points

Child pornography is bad, yes we both know that but as far as i'm aware Google are trying to do something about it, as i heard they log ips and pass them on?

PirateBay is totally illegal whichever way you look at it, yes they should probably work with the police but then again the whole of the site and everything on it is and should be passed on - if that was the case i doubt anyone would use the site! No, please don't think I am for child pornography but piratebay is a hug of illegal goings on - they'd have to report everything if they were going to do that.

The police should be able to easily see the seeds and grab the IP from that. Better still put up some dummy torrents like TOR does for proxies, that stops frauding... - people downloading it are as bad as people seeding it IMO.

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Anonymous Coward

@fellow anon

I would hope that if the police were remotely competent they'd simply log onto the torrent and harvest the addresses by doing some investigation.

But I suppose investigation is a bit beyond modern law inforcment, what help would the server logs give over watching the trackers?

If pirate bay are going to give away logs for one legal offense then they should give them away for all of them. Besides what help are logs (tor anyone?)

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Trace the source

If the Digital Mafia (MPAA/RIAA) can so easly track down they own consumers on P2P network. It should be a snap for police to trace down the source of the child porn pictures/videos! But wait... since the MPAA/RIAA have failed in they many attampts to shutdown Pirate Bay... maybe the source of the pictures will not lead to some perverts.....The fact that child porn torrent are floating on The Pirate Bay should make any users of the site think twice before using it. Sharing stuff is not illegal i most country (even if the MPAA/RIAA want you to think otherwise), but child porn is illegal almost everywhere.

Think of it? What a nice way for the MPAA/RIAA to illegaly shutdown a torrent site then to stuff it with child porn? (and let the police spend money and resource to do work)

The MPAA/RIAA is one of the most dangerous criminal organisation operating wolrdwide. They will stop at nothing to make sure that your personal rights and privacy will not prevent them from stealing money from everyone.

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One the other hand...

PB are a bit stymied. They can hardly tell the RIAA (or whoever) and courts they're not responsible for content, and then go tearing down stuff on their own volition. I'm afraid they either control the content (and become responsible for it) or they don't (and let this muck continue). The whole way they stay in existance is by having nothing to do with the content, other than listing it.

Personally. I'm kinda hoping the perverts will give their location and/or identitied away to the world at large. GoooooodNIGHT!

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Anonymous Coward

This won't get printed.... BUT...

You can actually blame the RIAA for this (if you really try). It it wasn't for them banging on about "intellectual property rights" all the time, PB probably could and would cop-operate with getting the pervs punted into jail. But they know that if they try to help the police to clamp down on the paedos they RIAA will use the fact to maintain their stranglehold on the music markets.

Remember: When you buy an "official" CD or DVD, you're helping to fund legal protection for paedophiles.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Public Relations

Quote: "I don't give a shit if you folks are upset," moderator Himod said on the site's forum. "Me and the other moderators job are NOT to have an opinion about if it is immoral or not."

I'm not sure if Himod has children or is even capable of procreating (other than with his hand). WTF is a mod's job? If they will not or can not eliminate child porn then they should shut it down. If you lack the moral direction to decide that raping children is right or wrong or is the same as linking to the Simpson's movie you have serious, serious problems.

I can appreciate that censoring some content and not others is a legal conundrum for them. The decision to not somehow block child porn is not really immoral, it is amoral.

It scares me a little bit that common care or behavior or thought for other's well-being is becoming a nuisance for business.

When an amoral Himod can say he/she doesn't care about child/rape/torture I can put forth an argument that an amoral person would have no fault in violating Himod in the same manner.

Morality may be a quaint term to cretins like Himod. Hopefully he does not represent *any* of the others at Pirate Bay.

Morality is one of the pillars that support human civilization.

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Anonymous Coward

Perhaps the police should thank the pirate bay...

After all, they can easily find the same listings that the paedos do, and monitor the torrents to collect the IP addresses of uploaders and downloaders.

Trouble is it probably isn't always clear which porn is or is not illegal, especially prior to download, but then that just means - IMO - that people should exercise caution and not touch any potentially dubious torrents. It's your responsibility to be reasonably sure that something is legal *before* you download it.

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Opinion

I guess it's each persons opinion which is more illegal or which has more moral ground from the things available on Piratebay. Piratebay is simply a scapegoat here. Child Porn is a horrible thing, but the internet makes it such that material, I'd imagine, can be gotten anywhere. If Piratebay removed it, it'd just pop up somewhere else. I'd agree that Piratebay should hand over IP data, but if they do it for that, why not any other illegal activity, no matter how less morally wrong. Companies should simply stop trying to police the Internet. I don't believe that will ever happen. Giving the growing and modular nature of the Internet, you simply can't keep up. I hope the child porn pervs are caught somehow though.

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How can they do otherwise ?

Given that the legal age of consent varies from country to country, to actually try and remove torrents based on a 'child porn' tag would be very difficult. Google may be trying to do something but hey, they have slightly more resources (and probably more kiddie porn on the books).

Its a difficult situation for PB but would I be correct in demanding my local Telco blocks all calls that paedophiles make to their victims ? Surely better that users pass on details to local police forces of torrents that may contain child abuse images ? Simply banning such torrents from PB wouldnt stop them from being shared, reporting their existance at least gives the plod a chance to get the culprits.

'Morality may be a quaint term to cretins like Himod. Hopefully he does not represent *any* of the others at Pirate Bay.'

Maybe you would like to consider that statement the next time you download an MP3 track or film using torrents or similar, Himod isnt questioning morality or defending rape etc. its simply the same defence that ISP's have used for years (and newspapers/tv/radio etc.) e.g. we are dumb bit-pipes/blank shields. If you are going to hold PB responsible for every torrent they index then Google is in DEEP shit :)

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Anonymous Coward

Pirate Bay illegal?

Er, not in Sweden where it's based (yet), as far as I'm aware.

If you mean it would be illegal elsewhere, that's an interesting question, as bit-torrent sites' legal status (again, as far as I know) has not actually been tested in court anywhere. Most sites are bullied into folding because they can't afford to defend themselves against million-dollar-a-week law firms. Besides, the Pirate Bay ISN'T elsewhere. It's in Sweden.

Bit-torrent sites don't host the content - users do, just the same as search engines don't host the websites.

If you think that Google should be responsible for any material their search bots find and serve up to you, fine. I don't think Google would see it that way any more than a torrent site would.

If notified of a torrent which is illegal - in Sweden - of course the Pirate Bay should remove it. If it's not illegal in Sweden, they have no obligation to remove the link.

As for Tony's suggestion that the amoral deserve to suffer at the hands of the amoral, who the fuck made you our morality arbiter?

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Anonymous Coward

@ Them Up There ^^^

Get a grip people. It's beyond the realms of modern technology to expect anyone to be able to control access to a .torrent file purely by speculating on what may or not be contained in the file or files within that torrents swarm.

Techinical impossiblity aside. In order to moderate every torrent on thier site they would have to be given free license to download and distibute all of the files contained within the torrents, they would have to be given exemption from prosecution as it would in many cases be criminal to aqquire and store those files even for the purposes of confirming thier content in order to remove them.

Now I'm NOT talking about the crap the mpaa and riaa try to pull, that's civil law not criminal law. torrents are not illegal, sharing torrents isn't illegal, sharing the files contained within torrents isn't illegal (unless it is contraband obv).

Child Porn is Illegal, possesing it, downloading it, storing it, etc, etc, those are real crimes. It would be a crime for the moderators on Piratebay to download material which is label'd as if it may contain Kiddie Porn even if it didn't, it would be a crime if they downloaded some mislabled torrent (like one pointed out by their userbase) and it turned out to be Kiddie Porn.

Piratebay isn't fucked, the law is fucked, you can't easily report this problem as in the computer world reporting it implies you saw it and seeing it implies you stored it, storing it, even in ram is a crime.

Even if, for example, piratebay report Illegal content in torrents to the authoritys. Piratebay would then be unable to delist the torrent without tipping of the seeder and the pedo's downloading it. If piratebay were to start delisting torrents on mass they may find themselves charged with interfering in an investigation or worst, destroying evidence which could be used to catch the real criminals.

Himod is right, he can't interfere or judge, it's not his job, society passed the buck on judging the legality of this sort of thing to the Courts. Calling Himod names won't change the Law.

So, Piratebay take a stance which I happen to agree with, leave it to the Police to moderate the Illegal stuff and leave it to Piratebay to moderate the ''FAKE'' scene releases, etc.

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Anonymous Coward

Freedom vs Morality

Having a site that lists P2P and doesn't have a filter is wonderful for getting all kinds of content (no moral value judgment). Most of my generation grew up learning that you should "share your toys" and "play well with others". Now we have MPAA/RIAA and others (dare I mention the software companies?) saying that what we learned was piracy and things should only work with one, maybe two operating systems. While I know people need to earn a living and pay their bills, the fact is that sharing software, videos, songs and the like will go on. Protecting the people from seeing things such as the viedos and pictures mentioned in the article should be the job of law enforcement and not the search engine. If we took off the shelf every book that was banned at one point or another we would have a fairly sparse library.

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Bronze badge

Why take it down?

Think about it. If they take it down, they not only limit their argument that they don't control the content, but they also restrict the ability of the police to continue searching for the people involved.

If the torrent is still up, still being seeded, then they have many more people to go after. And in the end, isn't that the best thing to do? Taking it down doesn't make it not exist.

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On the Morality of Species

Reading the comments above, I sense a tinge of fundamentalism. Everything here is discussed, /except/ matters concerning the moral status of kiddie pr0n:

-Is there always harm done in making it?

-Is not-for-profit distribution and use of it an explicit and/or implicit encouragement?

-Should recorders of kiddie pr0n that may be abusive not rather learn proper ethics instead of being condemned on the spot?

I know this is probably not the right place for it's discussion, and said discussion will inevitably end up in a flamewar (YAY); however, I suggest you consider analyzing instead of repressing moral conflicts before posting.

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Anonymous Coward

FFS!!!!!!!

Pirate Bay is right, it is not their job to moderate the content that their search engine provides access to. Some of the people here make me laugh, why the F*** are u getting angry with Pirate bay you should be getting angry with the police etc, this is another case of the weak, badly lead law enforcement trying to get someone else to do their job for them.

The police or what ever law enforcement agency, should keep their mouths shut and be thankful that the child pr0n pushers, make the mistake of giving them easy access to these files\hoster and should develop the tools\contacts that would allow them to do something about it. It's easy for them (law enforcement) to sit there and let someone else do their job for them (server logs etc) instead of becoming a pro-active and effective agency\group. Maybe they're to busy collect speeding tickets or what ever easy option for opressing the masses instead of being the crime fighting service we deserve.

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Anonymous Coward

Thin end of the wedge

It's a standard progression -

1) KP is bad...so if you had any on your site then OBVIOUSLY you'd remove it...or do you condone it?

2) These files are KP. As per 1, you have to filter them out. No, you can't check that they are - we've told you they're illegal so downloading them to make sure we've not made a mistake will get you arrested.

3) Now you've proven that you can filter out files here's a list of other things you're not allowed to show. You have to be able to tell in advance without downloading the file which of the hundreds of files you get posted a day are infringing this list.

4) Can't get that working, or afford the staff needed to do 3? Better shut down then.

And at any time if you decice not to play their game, you get accused of condoning KP - at which point you get tied to a stake and burned...

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

RE: Thin end of the wedge

That's why it's called a 'witch hunt'.

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Taking down links

Please note that the links are NOT to kiddie porn, the links are to SUSPECTED kiddie porn. Pirate Bay are making it clear that they will not remove links just because someone (the police in this case) say that it links to something illegal. They need actual proof, or a court order.

And as has been mentioned before Swedish law SPECIFICALLY BANS Pirate Bay from checking the links. It is ILLEGAL in Sweden to follow a link that says it is not kiddie porn (which these links do) but you suspect is (which the police do) to check.

Please do not insist on Pirate Bay breaking the law, as some of the above posters are doing.

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So Many Red Herrings

We have been fed so many red herrings , too many furphies , diverting our attention from what is really happening to create an illusion of safety. We have seen authorities continue to employ corrupt officials , allow their policemen to gun down and literally murder innocent bystanders with absolute impunity , torture prisoners prior to being charged and yet convict and jail fellow citizens not wearing uniforms of the same identical crime, and then allow drunken motorist off , for doing the same thing , so go figure that one out !

Interestingly legal gambling is now being fed by increasing levels of white collar crime , that in cost to the community , far surpasses that of blue collar crime by several orders of magnitude , and yet the police and the government prosecuters continue to turn a blind eye , as it is beyond their ability to think outsiide the square !

However , they now say , to protect all of us including your children from this evil called porn , which has been with mankind since the dawn of civilization , we need all your democratic rights and freedoms , and in exchange we will create the illusion of safety , and we will only prosecute those that receive this demented material , as the suppliers reside in foreign countries are beyond reach of our justice system , we will ignore those wankers(strangely call them a terrorist , and they will be rendered faster then you can say boo , to be tortured and illtreated at the countries pleasure).

Truly those two magic words combined evokes such an unreasoning heightened illogical fear in all parents of children it is beyond comprehension!

If education gives the basic tools , and the balance comes from it's life experiences , and yet many of todays parents wrap their children in so much cotton wool whilst force feeding only corrupt and incomplete ideals and theories , and making unreasonable demands and unreasonable expectations , little wonder they turn in insecure depressed repressed spoilt fat brats , because they have one key ingredient missing , in that we the parents refused to let the children learn from their own life experiences.

Yes to many red herrings , so few facts and the authorities with hidden agendas taking the easy way of tackling real crimes , pretending to offer false safety nets , and extremely dumb parents refusing to let their children grow up in the real world outside the home/rigid school environment.

PS , by todays loose definition of child porn , interestingly the old style photographs of bare assed naked babies on bear rugs , falls within that category as well!

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Re: C'mon, even they say it's a search engine

Just becase somebody reports something as KP doesn't necessarily make it so. People make false accusations all the time.

As stated above, the only way to verify whether it really IS KP is to view it, and that is illegal.

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Grrrrrrrrr

ok lets say i'm a total f*****g idiot. i goto pirate bay and search KP and a torrent comes up called "the most horrific KP ever.torrent". i click and start downloading. then i click on peers and get a list of all the IP's i'm connected to. OK the smart sickos will be hiding their real address, but come on its a bloody starting point, i dont believe there ever has been anonimity on the net and you'd be niave to think there was. it would seem to me the pirate bay are doing a service by letting the authorities see their LIVE logs thru the bittorrent client, IP address + timestamp = YOU. so whos bloody responsibility is it then, doesnt sound like the pirate bay's to me

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Anonymous Coward

Ridiculous

Some years ago, I ran a landline BBS. It used our second phone line, and ran from 9 PM to 7 AM. I had a timer on the phone line so no phones would ring between those times.

I was away one weekend, and came home Sunday evening to find the BBS computer plug pulled from the wall and the phone off the hook.

After getting everything set back up, I asked why my BBS had been turned off.

It turns out that another sysop had misconfigured his system, and it had started calling in the middle of Saturday afternoon. After a few calls, my mother realized that it was a computer call and so, in her infinite wisdom, went upstairs and pulled the plug on my computer. Obviously that didn't stop the calls, so she took the phone off the hook.

I checked the logs the next morning, contacted the sysop in question, and he fixed his system.

The point of this tale is to point out that a lot of people react much the same way as my mother. Yelling for PB to remove the link in question isn't going to fix anything. It's not going to solve the problem. By not removing it, the actual source of the problem (the uploader/s) can be identified and appropriate "repairs" can be made.

For the record, I am against KP. (Actually, I am against all porn, but I am even more against the government telling adults what they can or cannot do in private.) It's my opinion that anyone caught making or distributing KP should have their testosterone levels surgically reduced.

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@Tony

Morality is a wierd thing to define. My morals are different from yours, and everyone else's. To say they should ascribe to "moral standards" or "moral decency" is akin to saying they should ascribe to your morals etc.

Now I'm not saying this is right, or wrong, I'm not commenting on yours or Hinod's morals here. However, I am saying that there are valid points to both sides. Hinod however is saying that free speech is higher on the scale of morals than hunting down kiddie-porn. You're saying Kiddie porn is higher.

The added bonus issue here is a matter of liability. I cannot speak for Sweden's laws, but in Canada, working for an organization that would be occasionally frequented by paedophiles, we had to be extremely careful about how we pursued them because we might lose our legal defence with regards to ISPs and Common Carriers. If that were the case, we would need to monitor *every* piece of information being added from over a million people. That liability is huge, and it is prohibitive for many organizations upto and including Google, Facebook, Myspace, MSN to name a few.

Pirate Bay is in the situation where if they hunt down the illegal content they are not rewarded. In fact, they are actually punished by higher costs, legal awards, criminal sanctions and others. It isn't a pretty situation, but it is reality.

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