IsoHunt targeted by MPAA

Written by Wil Harris

January 19, 2007 // 2:50 p.m.

Tags: #canada #copyright #isp #mpaa

Popular BitTorrent aggregator IsoHunt.com has been pulled offline by its ISP.

The ISP reacted to a DMCA request by American film outfit the MPAA, apparently without bothering to check any details of the DMCA request with the site itself. Lackeys, much?

IsoHunt maintains that its service is legal. No copyrighted material is hosted on the site, which only indexes torrents, the content of which is obviously distributed by users themselves.

In the meantime, the guys at the site are doing their best to get back up. They're moving the site infrastructure to Canada, to avoid further problems with the long arm of the US law (the DMCA only applies in the US) and are taking the opportunity to upgrade the hardware while they're at it, so IsoHunt should be faster and bigger than ever when it gets back online, probably tomorrow.

Steve Gibson, security expert extraordinaire, is fond of saying that freedom of speech requires that copyright be unenforceable, since any mandatory copyright enforcement will inherently limit that freedom, if indirectly. The unpleasant side-effect of absolute freedom of speech and unenforceable copyright is piracy, making piracy a fact of life in a world balanced towards freedoms.

At the moment, it seems like the US is falling more on the side of copyright - unsurprising, given the amount of lobbying money going into government from big content firms. However, the rest of the world can thank Canada and Sweden for having laws that fall a little more in our favour.

What are your thoughts on IsoHunt, freedom of speech and piracy? Let us know your thoughts over in the forums.
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