The Pirate Bay prosecution - statement & backgrounder
London, 13th February 2009
The Pirate Bay prosecution - statement
Organisations representing music and film producers issued statements today ahead of the criminal prosecution, starting Monday 16th February, of four defendants associated with the unauthorised online distribution service The Pirate Bay.
A background information document for media (attached) is also provided.
For the Swedish music companies, Ludvig Werner, Chairman of IFPI Sweden representing independent and major music companies, said:
“For people who make a living out of creativity or in a creative business, there is scarcely anything more important than to have your rights protected by the law. Copyright exists to ensure that everyone in the creative world – from the artist to the record label, from the independent film producer to the TV programme maker - can choose how their creations are distributed and get fairly rewarded for their work. The operators of The Pirate Bay have violated those rights and, as the evidence in Court will show, they did so to make substantial revenues for themselves. That kind of abuse of the rights of others cannot be allowed to continue, and that is why these criminal proceedings are so important for the health of the creative community.”
For the international recording industry, John Kennedy, Chairman and CEO of IFPI, representing some 1400 member record companies worldwide, said:
“The criminal prosecution of The Pirate Bay is about protecting creators from those who violate their rights and deprive them of their deserved rewards. The Pirate Bay has hurt creators of many different kinds of works, from music to film, from books to TV programmes. It has been particularly harmful in distributing copyrighted works prior to their official release. This damages sales of music at the most important time of their lifecycle.
“The evidence in this case will show that The Pirate Bay is a commercial business which made substantial amounts of money for its operators, despite their claim to be only interested in spreading culture for free.
“A healthy and fairly-rewarded music sector needs protecting from services such as The Pirate Bay. The criminal prosecution comes at a time of rapid, positive change in the business models of creative industries in Sweden and elsewhere. Swedish music consumers have a wide range of choices among legitimate digital music services. These offer great consumer choice while at the same time rewarding and respecting the rights of creators.”
In a statement the Motion Picture Association, representing the US film studios, said:
“The operators of The Pirate Bay have exploited the creative efforts of others for years by enabling the illegal distribution of audio-visual and other creative works on a vast scale while making a profit for themselves. It is important that the people responsible for operating The Pirate Bay are dealt with by the appropriate law enforcement authorities in Sweden. The MPA is doing everything possible to support the prosecution and it is now a matter for the Swedish court to decide. We remain committed to our core mission of encouraging and pursuing common sense solutions that support the creativity and prosperity of the film industry.”
Please see attached media backgrounder.
IFPI represents the recording industry worldwide, with a membership comprising some 1400 record companies in around 70 countries. IFPI's mission is to promote the value of recorded music, safeguard the rights of record producers and expand the commercial uses of recorded music in all markets where its members operate.