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TPB AFK: Watch and Download The Pirate Bay Documentary (torrentfreak.com)
161 points by derpenxyne on Feb 8, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 68 comments



For all the people arguing this is glorifying breaking the law, it's worth keeping in mind all the people that stood up against segregation in the southern US states, or Apartheid in South Africa, or any number of laws that were considered "immutable" and carried severe penalties.

Yes, these actions are against current laws, but at citizens of the world we have a responsibility to stand up and make our voices heard if we ever hope to change anything. Many people will go to jail and pay big fines in the near future, but that is the way it has always been to influence great change.


"Yes, these actions are against current laws"

Actually for most of the sites life it wasn't known if it was illegal or not, since no such case had been tried in Sweden.


Very true.

I guess I'm looking at it from a World perspective - and in the countries that carry the most weight this seems to be clearly illegal.

Interestingly, even when it's not, a la Mega, the police hired buy the rich don't even care if what they are doing is illegal.

I have no doubt this will cause enormous upheaval and hopefully change in the coming years, as more and more people become aware of how much they are overstepping their authority.


Equating piracy laws with state run human rights abuse is a bit of a stretch.


First, the author wasn't even saying that. And second, it really isn't that much of a stretch at all. The reason why military dictatorships like North Korea or wherever are able to exist is because they have a complete stranglehold over the media, libraries, movies, books, etc.

The publishing corporations in the US fought long and hard to make everything from libraries to recorded music to radio to VCRs to the Internet illegal, all on copyright grounds, and had they won the US wouldn't be any different than North Korea or any of the African dictatorships.


I didn't equate the laws themselves, I equated the people struggling to change them.

You could apply it to any law in history that has been changed through the action of a few people.


Not to get too meta, but you did both. Consider this:

For all the people arguing this is glorifying breaking the law, it's worth keeping in mind all the people that stood up against raising the speed limit to 65 in the southern US states, or requiring seat belts in cars, or any number of laws that were considered "immutable" and carried severe penalties.

Yes, these actions are against current laws, but at citizens of the world we have a responsibility to stand up and make our voices heard if we ever hope to change anything. Many people will go to jail and pay big fines in the near future, but that is the way it has always been to influence great change.

---

That extra oomph that's missing is you equating the apartheid and segregation laws (and their egregious nature) to copyright law. While I agree with your underlying point, the solution isn't to blow things out of proportion and compare them to some heinous human rights laws. It's a short hop from there to Nazis, a la Godwin's Law.

edited for clarity


People going to jail for copyright infringement, which should really be a civil offense at best is pretty heinous in my books.

It's not apartheid but I find it (the punishment) really odd that it's acceptable in today's world.


If you want laws other than human right abuses, take Gandhi and his protest of the national salt tax.

Copyright, a state enforced monopoly. national salt tax in India, a other state enforced monopoly.

If we just want to limit us to laws regarding state enforced monopolies, there are plenty in the history of mankind.


The Pirate Bay was started as an act of civil disobedience against an unjust law?


(Apologies in advance for using your comment as an excuse to unload a diatribe.)

I would argue that it has become as much, at least at a high level (as another poster noted, the laws and precedents were less defined when TPB and others actually opened, and many people feel entitled to private copying irrespective of TPB). The basic claim of anyone sharing files is simply that they have a right to share them, including the copyrighted ones. It just happens to be the copyrighted ones that are contentious. I think the sentiment boils down to "would you steal a loaf of bread if you were broke?" (Yup. I know it's "wrong," but I'm no good to anyone dead...) One can debate the morality, but we can have machines bake bread (execute the bread algorithm) with minimal human intervention, and we have digital machines to make copies of information and entertainment at the user's own expense, so it's a pretty weak argument that the world should simply starve or go without; surely the utility from a fed person exceeds the cost of stolen bread today (if it doesn't, why doesn't it? have we really failed so greatly? why should we not simply act together so that bread is abundant enough that it can be donation-ware? production can be completely automated... we have to solve these problems some time, or we might as well admit we want everyone to suffer open-endedly - though we seem to be choosing exactly that through licensing models, SaaS, and digital library loans that expire...). Entertainment is not bread though (and copying is not theft), but entertainment is culture, and the cost of leaving people out IMHO also exceeds the "cost" of non-commercial sharing. These are all highly contentious and subjective interpretations, but as a whole society, we are pressed right up against that glass; it's easier to produce and distribute, yet we have to raise prices and enforce restrictions on permuting all the good ideas because we all have to pay the prices that reflect those behaviors. (IMHO, simply removing or phasing out that assumption would let good ideas multiply, to the benefit of consumers, while simultaneously relieving the price pressure, to the benefit of producers. Capitalism at it's best.) In the present, there is immense pressure to constrain knowledge since it is highly leverage-able. It separates the haves from the have-nots. The have-nots, however, can only copy and steal bread; they have no surplus. (Should they be forced, at gun point, to leave an 18% tip too?) I'm not saying the wealthy are "hoarding" their surplus - I believe value is created out of nothing short of opportunity - rather, I'm simply saying that feeding someone allows them to thrive, which is a net social benefit and, as such, non commercial sharing should be tolerated if not encouraged. To be fed is to be able. It's not a new dynamic, but the specific subject is: data behave differently from bread... Copying is fast and non-exclusive, like ideas; as we become more connected, preventing copying becomes the same as preventing thought. That's why copyright infringement has become a focal point: subverting copyright allows people to communicate freely and, more importantly, to subvert our rigged economy, which I do think is held together by numerous unjust laws, of which IMHO copyright, in it's present form, is one.


I thought the arguments about how the market should evolve to handle piracy were very interesting.

With that, I truly appreciate Gabe Newell's perspective on the issue: "Our goal is to create greater service value than pirates, and this has been successful enough for us that piracy is basically a non-issue for our company... prior to entering the Russian market, we were told that Russia was a waste of time because everyone would pirate our products. Russia is now about to become our largest market in Europe." [1]

Valve's solution: Create an altogether better service. Be more convenient than piracy.

It's a challenge for many industries to replicate what Valve has done, but I know for a fact that I buy games on Steam I could easily pirate because the quality of service is so great.

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-11-28-valve-piracy-a-...


If you enjoy this movie you should also watch http://www.stealthisfilm.com/


Why doesn't Youtube have better font support for subtitles? Or is this the fault of the people uploading them? I almost always find subtitles on Youtube too small and hard to read from more than 1m distance.


Wow. What a tremendously strong and difficult gesture, surrendering the less than impressive nature of their internal struggles and personal character flaws to the public through a documentary like this. Much respect to all of those involved, including the film maker. With examples like this we can look ahead with the hopes of a better world.


May anyone offer a good synopsis of the movie? If you know of a good blog post about it you may post it too. Thank you.


Is anyone else getting a terrible download speed for this? I'm on the 720p torrent and getting 65kps despite there being thousands of seeds.


I was getting around 500 KiB/s for the 1080p version just a few minutes into the download.

You could also just rip the 1080p version from YouTube with "Easy YouTube Video Downloader" browser add-on, or a similar add-on (there are tons of these). The YouTube servers typically support downloads of around 1-1.5 MiB/s which is better than torrents in most cases (on residential Internet lines).


On 1080p. Started out around 50 KBps. Now getting a steady 430 KBps.


Bursted at 10mb/sec a few seconds after starting my download.


At 1:02:30 you can probably figure out his laptop password.


People aren't arguing the same things here.

One side argues that piracy is a misnomer; that there are no true claims to digital property and that sharing is allowed at no cost for everyone. They highlight the injustices of the entertainment industry and "big business" poisoning both artists and consumers.

The other side argues that piracy is stealing with no room for moral relativism, and that people measurably suffer as a result of it.

We need to condense these and actually argue against the same things. First, let's examine what qualifies as fair use for sharing. It is true that the internet allows people to share media and idea in an unprecedented way, and that we are allowed access to things as a basic right, no matter where in the world we are. Sharing and public access to material is virtually universal, this is something that is agreeable.

Now let's examine property rights and intellectual ownership. Property is anything that can be owned, although one could introduce semantics and change the definition to anything which is of value, or a resource. In either case, patents, copyrights and trademarks are all viable forms of property in the same way land is property. That it is easier to steal a virtual form of property than it is to steal a house does not diminish the fact that media is a valuable resource which can be represented by a medium of exchange (e.g. money, currency).

In other words, when you pirate something, you are stealing media which is property. Property can be leased, bought, gifted and sold. It can also be partitioned and divided into smaller units. This brings us to a feasible view of property that can preside over both land and virtual media - property is the archetype itself, and property represents the greatest whole unit - under this definition, an album is a whole unit which could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Similarly, a movie could be worth a billion dollars. But they are sold in much smaller units which are mirror forms of the original, albeit in single form.

And this represents property for the same reason that selling an acre of a much larger form represents property - you are still selling a portion of a greater whole.

We have thus eliminated one of the biggest arguments against virtual media representing property, and being ineligible for protection from forms of stealing.

So we can now come to a reasonable agreement that piracy represents taking a form of property without paying for it, be it leasing or purchasing. And thus, piracy is equivalent to stealing.

The only remaining point is whether or not stealing is justified in light of the often unethical business practices the entertainment industry subjects its incumbents to, most notably the artists.

This is a much greater discussion to have, but I am of the opinion that it is not fair to those who produce or create the media to steal it. You do not know how much money they will lose, and you also do not know how much you would really "stick it to the man" to steal.

Is it worth depriving a farmer of his grain to send a message to the government? The answer must agree with your answer to whether or not it is fair and justified to steal from an artist to send a message to the industry supporting him.

So, now I bring my point full circle. Is sharing a universal right? Yes. But you do not share your property at no cost. Are people given the right of access? Yes, but that access is limited to surveying and browsing property. You are not allowed to squat on a home, and neither are you allowed to steal media. But you are given basic access to both of these things and presented with a choice to buy them or turn them down. These are the two options implicit in access. The problem is that people believe there are other options implicit in the right to access, and they act accordingly.

What further confuses the issue is ideological baggage associated with the "warez" culture. Adding a label to your identity is a handy antidote to guilt and ethical considerations, but it does not hold up to raw logical examination.


Copyright is not property, its a privilege given by the state to the author. Its a state enforced monopoly, given under a perceived limited timed.

Privileges aren't properties. You can not own it, only be given it by someone in power to enforce it. No matter of semantics, you can't turn a privilege it into a property. State enforced monopolies are not properties. Copyright is not property, Patent is not property, trademark is not property. I can't make it clearer than that.

If you believe that the land is owned by the state and that the individual is given state privilege to use it, then it too is not a property owned by the individual. If however you believe that the state do not own the land, then the land is a property of the individual that work it, builds on it, lives on it.

Its an illusion to think that just because one can barter with privileges, it suddenly become a property and all the economics regarding property will suddenly make it all right. Its false. You can't turn privileges given by the state into something it isn't and what it isn't is a property owned by the individual.


Fair enough. How do we deal with any variety of intellectual property rights then? Do you recommend changing patent laws as well?


I can see several nice changes to patent law, but intellectual property is just a make-belief nickname for a group of laws, all with different aspects and goals. The only common denominator in each law, is that they are tools of the state and that they are indistinguishable from industry regulations.

Copyright is a state granted monopoly on information, intended to encourage more works but to the cost of an increase unit sale price. It was a barging between the producers of creative works and society. Sadly, this law has not been updated with that goal in hundred of years, but rather taken off in the belief that any cost-benefit for society is simply not necessary.

Patent law is a state granted monopoly on production, in the belief that it would encourage disclosure of secret information regarding how to produce new products. It was a barging between the producers and society. Sadly, this law has also not been updated with that goal in hundred of years, but rather taken off in the belief that any cost-benefit for society is simply not necessary.

Trademark is a consumer protection law, intended to protect a consumer rights to get what he pays for. Trademark scope is sometimes abused with the intent to prevent competition. This is wrong, and should be illegal but is rarely punished. The state gives some privilege to the target producer that a trademark contain, but the purpose of the law is clear.


> And thus, piracy is equivalent to stealing.

Piracy isn't really stealing because it isn't changing owners from one person to another. Piracy is more like communism because it is an attack against the idea of private property itself.

http://emoglen.law.columbia.edu/my_pubs/dcm.html


Which do you find to be the stronger definition of property, something of value, or something that can change hands?


Your point is based on a false dichotomy. There are not two equally popular opposite camps in this situation.

Most proponents of TPB are anti-old media not pro stealing.

Its largely an unwillingness to accept archaic business practices in the world of the internet.

Constantly drawing parallels or comparisons to pre internet business models and notions of property misses the point entirely.


True, but I didn't suggest they were pro stealing, rather that they justified it by being against the industry itself.


Property is a system we created for allocating scarce and rivalrous resources; it makes no sense when applied to non-scarce elements.

So we can now come to a reasonable agreement that piracy represents taking a form of property without paying for it, be it leasing or purchasing.

I buy a CD, and then I share copies of it with other people, who accept them. When was anything taken from anyone? The concepts of property simply don't apply. The copyright holder still owns exactly the same things (s)he did before the copy was made. If copying harms the holder, then so does simply not buying.

I recommend reading Kinsella's argument: http://mises.org/books/against.pdf

By the way, this doesn't prevent people from advocating copyright; but call what it is: a government granted monopoly, not "property".


I understand the classical definition of property as a scarve and valuable resource.

However, unlike most people, I think we need to change the definition of property. The internet no longer has scarcity. But I don't believe that eliminates value.

The model we have now for earning revenue in many businesses, especially media, is on royalties. Royalties for copyrighted materials don't fit under the old model of property, but I believe we have to change that model.

This doesn't mean I believe copyright laws are not flawed right now. I believe they are, heavily so. But I still believe in intellectual property because I don't see another system where earning revenue on copyright would be fair to the producer.


One can defend copyright - either the current or a modified version of it - without changing any definition of property.

The only purpose of the change is to manipulate people into accepting copyright, especially at a moral level. It's pure propaganda.


Peter Sunde is all about freedom and "sharing". Yet, his site "Flattr" charges a higher service fee than any other service of its kind.

Here is from the flattr site:

"On incoming revenue you keep 90%. When you add money to give to others or withdraw money you earned you only pay a fee to the payment provider you choose."

So, they charge 10%. Paypal doesn't even charge you anything close to this. I also like how they tried to make it sound like it's not that bad, by talking about how much you actually get to keep rather than the fee itself.

I guess you need to make a profit/pay for server/infrastructure costs...so do artists, movie makers, and software developers.

It's so easy to take the hard work of others and in most cases, against the wishes of the original content creator, and just give it out for free. Anybody can buy a couple of servers, index a bunch of content, and put it up in a foreign country.

TPB isn't fighting for your freedom. They are helping in the demise of independent artists. Sure, you will always have a few people that play for free because it's fun, but because of the current state of the Internet (the new generation feels like they are entitled to music and anything else online, for free), it's going to be very difficult to actually make a living unless you are signed to a major label.


>Yet, his site "Flattr" charges a higher service fee than any other service of its kind

Could you show me another service 'of its kind' as awesome as Flattr? Probably not.

Speaking of the the services not of its kind, Flattr's 10% is well reasoned. Appstore/Google Play charges 30%. Have you heard about Envato? They charge 50% on all sales until you make $70,000. Thousands of people make a living out of Envato and Appstore/Play.

Also don't forget that Flattr is dealing with micro transactions. With Flattr you can give $1 to 10 different content creators. Could you do that with Paypal? I think not. So, I would say that Flattr's 10% fee is well reasoned and acceptable.


"Appstore/Google Play charges 30%. Have you heard about Envato? They charge 50% on all sales until you make $70,000. Thousands of people make a living out of Envato and Appstore/Play."

Those services are for giving donations to people? Can you show me where they state this, because I can't find it anywhere..

"I would say that Flattr's 10% fee is well reasoned and acceptable."

Are you a shill for Flattr? Your comments make me think that you work for the site..


Independent artists aren't going anywhere, and neither are record labels. Independent artists and labels alike have been helped and harmed by the changing paradigm that global networking has brought about. Pick whichever sign for the delta you want, but money isn't and hasn't been the driving force behind artistic expression. The overwhelming majority of all musicians never break even on the time and money they put into their work. It's been that way for decades. Most artists --signed and independent alike-- are far more concerned with the size of their audience than their wallets. And in the quest for an audience, the internet has far outdone its predecessors. From my perspective, the "current state of the Internet" is not a state in need of repair. Rather, business models are in need of an update. Humanity has dragged them forward into new technologies kicking and screaming every time, and every time the show has gone on.


> It's been that way for decades.

Try centuries.


>TPB isn't fighting for your freedom. They are helping in the demise of independent artists. Sure, you will always have a few people that play for free because it's fun, but because of the current state of the Internet (the new generation feels like they are entitled to music and anything else online, for free), it's going to be very difficult to actually make a living unless you are signed to a major label.

Did independent artists ever subsist off album sales prior to the internet/TPB?


  > TPB isn't fighting for your freedom. They are helping in the demise of independent artists.
I think you've been misinformed about the effects of content piracy.


Indeed, it's disheartening to see people try to defend what is most certainly a crime. No matter what you call it, the artists are not getting paid for their content when they have the right to require payment. That is not right, no matter how you slice it.

I'm tired of people saying "but look how evil the artists/labels/companies are!" I don't care, it's no excuse. You're correct that they're shady, but just because you're correct doesn't make your actions right.


> You're correct that they're shady, but just because you're correct doesn't make your actions right.

You're correct that there are laws against sharing, but that doesn't make those laws right.

> Indeed, it's disheartening to see people try to defend what is most certainly a crime.

I guess your point is that things are illegal for a reason? There is certainly some truth to that. However, trying to enforce old ideas of copyright when digital distribution has created fundamental changes in how media is consumed seems shortsighted to me.

Perhaps you'd be less disheartened if you recognized how many people, both artists and consumers, are successfully navigating digital distribution without resorting to draconian copyright and drm.


If you are talking about morality, I would stay away from those that want to deny peoples access to general useful information. To quote professor Eben Moglen:

  The great moral question of the twenty-first century is
  this: if all knowing, all culture, all art, all useful
  information can be costlessly given to everyone at the
  same price that it is given to anyone; if everyone can
  have everything, anywhere, all the time, why is it ever
  moral to exclude anyone?


So a movie is information now? A song is information? Even the dictionary doesn't agree with your definition:

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/information?s=t

How about your name, address, ssn, CC number, and bank account information. Information wants to be free, right?


http://www.billboard.com/charts/hot-100

There is an indie artist #1 on the charts right now, first time in 20 years, and second time in history.

"...won’t talk about how much money they’ve made, but it’s enough to make a major label’s advance offers seem inconsequential."

Is this an anomaly or is this a trend?


It can happen, but very rarely. Indy artists are like startups that have no funding for marketing or just don't know how to market themselves properly.


Try to give to artist 10, 20 or 50 cents trough paypal. You will pay minimum 200% transfer fee.


On the App Store for instance 30 % goes to Apple.


FYI, the name of this logical fallacy is "poisoning the well".

"He made X before, so Y must be Z"


No, it's called hypocrisy and it's pretty clear.

But because he is the darling of the HN community (which seems odd, since many people here are interested in running startups), nobody cares.

I find the same thing happens with Al Gore. He made carbon credit laws that made him a billionaire and his supporters don't see this as filthy, corporate, greed. Yet, complain about the banks.


The only way to adjust business practices in a society that fetishizes deregulation is transferring money around. If the businesses can't/won't self-regulate, some action will be taken within the boundaries of what America will tolerate.

A much better action would certainly be to regulate, empowering the EPA and international health/safety standards bodies and skip over the middlemen entirely.


Such a horrible arguments, no wonder it got down voted.

If you think you can do better than Flattr and produce a service that charge less, feel free to implement it. Competition is healthy, and there is no software patents in Sweden, thus no state enforced monopoly to stop you.

As for the TPB site itself, there are not a single peer reviewed research that say that independent artists was harmed by the site. Now days with the promo-bay, they have done more good than most labels but without charging a single dime.


"Such a horrible arguments, no wonder it got down voted."

Like most things that go against that go against the mainstream opinion of HN, my opinion is silenced by the masses.

"If you think you can do better than Flattr and produce a service that charge less, feel free to implement it. Competition is healthy, and there is no software patents in Sweden, thus no state enforced monopoly to stop you."

I don't need to. I'm also not trying to defend to the world why I'm freely sharing other peoples content and making money on it (through ad revenue).

"As for the TPB site itself, there are not a single peer reviewed research that say that independent artists was harmed by the site"

You are really tying to tell me that If I am selling a product and everyone knows they can get it for free from a website online, that people will buy it from me instead if downloading it for free and I won't get "harmed"?

You can defend this all you want, but when it hits your industry, don't start blaming anyone. It will cause job loss in the future.

"Now days with the promo-bay, they have done more good than most labels but without charging a single dime."

Prove it. There is no peer-reviewed research on the subject.


I'm not sure that a payment processor is the best thing to compare Flattr to, but if they believe it offers no value beyond that, artists are free to do everything themselves and use Paypal or whatever else.


A major label isn't a guarantee of money. In fact, quite the opposite. Royalties don't earn much of a living until you reach the very high echelons of musical popularity. The most money is really earned from touring and live performances.


Great, another thread ruined by a lowest common denominator discussion.


Kickstarter also charges 10%.


Ugh, the color-grading puts me off immediately...


Rather than glorifying the act of piracy, this movie does a wonderful job of exposing the founders.

One of them is an Alcoholic right-wing racist, another a drug addict.

Peter Sunde seems to be the only person who who seems vaguely normal.

I wish teenagers, children and other "pirates" realize that there is no glory in associating themselves with these sociopaths.


>I wish teenagers, children and other "pirates" realize that there is no glory in associating themselves with these sociopaths.

And I wish people would properly use the word "sociopath".


By right-wing racist, are you talking about Fredrik whose children are mixed-race (note the clips where he got married in Laos) or Carl who's married to a jewish woman?


You do realize that there are other races as well right? How would you explain the "dirty immigrants" quote?


It's a mistranslation, and you are ignoring the context.

He points out that every time he has been beaten up or robbed the assailants have been immigrants. And by immigrants, he clarifies, he is not talking about 7th generation Finns but about "turkblattejävlar". The phrase he uses can't be directly translated. It's a generalized racial slur of moderate intensity with a clear subtext of social class.

In the context, and when contrasted with "7th generation Finns", he is using the phrase to refer to a certain demographic: young males of low socioeconomic status, most likely originating from the Middle-east or North Africa. In polite conversation this is the subset of the population that you would euphemistically refer to as "ungdomsgäng" or "youths".

But, as you can see, he is not in a polite conversation: he's in a pub, he's drunk, and he has just called brokep "a fucking vegetarian leftist bitch ass bastard" who's driven by "ideological pussy-inflicted instincts". In that setting and with that tone the phrase was at most a less than appropriate way of referring to his attackers — hardly an exhibit of "right wing racism".


How can you believe something like that? You don’t say stuff like that. It’s the most obvious racism there is.

You are absurd. And, as clearly evidenced by your detailed explanation, there is apparently no mistranslation.

Not that it matters much, but defending racism?! Wow.


I don't see any "racism" here. Since it's "obvious", would you please pin-point it?


Really?!


I was hoping for something better of HN thread, than emotional exclamations. Oh, well. "You can't always get what you want".


Xenophobia != Racism


> Peter Sunde seems to be the only person who who seems vaguely normal.

I wish teenagers don't aspire to be "normal", as you seem to think they should.




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