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Pirate Bay blocking row silenced in Norway

Copyright holders lick wounds

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The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) and a pro-copyright group have given up their fight to get telecoms outfit Telenor to block access to The Pirate Bay in Norway.

The rights' holders have twice failed to convince Telenor to comply with its demands to cut off the BitTorrent tracker decentralised peer-to-peer network site.

According to Computer World, which cites a statement (Norwegian only) on performing rights society group TONO's website, any appeal against the case has now been dropped.

TONO and IFPI were understood to be considering bringing the case to Norway's supreme court after losing two rounds in the Norwegian court system against Telenor, which refused to play nice on the issue.

The IFPI said pursuing the ISP through the courts any further would be a waste of money, reports CW.

A battle between Telenor, IFPI and TONO kicked off in February last year, when the internet service provider hit back at copyright holders in the music and film industry by claiming they had no legal grounds to force it to block access to The Pirate Bay.

It said at the time that ISPs could not be held liable for actions by surfers looking for free downloads.

"Asking an ISP to control and assess what internet users can and cannot download is just as wrong as asking the post office to open and read letters and decide what should and should not be delivered," said Telenor at the time.

In February 2008, however, it was a different story in Denmark when Telenor-owned Tele2 agreed to a court order blocking access to The Pirate Bay, following demands from the record industry's anti-piracy lobby.

At the time the IFPI said it expected other internet service providers to voluntarily follow suit.

In early 2009 Ireland's biggest ISP, Eircom, agreed to block access to any website the music industry claimed was responsible for illegal music-swapping.

But execs at the Norwegian wing of Telenor dug their heels in and that tenaciousness appears to have paid off.

Elsewhere on planet Pirate Bay, one-time bidder for the site Hans Pandeya has resurfaced by buying a majority shareholder stake in a small US firm that makes and sells wall calendars, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and first reported by CNet yesterday.

He paid $325,000 in January this year for Business Marketing Services and gained 15 million shares, or 78 per cent of the company's stock. ®

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