'Pirate Bay will warn mainstream off BitTorrent'
Friday, 17th April 2009 at 4:15 pm
Sports Interactive MD – and victim of piracy – Miles Jacobson assesses the contentious court ruling
Miles Jacobson, studio director at Sports Interactive, has told Develop he believes that this morning's Pirate Bay ruling is likely to put off mainstream consumers from obtaining Copyrighted software from BitTorrent sites.
Sports Interactive – once responsible for the Championship Manager series and now the group behind Football Manager – has always been seen as one of the biggest victims of piracy. In January Jacobson supported the claim that 90 per cent of Championship Manager games had been illicitly sought.
The four founders of tracking site The Pirate Bay were each sentenced to one year in prison this morning for “assisting in making copyright content available”.
Representatives of entertainment firms such as Warner Bros, Sony Music Entertainment, and Columbia Pictures – all present in the Stockholm district court – have been awarded £4.5m in damages.
Jacobson believes that the Pirate Bay founders were martyrs even before the ruling was decided. He said that the key for software developers is to provide good value for money.
“I mean, there’s already a political party in Sweden called The Pirate Party, who believe that everything on the internet should be free, including all media, and when you question them how artists get paid they have no answers and they really don’t care," he commented.
Jacobson said it wasn’t his place to give his opinion on the severity of a court’s sentence, but offered his experience with the people behind the Pirate Bay:
“From my perspective, the Pirate Bay is the only one of these websites that, if you ask them for your copyrighted material to be taken down, they won’t do it. For me, that’s why this has gone as far as it has.”
Miles added that he was a very big supporter of BitTorrent technology, as his company use it to deliver patches and demos to consumers. “But we do this job and we should get paid for the work that we do.”
“Obviously, there are people right now who have said that they’re never buying a Sony game or ever watching a Warner Film again.
"But then again a law was only just recently passed in Sweden which made it illegal to download copyrighted material from the net, and what the nation saw was a 40 per cent drop in web traffic over the next two days.
"So, while it’s likely that some people will become more ‘radicalised’ off the back of the court case, the message does seem to get through to the mass-market consumers.”
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