The Pirate Bay, a BitTorrent search engine that Hollywood has tried in vain to shut down for years, was offline Monday morning.
The blackout was presumably the result of an injunction won recently by the film studios that ordered The Pirate Bay's bandwidth provider to stop servicing the site. This is only the latest chapter in the cat-and-mouse game between Hollywood's big studios and the site's operators.
The Pirate Bay has lost at least two other bandwidth providers in the past few years and the site typically just acquires a new host. That is likely to happen once again in this case, according to a source close to the site.
According to the blog TorrentFreak, the CB3ROB, operator of host CyberBunker, was ordered last week by the Regional Court of Hamburg, Germany, to cut off The Pirate Bay.
A year ago, four men associated with operating The Pirate Bay were found guilty of copyright violations by a Swedish court. They were sentenced to a year in jail and ordered to pay 30 million Swedish kronor ($3.6 million) in damages to copyright holders, among them a number of American film studios.
The four men--Peter Sunde, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Fredrik Neij, and Carl Lundström--were found guilty of having made 33 copyright-protected files accessible for illegal file sharing via the Piratebay.org Web site. The case is pending an appeal.