August 27, 2007 9:25 AM PDT

TorrentSpy shuts down in the U.S., the BitTorrent tracking site facing a copyright lawsuit from the motion picture industry, is shutting down access to users in the United States, the company said in a statement late Sunday night.

The barring of U.S. residents by TorrentSpy comes as a U.S. district judge is expected to rule any day on whether TorrentSpy must turn over its user information to the Motion Picture Association of America. That group filed a civil complaint against the company last year accusing TorrentSpy of violating copyright law.

"TorrentSpy's decision to stop accepting U.S. visitors was not compelled by any court," according to a statement from the company. "Rather, it arises out of an uncertain legal climate in the United States regarding user privacy and the apparent tension between U.S. and European Union Internet privacy laws."

The company also said that because its servers are located in the Netherlands, the site will remain accessible to users outside of the United States.

Although TorrentSpy doesn't host any pirated movies on its site, the search engine helps users find unauthorized copies, the MPAA alleged in its suit. TorrentSpy has argued that the company has many legitimate uses and is protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The DMCA provides safe harbor for Internet service providers and does not hold them responsible for unlawful acts committed by their users.

The MPAA declined to comment on TorrentSpy's decision.

Ira Rothken, attorney for TorrentSpy, said Monday that the decision to shut off U.S. residents will not affect the company's appeal of a recent magistrate judge's order that it hand over user information from the RAM on the company's computers.

"This is a wake-up call to citizens and Internet users that their privacy isn't protected as well as they might have thought," Rothken said in an interview with CNET "Google, Yahoo and other search engines should be very concerned. One day these attacks on privacy will likely affect them."

See more CNET content tagged:
DMCA, U.S., search engine, decision


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where does it end?
Lets sue networking companies,they allow the movies to be transfered.

Lets sue Microsoft, their OS allows to play the material.

Lets sue LCD monitor manufacturers, they have not asked Hollywood whether they can show it.

Is this the way?

Posted by maf07 (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
well, yea...
The current version of windows vista supports LCD HD monitors, but to view hd content, you'll also need a video card that not only supports hd, but encryption between the card and monitor, otherwise vista won't allow the content to be displayed on the monitor.
Posted by thedreaming (573 comments )
Link Flag
Yeah, how dare they take away my right to steal!

Oh, wait...
Posted by bblande (68 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Re: Reprehensible
Too bad they're not just stopping stealing. They're trying to stop file sharing in general. If I want to grab a distro of Linux from TorrentSpy, I can't now because the MPAA doesn't like the site.
Posted by MosX (20 comments )
Link Flag
Yea....THAT'LL stop pirating!
Oh yea...I just see this eliminating the pirating of music and movies
Posted by gsmiller88 (624 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I'm not even from the US, the UK infact, but because I use AOL they have decided to block me as well! Haven't they ever thought that there are other websites out there? HA HA
Posted by cameron2612 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
There are tons of others - one just has to look.
It was a good run with Torrent Spy - I saved a ton of money on lousy movies that would have been a waste of $20 to see. Oh well, I guess I'll take them out of my Favorites folder today.
Posted by gravityfactory (18 comments )
Link Flag
How to end piracy...
People pirate cause everything is expensive, including movies and music, so you lower the price on both and stop making crap and bingo, you got allot of people buying music and movies again!
Posted by thedreaming (573 comments )
Reply Link Flag
What nonsense
Would you ban Apple from making Ipods if someone stole your Ipod? Its not the maker that is to be blamed. Torrntspy is clearly the medium of "Mass Stealing" . You need to take a reasoning class. Way to go to stop piracy this is a hallmark achievement. In the information era - the public needs to learn to pay for software - It is an asset created with dedicated effort.
Posted by cyber_buoy (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
I couldn't agree more
Your comment was pure nonsense. Thanks for being honest in your
subject line.
Posted by Dalkorian (3000 comments )
Link Flag
Use a proxy
If you like Torrentspy just go through a non-US proxy...I use one from Brazil.
Posted by JT1517 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
A little help, please? :)
Posted by TBolt (70 comments )
Link Flag
use a proxy
how do you do that
Posted by goldman34 (3 comments )
Link Flag

Good luck.
Posted by JohnBarbagallo (60 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Just waiting to laugh as Hollywood slides into the ocean
Posted by Gunner144 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Can MPAA say "Proxy Server"?
All that will happen is people who really want to use TorrentSpy in the US will use a proxy to do so.
Posted by Anysia (104 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Yup. Configured Tor today and I can access TS just fine from
smack-dab in the heartland.
Posted by jumpjetta (302 comments )
Link Flag
Every time the MPAA/RIAA goes after some of these file sharing sites or companies, the developers figure out a way to make it harder to track users and files. Eventually we will be able to share files anonymously without them even finding out! So in the end, this isn't such bad news after all, just an advancement of progress. The future is gonna be awesome!

Posted by yellow--2008 (44 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Be careful.
The MPAA/RIAA may sue and force them to reveal the names and locations of individuals posting opinions they disagree with.

I am an individual who spends a great deal of money on movies. I do not like piracy, however I feel that it is no longer immoral to steal from the MPAA. It is still illegal, just not immoral.

I think the best solution to this mess is to stop going to or purchasing movies, and start reading more books.
Posted by ralfthedog (1589 comments )
Reply Link Flag

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