TorrentSpy Ordered by Federal Judge to Become MPAA Spy

TorrentSpy, one of the largest and most popular torrent dump sites, may soon become another piece of bait in the MPAA's ongoing efforts to track down and prosecute copyright infringers. The site has already been in legal trouble before, the target of an MPAA lawsuit in February 2006, but has resisted any change in policy. This may come to an end, due to a decision by the California Central District Court last month, in which federal judge Jacqueline Chooljian has ordered the site to create logs detailing individual user activity. These logs are then to be turned over to the MPAA for review. Judge Chooljian consequently granted a stay of the order, allowing TorrentSpy until June 12 to file an appeal.

TorrentSpy has a strict privacy policy, stating that it will never track visitors without their consent; the site's attorney, Ira Rothken, has stated that "It is likely that TorrentSpy would turn off access to the U.S. before tracking its users." The EFF, an advocate for the public in digital rights cases, though still reviewing the case, has tentatively given support to the site; Fred von Lohmann, an attorney for the EFF, calls the decision "unprecedented" and "troubling". "We shouldn't let Web site logging policies be set by litigation," said Lohmann. The EFF fears this decision could provide a dangerous precedent for intrusive actions in e-commerce and digital entertainment sights.

News source: News.com

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