The UK High Court has added 53 new sites to the piracy blacklist, more than doubling the number of blocked sites.
Now, some 93 sites have been officially blocked, including Rapid Moviez, Warez BB, Sumotorrent, Torrentfunk, Torrentz, watchseries.It, BitSoup, Isohunt, Stream TV, IP Torrents, Tor Movies and Torrentdb. The sites themselves do not host the illegal material, they only provide download links to pirated software, films, TV shows, e-books and music. This means that blocking the sites does not remove the illegal content from the web, it just makes it harder for people to find.
The court decision came after the Motion Picture Association (MPA) made a complaint that was uncontested by internet service providers, as they no longer wanted to defend themselves in court.
Chris Marcich, president and managing director of the MPA in Europe, believes that ordering ISPs to block certain sites is an effective way to tackle the issue of online copyright infringement. He added that the law targets sites that aim to make a profit from stolen content and don’t contribute anything to the economy in return.
BT is one of the first ISPs to block the newly banned sites, with O2, Virgin, Sky, TalkTalk and EE expected to follow suit soon.
Although the first restrictions began back in 2012, this latest court order is the first to block private torrent sites, which only make the download links to illegal content available to members. TorrentDay.com, BitSoup.me and IPTorrents.com are examples of the private sites recently put on the blacklist by the High Court. The Pirate Bay was the very first torrent site to be outlawed under changes made to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act in 2012.