UK Internet service providers ordered to block 21 pirate sites

The British Phonographic Industry (BPI), the trade association for the UK music business, has delivered a court order to every UK Internet service provider (ISP) that orders them to block access to 21 websites allegedly linked to pirated music.

The sites include popular torrent outlets BitSnoop, ExtraTorrent and Torrentreactor.

The court order comes into effect on 30 October, and already most major ISPs have announced that they will comply.

A spokesperson for Virgin Media said "as a responsible ISP we obey court orders addressed to the company."

BT has also confirmed that it will block the sites.

The BPI and other copyright pressure groups have in the past pushed for higher rates of prosecution and conviction for those accused of downloading copyrighted material illegally. However, the new focus on site-blocking suggests a wider shift of focus from the organisation.

BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor said "we asked the sites to stop infringing copyright but unfortunately they did not and we were left with little choice but to apply to the court."

Sites such as The Pirate Bay and Kickass Torrents have been blocked in the UK since mid-2012, and despite the proliferation of mirror sites, the BPI believes that the blocks have "significantly reduced the use of those sites in the UK."

It's unclear whether or not the new raft of blockages will have much effect on the growing market for online pirated content.

A similar battle recently concluded in the US, with popular torrent site isoHunt closing down after a lengthy court battle with the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America).

A full list of the sites to be blocked in the UK are as follows:

  • Abmp3
  • BeeMP3
  • Bomb-Mp3
  • FileCrop
  • FilesTube
  • Mp3Juices
  • eMp3World
  • Mp3lemon
  • Mp3Raid
  • Mp3skull
  • NewAlbumReleases
  • Rapidlibrary
  • 1337x
  • BitSnoop
  • ExtraTorrent
  • Monova
  • TorrentCrazy
  • TorrentDownloads
  • TorrentHound
  • Torrentreactor
  • Torrentz

Image credit: Flickr (mojorider2)