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Internet pirates are driven off Ascension Island

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The original Pirate Bay server - now the site's data is stored in cyperspace. Picture by James Losey
The original Pirate Bay server – now the site’s data is stored in cyperspace. Picture by James Losey

Three centuries after the buccaneer William Dampier abandoned his sinking ship in Clarence Bay, a new brand of pirates has tried settling on Ascension Island.

But the outlawed Pirate Bay website was quickly driven off the island’s internet domain after administrator Colin Wells was alerted by the media.

The owners of The Pirate Bay had not actually set foot in Georgetown.

Their site, which allows people to download films and other files without paying for them, merely switched to an Ascension domain name after being shut down on another island.

The site’s last address on the Dutch island of Sint Maartin, in the Caribbean, was seized by the authorities after pressure from campaigners against internet piracy.

The widely-read Motherboard blog noted that the site jumped to Ascension after being shut down in four other places in 2013, including Greenland, Iceland and Sweden.

Because all of The Pirate Bay’s data is actually stored on the internet, using so-called cloud storage, “there isn’t even anything to move”, says the site.

It adds: “There’s enough countries and enough domains (and more all the time) that this game of domain Whak-a-mole can pretty much go on nigh indefinitely.”

But St Helena never looked likely to be the next stop: as Motherboard predicted, the site had moved on to Peru within days of registering on Ascension.

Pirate Bay sets sail for Ascension Island – The Independent
Everywhere the Pirate Bay set up shop in 2013 – the Motherboard
William Dampier’s ship found off Ascension

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