The Pirate Bay’s North Korea claims are likely a piece of masterful satire

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Pirate Bay North Korea

Things are never boring in the world of the Pirate Bay. After Sweden’s Pirate Party discontinued its hosting of the site, it was apparently set to move its hosting to Spain and Norway. Now though, it claims it’s actually settled in North Korea.

The massive file-sharing site posted a blog in which it claimed that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had invited it to “fight [its] battles” from the country’s network.

As the Verge points out however, this statement is probably rooted more in satire than reality.

The first clue is in the hyperbole that the post uses in comparing North Korea to the Western countries that have been trying to shut down the site:

This is truly an ironic situation. We have been fighting for a free world, and our opponents are mostly huge corporations from the United States of America, a place where freedom and freedom of speech is said to be held high. At the same time, companies from that country is chasing a competitor from other countries, bribing police and lawmakers, threatening political parties and physically hunting people from our crew. And to our help comes a government famous in our part of the world for locking people up for their thoughts and forbidding access to information.

We believe that being offered our virtual asylum in Korea is a first step of this country’s changing view of access to information. It’s a country opening up and one thing is sure, they do not care about threats like others do. In that way, TPB and Korea might have a special bond. We will do our best to influence the Korean leaders to also let their own population use our service, and to make sure that we can help improve the situation in any way we can. When someone is reaching out to make things better, it’s also ones duty to grab their hand.

Another clue lies in the fact that the author of the post goes by the name Kim Jung-Bay, a portmanteau of Kim Jong Un and the Pirate Bay.

Then there’s the fact that internet access in North Korea is deliberately limited, with international mobile networks only just having opened up for tourists.

You might also want to bear the site’s 2007 April Fool’s Day prank in mind. Back then it claimed that it had relocated to the North Korean embassy in Stockholm.

Perhaps most damning however is the fact that a German programmer managed to trace the hosting chain from its supposed location in Pyongyang, North Korea, to an address in Cambodia.

Even if it isn’t in North Korea though, it’s obviously running out of places to run.

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  • Mike

    Pirate-bay is distributed hosting. You would literally have to either shut off the interbuts or strictly control every single file hoster in the world. With a size of ~100 MB, you could install it almost anywhere.

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