Baywatch: Two approaches to measure the effects of blocking access to The Pirate Bay

Joost Poort*, Jorna Leenheer, Jeroen van der Ham, Cosmin Dumitru

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    27 Citations (Scopus)


    In the fight against unauthorised sharing of copyright protected material, Dutch Internet Service Providers have been summoned by courts to block their subscribers' access to The Pirate Bay and related sites. This paper studies the effectiveness of this approach towards online copyright enforcement, using both a consumer survey and a newly developed non-infringing technology for BitTorrent monitoring. While a small group of respondents download less from illegal sources or claim to have stopped doing so, no impact is found on the percentage of the Dutch population downloading from illegal sources. Slight changes are found on the distribution of Dutch peers, but these seem related to the awareness raised by blocking rather than the blocking itself. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)383-392
    Number of pages10
    JournalTelecommunications Policy
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - May 2014


    • Unauthorised file sharing
    • Piracy
    • p2p
    • BitTorrent monitoring
    • Blocking access
    • The Pirate Bay
    • Online copyright enforcement
    • IMPACT


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