ISPs in Ireland to block KickAssTorrents voluntarily

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One of the first countries in the world which implemented ISP level blockade on The Pirate Bay will see renewed legal actions starting Monday that will see film and TV studios demanding the blockade of KickAssTorrents and according to industry sources, multiple ISPs have already agreed for a voluntary block without a court order.

Irish subsidiaries of Sony Music, Universal Music and Warner Music will be heading off to the High Court in Ireland demanding ISP level blockade of KickAssTorrents on Monday. Several ISPs have been listed as respondents, but there are indications that they won’t be contesting the ruling with some signing deals with the music labels that they will block the torrent site even without a court order just as the case was with The Pirate Bay.

The Pirate Bay case was initiated by the Irish Recorded Music Association (IRMA) and at the time ISP Eircom backed out of the court battle and simply blocked the site voluntarily back in 2009. Other ISPs including Digiweb, Imagine, UPC, Vodafone, Hutchison 3G and Telefonica O2 were forced to block the site in June 2013.

UPC is contesting the demands of music labels and has affirmed that it has been served with legal papers. Speaking with the Irish Times UPC said that it declined IRMA’s request of blocking KickAssTorrents voluntarily.

“Our position is that ISPs should not, on a voluntary basis, choose what can or should be consumed by internet users. Such matters are for the government or the courts to decide,” said the ISP.

However, this is not the stand of all ISPs as Imagine – one of the ISPs – has informed IRMA and the labels that it will implement a block should the defending ISPs loose the case. IRMA has confirmed that it has managed to strike deals with several other ISPs that they will follow the court orders even if they are not listed as respondents.