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UK Pirate Bayers get overseas help for proxy shutdown

International pirates have come to the help of anyone in the UK wanting to access torrent search engine the Pirate Bay.

Those pirates are a wily bunch. Following the UK ban of the Pirate Bay, a group of Brits calling themselves the Pirate Party set up a proxy that kept access alive to the torrent search engine. That too was shut down this week, but now the Party's international pirate chums have come to the rescue.

Pirate parties in Luxembourg and Argentina have set up proxies of their own, and are urging UK torrent fans to use them to access the search engine, The Verge reports. The Argentinian one is available from anywhere in the world, proving that regulating the Internet is like playing whack-a-mole -- the minute you close one thing down, another springs up elsewhere.

Us Brits had access to the Pirate Bay curtailed this week, after the proxy by the Pirate Party was shut down following legal threats from the music industry. The Pirate Bay is already banned in the UK, after a ruling back in April that forced ISPs to cut it off. Though that didn't really hurt the site at all. The proxy certainly proved popular, with recent stats showing the Bay was the 133rd most popular site in these isles.

The Pirate Party punted out a statement after its proxy was taken down, claiming it would "continue to fight for digital rights" but that "the law at present is clear and makes any decision to continue hosting the proxy untenable."

But that hasn't stopped its piratical counterparts extending a helping hand. (Or should that be a helping hook?) Sven Clement, president of the Luxembourg Pirate Party (one of those helping out the UK's) said in a statement: "Due to pressure from lobbyists, politicians all over Europe are seduced to expand the censorship infrastructure to prevent freedom of expression, the right to information and the free exchange of culture. With our proxy, we help circumventing the Internet censorship of European countries!"

As I say, the Internet is a tricky place to regulate. Do you think the Pirate Bay should've been blocked in the first place? Are we entitled to the "free exchange of culture", or should we have to pay for our movies and music? Let me know what you reckon in the comments, or on Facebook.