The complexities created by the differences in national copyright law and the inconsistencies in legal interpretations appear to have led to the Pirate Bay owners being fined for not blocking something that doesn’t legally need to be blocked.

In the Amsterdam case July 16, the defendants argued that they no longer owned the site, claiming to have sold it to a Seychelles-registered company called Reservella Ltd.

But they couldn’t provide sufficient proof of the sale to convince the court it actually took place. It ruled that The Pirate Bay’s co-founders’ failure to block the site made them responsible for facilitating the illegal sharing of copyrighted material.

At The Hague on July 19, where Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN was trying to force the ISPS to block The Pirate Bay site, the court ruled there was no evidence that the majority of the customers were using it to infringe copyright.

It said if BREIN wants to stop the actions of individual customers, it has to go after them separately because there was no justification for blocking the entire site.