I missed this story last week: an Italian judge has ruled that Italian ISPs block its subscribers’ access to Pirate Bay. Though there are always ways to get round blocked IP addresses it nonetheless makes it much more difficult and awkward to reach blocked P2P sites. Practically speaking it only requires one ruling, and thereafter anti-piracy teams can track new alternative IP addresses and pass those onto the ISPs to block. It’s actually a pretty low resource activity. Sure you need a few people committed to it, but its workable and less resource intensive than pursuing individuals.

However there are a couple of twists to the story. Firstly Pirate Bay report a modest rise in hits from Italy since the ruling (i.e. the publicity has worked in their favour – but I have some doubts over their numbers) and secondly, the site that Italian users trying to access the site get appears to be owned by the IFPI. i.e. implying that IP addresses are getting collected and logged.