These may seem like dark days for faithful of The Pirate Bay. With the site facing either a shutdown at the hands of the IFPI/MPAA or a takeover by the Global Gaming Factory X AB, there's a serious question of whether torrents both legal and illegal will continue to be available for free from the site. For the good of the community, one user has completed an ambitious crawl-and-archive of the site.
The massive archive weighs in at 21.3 GB -- but that's not bad, considering that it includes all 873,671 torrent files hosted on The Pirate Bay's servers (according to the author; TBP claims this number is over 2 million torrents). The archival database is programmed in SQLite3. An example site has been set up that can read from the database -- essentially a backup of The Pirate Bay page.
We urge those who use the torrents found inside to exercise caution. DailyTech has covered the $1.92M USD verdict against Jammie Thomas-Rasset (recently upheld by the U.S. Justice Department) and the $675,000 verdict against Joel Tenenbaum (which will also likely be upheld). And the fate of TBP's own admins is another example in the international sphere -- they face over $3M USD in fines and a year in jail each for their piracy. These extreme examples are in addition to thousands of citizens who agreed to pay thousands in fines to RIAA and MPAA. In other words, tread carefully in these waters -- we warned you.
For better or worse, the new torrent represents a time capsule of sorts, ensuring that even if TBP is burned to the ground, it will live on. And it serves to illustrate just how ineffectual current efforts to stomp out such sites continue to be.