Operating since 2003, UKNova, a torrent indexing site for British TV and Radio has been threatened with legal action from the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) and is closing down its doors to the public.
The site had many adoring fans, including overseas servicemen, ex-pats and the general populace due to it being a source of home media that veered more to the legal side of things, as the site did not carry any material that was available for sale. Still, regardless of its legal-leaning, the hawks at FACT swooped in and laid down a legal threat.
The site was self-proclaimed as a free catch-up TV and radio service, and had asked users not to add material that was available from retail. Of course, as the site was a torrent index, it did not carry any of the content on its servers, yet it did provide the means for its members to download and upload material amongst each other.
Site organiser, Roger Evans, has said that the site had been contacted by FACT and ordered to take down every torrent on the site, as well as material belonging to its members. "In nine years of operation we had never received a complaint from any TV channel. We do not believe FACT would have been able to bring a successful prosecution against us – but at this stage we have no money or resources to defend our case in court," Evans said.
He also said that the site does not have any ads, charges zero fees, and is run on a shoestring budget from voluntary contributions of time and money from members. All that remains of the site is just the chatroom and the discussion forums for current members, and it is not accepting any new members.
After nearly running for a decade, the takedown of the site has been a surprise to many, but after the demise of SurfTheChannel.com, it looks like not every site is safe from the wrath of FACT and the entertainment industry. Who's next then? [BBC via The Register]
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