Belfast Telegraph

PayPal account of torrent software developer Andrew Sampson frozen

PayPal has frozen the account of a developer who worked on a search engine that could find pirated content, in response to a complaint.

Developer Andrew Sampson has apparently lost access to all of the money saved in his account following a claim by the Motion Picture Association of American, reports TorrentFreak.

Sampson received an email from PayPal telling him that his account had been “permanently limited”. The company can now hold his funds for up to 180 days, and may take money as damages, and Sampson must remove all mention of the account from his website.

PayPal has been trying to restrict the business it does with sites that are involved in copyright infringement, reports TorrentFreak, and so many involved in the work have stopped using the site. PayPal works to take down such accounts, usually acting in response to complaints from copyright holders.

Sampson had added his account to his website as a way of allowing people to donate to his work, since he makes no money through advertising. He removed it soon after, but money was still left in the account when it was seized about a month after, TorrentFreak said.

Most of the money in the account when it was seized had come from users of the other open source projects that Sampson runs, he said. He had about $2,500 in the account, only about $200 of which came from the Strike torrent search engine, he said.

“That money was earned through legitimate freelance work and was going to be used specifically for my rent/car payment so it kind of sucks,” he told TorrentFreak.

The site shut down the account of Russian anti-Kremlin activists last week. Then, it explained that its Russian subsidiary was not able to host accounts for political parties or causes in the country, because it required complex procedures to validate people’s identity.

Source: Independent

Independent News Service