Pirates don't just plunder. In Sweden, it seems, they also believe in sharing.
As the world's largest repository of BitTorrent files, ThePirateBay.org helps millions of users around the world share copyrighted movies, music and other files--without paying for them.
That's illegal, of course--at least it is in the U.S. But when Time Warner's (nyse: TWX - news - people ) Warner Bros. studio accused them of breaking U.S. copyright law in 2005, the pirates gleefully reminded the movie company that they didn't live in America, but rather in "the land of vikings, reindeer, Aurora Borealis and cute blond girls."
Based in Stockholm, The Pirate Bay serves as a massive worldwide hub for copyright infringement but is shielded by its home country's lax copyright laws. The site lives in a comfortable legal loophole, one of many available to Web sites that offer users copyrighted content. Some exploit vagaries in U.S. law, while others depend on their international immunity.