The secret is journalism.
If the Pirate Bay wrote a quick op-ed piece about every torrent they linked to, then they would be journalists and thus, protected. Next thing you know, they will be named thepiratebaytimes.org.
I know this sounds like the start of a bad joke, but this seems to be a fairly simple principle. When the USSR made it nearly impossible to get normal goods that the public wanted, an underground sprang up to fill the need. This is simple supply and demand economics. To generalize, making things overly expensive and tied to one internet connected device is only going to encourage a larger underground market.
People, on the whole, want to do the right thing, but you should not deprive them of their right to do whatever they want with things they have legally bought, or they will circumvent it. Humans adapt, learn, and defeat stupid things like copy protection and vendor-lock in all the time. If they really want to decrease piracy, then they should stop price gouging, stop overly restrictive DRM, allow better "try before you buy" methods, and truly embrace college communities via viral marketing techniques rather than call them criminals.
But hey, you already knew this. At this point, we're just beating a dead horse with this argument.
That's fine. If a tornado ripped through their datacenter, I could see that being Force Majeure. Failure to have a backup generator (or other power protection mechanism) is not force majeure and you would be hard pressed to find a judge that would say otherwise. Failure to have power for any reason is considered a predictable event that any datacenter operator should be able to deal with for 24 hours.
No, I don't know for fact that they don't have adequate power backup. I do know for fact that they didn't loose their roof. I also know, as I live in the general area, that other than a few trees down here and there, power was the only problem.
I certainly didn't see anything about trees falling on datacenters in the storm reports I've read through. I have, however, read about many many people being out of power because of the winds.
The inability for AT&T's datacenter in Michigan to have power backups that can last more than a day should hardly be considered a natural disaster.
I'd love to see something happen in terms of getting money back, but somehow I doubt most subscribers care enough to push for it.
Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten