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US judges have had enough of porn trolls

by on12 August 2019


Fed up of high-tech shakedowns

Pornography producers and sellers account for the lion's share of copyright-infringement lawsuits in the US and judges are starting to say enough is enough.

US courts are cracking down on porn vendors that file thousands of lawsuits against people for downloading and trading porn films on home computers, using tactics a judge called a "high tech shakedown".

Electronic Frontier Foundation attorney Mitch Stoltz said the porn companies have “a business model that seeks to profit from litigation and threats of litigation rather than profiting from creative works”.

Two companies that make and sell porn are responsible for almost half of the 3,404 copyright lawsuits filed in the US in the first seven months of this year, according to an analysis by Bloomberg, Malibu Media LLC, which distributes such titles as “Stunning Sexy Shower,” has filed some 8,000 lawsuits nationwide since 2012. Strike 3 Holdings LLC, operator of such sites as “Tushy” has filed 3,500 lawsuits in just the past two years.

Apparently, they are more likely to sue wealthy men for their court cases and take no steps to avoid piracy.

But that started to come unstuck when District Judge Royce Lamberth in Washington baulked at Strike 3’s request for an order, saying he “will not accept the risk of misidentification” and that the flood of lawsuits smacks of “extortion”.

Other judges are starting to follow suit. A federal judge in New Jersey on July 9 granted Malibu Media’s request to identify the user, but refused to enter a judgment against the man, citing Lamberth’s “scathing opinion” and concern for the privacy of the individual when only an internet address is known.

Last modified on 12 August 2019
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