MPAA wins copyright lawsuit against file-hosting website

August 29, 2013 12:57 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Two years ago, the Motion Picture Association of America filed a lawsuit on behalf of its member studios that was considered "path-breaking and controversial," according to the Hollywood Reporter. The MPAA sought to make a move against "cyberlockers" by accusing the website Hotfile of copyright infringement.

Cyberlockers are file-hosting websites that have become popular methods for sharing copyrighted movies. Among these websites, Hotfile is one of the most widely used.

"Everyday Hotfile is responsible for the theft of thousands of MPAA member companies' movies and TV shows—including movies still playing in theaters—many of which are stolen repeatedly, thousands of times a day, every single day," Daniel Mandil, general counsel for the MPAA, said in a statement when the lawsuit was first filed.

Recently, a federal judge in Florida agreed. Though Hotfile argued that it was not responsible for what its users did with the file storage space they had on the website, U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams ruled that the site had liability.

"This decision sends a clear signal that businesses like Hotfile that are built on a foundation of stolen works will be held accountable for the damage they do both to the hardworking people in the creative industries and to a secure, legitimate internet," said former Senator Chris Dodd, chairman and CEO of the MPAA.

In an era of easy Internet access, it can be difficult for the motion picture industry to control its intellectual property and defend itself against piracy. That's why a Phoenix business attorney has experience in issues of business and entertainment law.

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