Bow-chicka-uh-oh: Man told to pay $1.5m for sharing ten porn movies

Movie studios, music labels and other copyright holders have, in recent years, been stepping up their efforts to dissuade illegal sharing of their content by targeting file sharers with legal action. There have been many high-profile cases; earlier this year, for example, we reported that over 2,500 people had been targeted by the producers of Hollywood blockbuster movie The Hurt Locker, with the studio claiming that the defendants had illegally shared the film online, and aiming to settle with them for around $3,000 each.

That’s chump-change compared with the amount that Kywan Fisher has been ordered to pay by a federal court in Illinois. In the largest ever damages award of its kind, Fisher has been told that he must pay £1.5m to Flava Works, Inc., an adult entertainment studio, after he was found to have shared ten of their movies via BitTorrent. At $150,000 per film, the amount represents the largest possible statutory damage award under US copyright law.

As TorrentFreak reports, Fisher was sued, along with several other defendants, by Flava Works in 2011. It was alleged that he had shared the file via BitTorrent, and through a traceable code embedded in the video files, Flava Works was able to prove that he was the source of “at least 3,449” downloads of the movies.

A factor in the enormity of the damages awarded was the fact that Fisher offered no defence. The case differs from many ‘copyright troll’ cases, which rely on accusations based solely upon connecting a defendant with an IP address, and it appears that the weight of evidence against Fisher was simply irrefutable.


Source: TorrentFreak | Image adapted from original artwork by .net magazine

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