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US Porn Company Wins Default Judgment Against File Sharer In Canada; Guy Told To Pay $64k

from the suing-fans-is-not-a-business-model dept

Suing fans is not a business model. And yet, so many companies still do it. We've written a few times about porn producer Corbin Fisher/Liberty Media, who has become a very aggressive supporter of mass lawsuits against fans who it accuses of sharing its works. This is a dumb business strategy. The company, obviously, thinks it will reduce infringement, but I can't fathom how it thinks this will get anyone to ever want to purchase from the company again. Perhaps it thinks it can stay in business through legal fees collected. For example, it sued some guy in Canada for sharing two of its movies, and since he didn't come to the US (though he had sent a letter) to defend himself, the court granted a default ruling in favor of the company, though (thankfully) it disagreed with the company's ridiculous assertion that merely using BitTorrent proves willful infringement. There are some who believe that a default judgment (when the defendant doesn't show up), means that the plaintiff always wins. It doesn't need to work that way, and we have seen courts actually rule against plaintiffs even under such circumstances though it's incredibly rare. Still, the end result is that the court has ordered the guy to pay nearly $64,000.

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  1. identicon
    That Anonymous Coward, 16 Jun 2011 @ 5:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Umm..

    "Um, link? A judgment =/= payment."

    Not in the traditional sense, but this becomes another one of the weapons being used in these mass shakedown cases.

    Even Steele pointed to the $250,000 judgement LMH managed to get in one of their cases. Now on the surface, that adds a level of terror to people guilty or innocent of the allegations. The offer of a couple thousand to avoid public embarrassment and awards reaching well beyond the means of most people sounds so much better.

    However when you look into this $250,000 "award", it was a negotiated settlement. The terms of the settlement read as long as the poor SOB they scared into admitting his guilt (by matching the records of his logins on CF and the times up uploads on a torrent site.) makes his regular payments the $250,000 amount is reduced. As long as he behaves and never ever violates anyones copyright every again the amount keeps going down. Given the claims of playing music for cows violates copyright, I think hes screwed. The Win was psychological, and the coverage of that win, but not the terms, scared more people into accepting "settlements" with just as draconian terms, including if you ever violate anyones copyright ever again your on the hook for the remainder of the $25,000 the settlement is for.

    So this is a wonderful PR device and not much more. They will get a few more people to sign up for future shakedowns by LMH et al.

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