Feeds

Gay porn burglar must pay $150k for each grumble flick

Golfing vids featuring short game action off the fairway

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

A gay smut production company has won a $1.5m award against a bloke who shared ten of its movies via the Bittorrent protocol.

It's a very rare example of an ordinary individual being whacked with full US statutory damages for copyright infringement - $150,000 per infringement. That's because the defendant Kywan Fisher failed to show up in court, leaving the judge no option but to impose the default judgment.

Porn studio Flava Works Inc said Fisher's ten videos were downloaded 3,449 times. It was pursuing 15 infringers but the cases against the others were dropped for lack of evidence. In fact, Fisher was only nicked because he was a subscriber to Flava's websites including Flavamen.com, CocoBoyz.com and Thugboy.com. This allowed him to be identified by a unique digital code Flava had embedded in the files. The licence agreement, obviously, didn't extend to sharing the works or as US law puts it, "placing them in the stream of commerce".

Flava's case against Fisher can be found here.

The United States' statutory damages for copyright infringement were introduced as a deterrence; in the digital era only two internet users have been on the sharp end. But that's because both Jammie Thomas and Joel Tenenbaum were gagging for a fight and decided to challenge the copyright system in court - after getting wobbly legal advice.

Wisely, the recording industry decided that punitive damages against punters were counter-productive. The campaign against file sharers made justice look arbitrary, the RIAA lost money on the legal actions, and it made it look like a bully.

The US industry's current strategy is a voluntary "graduated response" scheme giving the infringer at least six warnings - but there are no strikes. No fines can be levied, the user will not be disconnected - but will be able to appeal to a process administered by the American Arbitration Association (AAA). The biggest ISPs including AT&T, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Verizon have agreed to take part. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.