WOW hits back in repeat infringement case led by film producer

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By Chris Cooke | Posted on Monday, September 27, 2021

US internet service provider WOW has filed a motion to dismiss a copyright lawsuit that was recently launched against it by a consortium of independent film producers.

Film companies – many of which are linked to Millennium Media – have recently followed the lead of the music industry in trying to hold US ISPs accountable for their users’ copyright infringement.

This is based on the argument that internet companies have not done enough to deal with repeat violators among their respective user bases. Internet companies must have and apply repeated infringement policies in order to benefit from the safe haven protection available under US copyright law, which enables them to avoid liability for any infringement that occurs on their websites. networks or servers.

After BMG and then the majors succeeded in holding Cox Communcations accountable for the infringement of its clients, a number of lawsuits against other ISPs followed, initially filed by the majors, and more recently by Millennium Media and his fellow filmmakers. .

The film companies’ lawsuit against WOW followed the format of the previous label’s litigation, although it also included evidence from a BitTorrent service that it said proved ISP customers had infringed copyrights. complainants. He also called on WOW to set up a three-strike system to deal with violators and block certain websites, as well as to pay damages to film producers.

In response, WOW makes many of the same arguments made by other ISPs targeted by such lawsuits. However, he’s also making big allegations against the anti-piracy agency that the film producers work with, called Maverickeye, while bolstering his own anti-piracy credentials.

Basically, the ISP is calling the plaintiffs and Maverickeye “copyright trolls”, accusing them of sending a stack of harsh legal letters to suspected file sharers in an attempt to secure prompt payment from recipients rather than to actually pursue any infringement case through the courts.

According to Torrentfreak, WOW says, “The Plaintiffs and Maverickeye are part of a well-known network of copyright trolls. Until now, the plaintiffs’ modus operandi has been to sue John Doe in the hope of securing swift settlements and dismissing them at the slightest resistance ”.

“In addition,” he adds, “the courts and litigants in these cases have convincingly accused Mavericeye of serious wrongdoing, such as the submission of fraudulent” expert “statements by fictitious persons, the violation state law by engaging in unlicensed surveillance, and even conspiring with copyright owners to offer copyrighted content on BitTorrent, and then prosecute anyone who tries to download it ” .

As for its own track record in combating piracy among its user base, the ISP continues: “WOW has a robust program where it notifies account holders of alleged breaches, suspends their access to Internet if the allegations continue, then permanently terminates the account upon receipt. additional complaints ”.

We are now awaiting a response from Millennium, Maverickeye et al.