grimm

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grimm last won the day on August 11

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  1. The movie company behind the 2015 drama film Fathers & Daughters doesn't have the right to sue for online copyright infringement, an accused pirate from Oregon argues. In a motion for summary judgment, the defense shows that the filmmakers signed away the relevant distribution rights to a third-party. In recent years, a group of select companies have pressured hundreds of thousands of alleged pirates to pay significant settlement fees, or face legal repercussions. These so-called “copyright trolling” efforts have also been a common occurrence in the United States for more than half a decade, and still are today. While copyright holders should be able to take legitimate piracy claims to court, not all cases are as strong as they first appear. Many defendants have brought up flaws, often in relation to the IP-address evidence, but an accused pirate in Oregon takes things up a notch. Lingfu Zhang, represented by attorney David Madden, has turned the tables on the makers of the film Fathers & Daughters. The man denies having downloaded the movie but also points out that the filmmakers have signed away their online distribution rights. The issue was brought up in previous months, but the relevant findings were only unsealed this week. They show that the movie company (F&D), through a sales agent, sold the online distribution rights to a third party. While this is not uncommon in the movie business, it means that they no longer have the right to distribute the movie online, a right Zhang was accused of violating. This is also what his attorney pointed out to the court, asking for a judgment in favor of his client. “ZHANG denies downloading the movie but Defendant’s current motion for summary judgment challenges a different portion of F&D’s case: Defendant argues that F&D has alienated all of the relevant rights necessary to sue for infringement under the Copyright Act,” Madden writes. The filmmakers opposed the request and pointed out that they still had some rights. However, this is irrelevant according to the defense, since the distribution rights are not owned by them, but by a company that’s not part of the lawsuit. “Plaintiff claims, for example, that it still owns the right to exploit the movie on airlines and oceangoing vessels. That may or may not be true – Plaintiff has not submitted any evidence on the question – but ZHANG is not accused of showing the movie on an airplane or a cruise ship. “He is accused of downloading it over the Internet, which is an infringement that affects only an exclusive right owned by non-party DISTRIBUTOR 2,” Madden adds. Interestingly, an undated addendum to the licensing agreement, allegedly created after the lawsuit was started, states that the filmmakers would keep their “anti-piracy” rights, as can be seen below. Anti-Piracy rights? https://torrentfreak.com/images/zhangfiling.png This doesn’t save the filmmaker, according to the defense. The “licensor” who keeps these anti-piracy and enforcement rights refers to the sales agent, not the filmmaker, Madden writes. In addition, the case is about copyright infringement, and despite the addendum, the filmmakers don’t have the exclusive rights that apply here. “Plaintiff represented to this Court that it was the ‘proprietor of all copyrights and interests need to bring suit’ […] notwithstanding that it had – years earlier – transferred away all its exclusive rights under Section 106 of the Copyright Act,” the defense lawyer concludes. “Even viewing all Plaintiff’s agreements in the light most favorable to it, Plaintiff holds nothing more than a bare right to sue, which is not a cognizable right that may be exercised in the courts of this Circuit.” While the court has yet to decide on the motion, this case could turn into a disaster for the makers of Fathers & Daughters. If the court agrees that they don’t have the proper rights, defendants in other cases may argue the same. It’s easy to see how their entire trolling scheme would then collapse. — The original memorandum in support of the motion for summary judgment is available here (pdf) and a copy of the reply brief can be found here (pdf).
  2. The movie company behind the 2015 drama film Fathers & Daughters doesn't have the right to sue for online copyright infringement, an accused pirate from Oregon argues. In a motion for summary judgment, the defense shows that the filmmakers signed away the relevant distribution rights to a third-party.In recent years, a group of select companies have pressured hundreds of thousands of alleged pirates to pay significant settlement fees, or face legal repercussions.These so-called “copyright trolling” efforts have also been a common occurrence in the United States for more than half a decade, and still are today.While copyright holders should be able to take legitimate piracy claims to court, not all cases are as strong as they first appear. Many defendants have brought up flaws, often in relation to the IP-address evidence, but an accused pirate in Oregon takes things up a notch.Lingfu Zhang, represented by attorney David Madden, has turned the tables on the makers of the film Fathers & Daughters. The man denies having downloaded the movie but also points out that the filmmakers have signed away their online distribution rights.The issue was brought up in previous months, but the relevant findings were only unsealed this week. They show that the movie company (F&D), through a sales agent, sold the online distribution rights to a third party.While this is not uncommon in the movie business, it means that they no longer have the right to distribute the movie online, a right Zhang was accused of violating. This is also what his attorney pointed out to the court, asking for a judgment in favor of his client.“ZHANG denies downloading the movie but Defendant’s current motion for summary judgment challenges a different portion of F&D’s case: Defendant argues that F&D has alienated all of the relevant rights necessary to sue for infringement under the Copyright Act,” Madden writes.The filmmakers opposed the request and pointed out that they still had some rights. However, this is irrelevant according to the defense, since the distribution rights are not owned by them, but by a company that’s not part of the lawsuit.“Plaintiff claims, for example, that it still owns the right to exploit the movie on airlines and oceangoing vessels. That may or may not be true – Plaintiff has not submitted any evidence on the question – but ZHANG is not accused of showing the movie on an airplane or a cruise ship.“He is accused of downloading it over the Internet, which is an infringement that affects only an exclusive right owned by non-party DISTRIBUTOR 2,” Madden adds.Interestingly, an undated addendum to the licensing agreement, allegedly created after the lawsuit was started, states that the filmmakers would keep their “anti-piracy” rights, as can be seen below.Anti-Piracy rights? https://torrentfreak.com/images/zhangfiling.pngThis doesn’t save the filmmaker, according to the defense. The “licensor” who keeps these anti-piracy and enforcement rights refers to the sales agent, not the filmmaker, Madden writes. In addition, the case is about copyright infringement, and despite the addendum, the filmmakers don’t have the exclusive rights that apply here.“Plaintiff represented to this Court that it was the ‘proprietor of all copyrights and interests need to bring suit’ […] notwithstanding that it had – years earlier – transferred away all its exclusive rights under Section 106 of the Copyright Act,” the defense lawyer concludes.“Even viewing all Plaintiff’s agreements in the light most favorable to it, Plaintiff holds nothing more than a bare right to sue, which is not a cognizable right that may be exercised in the courts of this Circuit.”While the court has yet to decide on the motion, this case could turn into a disaster for the makers of Fathers & Daughters.If the court agrees that they don’t have the proper rights, defendants in other cases may argue the same. It’s easy to see how their entire trolling scheme would then collapse.—The original memorandum in support of the motion for summary judgment is available here (pdf) and a copy of the reply brief can be found here (pdf).
  3. Film distribution Dutch FilmWorks has been successful following its application earlier this year to track BitTorrent pirates and store their data. In a decision handed down Wednesday, the Dutch Data Protection Authority said that permission had been granted for IP address and other information to be stored for up to five years. For many years, Dutch Internet users were allowed to download copyrighted content without reprisals, provided it was for their own personal use. In 2014, however, the European Court of Justice ruled that the country’s “piracy levy” to compensate rightsholders was unlawful. Almost immediately, the government announced a downloading ban. In March 2016, anti-piracy outfit BREIN followed up by obtaining permission from the Dutch Data Protection Authority to track and store the personal data of alleged BitTorrent pirates. This year, movie distributor Dutch FilmWorks (DFW) made a similar application. The company said that it would be pursuing alleged pirates to deter future infringement but many suspected that securing cash settlements was its main aim. That was confirmed in August. “[The letter to alleged pirates] will propose a fee. If someone does not agree [to pay], the organization can start a lawsuit,” said DFW CEO Willem Pruijsserts “In Germany, this costs between €800 and €1,000, although we find this a bit excessive. But of course it has to be a deterrent, so it will be more than a tenner or two,” he added. But despite the grand plans, nothing would be possible without first obtaining the necessary permission from the Data Protection Authority. This Wednesday, however, that arrived. “DFW has given sufficient guarantees for the proper and careful processing of personal data. This means that DFW has been given a green light from the Data Protection Authority to collect personal data, such as IP addresses, from people downloading from illegal sources,” the Authority announced. Noting that it received feedback from four entities during the six-week consultation process following the publication of its draft decision during the summer, the Data Protection Authority said that further investigations were duly carried out. All input was considered before handing down the final decision. The Authority said it was satisfied that personal data would be handled correctly and that the information collected and stored would be encrypted and hashed to ensure integrity. Furthermore, data will not be retained for longer than is necessary. “DFW has stated…that data from users with Dutch IP addresses who were involved in the exchange of a title owned by DFW, but in respect of which there is no intention to follow up on that within three months after receipt, will be destroyed,” the decision reads. For any cases that are active and haven’t been discarded in the initial three-month period, DFW will be allowed to hold alleged pirates’ data for a maximum of five years, a period that matches the time a company has to file a claim under the Dutch Civil Code. “When DFW does follow up on a file, DFW carries out further research into the identity of the users of the IP addresses. For this, it is necessary to contact the Internet service providers of the subscribers who used the IP addresses found in the BitTorrent network,” the Authority notes. According to the decision, once DFW has a person’s details it can take any of several actions, starting with a simple warning or moving up to an amicable cash settlement. Failing that, it might choose to file a full-on court case in which the distributor seeks an injunction against the alleged pirate plus compensation and costs. Only time will tell what strategy DFW will deploy against alleged pirates but since these schemes aren’t cheap to run, it’s likely that simple warning letters will be seriously outnumbered by demands for cash settlement. While it seems unlikely that the Data Protection Authority will change its mind at this late stage, it’s decision remains open to appeal. Interested parties have just under six weeks to make their voices heard. Failing that, copyright trolling will hit the Netherlands in the weeks and months to come. The full decision can be found here (Dutch, pdf) via Tweakers
  4. @Inviter hello great giveaway as always i would like to apply again and thank for you hard work.
  5. French anti-piracy agency Hadopi has just released its latest results revealing that since its inception, nine million piracy warnings have been sent to citizens. Since the launch of the graduated response regime in 2010, more than 2,000 cases have been referred to prosecutors, resulting in 189 criminal convictions. But with new forms of piracy under the spotlight, there's still plenty to be done. More than seven years ago, it was predicted that the next big thing in anti-piracy enforcement would be the graduated response scheme. Commonly known as “three strikes” or variants thereof, these schemes were promoted as educational in nature, with alleged pirates receiving escalating warnings designed to discourage further infringing behavior. In the fall of 2010, France became one of the pioneers of the warning system and now almost more than seven years later, a new report from the country’s ‘Hadopi’ anti-piracy agency has revealed the extent of its operations. Between July 2016 and June 2017, Hadopi sent a total of 889 cases to court, a 30% uplift on the 684 cases handed over during the same period 2015/2016. This boost is notable, not least since the use of peer-to-peer protocols (such as BitTorrent, which Hadopi closely monitors) is declining in favor of streaming methods. When all the seven years of the scheme are added together ending August 31, 2017, the numbers are even more significant. “Since the launch of the graduated response scheme, more than 2,000 cases have been sent to prosecutors for possible prosecution,” Hadopi’s report reads. “The number of cases sent to the prosecutor’s office has increased every year, with a significant increase in the last two years. Three-quarters of all the cases sent to prosecutors have been sent since July 2015.” In all, the Hadopi agency has sent more than nine million first warning notices to alleged pirates since 2012, with more than 800,000 follow-up warnings on top, 200,000 of them during 2016-2017. But perhaps of most interest is the number of French citizens who, despite all the warnings, carried on with their pirating behavior and ended up prosecuted as a result. Since the program’s inception, 583 court decisions have been handed down against pirates. While 394 of them resulted in a small fine, a caution, or other community-based punishment, 189 citizens walked away with a criminal conviction. These can include fines of up to 1,500 euros or in more extreme cases, up to three years in prison and/or a 300,000 euro fine. While this approach looks set to continue into 2018, Hadopi’s report highlights the need to adapt to a changing piracy landscape, one which requires a multi-faceted approach. In addition to tracking pirates, Hadopi also has a mission to promote legal offerings while educating the public. However, it is fully aware that these strategies alone won’t be enough. To that end, the agency is calling for broader action, such as faster blocking of sites, expanding to the blocking of mirror sites, tackling unauthorized streaming platforms and, of course, dealing with the “fully-loaded” set-top box phenomenon that’s been sweeping the world for the past two years. The full report can be downloaded here (pdf, French)