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Did you download a movie from I.T. Productions on a torrent website?

Posted by Steve Vondran | Nov 26, 2016 | 0 Comments

Defense Attorney for Illegal Movie Download cases

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Introduction

Our intellectual property (“IP”) law firm can help you with legal issues dealing with online infringement of book, movie, music, software and other copyrighted digital content such as photos, lyrics, comics, art, illustrations, architecture and other creative works of authorship. This blog discusses Video Downloads from I.T. Productions.

Who is Voltage Pictures?

According to Wikipedia:

“Voltage Pictures is an American film financing, production and distribution company founded by producer Nicolas Chartier. The company's first financed and produced film was The Hurt Locker, which was nominated for nine Academy Awards and won six. On January 6, 2011, it was announced that Voltage's president Charter partnered with longtime Hollywood Gang Productions executive Craig Flores to form Voltage Productions to produce large pictures set at studios, and films in the $15 million-$40 million budget range .”

Is file sharing legal?

It depends on what you are sharing  If the digital content is in the “public domain” this could be legal.  Other copyrighted content registered with the U.S. Copyright Office may be subject to the United States copyright law, and if you are infringing on one of the “exclusive rights” of a copyright holder (ex. right to make copies, reproduce, publicly perform, distribute, etc.), this could lead to being sued in federal court and receiving a subpoena.

What are the exclusive rights of a federal copyright holder?

Under the U.S. Federal Copyright Laws:

Copyright protection “subsists in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression.” 17 U.S.C. § 102(a). This protection has never accorded the copyright owner complete control over all possible uses of his work.  Rather, the Copyright Act grants the “ copyright holder “ exclusive” rights to use and to authorize the use of his work in five qualified ways, including reproduction of the copyrighted work in copies. All reproductions of the work, however, are not within the exclusive domain of the copyright owner; some are in the public domain. Any individual may reproduce a copyrighted work for a “fair use;” the copyright owner does not possess the exclusive right to such a use. § 106 with id., § 107.  Anyone who violates any of the exclusive rights of the copyright owner,” that is, anyone who trespasses into his exclusive domain by using or authorizing the use of the copyrighted work in one of the five ways set forth in the statute, “is an infringer of the copyright.” Id., § 501(a). Conversely, anyone who is authorized by the copyright owner to use the copyrighted work in a way specified in the statute or who makes a fair use of the work is not an infringer of the copyright with respect to such use.” See Sony Corp. of Am. v. Universal City Studios, Inc., 464 U.S. 417, 432–33, 104 S. Ct. 774, 784, 78 L. Ed. 2d 574 (1984)

Sample allegations you might see in the federal copyright lawsuit

“Plaintiff I.T. is a limited liability company with principal offices in Los Angeles, California. 5. I.T. is an affiliate of Voltage Pictures, a production company with a notable catalog of major motion pictures.   (www.voltagepictures.com).

“I.T. is a dramatic major motion picture released in 2016. 7. I.T. has been registered with the United States Copyright Office by the owner, I.T., Registration No. PAu 3-801-126 (2016), copy attached as Exhibit 1. 8. Under The Copyright Act, I.T. is the proprietor of copyrights and interests needed to bring suit. 9. The motion picture contains original material that is copyrightable subject matter under the laws of the United States”

“Prior to filing suit the defendant was sent multiple notices by Plaintiff pursuant to 17 U.S.C. 512(a) (“DMCA notices”) in an attempt to have the defendant voluntarily terminate the infringing activity, yet despite multiple notices infringing activity and the distribution of Plaintiff's motion picture by the defendant continued and continues as of the filing of this action”

“Defendant's IP address was at that time of observed infringement managed by Internet Service Provider (“ISP”) Comcast, who on information and belief, generally assigns an IP address to a single party for extended periods of time, often for months and provides Wi-Fi systems with notable pre-installed security and passwords.”

These are some of the sample allegations you might find asserted in the lawsuit.  If there is “willful copyright infringement“, you may see a claim for attorney fees and up to $150,000 in statutory damages PER INFRINGED TITLE.

What is the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Protection Act?

According to Wikipedia:

The Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act (OCILLA) is United States federal law that creates a conditional safe harbor for online service providers (OSP) (a group which includes internet service providers (ISP)) and other Internet intermediaries by shielding them for their own acts of direct copyright infringement (when they make unauthorized copies) as well as shielding them from potential secondary liability for the infringing acts of others. OCILLA was passed as a part of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and is sometimes referred to as the “Safe Harbor” provision or as “DMCA 512” because it added Section 512 to Title 17 of the United States Code. By exempting Internet intermediaries from copyright infringement liability provided they follow certain rules, OCILLA attempts to strike a balance between the competing interests of copyright owners and digital users.

So, under this law, your ISP cannot be held liable for the infringing acts of its customers who may be engaged in illegal P2P (peer-to-peer) online file sharing of eBooks, comics, computer games, software programs (such as Apple Final Cut, Autocad Revit, or Microsoft Office Pro).  This is the reason you will normally NOT see your ISP such as Verizon, Charter, Cox, Comcast, AT&T or Century Link, for example, named in the lawsuit for direct or contributory copyright infringement.

Contact a File Sharing Defense Law Firm

Our firm has helped many companies and individuals from across the United States handle software and copyright infringement claims, and claims of internet piracy.  Call us for a no cost initial evaluation for companies and individuals who have received a cease and desist letter, notice of copyright infringement or subpoena notice for your ISP.  We can help negotiate settlements of your case, or litigate the case if you have a potential defense to copyright infringement.  Call (877) 276-5084.  Click here to visit our Copyright Bully resource center.

About the Author

Steve Vondran

Welcome to the SHORT BIO page for Attorney Steve®  (Yes, I was able to get a trademark for Attorney Steve®) Click here to go to a more COMPLETE BIO. AZ Bar Lic. #025911 CA. Bar Lic. #232337 Introduction I have done a lot of things in my 15 years of law practice and in my life in general.  ...

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