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First off today, Stephen Carlisle at Hypebot reports that the Ninth Circuit has overturned a lower court on the issue of attorney’s fees in a BitTorrent piracy case, setting the stage for similar rulings in the circuit.
The case is Glacier Films (USA) Inc. v. Turchin. In the case, Glacier Films accused Turchin of pirating the film American Heist. Turchin openly admitted to having done it and the two sides reached a settlement of $750 plus attorneys fees as set by the court. The court, however, awarded none. According to the district court, Glacier Films was a copyright troll that had filed hundreds of similar lawsuits and they were attempting to get Turchin to pay for the estimated 100,000 other users who had downloaded the film.
The Ninth Circuit overturned that saying that plaintiffs are required to file their cases individually and that attorney’s fees are not about punishing plaintiffs, but about ensuring that lawyers are able to get paid for their work. It would be impractical for plaintiffs to pay thousands of dollars in attorneys fees to collect small judgments, making it appropriate for the court to award such fees in this case.
Next up today, Devin Coldewey at TechCrunch reports that the popular retro gaming website EumParadise is removing all ROM downloads, ending a run of 18 years.
ROMs are downloadable copies of games that are typically meant to be played on emulators. But while there’s nothing illegal about emulation itself, ROM downloads do infringe the copyright of the original video game. However, they’ve often been semi-tolerated since many of the games offered are not available for legal purchase anywhere and would be expensive or even impossible to obtain otherwise.
However, with modern systems offering access to classic games, copyright holders have been stepping up their campaign against ROMs. This has included two recent lawsuits by Nintendo against other ROM sites, both of which have shuttered.
Finally today, Chris Tribbey at Media and Entertainment Daily reports that a new report from Irdeto shows that, even though peer-to-peer (P2P) piracy has fallen off in some parts of the world, it remains a strong force globally and is dominate among “committed pirates.”
The report shows that, globally, P2P piracy accounts for 70% of global pirate activity. According to the report, half of all “casual pirates” turn to P2P sites while 8 out of 10 “committed pirates” do so.
The report also says that P2P remains king in countries where piracy is the highest. In those countries P2P is continuing to grow, meaning that it still represents “a big threat to the industry”.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.