3 Count: Piracy Decline

Some good news for a change...

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1: Musician Sues Over Transfer of Copyrighted Songs, Lack of Royalties

First off today, Kirsten Errick at Law Street reports that musician Orland Valle has filed a lawsuit against Sony Music and publisher Los Magnifikos alleging that his administrative rights in his music was transferred to Sony without his permission and that they have failed to pay royalties for his collaboration with the defendants.

The lawsuit, filed in Puerto Rico, alleges that Valle entered a publishing contract with Los Magnifikos Publishing in May 2010. However, before the contract ended, Los Magnikos assigned the rights to Sony even though the contract required his permission before doing any such designations. The lawsuit goes on to claim that, despite a requirement for accounting and royalties, he has not been paid anything since 2017.

Valle is accusing the defendants of violating the United States Copyright Act, the Declaratory judgment act and breach of contract.

2: Adult Film Company Shifts Copyright Litigation Push to Florida

Next up today, Matthew Bultman at Bloomberg Law reports that the number of copyright infringement cases in the United States has dropped drastically, but that can be owed largely to two defendants, Strike 3 Holdings and Malibu Media, filing almost no federal copyright infringement cases.

The two companies would take a remarkably similar legal approach. Since both are adult content providers that have been battling piracy, both would file lawsuits in federal courts seeking the identities of individuals behind IP addresses. However, a judge recently denied such a petition by Strike 3, likening the process to extortion, and both have mostly halted their litigation in federal courts as a result while appeals are sorted out.

However, that doesn’t mean the companies have stopped. They’ve instead started filing their cases in a Florida state court in Miami. There, they can file a “bill of discovery” to try and compel ISPs to hand over the identities of suspected infringers. The only federal cases have dealt with potential defendants that objected to being sued in a Florida court.

3: Global Pirate Site Traffic Drops to New Low After COVID-19 Peak

Finally today, Ernesto Van der Sar at Torrentfreak writes that, despite reaching new highs during the early stages of the Coronavirus pandemic, piracy traffic seems to have slowed and is falling to levels lower than before the pandemic started.

This comes from a report by the traffic-monitoring company Muso, which shows that the visits to piracy websites began to drop starting in early May and has continued to decline through the month. This has been especially pronounced with film piracy sites, which saw a marked increase in traffic due to the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns but has since been cut in nearly half from its peak in early April.

Music piracy, however, has been on a steady decline since before the pandemic, currently down 25% from the start of the year. Overall, visits to piracy sites are down by about 25% since the early-April peak.

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