MPAA & Internet Industry Heavyweights Join In On Gay Porn Studio’s Federal Copyright Infringement Court Case

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has submitted a court document (amicus brief), known as a friend-of-the-court brief, supporting the Preliminary Injunction issued by United States District Judge John F. Grady in the Copyright Infringement case of Flava Works vs. MyVidster (Case Number: 1:10-cv-06517).

The Preliminary Injunction is currently on appeal by MyVidster.com with the United States Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Meanwhile, Google and Facebook jointly submitted their own amicus brief, advocating that the United States Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals overturn an injunction of the video-sharing site.

Phillip Bleicher“This is a simple case of Marques Gunter using his website MyVidster.com as a vehicle to commit and contribute to massive amounts of theft. He is running a media distribution platform based on stolen content that directly competes with guys like us.” – Phillip Bleicher CEO of Flava Works

In the fall of 2010, Flava Works announced the filing of a copyright and trademark infringement lawsuit against Marques Gunter, owner of Myvidster.com, a porn file sharing and social video bookmarking site. Shortly after filing the suit, Flava Works filed a motion for Preliminary Injunction while the case was being heard in court.

Flava Works is also suing the web host Voxel.net and LeaseWeb.com for failing to remove MyVidster.com from its servers despite dozens of DMCA notices alerting Voxel.net and LeaseWeb.com that Gunter was a repeat infringer. Under DMCA, safe harbor no longer applies to sites that fail to remove repeat infringers.

FlavaWorks is being represented by the Law offices of Meanith Huon while MyVidster.com are being represented by Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg.

This filing makes the MPAA the third notable heavyweight to take a position in this case. These Internet companies dispute Flava Works’ and the lower court’s assertion that a website’s servers need not actually store a copy of a work in order to “display” it, as the term applies to copyright infringement, because such a rule directly contradicts the Ninth Circuit’s 2007 ruling in Perfect 10 v. Amazon.com, Inc., in which it was held that strict liability could only be assigned to the host of the unauthorized content and not to one who merely provides a link to that content.

“The key issue in this case is whether the creation and hosting of links can, as a matter of law, be direct copyright infringement. We are hopeful that the Seventh Circuit’s input on this case will clarify what could potentially have wide-reaching impact for search engines, social media sites and other websites that link to material hosted elsewhere; not to mention the millions of individual Internet users who create links to content on the Internet every day.” Kevin C. May, one of two intellectual property partners working on the case at Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP (Chicago), who represents myVidster.com on a pro bono basis.

“While this case involves two relatively smaller entities, the ruling has significant impact and wide-reaching consequences. A Seventh Circuit decision that simply creating a link can be an act of direct copyright infringement would place a huge burden on sites like Google and Facebook to effectively manage the millions of links channeled through their sites daily and introduce a massive level of uncertainty to the core business models underpinning those companies.” William J. Lenz, Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP (Chicago)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *