hotfile Movie industry goes after file hosting service Hotfile

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has filed for a summary judgement against file-hosting service Hotfile, claiming that it is infringing the copyright of its films.

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has filed for a summary judgement against file-hosting service Hotfile, claiming that it is infringing the copyright of its films.

 
The group, which consists of big name studios like Disney, 20th Century Fox, Universal Studios, Columbia Pictures and Warner Bros, claims that over 90 percent of the files downloaded from Hotfile are infringing of copyright laws and that nearly every Hotfile user is liable.
 
The request, if granted, could give the courts the right to force Hotfile offline without involving a lengthy trial procedure, a tactic that many hosting websites might feel is designed to prevent them from telling their side of the story and providing evidence of their innocence.
 
The case follows the shutdown of MegaUpload and the arrest of its founders in January, with attempts by the US to extradite key employees to the US. That situation caused many rival hosting sites to shut up shop and the MPAA is likely hoping that Hotfile will do the same.
 
hotfile Movie industry goes after file hosting service Hotfile
 
The problem for Hotfile is that the MPAA's argument rests on the allegation that Hotfile employs a similar business model as MegaUpload, paying users for how many times their files are downloaded, which it claims gives an incentive for digital piracy. 
 
Hotfile said that it removes copyright-infringing files as soon as it is requested to do so, as outlined in the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. This has been the argument of many file hosts, citing the impossibility of monitoring the upload of every single file for infringing content. It does, however, force studios to hunt down infringing files, which adds to the costs incurred in protecting intellectual property.
 
The MPAA claims that Hotfile does not qualify for immunity under the Digital Millenium Copyright Act as it has failed to go after repeat offenders, some of whom have received as many as 300 notices. However, Hotfile has since announced updates to its system that include more aggressive procedures for identifying and tackling repeat offenders.
 
Source: BBC