Strike 3 Holdings filed 17 new copyright infringement lawsuits in Michigan on November 20th and 23rd. Each lawsuit is nearly identical and alleges unnamed internet subscribers, known as John Does, have illegally downloaded Strike 3 Holdings’ copyrighted films through BitTorrent networks. Once the lawsuit is filed, Strike 3 Holdings will ask to subpoena the internet service provider (ISP) in order to get the name of the account holder connected to the IP address. Internet subscribers usually first find out about the lawsuit when they receive a notice of the subpoena from their ISP stating they need to file a Motion to Quash in order to stop the release of their information.
Although downloading through BitTorrent may feel commonplace, the lawsuits against alleged downloaders are serious and represent potentially thousands of dollars in damages per infringement. When multiple infringements are alleged, damages granted by the court can easily escalate into 10’s or 100’s of thousands of dollars. This makes an early and effective defense against these suits all the more important. For more information on what these lawsuits mean for internet subscribers, please check out our FAQ section.