Strike 3 Holdings and Malibu Media don’t seem to be taking any time off for the holidays. They have continued to sweep New York with 75 more file sharing lawsuits against John Does. Strike 3 Holdings has been particularly busy, filing 57 new BitTorrent lawsuits, including 23 on Christmas Day. Malibu Media has also filed 18 more cases against internet subscribers.
Although different companies, Strike 3 Holdings and Malibu Media have similar strategies. They both pay overseas investigators to monitor BitTorrent activity and record the IP addresses observed downloading their copyrighted films. Strike 3 Holdings owns the rights to Vixen, Tushy, Blacked, and Blacked Raw and Malibu Media owns X-Art. Both companies are notorious mass-filers of these copyright suits. The companies then sue the IP addresses for copyright infringement, asking for thousands of dollars in damages per infringement.
The Plaintiffs are able to file so many lawsuits because each lawsuit is virtually identical, with only the IP address and details of the alleged infringements differing. They sue each IP address as a “John Doe” and then subpoena the internet service provider (ISP) to discover the name of the subscriber. Usually the defendant first finds out about the lawsuit when they receive a notice from their ISP regarding the subpoena and the option to file a motion to quash. It is important to begin an effective defense at this stage. Securing representation early can provide you with more options to protect your identity and how to fight the allegations.
These notices are serious. If you do not respond, the ISP is obligated to provide your identity to the Plaintiff, which allows them to serve you with a summons and complaint. Once you are served, you typically have 21 days to respond in Federal court.
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.
Many defendants also wish to defend anonymously because federal civil lawsuits are generally public record and easily searchable. For those who wish to minimize the suit’s effect on their private and professional lives, it is vital they retain counsel without delay.
If you have received a notice in one of these cases, please don’t hesitate to call me immediately at 888.801.8681. If calling after-hours, please leave a message; I do return calls after-hours.
I have years of experience defending file-sharing lawsuits and can help you achieve the best outcome possible. I have defeated several copyright plaintiffs in lawsuits around the U.S.; I also fought Malibu Media in their first trial. I’ve represented over 600 defendants in both settling and litigating file-sharing lawsuits. I’ve written a subpoena defense guide for your information, as well.
I look forward to speaking with you and helping you put this matter behind you. Please don’t hesitate to call. 888.801.8681.