Judge Slaps Pirate With $1.5 Million in Damages for Sharing Seven Porn Clips
Let’s just get this out of the way immediately: Never, ever, miss the chance to defend yourself if you’re being accused of piracy. Regardless of whether you’re guilty to some degree, plaintiffs have consistently shown that they believe any infringement upon their content to be worth millions of dollars. This public service announcement is unfortunately far too late for Anwar Ogiste of Maryland, as a federal judge has already awarded a default judgment of $1.5 million to adult company Flava Works. Ogiste’s crime? Sharing seven porn videos.
This isn’t the first time Flava Works has brought a claim against one of their users. The company includes a unique code in all the downloads made by specific users, meaning they can be traced back to their accounts if they’re illegally shared. Using this, they won their case against Kywan Fisher last month, and apparently convinced the federal judge in Ogiste’s case to rule similarly.
According to TorrentFreak, $1.5 million is the largest amount capable of being rewarded as statutory damages under copyright law, and Flava Works has won a total of three cases with that amount in the past month. That means they’ve been awarded at least $4.5 million in damages. Between Fisher and Ogiste, they shared a grand total of 17 videos which amounted to $3 million in damages. That’s over $176,000 per flick.
That’s just a stupid amount of money for something so ubiquitous.