The lawsuit was lodged by Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), and resulted in a summary judgment ruling against www.isohunt.com, www.torrentbox.com, www.podtropolis.com and www.ed2k-it.com, all owned by Gary Fung. The plaintiffs, U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson wrote, "asserted that, through his operation and promotion of the websites, Fung allows users to download infringing copies of popular movies, television shows, sound recordings, software programs, video games, and other copyrighted content free of charge. "
Judge Wilson dismissed Fung's arguments that his sites were distinguishable from other file-sharing sites that have been shuttered for copyright infringements, such as Napster.
The judge wrote in Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc., et al., v. Fung:
These technological details are, at their core, indistinguishable from previous technologies. In fact, Defendants' technologies appear to improve upon the previous technologies by permitting faster downloads are large files such as movies. Such an improvement quite obviously increases the potential for copyright infringement.
Fung told Wired that he was considering an appeal, maintaining that provisions in copyright law should protect Torrent sites that remove content when requested by rights-holders.
[Image via the Law Office of Lisa N. Kaufman.]