Is This Porn Site Extorting Its Bootleggers?

Illustration for article titled Is This Porn Site Extorting Its Bootleggers?

If you rip your sexy movies illegally from torrent sites, you might be sued very publicly for pirating porn soon. And while downloading spank bank material for free is illegal, the way one company called Malibu Media is going after their thieves seems nefarious in itself: they're naming them, individually, in a lawsuit.

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According to the Village Voice, one guy eager to settle rather than be embarrassingly dragged to court, paid out more than $40,000 to the company last year, which has made a habit of extorting people who may or may not have actually downloaded their films illegally. Through their attorney Jacqueline James, Malibu has filed 89 copyright infringement suits in New York federal court alone. She says she's only chasing the horniest of downloaders.

Still, as Jon Campbell reports, it's tough to pinpoint exactly who downloaded what because people share web connections and if there's an open connection, anyone can use it. So if a bit of "beautiful erotica"—Malibu Media's term—is downloaded from an open source, is it, for example, a cafe who is at fault? Or the guy in 5A who has no idea that the teenager in 6D is ripping Double Daydream, a Malibu Media title?

The fact of being publicly sued over downloading pornography might add an extra element of pressure, Stolz adds. And "even if everything is above board, there is a power imbalance. People pursuing a strategy like this have to tread very carefully," he says, to avoid becoming abusive.

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So if you're downloading illegally, you've been warned and if you're got an open connection, dude, close it.

Image via Shutterstock.

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DISCUSSION

What is it, something like 75% of men who when surveyed have watched porn within the last week? If I was innocent and/or thought I'd win the case, I'd have no problem with the world knowing that *gasp* I watch porn!