Saturday, February 22, 2014

Canadian court ruling in Teksavvy file sharing case a blow to copyright trolls: Geist; Toronto Star, 2/21/14

Michael Geist, Toronto Star; Canadian court ruling in Teksavvy file sharing case a blow to copyright trolls: Geist: "The outbreak of copyright trolling cases in the United States and Britain in recent years has sparked considerable anger from courts, Internet providers, and subscribers. These cases, which typically involve sending thousands of legal letters alleging copyright infringement and demanding thousands of dollars to settle, rely on ill-informed and frightened subscribers, who would rather pay the settlement than fight in court.
Canada was largely spared these cases until 2012, when Voltage Pictures, a U.S. film company, filed a lawsuit demanding that TekSavvy, a leading independent Internet provider, disclose the names and addresses of thousands of its subscribers who it claimed infringement its copyright. TekSavvy did not formally oppose the request, but it did ensure that its subscribers were informed about the lawsuit and it supported an intervention from the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic, a technology law clinic, that brought the privacy and copyright trolling concerns to the court’s attention (I sit on the CIPPIC advisory board).
The federal court issued its much-anticipated decision on Thursday, granting Voltage’s request for the subscriber names, but adding numerous safeguards designed to discourage copyright trolling lawsuits in Canada...
The big remaining question is whether copyright trolls will now view Canada as hostile territory."

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