In Oregon a federal court has prohibited a woman from using BitTorrent, as well as obliging her to remove that program and any other peer to peer software from her computer, instead of paying $7,500 settlement for having downloaded the movie Dallas Buyers Club.
This lawsuit is just one of many that has been going on for well over a year. The makers of the Movie Dallas Buyers Club have attempted to go for an extreme enforcement of their property, and using a program called Maverick Monitor have managed to track and prosecute pirates of the movie. This of course is not without its critics, particularly in light of the fact that the software used won’t discriminate between those who downloaded the movie in its entirety and those who only downloaded a portion and then stopped. So far, the series of lawsuits has seen a number of success in the US, Singapore and Australia, where the media companies were able to strong-arm ISPs into identifying the IP addresses of those accused of pirating the movie. These lawsuits are often for settled for amounts nearing $3,000 to $4,000.
In this case the pirate in question, Krystal Krause, has been granted leniency by the judge presiding over the case. The decision to have her not pay the $7,500 fine comes in light of certain ‘financial hardships’ and unnamed ‘extenuating circumstances’, and come with two rather important caveats; that she promises never to illegally download a movie again, and that she remove any peer-to-peer program from her computer and promise never to use one again. TorrentFreak posted a copy of the court document where these demands are laid out;
Krystal Krause is hereby directed to immediately delete all unlicensed video and audio content in her possession and subject to her control, together with any and all BitTorrent clients on any computer(s) she owns or controls together with all other software used to obtain media through the Internet by BitTorrent peer-to-peer transfer or exchange.
Was the court’s leniency justified? Is the court’s request that the pirate never use peer-to-peer software again justified?