Record companies’ war on ISPs and piracy Multiple settlements with Charter

A computer keyboard with a pirate skull symbol and a cap on one of the keys.

Charter Communications has agreed to settle hacking lawsuits brought by major record labels, which accused the cable internet provider of failing to terminate the accounts of subscribers who illegally downloaded copyrighted songs.

Sony, Universal, Warner and their various subsidiaries sued Charter in United States District Court in Colorado. In March 2019 In a lawsuit it claimed that the ISP helps subscribers pirate music by selling packages with higher internet speeds. They filed another lawsuit against Charter in the same court in August 2021.

Both cases have been settled. Record companies and charterers reported their settlements to the court on Tuesday filings who – which He saidThe parties hereby notify the court that they have resolved the above procedure. Upon settlements, the court cleared the pending trials and required the parties to file dismissal papers within 28 days.

Also Bright House Networks charter company Settlement A similar lawsuit is filed in the US District Court for the Central District of Florida this week. The Florida record companies’ case was settled a day before the scheduled trial, such as TorrentFreak I mentioned Tuesday. was the case rejected with prejudice after settlement.

No details of any of the settlements were provided in the documents notifying the courts. It was a three-week jury trial in a Colorado case course It will start in June 2023 but is no longer needed.

The question for Internet users is whether the settlements mean the charter will be stricter in ending subscribers who illegally download copyrighted material. The charter company declined to comment today when we asked if it had agreed to increase the termination of accounts of subscribers accused of hacking. We have also contacted the Big Three record labels and will update this article if it provides any information on settlements.

Cox’s billion-dollar ruling could force ISPs to cut subscribers

Even if the settlements did not have a specific clause on the termination of subscribers, the charter is supposed to pay the registration marks to settle the claims. That could make the country’s second largest ISP more likely to terminate subscribers accused of hacking in order to prevent future lawsuits.

a The jury ruled in December 2019 That Cox must pay $1 billion in damages to major record companies in a case filed in US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. This decision raised alarm bells for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the Center for Democracy and Technology, the American Library Association, the Association of College and Research Libraries, the Association of Research Libraries, and Consumer Advocacy Public Knowledge Group.

those groups warned In June 2021 court filing That ruling, if not overturned, “would force ISPs to terminate more subscribers with less justification or risk greater liability.” The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit heard oral arguments in March 2022 and has yet to issue a ruling.

Charter proposal rejected to reject

In Colorado Court, complaint “Intentionally contributed to, and profited from, the gross copyright infringement of thousands of subscribers,” Charter said. Charter has insisted that nothing be done – despite receiving thousands of notices detailing the illegal activity of its subscribers, despite Its clear legal obligation to address the widespread and illegal downloading of copyrighted works on its Internet services, despite it has previously been sued by plaintiffs for similar conduct.”

charter argue In a motion to dismiss the case that “Failure to terminate customer access to the Internet based solely on unverified (and unverifiable) notifications alleging prior infringement does not demonstrate the requisite intent by the ISP to encourage the breach.” Charter said it has “a policy of not terminating customer accounts based on receipt of notifications containing unverifiable accusations of infringement.”

The charter also wrote that “[p]The plaintiffs do not (and cannot) claim that the termination restricts access to the infringing content. It is logical that terminating a customer’s connection to the Internet does not prevent the customer from finding another source of Internet access, nor does it affect the availability of allegedly infringing content hosted over peer-to-peer networks or programs. The charter has no greater power to block access to peer-to-peer networks than the subscriber’s electricity company.” The charter’s proposal was dismissed by dismissal of the case, and the company ultimately chose not to appear in court.

In Florida, the judge eviction Record companies claim liability, but industry claim complaint He also sought damages for indirect copyright infringement.

Disclosure: The Advance/Newhouse Partnership, which owns 12.4% of Charter, is part of Advance Publications. Advance Publications is owned by Condé Nast who owns Ars Technica.