Last week the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that ISPs are required to terminate ‘repeat infringers’ based on allegations from copyright holders alone, a topic that has been contested for years.
This means that copyright holders now have a bigger incentive to send takedown notices, as ISPs can’t easily ignore them. That’s music to the ears of the various piracy tracking companies, Rightscorp included.
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The piracy monetization company always maintained that multiple complaints from copyright holders are enough to classify someone as a repeat infringer, without a court order, and the Fourth Circuit has now reached the same conclusion.
“After years of uncertainty on these issues, it is gratifying for the US Court of Appeals to proclaim the law on ISP liability for subscriber infringements to be essentially what Rightscorp has always said it is,” Rightscorp President Christopher Sabec says.
Rightscorp is pleased to see that the court shares its opinion since the verdict also provides new business opportunities. The company informs TorrentFreak that it’s ready to help copyright holders to hold ISPs responsible.
“Rightscorp has always stood with content holders who wish to protect their rights against ISPs that are not taking action against repeat infringers,” Sabec tells us.
“Now, with the law addressing ISP liability for subscriber infringements finally sharpened and clarified at the appellate level, we are ready to support all efforts by rights holders to compel ISPs to abide by their responsibilities under the DMCA.”
The piracy tracking company has a treasure trove of piracy data at its disposal to issue takedown requests or back lawsuits. Over the past five years, it amassed nearly a billion “records” of copyright infringements.
“Rightscorp’s data records include no less the 969,653,557 infringements over the last five years,” Sabec says.
This number includes a lot of repeat infringers, obviously. It’s made up of IP-addresses downloading the same file on several occasions and/or multiple files over time.
While it’s unlikely that account holders will be disconnected based on infringements that happened years ago, this type of historical data can be used in court cases. Rightscorp’s infringement notices are the basis of the legal action against Cox, and are being used as evidence in a separate RIAA case against ISP Grande communications as well.
Grande previously said that it refused to act on Rightcorp’s notices because it doubts their accuracy, but the tracking company contests this. That case is still ongoing and a final decision has yet to be reached.
For now, however, Rightcorp is marketing its hundreds of thousands of recorded copyright infringements as an opportunity for rightsholders. And for a company that can use some extra cash in hand, that’s good news.