Porn baron to crack down on O2 illegal file sharers

Pornographic production company, Ben Dover Productions, has confirmed it will be mailing O2 customers over illegal sharing of its films.

by Michael Northcott
Last Updated: 19 Aug 2013

Crackdowns on Internet users downloading pirated content is normally the preserve of music, film and television copyright owners, but now the porn industry is also using protection where its revenues are concerned. Ben Dover Productions won a court order in March forcing phone network O2 to provide contact details of the owners of almost 10,000 IP addresses which are linked to illegal downloads of its pornographic movies. Now it plans to write to the main culprits and start building its cases.

In a statement, the company said it would focus on customers who have been uploading content to peer-to-peer download networks so that other people could get hold of a pirate copy of the content. People who have downloaded just one or two films would not be pursued. The firm’s commercial director, Julian Becker, said the first letter received by suspected culprits would be for finding more information about the infringement of copyright. The response to the letters will determine the company’s next move, case by case.

So whilst a few thousand people have been caught with their pants down, they needn’t be hauled through the courts. Ben Dover Productions is registered with Companies House as Golden Eye International, and the latter’s website offers the option of settling out of court to reimburse the filmmaker for any loss of revenue. A good deal, unless you want to find yourself in the dock for stealing porn, which looks decidedly seedy…

The firm had originally tried to demand terms such as getting culprits to respond to the letters within 14 days, as well as specifying fixed compensation of £700, but the courts said it must offer 28 days for replies, and negotiate settlement sums individually for each case. 

Better keep an eye on the post if you’re one of them: it would be unfortunate if someone else accidentally opened your mail one morning to read about your sorry situation…

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