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MPAA settles with cyberlocker service Hotfile for $80 million

By Kyle Johnson,

The Motion Picture Association of American has settled with digital locker service Hotfile for $80 million.

The settlement comes only a few months after the website and founder Anton Titov were found liable for copyright infringement conducted through Hotfile, Deadline reports. Titov must also shutter the website unless copyright technology is installed.

MPAA head Chriss Dodd said in a statement, "This judgment by the court is another important step toward protecting an Internet that works for everyone."

Those listed in the suit as plaintiffs include Universal City Studios Productions, 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises and more.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the settlement was agreed upon just as the two parties were set to head to trial. The MPAA filed the suit back in 2011 against Hotfile.

Legal documents from the MPAA said Hotfile was "as egregious" as Limewire and Napster. U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams had agreed noting "the extent of infringement by Hotfile's users was staggering."

Hotfile had claimed that under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's safe harbor provisions it was protected from lawsuits. The judge felt the site had done little to try and stop users from uploading copyrighted material. "Aside from infringement notices Hotfile had no alternative method for preventing repeat infringers by its users."

 
 

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