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Pitbull Wins $2.85 Million Judgment

File-sharing site WhatsTea.com guilty of copyright, trademark violations
Pitbull Wins $2.85 Million Judgment
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Nov 26, 2008 3:00 PM PST    Text size: 
MIAMI — Gay adult production house Pitbull Productions has been awarded $2.85 million in a default judgment against The Urban Netmedia Group, Inc. and its file-sharing website WhatTea.com for copyright and trademark infringement.

U.S. District Judge Adalberto Jordan in Miami further ordered the WhatsTea.com domain be transferred to Pitbull Productions.

The judgment was issued on Sept. 16.

As part of the default judgment, defendants and Urban Netmedia owners Jonathan Lewers (aka Craig Ennis), Nadine Lewers and Larry Lewers were ordered to pay $500,000 for each of two trademark violations and $50,000 for each of 37 copyright infringements. They also were ordered to pay Pitbull’s legal fees.

Judge Jordan cited Microsoft Corp. vs. Compusource Distributors, Inc. (115 F. Supp. 2d 80) in determining his judgment.

“After more than two years of litigation, the law did what it is place to do — protect copyrights and trademarks,” Pitbull’s Jalin Fuentes said.

“Online newsgroups, file sharing sites, blogs and magazine sites, among others, cannot hide while they willfully [and] illegally infringe on our hard work, copyrights and trademarks,” he said.

“Webmasters, registrants and domain owners must take active measures to ensure that a company’s intellectual property is not being abused.”

The mere act of taking down “unauthorized material” is not enough. “They must, once served notice, implement active measures… to help insure that chronic, continued infringement does not occur,” he said.

Pitbull Productions was granted “an emergency hearing in U.S. District Court in New York as part of a lawsuit filed against Universal Netmedia and its Internet service provider, Alpha Red.”

Pitbull Vice President Pat Reshen told XBIZ Alpha Red and Universal Netmedia “provide their users with a fully integrated infrastructure that connects them to infringing digital files.”

Further, the website “even encourages users to infringe through a point system that gives users more access according to the number of movies they upload,” Reshen said.

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