Media Copyright Group Gets Sued by Competitor

Lyla Katz
CHICAGO — Media Copyright Group, which represents various adult companies in a number of BitTorrent John Doe piracy lawsuits, has been hit with a trademark infringement lawsuit by a competitor, U.S. Copyright Group.

Attorneys for U.S. Copyright Group sent a cease-and-desist letter to the Media Copyright Group, claiming trademark infringement.

The letter demanded the group change its name because it was “confusingly similar” to U.S. Copyright Group’s and settle for $25,000 or risk going to court.

In response, John Steele, of the Media Copyright Group, filed for declaratory judgment at U.S. District Court in Chicago saying the company is not infringing.

“[It’s] use of the business name, Media Copyright Group, constitutes fair use of the trademark,” the filing said.

“Defendant cannot identify any individual who was actually confused and believed that Media Copyright Group’s copyright services originate from or are somehow affiliated with U.S. Copyright Group.”

Media Copyright Group also denied that its name constitutes false designation of origin, sponsorship or affiliation and unfair competition.

The filing also states that U.S. Copyright Group attorney Jeffrey Weaver "committed fraud" on his trademark application when he wrote that U.S. Copyright Group is "the only company of its kind, as far as the applicant is aware" when he knew all along of other companies that offered similar services.

As a result, Media Copyright Group said the resulting registration should be canceled.

Media Copyright Group seeks attorneys fees and other expenses.

Representatives from both companies were unavailable to comment by post time.