Dreamroom's Copyright Case Against FC2.com Heads to Trial

Rhett Pardon

LOS ANGELES — A copyright infringement case involving more than 1,000 videos allegedly found on popular Japanese video-hosting site FC2.com gets under way before a jury next week at federal court in Los Angeles.

FC2, reportedly the sixth most-popular website in Japan, was sued in March 2013 after Japanese-language porn company Dreamroom Productions found its videos on the site.  

Dreamroom, according to the original suit, said that FC2 had encouraged illegal uploading and downloading of its copyrighted works by compensating uploading members.

But last week, Dreamroom counsel withdrew its claim for inducement of copyright infringement, leaving only claims of direct copyright infringement, contributory copyright infringement and vicarious copyright infringement.

The original suit claimed 925 instances of copyright infringement; later, in the midst of pretrial litigation, Dreamroom said that it found another 270 videos on FC2.

FC2 said it denies that it should be held liable for the infringement of its users, according to a court brief.

Named FC2 as an abbreviation of "Fantastic Kupi-Kupi," the company runs much of its operation from Las Vegas with some staff in Tokyo.

Los Angeles-based Dreamroom operates Japanese-language porn sites MuraMura.tv, PacoPacoMama.com, 10 MuseMe.com, 1Pondo.tv, CarribeanCom.com and Heyzo.com.

A jury trial at Los Angeles federal court to settle the suit is scheduled to start on Tuesday.

Dreamroom seeks statutory damages of $150,000 per infringement, an injunction against FC2 and attorneys fees.

Just last week, Dreamroom won a $20.4 million judgment against the operator of a now-defunct porn membership site, Movie-Revolution.com, which allegedly poached and streamed 272 videos of Dreamwork's signature content — Asian women in bukkake, glamour, bikini and fetish scenes.

In that suit, Movie-Revolution.com's owner said that the site was merely a file locker and that users uploaded the material. That claim, however, was later refuted.