Titan Media Wins Infringement Case

Gretchen Gallen
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Gay adult content producer Titan Media had its efforts at copyright protection vindicated after winning a $418,000 judgment in a copyright infringement case in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.

The San Francisco-based adult company, a subsidiary of the Io Group Inc., has been a leading force in copyright protection issues against various websites and peer-to-peer companies that it believes aid in the dissemination of copyrighted content over the Internet.

Some of Titan's efforts at curbing the amount of copyright theft that currently exists online has resulted in letters to the U.S. Senate accusing P2P network Kazaa of doing little, if nothing, to control the amount of freely traded pornography files that end up in the hands of underage users.

Titan's most recent victory was determined by United States District Judge Jeffrey S. White in a case against the owner of two websites, Sobe-cfg.com and Sobear.com.

Titan claimed that the site's owner, Timothy J. Ward, owed the plaintiff $209,000 in damages for infringing on Titan-produced content. Ward is accused of infringing on 279 images via his websites.

Titan was also awarded an additional $209,000 for violations of Rights of Publicity for the same images, the company announced Friday, adding that the court-enforced penalty for infringing on Titan content totaled $1,500 per image.

“We are extremely pleased with this large award by the courts,” said Keith Webb, vice president of Titan. “But we are even more pleased that this judgment continues to amplify our warning to online thieves: If you steal from Titan, you will get caught and you will pay the price.”

In November of 2003, Titan filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Larry Flynt Publications alleging that LFP posted 250 unauthorized Titan photos on a newly launched gay website, Studclub.com, a paid membership site that is believed to be part of the Flynt Digital family.

And in June, Titan settled a copy infringement case over the alleged use of unauthorized photos by the operators of KeepStill.com and parent company Pivotal Inc., which Titan claimed used TitanMen.com photographs to generate traffic and earn affiliate commissions.