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Titan Media Sues Houston Retailer for Infringement

Gay production company alleges that video store was renting burned copies of its DVD titles
Titan Media Sues Houston Retailer for Infringement
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Feb 27, 2008 6:00 PM PST    Text size: 
SAN FRANCISCO — Gay production company Titan Media and its parent company the Io Group Inc., have filed suit in U.S. District Court, claiming that video retailer Q Video of Houston was renting illegally replicated copies of Titan titles.

The copyright infringement case names Michael James Deitcher, owner of Q Video, as the defendant. Deitcher was unavailable for comment at post time.

According to Titan Media Vice President Keith Webb, a fan who had rented a poor-quality copy of a Titan video from the store tipped off the studio.

At that point, private investigators were sent in to research the studio’s claims by renting several Titan titles. The rental copies were reportedly all burned from original DVDs onto discs that were labeled with a black marker.

The store, which apparently sells mostly compilations, was not selling Titan titles and offered them only for rental. The store had multiple Titan boxcovers in a three-ring binder, which were offered to customers to make their rental selection.

“What really hurts is that this is one of the main, if not the main, gay store in Houston,” Webb told XBIZ. “We had a gay-owned-and-operated store stealing from a gay-owned-and-operated company. That really stings. I expect it from some, but not from another gay company. It is extremely disappointing.”

According to court documents, the company’s investigation was able to document the rental of 17 Titan titles, and Webb said the company will seek $150,000 in damages per title, for willful violation of copyright laws.

Those titles include “Alabama Takedown,” “Folsom Filth,” “Boiler” and “Farm Fresh,” among others.

A court date in the trial has not been set.

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