Colorado Court Deems Strike 3 'Not a Copyright Troll'

Colorado Court Deems Strike 3 'Not a Copyright Troll'

DENVER — A Colorado federal court last week ruled that a copyright infringement lawsuit by Strike 3 Holdings can move forward, with the judge issuing an opinion that the copyright holder for the Vixen Media Group brands should not be considered a “copyright troll.”

Strike 3 and its main legal enforcer, attorney Lincoln Bandlaw, have engaged in a long-term, relentless practice of pursuing lawsuits against individual content pirates and anonymous file-sharers.

As XBIZ has reported, Strike 3 has not backed down from its lawsuit-heavy strategy, even after being criticized by judges for the legal strategy of subpoenaing ISPs for customer information, and being termed “copyright trolls” by critics.

Last year, Strike 3 filed “a record-breaking number of lawsuits against alleged BitTorrent pirates,” file-sharing news site TorrentFreak’s Ernesto Van der Sar reported. “The company is keeping up this pace in 2023, averaging dozens of lawsuits per week.”

The still-anonymous Colorado defendant in last week’s decision had submitted a motion to quash Strike 3’s April lawsuit, in order to prevent Comcast from revealing their identity.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael E. Hegarty denied the motion.

Hegarty, who handles all of the Strike 3 cases in the district, ruled that the company’s attempt to obtain information from the ISP is “a necessary first step in Plaintiff’s process of discovering the identity of the alleged infringer for the purpose of enforcing its copyright.”

Moreover, Hegarty wrote, “The Court has neither observed nor been made aware of any particular Defendant in the cases before this Court who has experienced ‘coercive’ settlement tactics by Plaintiff … This Court has handled over a hundred similar cases and consistently found these plaintiffs are not copyright trolls but rather actual producers of adult films whose works are infringed.” 

In moving forward, the case becomes one of the large number of lawsuits fostering Strike 3’s reputation as a litigation powerhouse in the U.S. justice system.

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