Hollywood has been fighting the battle against file sharing sites for years in an attempt to stop what it sees as conduits for piracy. The legal battle surrounding these file sharing sites ended up with Google blacklisting major file sharing sites such as 4Shared, The Pirate Bay, and isoHunt back in 2011. Getting the sites blacklisted from major search engines wasn’t the end of the battle with Hollywood continuing its legal campaign.
Filesharing website isoHunt has announced that it will be shutting down as part of the settlement with Hollywood studios. In addition to closing its doors, the website has agreed to pay $110 million for claims that the site induced the pirating of movies and TV shows. The legal case between isoHunt owner Gary Fung and Hollywood studios was set to return to court soon.
However, US magistrate Judge Jacqueline Chooljian canceled a hearing that was scheduled after being informed of the settlement. A copy of the proposed settlement was given to the court on Thursday morning and brings to an end a seven-year long legal battle over the website and piracy. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled against isoHunt in March.
The court stated in March:
There is more than enough unrebutted evidence in the summary judgment record to prove Fung offered his services with the object of promoting their use to infringe copyrighted material
The website and its owner was also denied safe harbor protection offered by the DMCA because the court said the site had “red flag” knowledge of infringement and profited from the infringement through advertising. After ruling the infringement to be willful, isoHunt faced damages of $150,000 for each act of infringement. The settlement requires the website to shut down by October 23, 2014.