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Warner Brothers admits making false takedown requests

Firm makes admission during Hotfile case
Thu Nov 10 2011, 09:49

BIG MEDIA OUTFIT Warner Brothers has admitted in court that it asked Hotfile to take down material that it did not own.

The film studio made the admission in a federal court, according to a report at Torrentfreak, and revealed that it had removed files from Hotfile for which it did not own the copyrights.

It used a scatter gun approach to takedown requests, apparently, and sometimes it removed files by mistake. The firm also admitted that one of its workers took down open source software that could be used to speed up downloads from the web site.

The case is a murky one. Hotfile gave Warner Brothers access to its web site after the company complained that its copyrighted material was being shared on its web pages. Hotfile soon complained that the media firm was abusing this right, and the result is what we have in front of us now.

"Warner has made repeated, reckless and irresponsible misrepresentations to Hotfile falsely claiming to own copyrights in material from," said Hotfile in a complaint published by Torrentfreak.

Warner Brothers admitted that this was true, and said that it did not always accurately check the contents of files, and thus made a number of errors.

"Warner admits that, given the volume and pace of new infringements on Hotfile, Warner could not practically download and view the contents of each file prior to requesting that it be taken down through use of the tool," it said.

"Warner admits that, as one component of its takedown process, Warner utilizes automated software to assist in locating files on the Internet believed to contain unauthorized Warner content."

Warner Brothers has asked that the claims be dismissed and argued that even though it took down some content falsely, this did not mean that some other copyright holder might not have done the same thing. µ


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