Thursday, August 13, 2020

Cox Wants $243M Reduction In $1B Copyright Infringement Ruling

Cox Communications has moved to trim $243 million off the $1 billion copyright infringement ruling levied against it late last year, reports Digital Music News.

The Atlanta-headquartered internet service giant and television provider recently submitted the request to a Virginia federal court, and Digital Music News obtained an exclusive copy of the corresponding filing. For additional background, the long-running legal battle initiated in August 2018, when the Big Three record labels and several other plaintiffs, corralled by the RIAA, targeted Cox Communications in a $1.5 billion copyright infringement complaint.

Essentially, the plaintiff entities alleged that Cox failed to adequately respond to and address its users copyright infringements – and, in turn, “obtained a direct financial benefit” at their expense.

A courtroom confrontation as it raged on through the remainder of 2018 and the vast majority of 2019, until a jury determined on December 19th that the record labels’ qualms carried weight. Besides finding the ISP guilty of both vicarious and contributory copyright infringement, the jury opted to award the plaintiffs $99,830.29 for each of the 10,017 infringed works, bringing the grand damages total to an even $1 billion.

Cox Communications promptly fought back against the “shockingly excessive” ruling, though U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady dismissed the majority of the 58-year-old company’s challenges in June. However, the federal judge also indicated that the 10,017-work infringement list may have been “premature,” before granting the defendants 60 days to provide an updated tally (accounting for overlapping sound recordings and underlying compositions, as well as songs that the plaintiffs don’t in fact own).

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