File-hosting service Hotfile has fired a law suit at Warner Bros., alleging 'fraud and abuse'.
Hotfile says the film maker systematically abuses an anti-piracy tool Hotfile made available to it, to take down content the company doesn’t actually hold the copyright to.
“Warner has made repeated, reckless and irresponsible misrepresentations to Hotfile falsely claiming to own copyrights in material from Hotfile.com,” the suit states
Warner has a Special Rightsholder Account (SRA) with Hotfile that allows it to remove any number of files that may infringe its copyright. On its complaint Hotfile, claims Warner systematically misuses this tool, taking down material willy-nilly.
Game demos and open source software have been downed in Warner's over-enthusiastic purges, Hotfile claims.
“The single file deleted by Warner that had been most frequently downloaded by Hotfile users—five times more frequently than any other file—was a freeware software title wrongfully deleted by Warner. The software publisher that uploaded the file used Hotfile.com as a means for distribution of its open source software. Warner was not authorized by the software publisher to delete the file,” the complaint alleges.
Hotfile says Warner earns from the take-downs as the result of an arrangement by which Warner ccan replace downed content with ecommerce links
“By increasing the number of links it was taking down with Hotfile’s SRA, and indeed falsely inflating these numbers, Warner was increasing the number of times it could present e-commerce links to Hotfile’s users for its own enrichment,” the suit notes
Hotfile wants a a jury trial and seeks compensation for losses and damage to its reputation.