Illegal sites under Hollywood piracy scanner

MUMBAI: The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) on behalf of major Hollywood movie studios filed lawsuits in federal court in Los Angeles yesterday against YouTVpc.com and Peekvid.com.


These websites facilitate copyright infringement on the Internet and contribute to and profit from massive copyright infringement by identifying, posting, organizing, and indexing links to infringing content found on the Internet that consumers can then view on-demand by visiting these sites.


“The sole purpose of these sites is to disseminate content that has been illegally reproduced and distributed. They are a one-stop shop for copyright infringement. These lawsuits should serve as a warning to other aspiring movie theft ‘entrepreneurs’ that they are not above the law and will face serious consequences for their activities. Profiting from the theft of other people’s creative works is illegal and must be stopped,” said MPAA executive vice president and director of worldwide anti-piracy operations John Malcolm.


YouTVpc and Peekvid rely on advertisers to maintain their illegal websites and they profit handsomely from a seemingly endless stream of third-party advertising pitches. Peekvid – whose servers are located in San Antonio, Texas – averages over 53,000 unique users per day who view over 184,000 pages of content. YouTVpc – whose servers are located in Scottsdale, Arizona – averages more than 6,000 unique daily visitors who view over 21,000 pages of content per day.


In addition to advertising revenues, operators of YouTVpc solicit monetary donations through a “Donations” tab on the website that allows users to make financial contributions through PayPal.com. Civil lawsuits were filed against YouTVpc and Peekvid in US District Court in Los Angeles for damages and injunctive relief for violations under the United States Copyright Act of 1976.


The worldwide motion picture industry, including foreign and domestic producers, distributors, theaters, video stores and pay-per-view operators lost $18.2 billion in 2005 as a result of piracy–over $7 billion of which is attributed to Internet piracy and more than $11 billion attributed to hard goods piracy including bootlegging and illegal copying.

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