CBS Interactive, CNET sued for mass-scale copyright infringement

A coalition of artists in music and film has sued CBS Interactive Inc. and CNET Networks, Inc. for mass-scale copyright infringement in Los Angeles federal court.

This lawsuit is based on the defendants’ direct participation in massive copyright infringement on peer-to-peer (‘P2P’) systems, such as LimeWire, that are used to copy and distribute songs, films and other artistic works. LimeWire and its principals have already been found liable for copyright infringement on a virtually unprecedented scale and have been enjoined from further infringing activities by a New York federal court. As alleged in the lawsuit, CBS Interactive and CNET have acted as the main distributor of LimeWire software and have promoted this and other P2P systems to profit from wide-scale copyright infringement.

Internet users have downloaded more than 220 million copies of LimeWire software from these defendants’ website since 2008, which is some 95 per cent or more of all copies of LimeWire that were downloaded until LimeWire was shut down by Court Order. Defendants’ website also has been a major source for other P2P software applications, including FrostWire (32 million downloads).

Leading the coalition of artists in the suit are Alki David, film producer and billionaire founder of FilmOn.com, and Mike Mozart, a popular YouTube commentator who has documented in detail on the site CNET’s participation in copyright piracy on an enormous scale.

“Illegal file sharing through LimeWire has caused enormous damage to everyone who is trying to make a living in the entertainment community,” said David. “As more and more artists join this lawsuit, it will become the most significant copyright infringement lawsuit in history. My ultimate hope is that this lawsuit will ensure that huge corporations like CBS Interactive and CNET do not profit from these wrongful activities at the expense of hard-working artists.”

Lime Wire LLC and Lime Group LLC are also named as defendants with CBS Interactive and CNET in the lawsuit.

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