• Follow us


Lawsuits hit Canadians accused of illegal downloading, uploading of movies

Anya Morgante of Toronto says she can’t believe she’s being sued for allegedly sharing a copy of a film featuring Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson.

“I am not a pirate,” she said, a term often used to describe people who share copyrighted works like movies without permission or payment.

But Morgante is just one of about 3,400 Canadians facing legal actions in Federal Court launched by a prestigious Toronto law firm on behalf of U.S. movie production companies attempting to enforce their copyright claims.

Global News Help us improve Globalnews.ca Global News Story continues below

“There is no such thing as a free lunch,” said lawyer Ken Clark, a partner at Aird & Berlis LLP, who is spearheading the litigation.

READ MORE: No, you do not have to pay a ‘settlement fee’ if you get an illegal download notice

“If you get caught, you have to pay,” he said.

One of Clark’s clients, Bodyguard Productions, Inc., made the Hollywood film The Hitman’s Bodyguard, described as a “genuine smash hit” by Forbes Magazine, earning more than US$70 million when it was released in 2017, according to the publication.

But producers and distributors said they believe they have lost significant additional revenue to video pirates who are sharing the movie online for free in violation of copyright legislation, including Canada’s Copyright Act.

“We are trying to educate people and make it sting a little,” Clark told Global News, describing how his law firm is methodically sending out hundreds of legal claims against Canadians who shared the movie.

READ MORE: Canadians who illegally download movies may be risking more than previously thought

Clark’s law firm sent Morgante a statement of claim in December, 2017, alleging infringement after the movie was shared through her Rogers internet service. The claim has not been proven in court.

“It’s been stressful,” Morgante said in an interview, denying she watched or shared the movie.

However, she acknowledged it was possible someone else in her home or someone who had access to Wi-Fi service did.

“I’m not even computer-savvy,” said Morgante, adding she did not receive any notice from Rogers alleging her account had been used improperly.

READ MORE: New regulations about illegal downloading go into effect

She said she has a Netflix subscription, uses pay-per-view television and goes to the cinema when she wants to watch movies.

Clark said his client isn’t interested in going after those who merely download video content, but internet users who shared videos with others — something detected by sophisticated sniffer software used by movie companies.

“We send warning notices for a reason: to put the owner of the (internet) account on notice,” he said, adding they would not take legal action against anyone who had not received at least two emailed warnings first. He said they would only take action if the person in question ignored the warnings.

In response to the claim, Morgante said she got advice from a legal clinic and then submitted a statement of defence. She said she didn’t share the movie, nor does she believe anyone else in her household did.

READ MORE: Internet users receive illegal downloading notices, but what do they mean?

In January, she received an offer to settle the claim.

“The subject defendant shall pay to the Plaintiff the sum of $3,000, inclusive of costs for damages,” the statement said.

“It’s not fair. It’s crazy. They should have to prove [their case],” Morgante said.

The law firm had been prepared to accept a lower amount of $150 to settle the claim at a later point, but she said paying any amount would amount to an admission of guilt.

“It’s the principle,” she said.

READ MORE: Canadians among top illegal downloaders of ‘Game of Thrones’

Clark said his law firm listens to consumers individually and doesn’t want to litigate against those who have a valid explanation for movie sharing. He said defendants have paid various amounts ranging from $100 to $5000 to settle the claims.

Although to date no federal judge has ruled in favour of his clients against someone accused of illegal downloading or uploading, Clark said “we have cases in court.”

Clark also warned consumers against the use of so-called Android boxes, devices sold with the promise of free television and free movie content. He said those devices are used to redistribute copyrighted content and may also violate laws.

“No law allows people to get something for nothing,” he said.

Read More

Leave A Comment

More News

Global News : Entertainment

Tekashi 6ix9ine’s ex-girlfriend claims rapper viciously beat her 2019-02-07 15:55:47“He punches me out of nowhere,” Sara Molina said. "I was leaking blood."

Woody Allen suing Amazon for $68M over killed 2019-02-07 15:51:08Woody Allen says that Amazon ended a four-picture movie deal last year after old accusations against him resurfaced.

Paul Rudd spotted rocking out at Foo Fighters 2019-02-07 15:43:54Here's the captured footage of Ant-Man having the time of his life.

Oscars 2019 to go without host for the 2019-02-07 14:47:00Daniel Craig, Jennifer Lopez, Amandla Stenberg and Awkwafina are part of the first slate of presenters for the awards show.

Billy Corgan reunited with long-lost Smashing Pumpkins ‘Gish’ 2019-02-07 14:16:46After nearly 27 years, the frontman was unexpectedly reunited with his 'holy grail.'

Bow Wow’s girlfriend details alleged abuse in 911 2019-02-07 12:27:51Leslie Holden alleged that Bow Wow hit her numerous times, took away her phone, and trapped her in a room.

Ozzy Osbourne admitted to hospital with flu ‘complications’ 2019-02-07 11:11:04The 'Crazy Train' rocker was forced to postpone his European and U.K. tour only a week prior.

2019 Canadian Screen Awards nominees announced 2019-02-07 10:59:46'Big Brother Canada' is nominated for best reality/competition program or series, and Global‘s 'Private Eyes' received n

New report alleges James Brown was murdered in 2019-02-07 08:41:58The shocking investigation suggests foul play was a factor in the Soul legend's death.

Lawsuits hit Canadians accused of illegal downloading, uploading 2019-02-06 20:23:13About 3,400 Canadians are facing legal actions in Federal court launched by a prestigious Toronto law firm on behalf of U.S. movie production companie

‘Room’, based on award-winning novel, to premiere in 2019-02-06 15:09:13The Grand Theatre has announced that the North American premiere of 'Room' will be on its Spriet Stage in March of 2020. 

Sam Lloyd, ‘Scrubs’ actor, diagnosed with lung cancer, 2019-02-06 14:27:25The actor received his diagnosis on Jan. 15 after welcoming his first baby with wife, Vanessa.

Arts & Entertainment -

Albert Finney goes toe to toe with Julia 2019-02-08 12:15:00In 2000, veteran actor Albert Finney was enjoying one of the busiest years of his career with four film roles, one of them in "Erin Brockovich." The

Alicia Keys, James Corden parody ‘Shallow’ to plug 2019-02-08 11:25:00In an unsurprising turn of events, the “A Star Is Born” hit “Shallow” was parodied to promote this weekend’s Grammy Awar

Grammys look now to take charge of the 2019-02-08 10:30:00While music has long been considered pop culture’s most rebellious mainstream art form, this week in the lead-up to the Grammy Awards a clearer

He’s not just a former president. Jimmy Carter 2019-02-08 09:30:00In the wee hours of a crisp, wet fall morning, hundreds of cars drove slowly over a dirt path in this tiny rural town then parked among a grove of tre

The 99-Seat Beat: MLK, ‘Miss America’s Ugly Daughter’ 2019-02-08 09:00:00William Faulkner wrote, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past” — which rings particularly true in the theater, where pla

Overrated/Underrated: That song from 'Russian Doll,' and Post 2019-02-08 09:00:00UNDERRATED Allison Miller’s ‘Glitter Wolf’: A rising star in jazz who can be found on multiple year-end best-of lists, in addition t

California Sounds: A closer look at the Los 2019-02-08 08:30:00One of the less obvious storylines in the race for Grammy Award glory is the role geography plays in this year’s prominent races. The eight nomi

Review: Never mind the joke title, 'PEN15' may 2019-02-08 08:05:00The juvenile joke of the title and the oddness of its casting notwithstanding, Hulu's ”PEN15,” in which grown-up actresses Maya Erskine a

'PEN15' creators Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle on 2019-02-08 08:00:00Comedy duo Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle have barely settled into their seats at a Silver Lake coffee shop when they learn Scott Speedman — the q

Canceled after Thousand Oaks shooting, Cal Lutheran's Columbine 2019-02-08 08:00:00The morning after the Thousand Oaks shooting in early November, in which a gunman opened fire on a local bar, killing 12 people, California Lutheran U

Women take the lead at this year’s Grammys, 2019-02-08 07:30:00With scheduled performances by Lady Gaga, Cardi B, Camila Cabello, Kacey Musgraves, Janelle Monáe and — hey, why not? — the always-

2019 Grammy Awards: Everything you need to know 2019-02-08 07:00:00Cue the music! Because there will be lots of it when the 61st Grammy Awards air Sunday night. We’ve logged all the pertinent info you need to kn

Entertainment - The

James Corden's Dad At Super Bowl Was Way 2019-02-08 12:10:44Watch Malcolm Corden kick a field goal and get licked on the head by Paul Rudd in a hilarious run of adventures.

Hollywood's Mid-Budget Comedies Aren't What They Used To 2019-02-08 11:10:43Mel Gibson made $25 million for "What Women Want." The entire budget for "What Men Want" was $22 million.

Conan O'Brien And Nick Kroll Teach Sex Education 2019-02-08 11:03:33Two comedians breaking down reproductive health has its advantages if you don't want to learn anything.

Ariana Grande Drops New Album With Emotional Song 2019-02-08 10:42:12Fans realized that the song "Ghostin" appeared to be about the pop star being with Pete Davidson when Miller died.

Seth Meyers Goes Viral Eating 'The Most Painful 2019-02-08 08:10:46The comedian's spicy wings challenge provided some memorable moments.

Woody Allen Sues Amazon For Dropping Film Deal 2019-02-08 07:53:02Allen's breach of contract claim says Amazon cited daughter Dylan Farrow's "baseless allegation" of childhood sex abuse.

Spike Lee On Gov. Ralph Northam, Or Anyone 2019-02-08 00:37:32The "BlacKkKlansman" director said he doesn't want to hear anyone defend their blackface by saying "it was the '80s."

You'll Never Unsee It: Jimmy Kimmel Finds Bezos 2019-02-07 22:58:51Late-night host says the Amazon CEO's pic is "much more graphic than I expected."

Colbert Reveals How GOP Sees Sex Harassment vs. 2019-02-07 22:37:10"Late Show" host said there's a key difference between the two as far as Republicans are concerned.

Ariana Grande Accuses Grammys Of 'Lying' About Why 2019-02-07 17:24:50The singer dropped out of the award show over a reported clash with producers.

Ariana Grande Reacts To Pete Davidson And Kate 2019-02-07 16:29:05The singer offered a breezy two-word response when asked about the couple.

Yalitza Aparicio Of 'Roma' Speaks Out On Barriers 2019-02-07 16:28:29“If I do something wrong, they might think we are all that way. So I have to take good care of that image, our image,” the actress said.

CBC | Arts News

British actor Albert Finney dies at 82 2019-02-08 10:09:46British actor Albert Finney, the Academy Award-nominated star of films from Tom Jones to Skyfall, has died at the age of 82.

From Gucci to Prada, fashion fails evoke 'racist' 2019-02-08 08:38:30Some of the world's top fashion brands have raised eyebrows with designs that have racist connotations, the latest being Gucci's blackface-like bala

Ariana Grande clashes with Grammys producer over why 2019-02-07 19:26:31Grammys producer Ken Ehrlich said the show had multiple conversations with Ariana Grande about possibly performing Sunday, but the singer "felt it wa

Amazon's Jeff Bezos says National Enquirer tried to 2019-02-07 19:08:52Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said Thursday he was the target of "extortion and blackmail" by the publisher of the National Enquirer, which he said threaten

Bill Cosby moved to general unit at Pennsylvania 2019-02-07 15:12:56Bill Cosby has been moved to a general population unit as he serves three to 10 years in prison for sexual assault in Pennsylvania.

Woody Allen sues Amazon Studios for quitting movie 2019-02-07 14:39:11Woody Allen sued Amazon Studios on Thursday, saying he deserves at least $68 million US in damages for its refusal to distribute his completed movie A

Canadian Screen Awards: Anne with an E, Schitt's 2019-02-07 09:12:46Anne with an E and Schitt's Creek, among the current wave of homegrown TV shows making a splash with international and domestic audiences, lead the r

Gucci pulls 'blackface sweater' from stores after complaints 2019-02-07 06:42:25Gucci has apologized for a wool sweater that resembled a "blackface" and said the item had been pulled from its online and physical stores, the late

Arkells surprise Calgary students who won award with 2019-02-06 19:43:09Students at the Calgary Arts Academy thought they were repeating an award-winning performance at a school assembly on Wednesday, but ended up being jo

Revenge, reality and racism: Hollywood writers process Liam 2019-02-06 18:17:32Liam Neeson's recent admission to contemplating a racist attack has some fans stepping away from the action star.

CBC appoints Barbara Williams executive vice-president of English 2019-02-06 14:46:44Barbara Williams has been appointed CBC's new vice-president of English services in charge of English-language TV, radio and digital services.

Spotify buys Gimlet, Anchor to ramp up its 2019-02-06 10:41:29Music streaming service Spotify is buying podcast companies Gimlet and Anchor as it looks to take on Apple's popular iTunes' podcasting platform.

Top Entertainment stories

Eaton Centre shooter was suffering from PTSD: Defence 2019-02-08 14:02:54Defence lawyers for a man accused in a deadly shooting at Toronto’s Eaton Centre six years ago say he was suffering from post-traumatic stress d

Lindros wants Roman’s Law carried across the country 2019-02-08 14:01:55It was while waiting at the Toronto airport on Wednesday, while his flight was initially cancelled and then twice delayed because of an ice storm, whe

Two arrested in Bowmanville Canadian Tire thefts 2019-02-08 14:01:22Security guards at a Bowmanville Canadian Tire called police after two people allegedly tried to steal from the store. Durham Regional Police say secu

Serial killer Bruce McArthur can apply for parole 2019-02-08 13:47:44A serial killer who murdered eight men from Toronto’s gay village will be 91 before he can apply for parole, a judge ruled Friday after handing

MIKE’D UP: Are kids playing too much hockey? 2019-02-08 13:41:32WATCH ABOVE as National Hockey columnist Michael Traikos and Sun columnist Steve Simmons look at the regimen of hockey training some kids are exp

Woz blog: Raptors should flourish with basketball genius 2019-02-08 13:38:07Let’s be real. All anybody wants from me today is my take on the big trade, not reaction to Thursday’s weird game in Atlanta. So, I’

Maple Leafs take the subway and take it 2019-02-08 13:23:06OK, now the Maple Leafs know what City Hall looks like when jammed with fans who’ve come to cheer them. They just have to do it in warmer weathe

Caledon house explosion caused by natural gas: Fire 2019-02-08 13:09:40The Office of the Ontario Fire Marshall says a deadly house explosion in Caledon last week was caused by natural gas in the residence. Fire Investigat

Mom charged with manslaughter in Hamilton boy’s death 2019-02-08 12:59:24A 39-year-old woman has been charged with manslaughter in the death of her four-year-old son after Hamilton Police spent more than a year probing the

BAR SHOTS: Man allegedly fired gun in Ajax 2019-02-08 12:52:18Durham Regional Police have charged a 23-year-old man with a slew of weapons offences after shots were fired outside a bar in an Ajax strip mall last

Feb. 8, 2019 2019-02-08 02:00:01Andy Donato

Raptors refuse to lose despite depleted numbers 2019-02-07 23:40:31ATLANTA — The Raptors had any number of reasons to call it a night early and chalk this one up to a loss due to exceptional circumstances. A nin


Shakespeare Bash’d version of Othello presents an unsettling 2019-02-08 13:36:48The play purports to expose a societal evil with devastating outcomes: brutal onstage murders of two innocent women; Othello’s almost immediate

Tafelmusik goes for brash instead of beautiful in 2019-02-08 12:44:47All of the music in the program, featuring Italian violinist Enrico Onofri, was delivered as the aural equivalent of seeing the stately white marbles

Toronto’s newest pro team, Defiant, starts play next 2019-02-08 12:30:00Toronto’s new franchise has some locals excited — and that’s not even counting the owners.

They were once Toronto society’s power duo. Instagram 2019-02-08 12:00:00Mary Symons and Nolan Bryant were everywhere together in the city’s high-strata events. Then something happened.

Actor Albert Finney, nominated for five Oscars, dies 2019-02-08 09:54:54Star won over audiences worldwide with his good-natured, funny and sensual portrayal of an 18th-century English rogue in Tom Jones.

Khan’s new novel centres on real-life mosque attack, 2019-02-08 09:00:00Deadly Divide’s narrative is cut with excerpts from fictional message boards and blogs related to the case. As part of her research, Khan scroll

Small Print: Deirdre Baker 2019-02-08 08:30:00Deirdre Baker picks include a range of YA and children’s books that promote strength, history and activism in the Black community, particularly

In 1954, Black train porters called on Ottawa 2019-02-08 07:30:00In They Call Me George, sociology professor and novelist (Independence) Cecil Foster reveals that in 1954, a 35-member delegation of the Negro Citizen

Organist’s son haunted by echoes of his distant 2019-02-08 07:00:00Mark Abley’s father, Harry, had one great passion in life — the organ. Mark Abley is still coming to terms with why his father did not sho

Ariana Grande’s latest album just dropped. Here’s how 2019-02-08 06:45:52Fans of pop superstar Ariana Grande are going crazy online over the release of her new album thank u, next, with many praising its exploration of the

Megan Gail Coles creates a hard and unforgiving 2019-02-08 06:00:00Coles’ debut novel Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club contrasts vicious and beautiful

Pamela Adlon continues Better Things without Louis C.K. 2019-02-08 00:00:00Better Things creator, director and star Pamela Adlon no longer writes the series with disgraced comedian Louis C.K., but his influence is remains in

Disclaimer and Notice:WorldProNews.com is not responsible of these news or any information published on this website.