Film industry big shots have urged BT to block access to an indexing website called Newsbin2, which acts as a hub for links to websites hosting pirated copies of films and TV shows.
The Motion Picture Association (MPA) has got its lawyers involved and has filed an injunction in a bid to force BT Broadband to block access to the website with dubious intentions, The Guardian reported.
The trade body, which represents Hollywood studios based outside the US reportedly wants to stop people using Newzbin2, the offshore site that allows film fans to access illegal material via its Usenet service.
Here's the legal bit.The MPA is reportedly seeking injunctions against internet intermediaries by using section 97A of the UK Copyright, Designs and Patent Act- the UK's implementation of article 8.3 of the EU Copyright directive, which apparently has not been used to press for legal action in Britain before.
However, the directive is believed to have been used to force ISPs to block sites involved in dishing out pirated films in Denmark and similar cases are underway in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany.
The bid to use the EU's Copyright Directive to stop the distribution of pirated material is the latest in a long line of attempts tried out by copyright owners to make ISPs help them crack down on illegal sharing of copyrighted content.
The cinematic super association has reportedly previously won a high court copyright infringement case against a similar site, called Newzbin, a UK-based site with links to pirated films and TV shows. It was told to pay damages.
The operator of the site (Newzbin Ltd) went into administration, dodging the damages and shortly after that Newzbin 2 launched, which experts have noted seems to be a copy of the original site. However the people in charge seem to have learnt a lesson and new reportedly stay anonymous and the site is based overseas, purportedly hosted in Sweden and registered in the US.
While the owners of Newzbin told The Guardian they are not involved with the new incarnation of the site, TorrentFreak has claimed a group called Team R Dogs are really responsible.
President and MD of the MPA in Europe, Chris Marcich, reportedly said that the continued operation of Newzbin 2 "flies in the face of the previous judgment by the high court".
"Like all other content providers, we need co-operation from key stakeholders to ensure that a legitimate content market can flourish. Legitimate content markets help everyone: they enable the creators to keep their jobs and protect their work, provide tax revenues and ensure the content provided to consumers is high quality," he reportedly added.
A BT spokesperson told the newspaper: "We can confirm that we have received the papers from the MPA and are reviewing them. We will respond in due course."