BMG Rights Management v. Cox Communications, no. 14-1611 (E.D. Va. Dec. 1, 2015).
In an action by the putative owners of 1,400 musical compositions against an internet service provider (Cox) for contributory and vicarious liability based on its users Bit Torrent infringement, the Court held inter alia that the ISP was not protected by the DMCA safe-harbor because it did not terminate access of repeat infringers under appropriate circumstances. The Court found that defendant did not implement a repeat infringer policy before 2012, and after 2012 it did not reasonably implement its policy. Thus, if Plaintiff is successful at trial, it will not be limited in the remedies it seeks.
Other issues the Court addressed was whether Plaintiff had standing (the copyright registrations listed Plaintiff, its predecessor, someone else, or the works were purchased). The Court further found questions of material fact, 1) whether there is evidence of direct infringement by third parties; (2) whether there is evidence of Cox’s contributory infringement; (3) whether there is evidence of Cox’s vicarious liability; and (4) whether BMG failed to mitigate its damages. Lastly, the Court found that the "unclean hands" defense failed as a matter of law.