Los Angeles – Zuffa’s Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has filed a copyright infringement complaint against Justin.tv, claiming that it has not done enough to prevent pirated streams from being uploaded on its site. Justin.tv is a website that allows users to produce and watch live streaming video.
The complaint, filed in Nevada U.S. District Court, states, “Since its inception, Justin.tv’s members and users have employed the website and its technology as a platform to illegally distribute, stream, perform, copy or broadcast UFC live events.” The complaint also alleges that Justin.tv has not adequately taken the steps to respond to takedown notices issued by the UFC. Justin.tv provides an online anti-piracy filter, however the complaint claims that the filter is not always operational.
The UFC is the largest mixed martial arts promotion company in the world, and offers pay-per-view broadcasts of boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling, Muay Thai, karate, and other styles of fight competitions. It has suggested that Justin.tv be more proactive in preventing its users from uploading the pirated material by assigning round-the-clock employees to monitor the site and remove unauthorized streams and also use a watermark technology to compare uploads against copyrighted material.
In December 2009, UFC CEO and Chairman Lorenzo Fertitta testified in front of the United States House of Representatives that Justin.tv and other video streaming sites were profiting off of the unauthorized use of its copyrighted material. The usual defense made by these sites is that they are protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s safe harbor provisions, which says the sites are not liable for unauthorized content being uploaded as long as they are responding to the takedown notices.