The world of Kodi boxes and repositories built for sharing addons that make it possible for people to consume copyrighted content is a murky one and as of late, it is something that has found its way into the news cycle most weeks.
The biggest news recently has been the apparent demise of TVAddons, a repository that is at the center of a lawsuit in Texas that was filed by the Dish network. Subsequently, the TVAddons domains went dark, with the belief being that the two were linked. But now this is not the case anymore and new legal steps have been taken north of the border in Canada.
According to TorrentFreak, back on June 2nd, a group of Canadian telecom firms including the likes of Bell Canada, Bell ExpressVu, Bell Media, Videotron, Groupe TVA, Rogers Communications and Rogers Media, filed a complaint in Federal Court against Montreal man Adam Lackman, the guy behind TVAddons. The claim is that by making it possible for people to get their hands on Kodi add-ons that are designed for accessing copyrighted material, Lackman was responsible for such shows as Game of Thrones, Prison Break, The Big Bang Theory, America’s Got Talent, Keeping Up With The Kardashians, and more being accessed illegally.
“[The defendant] has made the [TV shows] available to the public by telecommunication in a way that allows members of the public to have access to them from a place and at a time individually chosen by them…consequently infringing the Plaintiffs’ copyright…in contravention of sections 2.4(1.1), 3(1)(f) and 27(1) of the Copyright Act,” the complaint reads.
Interestingly, it would appear that Lackman was not allowed to properly mount a defence, with the court restraining Lackman from carrying out activities related to TVAddons.
Following the filing of the complaint, on June 9 the Federal Court handed down a time-limited interim injunction against Lackman which restrained him from various activities in respect of TVAddons. The process took place ex parte, meaning in secret, without Lackman being able to mount a defense.
So how does this all tie into the TVAddons domains going offline? Well this was also the work of the courts, with an independent court-appointed supervising counsel apparently now the owner of the domains previously managed by Lackman. The report claims that the Canadian court authorized “bailiff and computer forensics experts to take control of Internet domains including TVAddons.ag and Offshoregit.com plus social media and hosting provider accounts for a period of 14 days.” As a result, all of those domains and accounts were transferred to Daniel Drapeau at DrapeauLex, the independent, court-appointed supervising counsel we mentioned a moment ago.
However, things are not necessarily going as swimmingly for the plaintiffs as they may seem. The plaintiffs received a ticking off from one judge regarding their handling of the case and the way evidence was collected and Lackman questioned. Lackman, for his part, has vowed to stand his ground, believing that he is covered by the Canadian Copyright Act, specifically subparagraph 2.4(1)(b), which states:
A person whose only act in respect of the communication of a work or other subject-matter to the public consists of providing the means of telecommunication necessary for another person to so communicate the work or other subject-matter does not communicate that work or other subject-matter to the public
Whether that is true or not is something we are going to have to wait to find out, no doubt following a lengthy and costly legal battle.
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