Product and mark counterfeiting in the entertainment, sports, and media industries have increased dramatically in recent years affecting numerous industries. A company’s success increasingly depends on the ability to protect its intellectual property (IP) assets and reputation. From handbags to electronics to personal care products, counterfeit products often represent an incalculable cost to a client’s reputation and can result in permanent damage to a brand if not handled properly.
Online counterfeiting can bring rise to various claims for businesses. These claims include trademark infringement, copyright infringement, or unfair competition. Product diversion can also bring additional claims, such as tort and breach of contract claims. At our law firm, we assist clients with legal issues related to business, technology, and e-commerce transactions.
Our lawyers have been at the forefront of anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy developments, and have developed modern initiatives now utilized by many other firms and organizations. While many firms focus on litigation alone, The Case Lawyer emphasizes the importance of a mix of litigation and non-litigation alternatives, for a more long-lasting impact with a bigger return on investment.
Our Team endorses a partnership approach to combating counterfeiting and piracy, and we commonly leverage our global network of contacts from major e-commerce sites, social media platforms, payment intermediaries, law enforcement agencies, and rights-holders, to achieve results.
Counterfeits are not a new problem. It has been condemned by almost every government in the world and there are a number of international accords to protect IP internationally. Despite this, counterfeit products have been gaining more attention in recent years. Its negative impact on consumers, the industries and its workers and wholesalers & retailers are profoundly significant. The driving force behind the explosion of counterfeiting is clear and the widespread use of the internet.
We explain the details of the changes to IP and its protections in recent years and both traditional and modern methods used to tackle online IP infringements and its efficacy. The internet brought widespread global communications, instant sharing of information, e-commerce and a world of other liberating influences however not every change has been positive.
There are many ways to inadvertently violate copyright and patent law. You may not even know that you are breaking the law. Some activities that many may consider harmless—or at least victimless—can lead to lengthy and expensive court cases, which can become more difficult if you are not represented by an experienced online piracy lawyer.
An example of such an activity, which many people do every day without understanding the legality of the situation, is sharing files on a file-sharing network, even if you have legally purchased the files. Copyright laws may prohibit this kind of activity.
Sometimes these transactions may occur when you unknowingly belong to a pay-for-play or download file-sharing site. You may believe that you are acting in a legal way, especially since you are paying money for the downloads, but it may turn out that you were purchasing music from an illegal file-sharing site. We being an online piracy lawyer can help you understand the law and your rights while planning your defense.
Piracy is one of the most common types of cyber crimes. Cyber crimes can include just about any crime or criminal activity that takes place online. This type of cyber crime deals with theft of certain types of intellectual property. Illegally downloading music is probably the most popular form of piracy and cyber crime. Illegal file sharing can also occur with games, movies, television shows and a variety of different types of software. Any time a file is shared or downloaded illegally online, that’s piracy and a cyber crime.
Law provides that the owner of a copyright may apply to the court for an injunction that requires a carriage service to take the steps the court considers reasonable to block an online location that:
The court may grant the injunction in terms it considers appropriate, including:
(a) requiring the carriage service provider to take reasonable steps to do either or both of the following:
(i) blocking domain names, URLs and IP addresses that provide access to the online location and that are specified in the injunction;
(ii) blocking domain names, URLs and IP addresses that the carriage service provider and the owner of the copyright agree, in writing, have started to provide access to the online location after the injunction is made; and
(b) requiring the online search engine provider to take reasonable steps to do either or both of the following:
(i) not providing search results that include domain names, URLs and IP addresses that provide access to the online location and that are specified in the injunction;
(ii) not providing search results that include domain names, URLs and IP addresses that the online search engine provider and the owner of the copyright agree, in writing, have started to provide access to the online location after the injunction is made.
Once an injunction has been obtained, a copyright holder can block mirror and proxy sites that facilitate digital piracy without the need to return to court.