This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Porn Piracy: Is Smut Just Too Expensive?


By Janko Roettgers, GigaOM

Porn producers have filed tens of thousands of lawsuits against file sharers in recent months, going after BitTorrent users who have downloaded titles like Batman XXX and Black Big Booty Queens. But the industry seems increasingly divided about this approach after some of the most prolific lawsuits were curtailed by the courts. Some studios and producers vow to fight on, while others wonder whether it’s time to embrace new business models instead.

On one side of the debate are people like Alex Braun, the mastermind behind Batman XXX: A Porn Parody. Braun had targeted some 7,000 people for downloading the movie with a single lawsuit, but a U.S. District Court ruled in late December that the cases had been improperly joined. In other words, Braun would have to file a separate lawsuit against each and every single file sharer.

That decision followed a similar order earlier in December related to thousands of further porn piracy lawsuits, as well as a decision that limits lawsuits to those users that actually reside within the jurisdiction of a court. Still, Braun seems determined to carry on. “I can assure you that I am not quitting,” he told the adult industry news site XBIZ last week, adding the threat: “Heads will roll.”

On the other side are people like Allison Vivas, president of the Southern California-based porn studio Pink Visual (site not safe for work). Vivas told me during a phone conversation this week that her company has been approached by law offices specializing in P2P lawsuits as well, but decided against taking part in it. “It wasn’t as straightforward as advertised,” she said about the lawsuits.

Vivas anticipated early on that groups like the EFF would get involved, and that the courts would question some of the legal tactics used to bring forward mass lawsuits against file sharers. The recent court defeats only validated her concerns, leading Vivas to rule out lawsuits against consumers in the future as well. “I don’t think we will engage in it,” she told me.

That doesn’t mean Pink Visual is turning a blind eye to piracy. The company is educating customers about the rights and wrongs of file sharing, and it’s going after some of the bigger X-rated YouTube clone sites that offer free streaming of unlicensed porn movies. However, Vivas also believes that the porn industry needs to adapt. “We still see a consumer willing to purchase — just not the same way they used to,” she told me.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,113.54 +61.81 0.36%
S&P 500 1,983.53 +9.90 0.50%
NASDAQ 4,456.0160 +31.3120 0.71%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs