03/18/2012 : RIGHTHAVEN LOSES COPYRIGHT CASES AGAINST SPORTS BETTING INFORMATION SITES
More defeats for copyright specialist
It has not been a good week for Righthaven, the now notorious copyright legal action specialist that pursued many industry companies for alleged copyright infringements, intimidating a significant number of them into settlements with the threat of court proceedings.
In the latest in a series of court defeats against companies prepared to fight the Righthaven claims, the company was sent packing by US judges in cases it brought against the long-established TheRX.com and fellow sports betting information site Sports Book Review.
Judges questioned the agreements which Righthaven signed with various companies that ceded their right to sue on copyright issues in return for a cut of any settlements or court awards that the copyright specialist was successful in squeezing out of allegedly infringing operators. The agreement was found wanting in terms of jurisdiction or damage sustained in this week's cases.
Vegas Inc reported on the latest defeats, identifying Righthaven's partner in the legal actions as Stevo Design Inc (owned by a sports handicapper).
Vegas Inc noted that over 70 of the 276 actions launched by Righthaven in the past two years were settled without court action, but that the company had run into difficulties when a growing number of its victims decided to fight rather than flee, testing its financial and legal resources.
Last Friday Judge Kent Dawson became the latest member of the judiciary to find against Righthaven in the case against TheRX, reprising a similar action taken earlier in the week by Judge Larry Hicks in the case against SBR, which has apparently decided to launch an action of its own to recoup its legal costs from Stevo rather than the now financially challenged Righthaven.
Earlier this month there were reports that losing other cases had stressed Righthaven with over $180,000 in unpaid legal costs, resulting in the seizure of both its copyright assets and its domain.
The publication Vegas Inc reported that Judge Philip Pro found that Righthaven had no right to sue in a significant number of its actions, his conclusions reinforcing decisions by eight other judges in three US states who have found that Righthaven lacked legal standing