If the U.S. Copyright Group (USCG) is to be believed, tens of thousands of BitTorrent users are at risk of receiving a settlement letter in the mail if they have shared films without authorization. The group behind the ‘Hurt Locker’ case says it is tracking hundreds of other films for various movie companies.
In March the U.S. Copyright Group imported the mass litigation “pay up or else” scheme to the United States. The initial targets were relatively unknown indie films, but this changed when the makers of the Oscar-winning Hurt Locker joined the lucrative scheme.
Before the actions of the USCG were closely followed by the mainstream media, the lawyers involved had set up an informative website for potential clients where they explained how they could turn piracy into profit. In several videos the group’s frontman Thomas Dunlap explained how easy it is to squeeze money out of BitTorrent users.
One fact that they revealed was that the copyright holders have to give up 70% of the revenue from settlements to the USCG, but their videos contained more insights into the dealings of the group. For unknown reasons the videos were all taken out of public sight, but they missed one.
As mentioned briefly in an earlier report, Thomas Dunlap claims that they are already following 300 films, and that was before the news about Hurt locker became public. If each of these films actually results in a lawsuit to reveal the identities of alleged downloaders the number of targeted BitTorrent users will explode.
With ‘just’ 500 tracked file-sharers per film there are already 150,000 potential targets at risk of receiving a settlement letter. It’s unlikely that the individuals will be taken to court of course, but if they are revealed they will receive a ’speculative invoice’ in the form of a $1,500 to $2,500 settlement offer.
Read more: TorrentFreak