India: Thanks to Spiderman, High Court orders pre-emptive blocking

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Sony Pictures Animation released “Spider Man: Across The Spider-Verse” in India on June 2nd.  Acting on Sony’s application for interlocutory injunctive relief, that distribution rights have not been granted to 101 named Web sites, a Delhi Judge ruled on May 29th that barred them from distributing the film.

After confirming that the sites listed in Sony’s request classify as “rogue”, according to a previous case involving the pirate site, the judge also directed the relevant telecommunications authorities in India to notify all Internet service providers to block access to the listed sites.

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Any web site that, “as its principal activity involves reproduction, publication and communication of infringing material,” is classified as ‘rogue,’ according to the case.

Court order

Sony Pictures Animation Inc. vs FLIXHD.CC/ & ORS., Order. May 29, 2023. High Court of Delhi at Delhi, India.

Further reading

Delhi High Court Restrains Over 100 Rogue Websites From Streaming Sony’s ‘Spider-man: Across The Spider-Verse,’ Article. Parina Katyal. May 31, 2023.

Delhi HC restrains over 100 ‘rogue websites’ from streaming Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse” Article. By Malavika Prasad. May 31, 2023. The Indian Express

Why it matters

This ruling is an attempt to stem illegal redistribution of a film before its commercial release.  Legal remedies alone are not effective: a quick search online by Piracy Monitor confirmed that the movie was available for streaming on May 31.  The location of the streaming site was unknown and may or may not be in India.

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