Cox Communications Fights Back Against ‘Shockingly Excessive’ Copyright Infringement Ruling

Cox Communications, a major US-based provider of television, telephone and internet services, has filed a motion for remittitur to seek a reduction in penalties. This move comes after the company lost a high-profile lawsuit to Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, and Warner Music Group, among other plaintiffs. The litigating labels had alleged that Cox failed to address repeated copyright violations committed by its internet users and therefore was liable to pay damages.

The jury awarded the copyright holders a staggering $1 billion, which amounts to $99,830.29 for each of the 10,017 works identified by the plaintiffs. Cox and Thomas Buchanan of Winston & Strawn LLP have filed a motion for remittitur. It is a request for a judge to lower the jury fines that are thought to be excessive, or to reconsider the penalties in a new trial.

In their filing, Cox condemned the jury’s decision and the $1 billion fine, calling it “a miscarriage of justice,” “grossly excessive,” and “shocking.” The company further argued that the fee itself is “unlawfully punitive,” violates the company’s right to due process, and that it resulted from the plaintiffs’ legal team encouraging jurors to make an example out of Cox, as opposed to evaluating the effects of the alleged copyright infringement.

Cox’s filing goes on to cite other similar cases wherein juries requested dramatically lower payments from the parties that allegedly committed or failed to address copyright infringement. It also claims that “the verdict in this case exceeds the aggregate dollar amount of every statutory damages award rendered in the years 2009-2016 by more than four hundred million dollars.” The three largest of these damages verdicts were issued to individuals who directly committed large-scale copyright infringement by continually uploading protected works to the internet.

The decision also details alleged omissions by the plaintiffs’ legal team and misunderstandings that impacted the jury’s decision in the 38-page filing. If the motion is denied, Cox will have an opportunity to appeal the decision. However, the Big Three major labels haven’t commented (individually or in a joint statement through the RIAA) publicly on the matter at the time of writing.

Cox Communications is based out of Atlanta and is owned by Cox Enterprises, a conglomerate founded by one-time presidential candidate James Cox. The company has been providing communication services to its customers for over 50 years. It offers an array of services, including high-speed internet, cable TV, and digital phone, to both businesses and individuals across the United States.

The lawsuit filed against Cox Communications is not the first of its kind. In recent years, the music industry has sued several internet service providers for failing to address copyright violations committed by their users. The industry has been calling for tougher measures against those who facilitate piracy, and this lawsuit against Cox is a clear indication that they are willing to take legal action to protect their intellectual property.

The outcome of this case will set a significant precedent for the music industry and internet service providers. It will determine whether ISPs are liable for the actions of their users and how they must respond to copyright infringement complaints. It is a significant challenge for Cox Communications, who faces a tremendous amount of money in fines and the possibility of setting an unfavorable precedent for the entire industry.

In conclusion, Cox Communications’ motion for remittitur is a significant move in the ongoing legal battle between the music industry and internet service providers. The outcome of this case will have far-reaching consequences for both industries, and it remains to be seen how it will affect the future of copyright law in the United States.

You can find Cox’s filing here.

6 Responses

  1. Ted

    The thing about penalties, regardless of being excessive or not, is that if you don’t commit the infringing act then you don’t have to worry about any fines.

    • Anonymous

      Oh ted the thing about the RIAA is that it’s an extortion racket that does not care becuase it makes it own rules as to what is and is not infringing and you good and damn well know that lol

      Anyone could tell that just by looking at the history spoof said Criminal organization

      I hope cox wins and I hope you the Riaa lays off more people after this.

      • Ted

        This isn’t about the RIAA, and you good and damn well know that lol. It’s about Cox ignoring copyright and usage law. Your ignorance and hatred for governing bodies in the music industry is showing.

        • Anonymous

          “Ignoring usage and copyright law”

          Whatever lol

          If you people had so much faith in your case you would not had got that tech illiterate judge o Grady to deny evidence and now you want to ask questions on jurors torrenting habits to get yourself a better result.

          This from the industry that went to court to say Katy perry did not commit copyright infringement but will sue an isp over the whole of its internet traffic.

        • Anonymous

          but then again I expect nothing less from you vultures you don’t even pay your artist lol

          And since you have done everything from suing dying kids with cancer to now taking a bat to the internet this does not really surprise me.

          • Ted

            It isn’t that hard, but you seem to want to defend against what is right. Follow the rules and there are no problems.