Merlin Sues LimeWire, Seeking at Least $5 Million
Merlin Sues LimeWire, Seeking at Least $5 Million

The legal case against P2P service LimeWire is now spilling over into the broader digital ecosystem. CBS Interactive and CNET were both named in a lawsuit brought by film and music rights holders alleging they were the "main distributor" of LimeWire software.

The suit was filed by Alki David, a film producer and founder of FilmOn.com, along with several artists, including Detron Bendross of 2 Live Crew, Rome, Diamond Blue of Pretty Ricky, Trisco Smith from Force MDs and Coldhard representing Crucial Conflict.

"CBS Interactive and CNET have acted as the main distributor of LimeWire software and have promoted this and other P2P systems to profit from wide-scale copyright infringement," reads a statement send to Billboard.biz today. The group alleges that more than 220 million copies of LimeWire software were downloaded from CNET And CBS Interactive websites since 2008, representing 95% of the total copies distributed. The suit also says the company's websites also provided access to other P2P software, such as FrostWire.

LimeWire LLC and Lime Group LLC are both also named as defendants.

A statement from CBS Interactive sent to Billboard.biz late Wednesday afternoon reads: "CBS and a host of other media companies were awarded a court ordered injunction against one of Alki David's companies last year with respect to that company's improper use of copyrighted content. This latest move by Mr. David is a desperate attempt to distract copyright holders like us from continuing our rightful claims. His lawsuit against CBS affiliates is riddled with inaccuracies, and we are confident that we will prevail, just as we did in the injunction hearing involving his company."

LimeWire has already been found liable for copyright infringement in the music industry's ongoing case against it. That case is now it the damages phase, which began yesterday. The RIAA claims the penalty should be more than $1 billion. LimeWire shut down last October after the judge in the case ordered an injunction against it.

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