Oscar-nominated films being traded.

The Motion Picture Assn. of America filed a third round of lawsuits today (Feb. 24) aimed at curbing online piracy of films.

In a telephone conference today (Feb. 24), John G. Malcolm, MPAA senior VP/director of worldwide anti-piracy operations, said the civil suits name an unspecified number of "John Does" who have illegally uploaded or downloaded pirated films. Malcolm said some of the individuals named uploaded or downloaded one film, while others are cited for multiple illegal activities.

The announcement was timed to take advantage of the buzz surrounding Sunday's Academy Awards telecast. Malcolm said a number of films nominated for Oscars are being illegally traded online, including "Sideways," "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "The Incredibles."

Malcolm further stated that the MPAA will not disclose how many future rounds of lawsuits may be coming. "We are sending a message that if you do engage in this activity, there is a chance we will get you the next time around," he said.

The MPAA's first two rounds of anti-piracy lawsuits were filed Dec. 14, 2004, and Feb. 10 of this year.

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