The founder of Canadian file-sharing search engine isoHunt is “free at last” after settling a years-old lawsuit with the record industry for $66 million. Gary Fung, who launched isoHunt.com in 2003 to allow users to search pirated music, movies and other torrent files, agreed to a consent order with the Supreme Court of British Columbia finding him liable for infringing the copyrights of over two dozen Canadian and international labels.
The court found that isoHunt and Fung were liable for $55 million in damages and an additional $10 million in punitive damages, plus another million in court costs. As part of the settlement, Fung agreed to never be associated with any other service that makes music available without the authorization of music companies. A second consent order agreed to the dismissal of a countersuit filed by Fung against the labels.
“Music companies in Canada stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the fight against illegitimate sites that distribute massive volumes of creative works without compensation to creators,” said Graham Henderson, president & CEO of Music Canada, the trade group for Canadian music companies. “Thousands of Canadian creators, our creative industries, and their employees are directly harmed by these activities. This settlement is a step forward towards providing consumers with a marketplace in which legitimate online music services can thrive.”