Men Com Myvidster v Flava Works, Inc. – 7th Circuit Vacates Injunction

Men Com Myvidster

Myvidster is an aggregator of adult video clips, including many featuring gay men. Visitors to Myvidster can easily watch these videos by following links directly to where they reside on remote servers; additionally, Myvidster allows users to create HTML/Javascript code that can be integrated into other websites to play these clips.

Last July, a federal court granted myVidster operator Marques Rondale Gunter and its website an injunction after Gay Erotica Network complained of copyright infringement. The judge determined that myVidster could not claim safe harbor protections under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act because its investigation and taking down of videos when requested was insufficient. The case quickly went viral online and attracted the interest of prominent tech firms like Google and Facebook; these two also submitted amicus briefs in support of Gunter.

This week, the 7th Circuit court issued its decision in regards to myVidster and its website, finding no admissible evidence that myVidster contributed to Flava Works videos’ transmission when its visitors bookmarked them and clicked through inline links to watch them.

Posner found myVidster could have been held liable for contributory infringement if it encouraged visitors to upload and post Flava Works videos without authorization on the Internet, where they would then become available for public performance via myVidster’s website. But this approach would require a new interpretation of contributory infringement claims in general and thus was ultimately abandoned as unnecessary.