Sfdoubletake's Blog

Louis Vuitton awarded $32M from infringing Fremont ISP | September 14, 2009

Last week Steven Chen and his two Fremont based hosting solutions were ruled to pay a hefty $32 million in damages against Louis Vuitton for harboring LV replica e-commerce sites. The two hosts Akanoc and Managed Solutions Group both are owned by Chen and not protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act according to the ruling. Louis Vuitton was able to prove that the hosting companies were “aiding” in infringing the Louis Vuitton trademarks, seeing as most of the companies customers participate in the sale of copyright infringing material. They also claimed that the company was fully aware of the infringing sites and Louis Vuitton had tried to contact them a year prior to the lawsuit.
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The sites infringing included Louis-Vuitton-bags.org, Luxury2us.com, Handbagsell.com. Most of which come up with bad hostnames or are not hosted at all. Handbagsell.com however is still up and running, and clearly doesn’t display that their products are replicas. A quick google search even came up with people asking online whether the site’s products are real, so there is confusion out there. For some this is a great step for Fashion in the copyright direction, for others this a step back on the DMCA’s intended use.

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-Zain Ali

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