The movie studios sued Valence Media in February claiming that the company's TorrentSpy website aids in the pirating of movies online. As it goes with any file-sharing network or service, TorrentSpy isn't so much accused of encouraging or permitting pirates but of helping them by way of turning a blind eye. Valence tried to dismiss the suit in March, but the motion was denied. However, Hollywood might be satisfied if TorrentSpy simply ceased indexing pirated files and barred individuals who are guilty of regularly sharing illegal materials.
Well, now Valence Media has launched a counter-attack. The company sued the MPAA on Wednesday for hiring a hacker to obtain information from Valence's computers. The hacker, who is claimed to have been paid $15,000, broke in and collected a large amount of evidence to use against Valence in the original suit (it is unclear from the AP story if the hack was done before or after the original suit was filed). The MPAA is denying the accusations and the hacker has not been identified in the lawsuit, but it was stated that the Hollywood trade group only guaranteed the payment if the information they received was useful.
My guess is that the hacker was not actually paid and so he anonymously ratted the MPAA out to Valence. Whatever the specifics, though, one thing is obvious: The MPAA is a very hypocritical organization if the allegations are true. Can we please just get rid of Dan Glickman and the rest of them? They should be paying more attention to the quality of their industry's product these days than spending so much money on the fight against piracy. I don't mean that I support the criminals, really, but it has to be clear to Glickman now that for every pirate or piracy aid they put away or shut down, new ones pop up in their place. I'm sure there must be more important issues that Hollywood should be concerned with these days.