Kazaa Ruled Illegal, Ordered To Filter Copyrighted Material

Kazaa, a file swapping network which is heavily used for swapping illegal song files and movies, was ruled illegal by the Federal Court of Australia Monday. The suit, filed by Universal Music Australia against Sharman License Holdings, the operator of Kazaa, found that Sharman has infringed upon the copyright of sound recording holders, and ordered that the companies involved be restrained from allowing Australian Kazaa users to violate copyrights. In a lengthy summary, Judge J. Wilcox ordered that Kazaa upgrade its file sharing system to include non-optional keyword filtering technology to exclude copyrighted works, that all future versions of the software must include the filtering, and that "maximum pressure" be applied to have users upgrade their software. The case found that in addition to Sharman that LEF Interactive Pty Ltd, Nicola Anne Hemming, Altnet Inc., Woodland Hills-based Brilliant Digital Entertainment, and Kevin Glen Bermeister had infringed upon the copyrights of music holders.