Film and TV studios sue over illegal downloads in Ireland
Seven major film and TV studios have brought a legal action aimed at stopping allegedly "massive" illegal downloading of films and other products.
The studios, all members of the Motion Picture Association, believe up to 1.3 million people here may be involved in illegally accessing their films via various websites.
The studios are 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Disney Enterprises, Universal Studios, Sony Pictures Television and Columbia Pictures and their case is supported by independent distributors and filmmakers in Ireland.
Their proceedings are against eight internet service providers (ISPs): Eircom, Sky Ireland, Vodafone Ireland, Virgin Media Ireland, Three Ireland, Digiweb, Imagine Telecommunications and Magnet Networks.
The action, to be fast-tracked by the Commercial Court, is aimed at having the ISPs block or disable access by subscribers to three "target" websites, known as "streaming" websites - movie4k.to, primewire.ag and the website currently located at onwatchseries.to.
In court documents, it is claimed the activities of the websites are having a detrimental effect on the studios, the film industry here and independent producers and distributors.
Mr Justice Brian McGovern agreed to fast-track the case and returned the matter for further directions on February 27.