A California judge has granted TrillerNet’s motion for a default judgment against online entities that illegally pirated an April Triller Fight Club boxing match between Jake Paul and Ben Askren and profited from the stolen content.
Judge R. Gary Klausner of the U.S. District Court Central District of California granted the motion for default judgment against Matthew P. Space and Eclipt Gaming, defendants named in TrillerNet’s April 23 complaint.
TrillerNet is a global AI-enabled app that allows users to create and distribute video content. In April of this year, TrillerNet launched Triller Fight Club, a new concept in combat sports and entertainment, mixing bouts between boxers and fighters from other disciplines, such as MMA, with top-tier music entertainment.
The April 17 Paul-Askren event featured Justin Bieber and the Black Keys along with commentary by Snoop Dogg, a Triller Fight Club investor.
Triller Fight Club was launched by Triller co-owners Ryan Kavanaugh and Bobby Sarnevesht to disrupt the centuries-old sport of boxing and engage a new generation of fans. It also serves as a promotional tool for the Triller app, which has surged in popularity around the world.
When a court grants a motion for summary judgment, it means that the petitioner has demonstrated that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact of the case, and that they are entitled to judgment as a matter of law. When a motion for summary judgment is granted, it means that the case will bypass a trial.
“We are pleased to have the court stand with Fight Club and, more importantly, send a shot over the bow of anyone who seeks to infringe on the lawful rights of artists and the platforms that support them,” Mahi de Silva, TrillerNet’s Chief Executive Officer, said in a statement.
Triller charged $49.99 for the pay-per-view event and estimates upward of 4 million viewers watched the event illegally through pirated streams. Further, the online entities that pirated the streams sold advertising and sponsorship against it, enriching themselves from the stolen Triller content.
On May 10, TrillerNet launched a second suit, this time against the H3 Podcast, a video podcast produced by Ethan Klein, which pirated the Paul-Askew fight. Rather than move toward a settlement, Klein launched a series of personalized and slanderous online attacks at Kavanaugh, including the creation of videos, launching a website that compares Kavanaugh to a disgraced Hollywood figure and urging and instructing his many followers to assault Kavanaugh’s online properties, including his Wikipedia page, his Instagram feed, etc.
This has led Kavanaugh to sue Klein for defamation. Kavanaugh wrote about his reasons for filing the second lawsuit in an article for C-Suite Quarterly.
“One malignant internet personality with a large following—the equivalent of an angry child with a loaded gun—can cause disproportionate harm to anyone, using lies, slander, and SEO, and suffer few if any consequences,” Kavanaugh wrote. “What has happened to me could happen to any person or business if a disturbed individual who espouses racist, homophobic, and other offensive views musters a large, obedient social media following and attacks.”
Kavanaugh added, “Hopefully this case will not only stop Klein but serve as a deterrent for others who use social media to harm those who do not deserve it and help set a precedent that this type of behavior cannot be tolerated.”