Triller Fight Club announced on Monday, April 26 that it’s pursuing a $100 million lawsuit against several YouTubers and other websites for illegally streaming the Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren fight on April 17.
Illegal streams can be found for almost any event that’s only available on network TV or behind a paywall, and Triller’s latest Jake Paul fight on April 17 was no different.
For those who didn’t want to pay to watch the fight at home, a number of sites and even channels on YouTube were there to provide a free pirate stream, and now Triller is coming after those it thinks are responsible.
In a statement, Ryan Kavanaugh, co-controlling shareholder of Triller said it was “shocking” that the event was allegedly rebroadcast incredibly easily by all of the named defendants, most of whom used YouTube to do it.
“It’s shocking to think a theft so grand can be done so blatantly and brazenly and with no remorse. There is zero difference between what they did and walking into a market stealing tons of a product and selling it at a discount in the parking lot,” Kavanaugh wrote. “It’s neither civilly nor criminally any different, and we are prosecuting to the fullest extent of the law.”
According to Triller, there were more than 2 million illegal streams rebroadcasting the Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren fight without permission, amounting to “hundreds of millions of dollars” in lost revenue.
“The good news is they [defendants] are not protected by VPN masking or other firewalls as their activities are criminal and grand theft,” Kavanaugh added. “So we will ultimately find them and prevail not just for us but for content creators in general.”
Among the defendants named are sites like Online2Livestream, Crackstreamslive, Sports-Today, and others, including a YouTube channel known cryptically only as “Mike,” which brazenly streamed the fight live right on YouTube as it was live.
According to court documents, Triller is seeking in excess of $100 million from the sites and channels its names in the suit for lost revenue from the fight. Stick with Dexerto for all the latest details on this developing story as they happen.
However, on May 3, Triller announced that it is granting one month amnesty to viewers who pirated the content, allowing them to pay the original $49.99 price before June 1.
“We encourage anyone who pirated the event to visit the site before June 1, pay their $49.99 and receive a full and complete release from Triller to avoid further action,” Triller’s Head of Piracy, Matt St. Claire, stated. “We are taking this position because it is outright theft. It is no different than walking into a store and stealing a video game off the shelf. In the case of the offending sites, it’s worse, because they also then resold it to many people, illegally profiting from work they do not own.”