Interference with “Pay-Per-View” Billing Information Prohibited under Section 553 and DMCA

23 11 2008

Defendant Chaffee appealed a Rhode Island District Court decision granting summary judgment to Plaintiff CoxCom, Inc. The District Court held that that Chaffee violated the Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984 Section 553 and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act by selling cable filters to cable customers and marketing them as a technology to avoid being charged for pay-per-view purchases. The filters interfered with signals from the customer’s digital cable box, thereby preventing the cable company from receiving pay-per-view billing information. On appeal, Chaffee argued that summary judgment was improperly granted, that CoxCom lacked standing to sue, and that damages and injunctive relief were improperly granted. The United States court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed the District Court on all issues.

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