"MusicCity (also known as StreamCast Networks) has failed to pay any amounts due to Kazaa BV under the parties' license agreement," Kazaa BV founder Niklas Zennstrom wrote in an e-mail to CNET News.com. "As a result of MusicCity's breach, Kazaa BV did not provide version 1.5 to MusicCity. Kazaa has also terminated MusicCity's license."
The situation would remain tense between both sides, until StreamCast networks opened a new offensive
in the ongoing Sharman Networks/StreamCast Networks conflict. In January of this year, StreamCast filed a lawsuit against Skype, Sharman, and several other StreamCast affiliates under the civil portion of the RICO Act. Included in this lawsuit is Kevin Bermeister, CEO of Altnet. It is believed that StreamCast’s motivation for this lawsuit stems from Morpheu’s 2002 removal from the FastTrack network.
In this ongoing war of attrition between file-sharing developers, Altnet has decided to strike back. Showing that its 2003 words are more than a paper tiger, Altnet has sued StreamCast networks for violations of its “True Names” patents. In a press release issued today, Altnet’s Michael Speck, the enforcer of Altnet’s copyright issues, announced a new theater of operation. Specifically, Altnet filed a lawsuit in Central California District Court against StreamCast Networks, Inc., and its chief executive, Michael Weiss for apparent violations of Altnet’s “True Names” patent (numbers 5,978791 – 6,415,280 – 6,928,442.)
Michael Speck, manager of enforcement programs said, “StreamCast have been given ample opportunity by all to mend their ways. Their determination to continue distributing infringing material has left us with no choice but to prosecute them.”
Because of its perceived defiance, Morpheus has become one of the lone wolfs in the file-sharing world (Ares, eMule fall into this category as well.) Although criticized by some in the P2P community, it has been one of few commercial developers to resist the pressure to capitulate to the entertainment industry (LimeWire also potentially falls into this category.) Does this mean StreamCast’s position is that of absolute pro-piracy, or just represents the will to see things beyond the view of the entertainment industry? Altnet, in its enhanced stature
following June’s settlement, feels the former applies.
“StreamCast’s brazen patent piracy underpins its massive copyright infringement business. They are simply running out of opportunities to go legal.” said Michael Speck.
StreamCast Networks was unavailable for comment during publication.