Porn Site Loses Appeal to Enjoin Google Results
(CN) - The soft-core porn website Perfect 10 failed to show that Google's search engine caused its looming bankruptcy by offering the site's pictures of nude women for free, the 9th Circuit ruled Wednesday.
The federal appeals court in Pasadena rejected Perfect 10's request for a preliminary injunction in an ongoing battle with Google over alleged copyright infringements, finding that the website could not show it had or would suffer irreparable harm.
Perfect 10 claimed in California's Central District Court that Google's web crawler software had destroyed its business model because it makes thumbnails of Perfect 10's images available without a subscription.
The website argued that web crawler and other free Google services have left it "very close to bankruptcy" and have resulted "in over $50 million in losses from 1996 to 2007," according to the ruling.
U.S. District Judge A. Howard Matz refused to grant the injunction, and a three-judge panel of 9th Circuit judges unanimously affirmed.
The panel found that Perfect 10 had failed to "submit a statement from even a single former subscriber who ceased paying for Perfect 10's service because of the content freely available via Google." Nor had it offered evidence that it was in sound financial shape before the alleged infringements, according to the panel.
"While being forced into bankruptcy qualifies as a form of irreparable harm, Perfect 10 has not established that the requested injunction would forestall that fate," Judge Sandra Ikuta wrote for the court.
"Perfect 10 has not shown a sufficient causal connection between irreparable harm to Perfect 10's business and Google's operation of its search engine," she added.