Music company BMG’s $25m legal win over American ISP Cox Communications has been upheld by a federal judge. BMG went after Cox for not doing enough to prevent repeat copyright-infringement by its customers, based on data supplied by anti-piracy firm Rightscorp.

Now Cox’s request for a new trial after the verdict that went against it last December has been knocked back. “This case presents the question of whether a conduit internet service provider may be held liable for the infringing activity of its subscribers,” wrote US District Judge Liam O’Grady in his new ruling. At issue here is not just Cox’s role as the intermediary – the ISP – but the way it implemented its ‘strikes’ regime against customers found to be pirating music. “An ongoing relationship between a defendant and direct infringers presents a potential for culpability quite beyond distribution or design,” ruled O’Grady.

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