Pop music star Prince, known for hits such as “1999” and “When Doves Cry,” has dropped a copyright infringement lawsuit against 22 bloggers and Facebook users only weeks after he filed it.

The artist had sought $1 million in damages from each defendant. He claimed the defendants had directed others to sites where they could find bootleg recordings of his performances.

Most of the defendants were identified only by online names such as “World of Bootleg.” Causes of action included both copyright infringement and contributory copyright infringement.

According to the complaint, the defendants

“…typically publish posts that list all the songs performed at a certain Prince live show and then provide a link to a file-sharing service where unauthorized copies of the performance can be downloaded.”

Some of the sites were general-purpose bootleg sites, offering a wide range of intellectual property for illegal downloads. Some of the sites were fan pages.

The suit was dropped “without prejudice,” meaning that Prince can revive the claims at a later date.

Online piracy is continuing to grow, despite the availability of legal downloads and streaming from sources like iTunes, Pandora, and Netflix.

Most anti-piracy cases are civil copyright lawsuits brought by artists like Prince, entertainment and software companies, and trade groups like the Motion Picture Association of America.

An effective anti-piracy program can both deter infringers and potentially recover significant damages for a copyright owner.

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If your company is dealing with widespread copyright infringement, ideas or your brand, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney in Pasadena, California and I am a Rising Star as rated by Super Lawyers Magazine.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities. Connect with me on Google +