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Niece Waidhofer, Ryuu Lavitz, and OMGcosplay have dropped their lawsuit against Cloudflare. The creators of OnlyFans accused the CDN provider of facilitating access to the photos that leaked from the now defunct Thothub website. The reason for the dismissal is unknown, but recent legal developments may have played a role.
Last year, the Texas-based model Deniece Waidhofer Thothub sued for copyright infringement after users of the site posted several of his “exclusive” photos.
Shortly after the complaint was filed in federal court, Thothub went offline. This prompted Waidhofer to shift priorities.
In an amended complaint, Waidhofer focused on third-party services such as Cloudflare. At the same time, the other creators of OnlyFans Ryu lavitz and Margaret McGhee, better known as OMGcosplay, joined the trial seeking retaliation.
Cloudflare as a hacking facilitator?
The trio accused Cloudflare of direct and contributory copyright infringement. They claimed that the company made copies of their copyrighted works on its servers and purposely marketed its service to pirate sites such as Thothub.
Cloudflare clearly disagreed with these allegations and asked the court to dismiss these allegations. A few weeks ago, U.S. District Court Judge Fernando M. Olguin ruled on the case with a mixed order.
Justice Olguin concluded that the direct copyright infringement claim was unfounded. Even though Cloudflare temporarily stored the infringing material, there was no evidence that the company had done any willful acts that caused the infringing activity.
The creators of OnlyFans were allowed to modify their complaint with additional evidence. Contributory copyright infringement claims also survived the motion to dismiss, meaning the case could go to trial. However, a new filing shows that this will not happen.
A few days ago, the models informed the court that all remaining claims against Cloudflare have been dropped, meaning the case is closed.
“Plaintiffs Deniece Waidhofer, Margaret McGehee and Ryuu Lavitz, LLC and their attorneys of record notify that the remaining claims in this action are hereby dismissed without prejudice,” the record reads.
In addition to dropping the claims against Cloudflare, the creators of OnlyFans also dismissed their claims against the other defendants. This includes the MultiMedia advertising company, also known as Chaturbate, which has been actively used by Thothub in the past.
There is no other information as to why the case was closed. TorrentFreak’s request for comment remains unanswered from plaintiffs’ counsel. The Cloudflare press office did not respond to our request either.
Without further details, we can only speculate on what happened. One option is for the parties to settle the matter amicably. When this happens, the details of the deal are usually kept out of the public eye.
A recent court ruling in a similar piracy liability action may also have played a role. A week before the models dismissed their lawsuit, a California federal court ruled that Cloudflare was not liable for any copyright infringement.
In that case, Judge Vince Chhabria found that neither Cloudflare’s CDN service nor its IP address obfuscation system contributed significantly to the alleged copyright infringements of its clients.