With dozens of millions of viewers around the world The Walking Dead is one of the most popular TV-series around. The series just ended its fifth season and is scheduled to return next fall.
In common with most popular shows, The Walking Dead has a dedicated group of followers who’re constantly on the lookout for spoilers and possible directions the series may take.
One of the sources that has done well on this front is “The Spoiling Dead Fans.” The people behind the site have posted inside information and many spoiler videos in recent weeks, helped by unnamed sources.
“There is no amount of ‘thanks’ that we could ever give to our sources for everything they have done. We truly appreciate every bit of info they have shared with us throughout the seasons,” the group wrote on Facebook this week.
While the fan community does generate plenty of buzz for The Walking Dead, AMC is not happy with all material they publish.
In February the spoiler group published a 32 second sneak peek of the episode “From A Friend,” which was uploaded to Vimeo. As it contained video that had yet to air on TV it was quickly pulled offline by AMC.
“AMC diligently enforces its rights in and to The Walking Dead in all forms of media and rightfully takes its responsibility for the protection of The Walking Dead very seriously,” the company informed Vimeo.
And AMC didn’t stop at a takedown notice. A few days later it went to court demanding a subpoena to obtain the personal details of the alleged infringer from Vimeo, which was granted (pdf).
When presented with the subpoena, Vimeo has few other options than to hand over all the information they have on the account holder. This includes the associated email and IP-addresses.
Whether the information will be sufficient to pinpoint an actual person is unknown. AMC states that it wants to protect its rights, but whether that will be achieved via legal action remains to be seen. AMC is probably most interested in finding out who the sources for the actual leaked footage and spoilers are.
For now, The Spoiling Dead Fans remain active through their own website and social media accounts, spoiling their way to the next season.