‘Strike 3’ Files Record Number of Piracy Lawsuits in 2023

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Strike 3 Holdings continues to raise the bar when it comes to the number of piracy lawsuits filed in U.S. federal courts. This year, the adult entertainment company has already filed a record-breaking 3,465 cases. With potential settlements of hundreds or thousands of dollars each, this can be quite a lucrative business.

justiceToday, it’s common knowledge that IP-addresses and downloads of BitTorrent users can be easily monitored by tracking outfits.

This inherent transparency has fueled thousands of lawsuits against alleged video pirates, both in the U.S. and around the world.

In the United States, Strike 3 Holdings established itself as the absolute frontrunner in recent years. The company produces adult entertainment videos published under the brands ‘Blacked’, ‘Tushy’, and ‘Vixen’ made available from its own websites. If any of these videos are shared on pirate sites, Strike 3 takes action.

These lawsuits can be a lucrative business, especially when targeted defendants opt to swiftly settle the action for a few thousand dollars. The money comes on top of the deterrent factor, which is often cited by copyright holders as one of the main reasons to take action.

Legal pressure can deter the accused pirates and, perhaps, some of their neighbors too. On the whole, however, the copyright infringement problem is rather persistent, which is exemplified by Strike 3’s track record.

Raising the Bar

With the year in its final week, we decided to take a look at the number of file-sharing lawsuits filed in the United States in 2023. The data shows that Strike 3 Holdings has set a new record yet again.

strike 3 cases

From January 1 to today, Strike 3 submitted 3,465 complaints in various courts around the U.S., targeting “John Doe” subscribers. This is a new milestone; never before has a copyright holder filed this many lawsuits against alleged file-sharers in a single year.

For comparison, in 2017 all rightsholders combined filed 1,019 file-sharing cases. In the following years, this number increased mostly thanks to Strike 3, which set the previous record of 2,878 in 2022.


Strike 3 filed its first case in 2017 and since then has submitted over 12,500 complaints at federal courts.

Strike 3 lawsuits filed per year

stroke 3 lawsuits

Strike 3 is currently responsible for most legal action against file-sharers in the United States. Other independent movie studios also file piracy-related lawsuits, but these are limited to a few dozen at most.

With this level of workload, it’s no surprise that most cases are resolved relatively swiftly. Of all lawsuits filed in the first half of the year, more than 2,000 have already been closed; that’s more than half. This happens when the parties reach an out-of-court settlement or if Strike 3 drops a complaint for other reasons.

Trial Canceled

Earlier this year there was some ‘excitement’ when one of Strike 3’s lawsuits appeared to be headed to trial. That was canceled after the adult entertainment company and the defendant settled their differences at the eleventh hour.

There was no clear winner in that case, but both sides were ultimately happy with the outcome. According to Strike 3’s attorney Christian Waugh, the goal of these cases isn’t to damage individual defendants. The company wants to protect its rights.

“The point of my client’s litigation is not personal or to harm any defendant, it is to protect its rights under the Copyright Act, which has been done in this case,” Waugh told us at the time.

Courts have also issued judgments in these cases in the past. This has resulted in a windfall for Strike 3 in some cases but, when Strike 3 filed a lawsuit against a 70+-year-old retired police officer, the tables were turned.

Overall, however, it seems likely that there’s a financial benefit to Strike 3’s rights protection efforts. If the lawsuits generated losses, they probably wouldn’t file thousands of complaints every year.


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