RealNetworks and movie studios settle DVD lawsuit

RealNetworks will pay $4.5 million and drop its appeal of a court order barring sales of its DVD-copying software to settle a lawsuit by Walt Disney and other Hollywood movie studios claiming the technology violates copyright-protection laws.

RealNetworks also will refund about 2,700 customers who bought RealDVD, a $30 software program that allows users to save one back-up copy of a movie to a computer hard drive, according to an emailed statement.

"We are please to put this litigation behind us," Bob Kimball, acting Chief Executive Officer for RealNetworks, said in the statement. "Until this dispute, Real had always enjoyed a productive working relationship with Hollywood. With this litigation resolved, I hope we can find mutually beneficial ways to use Real technology to bring Hollywood’s great work to consumers."

US District Judge Marilyn Patel in San Francisco ruled in August that RealDVD circumvents copyright-protection laws and granted movie studios’ request for an order permanently banning the product’s sale.