One of the operators of Doctor Who Media — one of the oldest, most respected Doctor Who fansites — had reps from the Federation Against Copyright Theft (who produce the awful "You Wouldn't Steal a Car" ads) and the BBC thunder at his door and tell him he'd be served with a warrant if he didn't shut down the site immediately and transfer his domain to FACT.
Doctor Who Media has featured fannish reconstruction of the lost Doctor Who episodes, and had hewed to a code of conduct that prohibited posting links to leaked episodes.
But yesterday, following a visit by representatives from the BBC and Federation Against Copyright Theft, the site's operator took the decision to shut down the site for good.
"I had a knock at the door and a couple of guys were there. One from FACT and one from BBCWW [BBC Worldwide]. The FACT guy basically explained what the issue was, said that he was there to give a cease and desist and wanted the domain transferred," the site's operator informs TorrentFreak.
With threats of executing an official search warrant and taking the matter to court if terms could not be reached, there was never any question of embarking on a losing battle. With the user database secured, an agreement was quickly reached to close down the site and transfer the domain.
Interestingly, however, the domain name will not be going to FACT as is usually the case. Doctor Who Media's operator told TF that it will be transferred to the BBC as there are trademark issues involved.
"DWM may have been a major factor of my life for the past few years, but I wasn't going to let it ruin me, so I agreed, signed, the guy wrote down his mobile number in case there were any issues and then they went. They were about as nice as you could expect given the situation. It's only a job after all," he concludes.
(Image: Dalek stencil, Kylaborg, CC-BY)