MPAA Sues Grandfather For $600k -- While Admitting He Did Nothing Wrong

from the that's-a-problem dept

Ever since the entertainment industry started on their brain-dead, own-foot-shooting campaign of suing their own customers, we've wondered how they can get away with suing people who obviously didn't do the crime, such as parents or grandparents. While the industry would have you believe that it's whoever owns the connection that's guilty, the law would certainly suggest otherwise. Earlier this year, we noted that some parents are finally fighting back and the courts seem sympathetic. However, the entertainment industry still hasn't gotten the message. They also still don't recognize the terrible PR they get with headlines about how they're suing a grandfather who doesn't even like movies for $600,000. In this case, the grandson was responsible -- even if he downloaded movies that he already owned on DVD (3 out of the 4). Also, the article, once again, claims that he's being sued for downloading -- but every lawsuit we've seen hasn't been for downloading, but for uploading by offering to share it -- something that some courts are even questioning as well by noting that just leaving a file open to be shared is not the same thing as actively distributing it. So, to review, we have someone who wasn't involved at all being sued by the movie industry for something he didn't do for possibly distributing some movies, when the evidence doesn't even support whether or not he really did share the movies.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Oliver Wendell Jones, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 12:10pm

    Perfect Opportunity

    Finally, a perfect opportunity for someone to fight back, refuse to pay the "fine" and take it to court.

    In this case I'm sure the MPAA will immediately back down as they have an extremely weak case that they could very easily lose *and* set precedent for future "lawsuits".

    Let's hope someone takes this one on...

     

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  2.  
    identicon
    Joe Me, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 12:43pm

    Re: Perfect Opportunity

    You can sue whomever you want for whatever you want...but maybe tort reform would cause the MPAA to think again about how they approach people.

    They may very well expect to lose this case and others like it, but it could still bode well for them by building a "quiet momentum" to persuade Congress.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Mousky, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 12:52pm

    No Subject Given

    They may not necessarily be guilty, but they could be partially liable. It is all a matter of how the lawsuit is worded. The 'sympathetic' case you cite in no way shows that the "law would certainly suggest otherwise" - you are stretching the truth with the case in Michigan.

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 12:54pm

    No Subject Given

    Frankly I am holding out for someone to sue the MPAA and tear the whole damn thing apart.

    Maybe we should start suing them for low grade quality product being released and price fixing with the movie theatres.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Wayne, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:07pm

    Sued for offering for download

    The story mentions that the files were offered for download. I suspect than P2P programs automatcially "share" files that are downloaded and that the user has to do something not to share the files. In sounds like the kid didn't really know what he was doing so I suspect he didn't even know he was sharing the files after he downloaded them.
    This imporves their case against the kid, but they still have the problem that the person they are suing didn't do anything.

     

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  6.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:14pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    You're saying that the law says it IS okay to go after someone who didn't commit the crime?

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Patrick, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:17pm

    This stupid

    I cant believe they are tryin to hold an old man responsible. Can we get a petition together to force the MPAA to disband?

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Matt, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:26pm

    Re: This stupid

    So if someone shoots a person with my gun (metaphorically), i am responsible?

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    dave, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:35pm

    Re: This stupid

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    petition, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:41pm

    Petition

    Although it MAY never amount to anything. Let's see just how far we can make this go.
    http://www.petitiononline.com/mpaapet1/petition.html

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 1:51pm

    Re: This stupid

    If you leave the gun laying around the house, yes. But if they broke into your house, got into your closet, no.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    jg, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 3:04pm

    Re: This stupid

    Well, no - the gun industry is trying to stop lawsuits attempting to hold the gun manufacturer liable for crimes committed with guns they manufactured. The referenced article is quite clear on that.

    The analogy here: should the MPAA be able to sue Dell when a computer bought from them is used to make illegal downloads?

    I'm not sure whether the poster originally raising the gun analogy was being ironic or not, but states such as California have laws making adults responsible for crimes committed with their guns by minors, if the adult was negligent in their storage precautions.

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    QuantumG, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 4:17pm

    It's about liability..

    Claiming that he isn't liable because his grandson was the one doing it, not him, is about as rediculous as saying that he's not liable if someone cracks their head open on faulty steps in his house because his grandson lives there, not him. He owns the line, he's liable for any copyright infringement performed from that line. And no, it doesn't matter if it wasn't his son but some hackers who broke into his computer; if a burglar breaks into your house and puts his back out trying to lug away your safe, you're still liable. Much like copyright law in general, personal liability is insane and should be abolished.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    bmg, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 7:05pm

    share share share!!!!

    they make PLENTY of money, everyone should keep doing what theyre doing SHARING.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    bmg, Nov 2nd, 2005 @ 7:05pm

    share share share!!!!

    they make PLENTY of money, everyone should keep doing what theyre doing, SHARING.

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Tim, Nov 3rd, 2005 @ 6:05am

    Re: This stupid

    Run a tarpit. Not hard. Then when you get an offensive email, forward it to the FCC to investigate as UCE.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Jim Terwiliger, May 27th, 2008 @ 4:29pm

    Down with MPAA

    Maybe instead of sueing, we should start shooting. One day things will go to far and violence will result. I for one would cheer anyone that does this. Time to show what the poor can do.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 27th, 2008 @ 4:31pm

    Re: Re: This stupid

    Maybe instead of leaving the gun around the house they leave it with the bodies of the corporate whores who protect these rich bastards

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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