Can The DMCA Subpoena Provision Be Used For Good?

from the wrong-question dept

Jeremiah writes “Can my friend, being the rightful copyright owner of the musical works contained within his stolen PC, use the DMCA’s provisions to independently subpoena MSN’s connection records (to obtain the last known IP of his old PC) and the ISP’s customer information to find out where his computer is and recover it?” Interesting story and potential use. For all the evil uses of the DMCA subpoena provision, is this a good one? I’m not a lawyer, so take my comments with that in mind. The DMCA’s subpoena provision is supposed to be used by copyright holders to obtain information in a civil suit. The theft of the computer should be a criminal matter handled by the police – though, the police aren’t always so interested. More to the point, if he really does want to use the DMCA to subpoena the information why not file a John Doe lawsuit and then subpoena the information? The problem isn’t so much the subpoena itself – but that the subpoenas are issued prior to a lawsuit being filed and with little to no judicial oversight. Now, I’m sure some lawyers will come along and tell me I have no idea what I’m talking about. If you know more about the law than I do (lots of you, I’m sure) I’d be interested to hear your thoughts.

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “Can The DMCA Subpoena Provision Be Used For Good?”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...