Righthaven Fails To Show Up In Court As Ordered… When Confronted Says It Got Confused Over The Date

from the a-study-in-incompetence dept

As you may recall, when the federal district court in Nevada granted Marc Randazza’s request to turn Righthaven’s assets over to a receiver, for the sake of using them to satisfy the court ordered attorneys’ fees in the Hoehn case, the court also ordered — pretty damn clearly — that Righthaven’s principles, Steve Gibson and Raisha “Drizzle” Y. Gibson, appear in court on January 5th. Already, we knew that Righthaven had failed — as required by the court — to produce certain documents a week prior to this hearing (for which Randazza has asked the court to declare Righthaven in contempt). You may notice that the date on the calendar is now January 6th.

It’s one thing to ignore opposing counsel. It’s another to ignore multiple direct court orders, including one to appear in court. But… neither Gibson showed up in court yesterday. Nor did Righthaven’s main lawyer: Shawn Mangano. According to Randazza, the judge then called Mangano who claimed that he “thought it was tomorrow” (but did not explain the failure to deliver the required documents).

This is pretty amazing. We’ve had people in our comments repeatedly asking about the January 5th deadline. If a bunch of our commenters can keep the date straight, can’t the lawyer for the company being dragged into court? As I said, Righthaven’s ability to do exactly the wrong thing at nearly every opportunity is stunning. And every time we think we can’t be surprised any more, something like this happens. This is the most amazing study in incompetence we’ve ever seen. This is a company that failed to properly secure the copyrights it was suing over, chose not to use the DMCA’s takedown procedures, often targeted questionable cases of infringement, sued people over clear fair use situations, used a completely bogus demand for domain names in the lawsuits it filed, has been accused of theunauthorized practice of law in multiple states, failed to list Stephens Media as an interested party as required by Nevada law (for which it was sanctioned), failed to file many documents on time, missed deadlines for certain important filings, failed to pay attorneys’ fees owed, lost cases due not just to the failure to secure copyright properly but also to missing deadlines, had an appeal thrown out for failing to follow proper procedure… and, has been sued by their own process server for failure to pay its bills. And now this (and I’m probably missing some stuff!).

The judge has set a new hearing date for Monday, January 9th at 9am. I can’t imagine that the Gibsons and Mangano could possibly think they can get away with missing that one, too — but if you had asked, I never would have believed most of the things that Righthaven has done so far would ever happen in real life.

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Comments on “Righthaven Fails To Show Up In Court As Ordered… When Confronted Says It Got Confused Over The Date”

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64 Comments
btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: disrespect

> I have to say, after all that Righthaven has
> done, I’m a little surprised that the Judge
> hasn’t called them in contempt.

If I was that judge, I’d have issued a bench warrant to the sheriff for the arrest of the Righthaven CEO/president and the company’s chief counsel.

Let them cool their heels in the county jail over the weekend and see if their memory for court dates starts to improve.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

He’s way past being fair and they’ve already been handed enough rope to hang themselves multiple times and indeed have done so.

This judge is being like a doting uncle with a reputation for sternness but desperately trying to avoid actually being stern with pizzle,drizzle and mango.

Violated (profile) says:

Schedule

All I can say is that when Andrew Crossley of ACS:Law was going down at least he was nice/wise enough to keep to the scheduled appointments.

I don’t know what the people behind Righthaven are thinking when this lack of an organized schedule not only got them into this mess in the first place but this policy will not win them any favours when it comes to sorting out their finances.

He should also keep in mind that the Judge has many other options should he be found to be uncooperative. I expect currently the Judge just thinks he is an idiot and needs a push down the right path.

anonymous says:

Righthaven were ok whilst they were able to extort money out of people using threats of court action and massive fines. now they are on the receiving end of court actions, which they (and many other law firms etc) richly deserve, they dont seem to have a clue how to deal with it. hopefully, this whole escapade will end extremely badly for them and their associates!

DannyB (profile) says:

Amazing study in incompetence

> This is the most amazing study in incompetence we’ve ever seen.

I beg to diff.

For those of us who have been watching SCO for nearly nine years now (anniversary on March 6, 2012), Righthaven doesn’t hold a candle to SCO’s nor SCO’s lawyers’ incompetence.

Never attribute to incompetence what can be adequately explained by malice — when intellectual property is involved.

While I admire Righthaven’s attempts at incompetence, please don’t suggest it is more amazing than SCO’s incompetence.

V (profile) says:

Time to put them down...

Hasn’t this saga gone on long enough? Why aren’t the lawyers in this firm held in contempt and put into jail? If they were in a nice, warm jail cell and then summmoned to court by officers on their trial date, I’m quite sure they would be there.

They’ve already made a mockery of the justice system with their gross misinterpretations of the law, their bypassing of existing law and their cloak and dagger tactics of hiding important facts from the judges.

Think of all of the people’s lives and businesses that have been ruined because of them…. and now… they beg for mercy…. for… understanding?

Ironic.

DannyB (profile) says:

Re: Time to put them down...

> Hasn’t this saga gone on long enough?
> Why aren’t the lawyers in this firm held in contempt and put into jail?
> They’ve already made a mockery of the justice system . . .
> Think of all of the people’s lives and businesses that have been ruined because of them . . .

Those of us following SCO were asking the same questions and making the same comments years ago. SCO has truly been an education in how broken the US court system really is. And if you think that is bad, you haven’t seen the bankruptcy court system yet. SCO has been in bankruptcy “reorganization” since Sept 2007. The whole thing reeks to high heaven.

CD (profile) says:

LLC

Good thing Righthaven is an LLC and not a Corporation. Otherwise, since the Gov thinks corporations are people, the court could issue a WARRANT for Righthaven.

Then all we have to do is wait for Righthaven to be caught speeding. Or maybe they’d use Dog Chapman for bail bond since they cannot pay fees ordered by court and we see them running scared on A&E.

CD (profile) says:

Re: Re: LLC

I always thought it was Company, but your post made me second guess myself. So I googled “LLC”. I don’t know which is more credible… Wikipedia or a Government run agency, so I put both. They both say the same thing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Limited_liability_company

http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/article/0,,id=98277,00.html

I even googled Limited Liability Corporation and all the links were pointing to Limited Liability Company.

However, your comment pointed me to the similarities between the two, so I’m sure it could be overlooked and then treated as a Corporation anyway.

ken (profile) says:

Being a day late or not showing up at all is the norm with Righthaven not the exception. They always have the same lame excuses. Just like they abused copyright law they are now abusing the deference that Judges tend to give lawyers.

If they do not show up again someone may want to check to make sure Steve and “Drizzle” Gibson have not skipped town or the country.

Adam Wasserman (profile) says:

FUDBuster

Is FUDBuster still around?

Do you still feel that your prior (http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110423/01033814013/another-judge-slams-righthaven-chilling-effects-that-do-nothing-to-advance-copyright-acts-purpose.shtml) interpretation of the law is the valid one in light of the fact that federal judges disagree with you?

ChronoFish (profile) says:

It's not incompetence

I disagree that it’s incompetence. I think they fully know the law and know how to stall. In theory they could have been held in contempt of court….but they haven’t been.

This is like watching a dance between the White House and Congress. From the outside it’s bewildering. From the inside it’s a well orchestrated chess match.

Clearly RightHaven is not going to win, but at this point they are playing not to loose. So all they have left is their king. They’ll be moving that sucker all over the board hoping for a stale-mate.

Maybe they would rather go to jail than hand over documents or pay monies. Don’t be surprised to find documents “accidentally” destroyed.

-CF

hmm (profile) says:

Re: It's not incompetence

The judge needs to make an order expressing forbidding the destruction of any and all data related to righthaven by any party to prevent this.

That way its direct contempt of court if anything goes missing “accidentally”.

It’s possible for a judge to issue such an order retroactively btw to cover all records since this began.

BTW I now own the copyright/patent/other stupid IP method for “The Righthaven Show”.

Its a sitcom about 3 lawyers who don’t have a fucking clue what they’re doing and they get into all sorts of hilarious shennanigans whilst being given “guidance” from the big boss above…..

Pitabred (profile) says:

Re: It's not incompetence

I dunno… all of the absolutely stupid errors here seem like they’re first year student type errors, and the mistakes of someone who’s scared and doesn’t know what to do so they’re just ignoring things and hoping they’ll go away.

I don’t think it’s malicious, but I do think it’s a case of Righthaven being in way over their head and not knowing what to do.

Conscientiouspirate (profile) says:

Excuses

I think I recognize this sort of behavior. The story on Monday will be about this note:

“To my judge.
This is Shawn’s mom. Shawn can’t come to court today because he has the flu. He mailed the paper he was supposed to send you, but I saw that the neighbors dog attacked the mailman and ate the homework, and now I’m too sick to do it again.
(sign)
My mom.”

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