First HADOPI Victim Convicted, Not For His Own Infringement, But Because His Wife Downloaded Songs

from the soon-to-be-ex-wife dept

Well, here’s a nice contrast: just when a judge in the US has ruled that users there have no obligation to lock down their wifi connections, a court in France decides the exact opposite. What makes the story even more significant is that the individual concerned is the first person to be convicted under France’s 3-strikes law, generally known as HADOPI.

Not all of the facts of the case have been released, but we do know that he received and apparently ignored the statutory three warnings from HADOPI, and then was summoned to court, where things started to get interesting. As TorrentFreak reports:

the man told the court today that he is incapable of downloading and did not commit the infringements. Supporting his claims he brought into court the person actually responsible for the file-sharing.

That person turned out to be his wife (actually, soon to be ex-wife), who admitted that she had downloaded some Rihanna songs. But as Guillaume Champeau of Numerama pointed out to TorrentFreak, ironically this did not get him off the hook — on the contrary:

“By saying he knew she was downloading infringing content, but didn’t prevent her from doing so, he self-incriminated.”

That’s because under the HADOPI law, it is the owner of the Internet connection who is held responsible for any infringement committed with it, so it’s the husband, not the (ex-)wife who has ended up being fined 150 euros (about $200) for negligence. That’s admittedly less than the 300 euros ($400), with 150 euros suspended, that the French prosecution wanted, and far less than the maximum possible 1,500 euros ($2000) fine. But it’s still a stiff price to pay for something he didn’t do.

Indeed, he seems to have taken the judgment hard: Guillaume Champeau points out that HADOPI’s first victim has now said that he intends to cancel his Internet subscription completely (original story in French). It’s hard to see how this kind of result is going to help the growth of digital music in France, and the whole episode is a neat encapsulation of all that is wrong with HADOPI’s approach.

Moreover, this case must reinforce the view that HADOPI is a colossal waste of money. In two years of existence, HADOPI has sent out 1.15 million first warnings, 102,854 second notices, and 340 “third strikes”. And yet all French government has to show for the 12 million euros it costs to run HADOPI each year is the conviction of one innocent man.

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Comments on “First HADOPI Victim Convicted, Not For His Own Infringement, But Because His Wife Downloaded Songs”

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126 Comments
Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Ex Wife

Are the French more pleasent than the US when it comes to divorces? My first thought when reading this was “why did the soon to be ex wife decide to come in to support this guy?”

Although, perhaps she saw all this coming and decided to come in and proudly announce she was the infringer just so she could laugh her tits off when her ex husband was fined?

Anonymous Coward says:

Moreover, this case must reinforce the view that HADOPI is a colossal waste of money. In two years of existence, HADOPI has sent out 1.15 million first warnings, 102,854 second notices, and 340 “third strikes”. And yet all French government has to show for the 12 million euros it costs to run HADOPI each year is the conviction of one innocent man.

It will do no such thing.
They will look at those figures and claim a factor of ten reduction in piracy after the first warning, and a factor of three hundred for the second, proving the effectiveness of their “education” campaign. Just look at all the piracy it’s stopping! The fact that they’ve only convicted one man means it’s working.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see its budget increased as a result.

gorehound (profile) says:

And I have very high Hopes that once the 6 Strikes Bullshit starts in our Nation We just might see Mr. Normal get mad enough to start Cancelling MAFIAA Content from his home and maybe even Cancel their Internet and move to an ISP who refuses to join in to the mess.
And VPN’s with some Extra Freeware is also a great idea.Just make sure when you access your Finances in any way you use a regular USA DNS to do that.Using one of the Foreign DNS could lead to someone hacking into your important financial stuff.
F-Off Hollywood and your Stooge ISP’s !!! You are going to feel the whip real soon.

And yes HA HA HA HAdopers !!! Millions of French Dollars spent to Convict one man of something he did not do for what around $150 Euros.Hope your French Countrymen frak you up but good.

Trish says:

The copyright holders...

(…)they were the nation, the actual Nation; they were about all of it that was useful, or worth saving, or really respect-worthy, and to subtract them would have been to subtract the Nation and leave behind some dregs, some refuse, in the shape of a king, nobility and gentry, idle, unproductive, acquainted mainly with the arts of wasting and destroying, and of no sort of use or value in any rationally constructed world. (…)

nospacesorspecialcharacters (profile) says:

First Mistake

“but we do know that he received and apparently ignored the statutory three warnings from HADOPI…

…HADOPI’s first victim has now said that he intends to cancel his Internet subscription completely.”

His mistake was not to cancel his account with his current ISP as soon as he received the first letter, then starting a new account with a new ISP. Then doing a little bit of research into a reasonably priced VPN connection.

Quite simple, send a message to the ISPs that they may tolerate the MAFIAA but we won’t and we will take our money elsewhere.

Anonymous Coward says:

“That’s because under the HADOPI law, it is the owner of the Internet connection who is held responsible for any infringement committed with it,”

It’s the way it should be. In the same manner that you are responsible for long distance on your phone or PPV movies ordered on your cable, you should be responsible for your internet connection.

A big round of applause for the French courts getting it right.

Anonymous Coward says:

from what i read, the new person in charge (forgot the name) of Hadopi has already admitted that it is a total waste of time and money and completely disproportionate with the accusation. it only came into being because the wife of that obnoxious, greasy little worm Sarkozy is married to someone in the entertainment industry, even though she cant sing and cant act, just like the majority of the ‘stars’. shame the new person didn’t cancel this case and close the whole thing down before it went to court. i just wonder how the difference between the 24 million euros spent and the 150 euros recovered is going to be explained and condoned. if this is the ‘big victory’ the entertainment industries shout about, they seem to be easily subdued

average_joe (profile) says:

So the guy who negligently and illegally let his wife use his internet connection to break the law is the “victim”? What about the actual victims, you know, the ones who actually had their rights violated? Why no mention of them?

Moreover, this case must reinforce the view that HADOPI is a colossal waste of money. In two years of existence, HADOPI has sent out 1.15 million first warnings, 102,854 second notices, and 340 “third strikes”. And yet all French government has to show for the 12 million euros it costs to run HADOPI each year is the conviction of one innocent man.

Those facts say to me that it’s working quite well. Are you suggesting that unless thousands of people are convicted then it’s not working? I don’t even begin to understand your point. If thousands of people are being educated and not receiving more strikes so that there’s no need to convict them, then it’s working perfectly. Do you honestly think success should be measured by convictions?

And if under the law negligence is not legal, then how in the world is this guy “innocent”? That makes zero sense. He’s not innocent, he’s negligent. This is just silly whining, Glyn. You wouldn’t be happy if there were thousands of convictions, yet you’re whining about just one. And you’re making the intellectually dishonest suggestion that he’s somehow innocent while you admit that what he got convicted of is in fact illegal. Give me a break with the pirate-apologism.

Chris Brand says:

So what did they expect him to do ?

“By saying he knew she was downloading infringing content, but didn?t prevent her from doing so, he self-incriminated.”

So would he have been ok if he’d *tried* to prevent it ? “Listen, dear, I know you really like those songs, but I’ve been getting these letters …”. If not, how on earth do you actually *prevent* somebody in your home from using your Internet connection to infringe ? I guess you put the modem inside a box with a padlock ? Or sit behind them whenever they’re online, waiting to pounce on the mouse and click “cancel” ? I can’t see any way to completely prevent somebody from using my Internet connection to infringe (apart from the one he eventually came up with – cancel it), so what steps would be “good enough” ?

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re:

You apparently don’t get just how stupid that idea is. Your saying just because someone does not understand how to setup their router they should be responsible for others abusing it.

It is kind of like saying you should be responsible for murder because someone picks up your ax that you left out. You should have known better than to leave it sitting outside your shed and so now you should go to jail for murder. Oh, and the murder can then come to court and say “Yup, it was all me, I came and got this guys ax and hacked that girl all up. I was great fun!” He walks and you go to jail. You should have known better!

Ninja (profile) says:

Re:

You know, I just thought about those city wide open wi-fis, the open wi-fis I used on the buses in the US, the open wi-fis I used in the malls, public spaces etc etc etc

I think this is gonna be quite fun to watch. France is gonna see both a huge increase in vpn services and probably a great decrease in the availability of open wi-fis. Welcome to last century, France!

Ruben says:

Re:

Those facts say to me that it’s working quite well. Are you suggesting that unless thousands of people are convicted then it’s not working? I don’t even begin to understand your point. If thousands of people are being educated and not receiving more strikes so that there’s no need to convict them, then it’s working perfectly. Do you honestly think success should be measured by convictions?

I believe that’s exactly what’s being implied. Or at the very least, that this is a massive waste of taxpayer dollars; a bill that should have been footed by the labels and entertainment companies. Mercantilism at its pinnacle.

Once upon a time, rights holders had to enforce their own rights. Now they just bitch and whine that it’s so hard and no one’s doing it for them.

average_joe (profile) says:

Re:

That’s in the U.S.

Glyn notes that the law in France is different: “That’s because under the HADOPI law, it is the owner of the Internet connection who is held responsible for any infringement committed with it, so it’s the husband, not the (ex-)wife who has ended up being fined 150 euros (about $200) for negligence.”

Not sure what your point is.

average_joe (profile) says:

Re:

I’ll agree that it’s mercantilism. I don’t agree that it’s a waste. If you don’t think that certain rights should be enforced, take away those rights. But until then, don’t complain that they’re being enforced. And having the government enforce them in this way makes sense to me. Having the right holder go after an infringer one at a time is not practical.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re:

Give us a break with your obnoxiousness.

Those facts say to me that it’s working quite well.

It is not. The increase they detected in sales on itunes after HADOPI was implemented coincided with an Apple promotion (launch of iPhone if memory serves). Also, they are measuring the decrease of piracy by looking at bittorrent when it is obvious people moved to direct HTTP downloads. And they also ignore that Spotify and the likes have a positive impact on piracy and have absolutely NOTHING to do with HADOPI. You seem to fail to grasp the complexity of it so please don’t comment on what you can’t fathom in your tiny, undeveloped brain.

So the guy who negligently and illegally let his wife use his internet connection to break the law is the “victim”?

Good luck with all the grandpas and grandmas or even regular parents that have no clue on how to control what every1 does with their connections. I’m fairly sure your kids are downloading infringing content just like their friends and you probably don’t have a clue. And I’d love to be there and laugh once you find out. Lucky you that you don’t seem to be French to find out the hard way.

And God your last paragraph is so clueless I don’t even want to comment. Just one conviction? That’s one conviction too much. That damned law should not exist in first place.

Ruben says:

Re:

Well if it’s going to be the case that industry is employing government to enforce their private rights, then the government should get partial ownership or some form of direct compensation(beyond the taxes they pay). You said it yourself, the value is definitely there.

I’m not saying that the rights shouldn’t exist, only that civil infringement should be handled in civil court with private legal counsel.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re:

This article is about how ineffective, absurd, unfair and idiotic is HADOPI. Amusingly, we found one thing the US managed to do it right. Shame on France.

There is no negligent infringement in the U.S. That was a silly theory to begin with. The issue there should have been contributory infringement.

Aside the fact that you are calling the very theory of negligence you supported above silly, how the fuck can you contribute to something you don’t know it’s happening? Are you suggesting that Ford should be liable for what a drug dealer does with their cars? Are you that much of a moron?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

>Are you suggesting that unless thousands of people are convicted then it’s not working?

When you consider that the maximalists like you insist that all the letters sent out or people dragged into settlements are guilty, 90% of the time, there should have been a wave of these letters like the RIAA boasted in the initial months of their campaign.

The government that is presently in place is seriously considering reducing funding to HADOPI, or canning it outright. i.e. The government considers the initiative as grossly inefficient, if not a thorough failure.

But hey – obviously, you must know more than the government of the country that has this law, right? Moral and the law and all that?

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re:

Ok, since you apparently were busy pooping yourself when you read my first comment, I’ll try again to see if you can manage an actual response this time:

Under this system the courts have fined the alledgedly negligent guy for the infringement committed by his wife, who received ZERO fine. Care to try to again explain to me how this system is not batshit crazy?

Anonymous Coward says:

Bloody frogs

“he intends to cancel his Internet subscription completely”

That’s what the French collective wants. Not individually, but as a collective… We don’t need no steenking Internet, no email (which is a dirty word in French–use “couriel”). French is the greatest language in the world (which is why everyone speaks French). There are no wines except those from France–those others are just spoiled grape juice (even though American wines tend to score better in blind tests). etc. etc. etc.

I say let them HADOPI themselves even deeper into global insignificance.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re:

Those long-distance calls are normal operations of a phone. When signing up for a phone plan, you agree to be bound to all charges, unless you choose to dispute them in court.

However, HADOPI is a situation where you are being charged with a crime (whether civil or criminal law, doesn’t really matter at this stage). When you deal with laws, accusations and the courts, you are supposed to only charge the person responsible for the crime! Let’s use your ridiculous analogy. Let’s say I break into your house (right, that’s crime number one, trespassing), and using your landline phone, dial a foreign number and leave very explicit death threats? Assuming this is investigated, the police would have to prove beyond reasonable doubt that it was you who made the call, not me (I am not a lawyer, so I’m not sure whether or not you’d still get stuck with the long distance phone bill).
So why is it the police have to determine who made the abusive phone call, but they don’t have to determine who actually downloaded and infringed on copyrights?

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re:

Shut the fuck up average_joe.
You yourself are infringing right this very moment, with that avatar. As I and others have said before, its from the movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story. So you’re being a hypocrite for lecturing us on copyrights.

Also you’re a monster. In previous articles, you casually used rape to support your argument, when such a reference doesn’t belong. Two of my sisters were raped, so it really pisses me off when I see a guy screaming “Obey Copyright Law, cause of RAPE! Child porn!”

ltlw0lf (profile) says:

Current Internet Broken, Need New Internet

What this shows is that we need an international/non-national internet (in space maybe,) where everyone can connect to it at will and no government has control of it. Sure, they can still jam the signal, but it would cut down on the stupidity. Sure, it would be a lot slower than terrestrial systems, but at least the human rights issues would be solved.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re:

‘Any reasonable person could envisage anything physical in existence used as an offensive weapon.’

Fixed to highlight how absurd that argument is. With a little imagination, anything can be used as a weapon, so if you were going off of a ‘well it can be used as a weapon’ line of thinking, you’d have to apply it to everything.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

That is exactly what will reinforce the effort: People moving off the subscription and lower sales of physical goods are their evidence of piracy, so by going this far you are enforcing their temper tantrum. In reality there is nothing to do, but wait ’till the industries are crashing and fight their unprportional ideas as best you can ’till then. Time is on the side of reason.

Rick Smith (profile) says:

Re:

Your problem is that you are comparing apples to oranges.

I think everyone agrees that the owner of the internet connection is responsible for the ‘charges’, as your analogy. But this was not a fully formed analogy.

Where you fail is not realizing that an infringement is beyond the charges associated with using the phone (or internet connection) and therefore not the responsibility of the owner but the person which performs the action.

Let?s get the analogy framed in the proper context.

Using your situation, you own a phone and someone (in your family) uses it to call a television station (out of your local area so you have your long distance charge) during a live telecast and make all kinds of slanderous statements against a politician. You should expect someone to show up at your door since you are the owner of the phone and the person of record that pays for the item, but should you also expect to be sued for it? You certainly did not make the call or say the false accusations.

Or how about you own a car and you let neighbor borrow it. If they run a red light hit a pedestrian who dies but drives off (hit and run), would you expect to be convicted on murder charges while your neighbor is fined for running a red light (because they were caught by an intersection camera) just because you own the car? This is basically what happened with the wife being fined for negligence but the husband being convicted of infringement.

I don’t think any rational person would consider the phone or car own responsible in either case. So why should the owner of an internet connection be responsible for what someone else does, especially when they admit it in court.

nospacesorspecialcharacters (profile) says:

First Mistake

That was his second mistake… ignoring the letters and passing the buck to his wife.

There’s a parallel here with UK law approach to speeding (criminal) and parking (civil)…

Under UK law police must prosecute the driver of the vehicle at the time – therefore the owner is compelled to identify the driver – e.g. “it’s my wife who drove”.

However when it comes to civil offences of parking, saying “it’s my wife who parked” doesn’t get me off the hook as they simply prosecute the owner.

This is because in criminal law the accused must be proved guilty without a doubt, whereas in civil tort only a preponderance of evidence – leading to probability – is required.

I’m assuming this is how the French have interpreted HADOPI. I’m not saying I’m in favour of the ruling, I’m simply describing how I see it.

If it were me, I take any legal threats seriously and attempt to establish what my rights are and what recourse I have… but that’s just me. I realise most people would rather argue with the traffic warden and pay later than to go to the work to establish the facts surrounding the issue of the ticket and whether it was valid in the first place.

When it comes to a service I am paying for, I do not appreciate the service provider being a conduit for baseless accusations. I would consider cancelling my subscription and going with a competitor as a response to them likewise.

Baldaur Regis (profile) says:

Re:

And he’s never, to my knowledge, acknowledged or explained his hypocrisy in using that particular, copyrighted image. That just makes him another fucking troll.

And, being a troll, his pleasure comes from pushing peoples’ buttons. Trolls have no emotional or intellectual investment in their comments. They post just to get a reaction.

Fuck ’em.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

When HADOPI is in federal law in France this is per se a criminal case!

Not sure what the industry want to get out of it since damages does not apply in criminal cases, but I guess it is easier to make the damage claim in civil court after having the perp convicted in a criminal case.
In this case he is convicted of negligence and is therefore not really worth to pursue in civil court… I bet the industry is feeling cheated right now, by the admission of the wife. Are they going to sue her for downloading in a revenge-like move (most likely a huge waste of money putting her in jail for contempt) or are they going to accept that HADOPI is just a very expensive education exercise in how to avoid getting caught (people stopping pirating is prossibly a small subset here.).

Not an Electronic Rodent says:

Re:

Why are you responsible for long distance calls on your phone then, if perhaps someone else in your family made the calls?

Totally the wrong question. A slightly more accurate analogy if you insist on talking about phone lines would be “Are you responsible for the bank robbery someone arranges using your phone line?”

The pipe in between is nothing to do with the offence she comitted and he is no more responsible for what’s on the other end of the pipe than he is for what she says to someone on the other end of the phone – if she’d downloaded 6TB of data and run up a few thousand in “over quota” charges then your analogy would fit and I’d agree the guy is responsible.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

No, it’s because you insist that anyone who violates copyright law is committing a crime worse than murder and should be hit by the book. Oh, and if a person is accused of such a crime, they should be dragged to court where they fight things out until their resources are drained or they admit guilt, whichever comes first.

Live by the sword, die by the sword.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re:

“It’s hilarious to me that you guys, who hate copyright and see noninfringement everywhere you look, are hellbent on seeing my use as infringement. Makes me smile at the duplicity.”

No, they’re just pointing out your hypocrisy.

One thing that’s annoying is pathetic hypocrites who think that they’re so smart and better than others while making horrible statements.

average_joe (profile) says:

Re:

Shut the fuck up average_joe.
You yourself are infringing right this very moment, with that avatar. As I and others have said before, its from the movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story. So you’re being a hypocrite for lecturing us on copyrights.

How do you know my image came from the movie? You’re assuming that.

Also you’re a monster. In previous articles, you casually used rape to support your argument, when such a reference doesn’t belong. Two of my sisters were raped, so it really pisses me off when I see a guy screaming “Obey Copyright Law, cause of RAPE! Child porn!”

That wasn’t even me. Sorry, Rikuo, but you’re going on my mental “ignore” list. You just don’t have anything of value to add to the discussion, and you’re just too angry.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re:

“How do you know my image came from the movie? You’re assuming that.”

A quick google search drops the movie as the first thing in the search, Joe.

“That wasn’t even me. Sorry, Rikuo, but you’re going on my mental “ignore” list. You just don’t have anything of value to add to the discussion, and you’re just too angry.”

Yes, yes it was, Joe. That was you.

You may have said it as an AC, but you still said it.

and even if you didn’t say “rape” you still agreed with the person in question, so, yes, you did agree.

average_joe (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Yes, a similar image was in the movie. My image is not from a still in the movie.

And not, it wasn’t me. If I had said that, I would admit it. But I didn’t say it.

and even if you didn’t say “rape” you still agreed with the person in question, so, yes, you did agree.

I’m a terrible person because you assume that I would agree with something someone else said even though I didn’t say I agree?

You’re not too bright. I’m putting you on mental “ignore” as well. You’re way too angry. Respond/attack me all you want. I’m not reading your posts anymore.

Grow up, little boy. You must not get enough attention.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“Yes, a similar image was in the movie. My image is not from a still in the movie.”

Can you prove it?

“You’re not too bright. I’m putting you on mental “ignore” as well. You’re way too angry. Respond/attack me all you want. I’m not reading your posts anymore.

Grow up, little boy. You must not get enough attention.”

Nice try, Troll.

Get off the net until you grow up and get out of mommy’s basement.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Yeah, silverscarcat is correct.

If you look at the comments in threaded view, you’ll see average_joe that the AC who “isn’t” you started responding to questions posed directly to you and in a manner fitting exactly with your speech/writing style. A helluva coincidence.

And sorry to say, but you’ve been agreeing with and defending things on the same side as people who do conflate copyright infringement with rape. Now, if you were to take a stand and say to such people stop doing so, or doing so is wrong, then you’d have a leg to stand on and say, “See, I don’t conflate the two or approve of it.” But the facts of the matter are that you haven’t done so and you directly agree with the ones saying such things, so you’re giving your tacit approval to the disgusting use of such talk, which makes you no better (and perhaps probably even worse, seeing as how you’re a lawyer or studying to become one at least, and as such you should know better and for damn sure know that the two are in no way even remotely similar, much less on the same level of crime).

average_joe (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Give me a link to the post you think is me, and I will tell you whether it’s me. I don’t conflate copyright infringement with rape. They are two different things. There may be some analogies to be drawn, but that’s not the same thing as saying the two are the same. There’s also differences. One thing I’ve noticed on Techdirt is that lots of people don’t understand a simple analogy. For example, if I say that rape and copyright infringement are similar because the victims don’t want it to happen to them, the less intelligent members would respond, “You think infringement is as bad as rape?!?!?!?!” See my point. Anyway, give me the link and I will tell you if it’s me. If it was something I said, I will directly say so. Heck, if it’s something I agree with, I’ll say that too. So let’s clear this up today if it’s that important to you.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“For example, if I say that rape and copyright infringement are similar because the victims don’t want it to happen to them, the less intelligent members would respond, “You think infringement is as bad as rape?!?!?!?!””

HOW are rape and copyright infringement similar?

HOW?

There *IS* no comparison.

Comparing Rape to Copyright Infringement is like trying to compare apples to dynamite.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

I see where average_joe is coming from, but like others have said, the fact that he’s bringing up rape at all is bad form.

Basically, average_joe’s point is that there are victims in both situations and both are having things done to them against their wishes (thus they are victims).

But it falls back to what we’re all trying to point out to him, which for being a lawyer he’s being either purposefully obtuse or something in not getting.

Making any comparison between being a “victim” of copyright infringement and being a victim of rape is morally repugnant to the majority of people. And while he’s not directly conflating the two, but he’s walking a pretty f*cking fine line on that, it still is a comparison. Just because there’s a victim.

Btu it’s also worth noting that in the case of copyright infringement there is no true victim. Just because something is being done against your wishes DOES NOT make you a victim, average_joe. It is til something is done that actually causes you measurable harm in some way, shape or form (and that can be supported and verified with facts and evidence) that a victim is created.

Your comparison is still flawed and still morally repugnant. As someone who wouldn’t stfu about morals the other day, you seem to have some major issues with just where your morals lie. Conflating the copying of a file with the willful violation of a person’s body is pretty damn low and sickening. You’ve got a great future ahead of you though, teaching copyright violaters a major lesson in court and whatnot. You’ll definitely be on the “potential employees/attorneys” list for the RIAA/MPAA with the way you’re going.

average_joe (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Basically, average_joe’s point is that there are victims in both situations and both are having things done to them against their wishes (thus they are victims).

Right. And that is the extent of the comparison. Are there significant differences between infringement and rape? Of course. That’s obvious. But that doesn’t mean that certain aspects of the two can’t be analogized. Folks here seem to think that if two different things have any differences, then no analogies between the two can ever be made. That’s not how analogies work. If two things had to be exactly the same thing before they could be compared, then only things that were in fact the same thing could be compared. What’s the point of that?

But it falls back to what we’re all trying to point out to him, which for being a lawyer he’s being either purposefully obtuse or something in not getting.

They aren’t the same thing. I 100% agree. That misses the point of an analogy.

Making any comparison between being a “victim” of copyright infringement and being a victim of rape is morally repugnant to the majority of people. And while he’s not directly conflating the two, but he’s walking a pretty f*cking fine line on that, it still is a comparison. Just because there’s a victim.

Both are having something done to them that they don’t want to happen. That is a fact. Is one worse than the other? Of course. The analogy doesn’t say that the thing being done is of the same degree of reprehensibility. It just says that they share one aspect in common, which is true.

Btu it’s also worth noting that in the case of copyright infringement there is no true victim. Just because something is being done against your wishes DOES NOT make you a victim, average_joe. It is til something is done that actually causes you measurable harm in some way, shape or form (and that can be supported and verified with facts and evidence) that a victim is created.

Your standard is that there has to be measurable harm. I question how you decided that there’s never any harm in infringement. The studies point in different directions and are in my opinion inconclusive. And as I tried to explain to Mike, I’m talking about the issue of liability, not the issue of damages. Those are different things. When you’re talking about harm, you’re talking about damages. Damages for infringements are notoriously difficult to prove, which is why we have statutory damages.

Your comparison is still flawed and still morally repugnant. As someone who wouldn’t stfu about morals the other day, you seem to have some major issues with just where your morals lie. Conflating the copying of a file with the willful violation of a person’s body is pretty damn low and sickening. You’ve got a great future ahead of you though, teaching copyright violaters a major lesson in court and whatnot. You’ll definitely be on the “potential employees/attorneys” list for the RIAA/MPAA with the way you’re going.

In both situations, somebody is having something done to them that they don’t want to be done. That is the full extent of the comparison. I’m not saying the harm done is of the same degree. I haven’t said anything about the harm. I don’t think stating a fact is repugnant, but you have every right to disagree. Get on that soap box! Of course you don’t seem to understand that I’m not saying they are the same, I’m merely pointing out that in one small facet they are. The differences between the two are significant, so I agree with you there. But yeah, call me names because I say one thing that is the truth. Good on ya! You fit in well on Techdirt. Don’t try to think too hard! Mike doesn’t like that.

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