News.com Prevents Falsely Accused Grandmother Of Getting Kicked Off The Internet By The MPAA

from the but-who-will-protect-anyone-else? dept

One of the problems we've had with the whole "three strikes" concept that would kick people off the internet due to accusations, not convictions, of file sharing, is the fact that we hear all the time about innocent users accused of file sharing. Greg Sandoval, over at News.com recently came across a grandmother who was falsely accused multiple times of file sharing, and her ISP, Qwest, was threatening to kick her off the internet. We had not heard that Qwest had signed on with a "three strikes" program, so it's a bit of news that it's one of the companies who will accept bogus accusations. Not only that, but Qwest even told her that no other provider would grant her service because Qwest would let those other service providers "know her name and what she did." Thanks, Qwest!

The problem, of course, was that Cathi Paradiso didn't share any of the movies or TV shows she was accused of sharing, and she works from home as a recruiter -- so losing her internet access would be devastating. But the only way she got Qwest to back down was because Sandoval and News.com became interested in the story and convinced Qwest to look deeper. But if Paradiso hadn't been able to draw attention to herself from the press, she would have had no recourse. There was no one she could appeal to, and no official process to respond to the bogus claims of Hollywood. She got lucky that News.com was willing to pick up her story and contact Qwest, but what about anyone else threatened with bogus notices? Meanwhile, BayTSP, the company whose "evidence" has been shown to be flimsy and easily falsified in the past, stands by accusing her of file sharing, saying it was her own fault for having an open WiFi network, suggesting there's something inherently wrong with sharing your WiFi. Yes, the company stands by its false accusation. Nice company.

Filed Under: due process, false accusation, file sharing, three strikes
Companies: baytsp, qwest


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  1. icon
    Bob Bunderfeld (profile), 1 Feb 2010 @ 4:39pm

    WiFi Security

    You sir, are a fool.

    Your correlation between letting someone drive your car and her letting others use her WiFi is complete and utter rubbish. If you want a real correlation, it would be more like, her care getting STOLEN because she left the keys in it, and then it being used to commit one of the crimes you listed. While leaving your keys in the car is foolish, it is NOT against the law. A person cannot be held liable for another persons criminal acts unless a iron-clad connection can be made to show that the person not committing the crime knew the crime was being committed or should have known the crime was being committed.

    No where in any of these ACCUSATION cases are any of those being punished, are they being charged with a crime and being found guilty of said crime. Nowhere in our Legal System is there room for ACCUSATIONS and Punishment without proving those Accusations in a Court of Law.

    What will eventually happen is one of these cases will make it's way to the Supreme Court and all the Justices will find for the accuser. Our Nation is a Nation of Laws, not a Nation of Accusations. Companies that threaten people with Punishment or BlackBalls will be found to have acted without any DUE DILIGENCE or PROCESS, and they will feel the sting of the High Courts ruling in their Pocketbooks when the Court will let stand the HIGH Payout for acting OUTSIDE our Legal System in these matters.

    If the RIAA/MPAA want to make these Civil Cases into Criminal Cases then they will find that they will be paying a HIGH PRICE when it comes to falsely accusing and punishing people who DID NOT commit the crimes they are accused of.

    As for you, you should seriously do some study on what happens when ANYONE or ANY CORPORATION acts without DUE CAUSE or PROCESS.

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