Are There More Copyright 'Pre-Settlement' Groups Setting Up Shop In The US?

from the warning-letters dept

We recently covered how a recently created outfit going by the name US Copyright Group, had launched tens of thousands of lawsuits (some of which appear to be quite questionable from a legal standpoint), as part of what appeared to be an attempt at copying the efforts of companies like DigiProtect and ACS:Law in Europe (where such practices have been widely condemned). The lawsuits appear to be a smokescreen to get contact information for people to whom this "company" can send "pre-settlement" letters, in which they're told to pay up to avoid the lawsuit.

Considering that this pseudo-shakedown is apparently lucrative in Europe, perhaps others are preparing to do the same in the US as well. A reader who prefers to remain anonymous, but who works for a small ISP, passed along an email he recently received from what appears to be a newish operation called the Copyright Enforcement Group, whose website has a mock law enforcement shield on it. Like US Copyright Group, it doesn't hide behind any claims of stopping infringing content. It focuses solely on how this is a way to "monetize" infringements. The email also points to a separate site called CopyrightSettlements.com, which makes some interesting claims. This is the website where folks can "pay up," and it promises "you will receive a full release of liability" but also that "Your personal information and settlement terms will be kept confidential." Makes you wonder how the two can go together. If your info is kept secret, what's to keep copyright holders from suing again? And does the company make sure it covers all copyright holders for a piece of content? Will it indemnify users if they're threatened or sued again?

As for the letter to the ISP, it was an "introduction," in an attempt to ask for the ISP's cooperation in identifying its users. As we've seen with US Copyright Group, many ISPs refuse to just hand over names, though some will. Hopefully, most ISPs receiving the following letter know better than to just hand over info without a court order. Here's the relevant part of the email:
CEG provides intellectual property management services to a consortium of studios in the entertainment industry. Our clients have entrusted us with their valuable property and authorized us to bring legal action against those individuals who illegally download and/or distribute their copyrighted materials over the Internet.

CEG's proprietary technology detects infringements which occur over the Internet and gathers sufficient evidence to support a claim of copyright infringement against the infringing party. Once infringement is detected, we follow strict multi-step validation procedures to ensure that all information is accurate before we forward the DMCA notice to you. The infringing party is then afforded with an opportunity to settle the matter for substantially less than what will be offered if a lawsuit is filed or compared to the judgment amount a court may enter against the infringer.

We understand and respect the important role that you play in securing the privacy of your subscriber base. However, we, too, are deeply committed to our clients and will vigorously enforce their intellectual property rights against infringement. We sincerely hope that you will join us in our effort to fight Internet piracy.
Looks like this new form of "monetizing" content is spreading. And not in a good way.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    iamtheky (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:25pm

    "Pre-Settlement Options
    Monetary fines, hard goods purchases (DVDs, CDs, Books, etc.) and digital content purchases (video files, audio files, ebooks, etc.)"

    Can I please be the first to get a letter that says "if you purchase these goods, we wont sue you."

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:34pm

    Re:

    "if you purchase these goods, we wont sue you"

    Sounds like the logical end to how America's market is currently set up.

     

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    Steve, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:35pm

    Just, wow.

    "The flagship service of the Copyright Enforcement Groups allows content owners to monetize peer-to-peer (P2P) activity and realize revenues from an unexpected source, internet piracy. Infringers are tracked 24/7/365, automatically receive a “pre-settlement” offer by email and process payments or purchase goods via Copyright Enforcement Group’s branded collections website at www.copyrightsettlements.com."

    Talk about ballsy.

     

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    Steve, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:37pm

    I suppose the only missing link here is the copyright cops giving a kickback to ISPs.

     

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    jsl4980 (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:40pm

    Are companies like these even legal? Can someone just complain about their actions to the DoJ or FTC or someone? The business models seem like extortion and abuse if not theft. Should concerned readers just start contacting their state attorney general offices and the FTC to complain?

     

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  6.  
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    jsl4980 (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:44pm

    Re:

    Hate to reply to my own comment, but after some Google searching it looks like the FBI is in charge of handling extortion cases like this one. So I guess if you receive any of these letters contact the FBI.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:45pm

    I wonder what happens in the case of a false positive. What happens when (not if) they send someone a pre-settlement letter for content they have the right to distribute?

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 12:46pm

    oddly, if people stopped sharing files illegally, there would be no monetization possible. So stick it to the man, stop file trading!

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:03pm

    Re:

    LOL How is that sticking it to the man?

     

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  10.  
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    PaulT (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:12pm

    Re:

    "I wonder what happens in the case of a false positive."

    Presumably, that person has to fight it in civil court - at their own expense - despite the evidence against them being paper-thin and inconclusive. Only then, for the RIAA to refuse to pay their court costs - you know, like they've been doing so far.

    Unless you can prove you couldn't possibly have done it (e.g. don't own a computer or are dead, as in 2 actual cases), you can expect a long, expensive court battle for not paying the protection money.

    "What happens when (not if) they send someone a pre-settlement letter for content they have the right to distribute?"

    Presumably easier to prove, but again unless you have very good documentation to prove it, expect a court battle.

     

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  11.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:14pm

    Guess its time

    Guess its time for me to start a full on education campaign for everybody I know. Make sure that when they are sent these bogus letters they will know how to react instead of just handing over money.

     

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  12.  
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    DevConcepts (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Re: Fine line between extortion and coercion.

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

    Extortion, outwresting, or/and exaction is a criminal offense which occurs when a person unlawfully obtains either money, property or services from a person(s), entity, or institution, through coercion. Refraining from doing harm is sometimes euphemistically called protection. Extortion is commonly practiced by organized crime groups. The actual obtainment of money or property is not required to commit the offense. Making a threat of violence which refers to a requirement of a payment of money or property to halt future violence is sufficient to commit the offense. Exaction refers not only to extortion or the unlawful demanding and obtaining of something through force,[1] but additionally, in its formal definition, means the infliction of something such as pain and suffering or making somebody endure something unpleasant.[2]

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

    Coercion (pronounced /co-er-shon/ or /koʊˈɜrʃən/) is the practice of forcing another party to behave in an involuntary manner (whether through action or inaction) by use of threats, intimidation, trickery, or some other form of pressure or force. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in the desired way. Coercion may involve the actual infliction of physical pain/injury or psychological harm in order to enhance the credibility of a threat. The threat of further harm may lead to the cooperation or obedience of the person being coerced.

    See! Nothing criminal about Coercion.

    So Pay up now. Or ELSE!

     

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  13.  
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    alternatives(), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:27pm

    Re:

    Darn straight skippy - Just stop "consuming" their products. Don't listen to the CDs or MP3s from the CDs. Stop watching TV and movies.

    Screw 'em. You don't need them and they need yours (and others) money. Cut 'em off and they will die.

    (Same goes for buying their EQ - stop buying sony as an example)

     

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  14.  
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    Bubba Gump (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:28pm

    boycott the industry

    Looks like it's time to stop purchasing ANY music or video content. Let's watch them crash and burn and wonder where they went wrong...

     

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  15.  
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    alternatives(), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:29pm

    Tell 'em to pound sand.

    Inform them you have the MP3s on CD-R MUSIC cds and have thusly paid the fee as law set.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:45pm

    This mode of operation is...

    only for companies that won't evolve their business. Instead, they prefer the government-subsidized welfare system called "copyright" over realigning their distribution strategy and creating products which customers desire.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:47pm

    This mode of operations is...

    only for companies that won't evolve their business. Instead, they prefer the government-subsidized welfare system called "copyright" over realigning their distribution strategy and creating products which customers desire.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:48pm

    From their FAQ Q: What if I have an unsecured wireless network/router? A: The Internet Service Provider (ISP) account holder is responsible for securing the connection and legally responsible for any infringement(s) that result from an unsecured wireless network/router. They are claiming that it is illegal to have an unsecured router I suppose. --- Q: What if I don't have money to pay the settlement right now? [Show Answer] A: CEG may offer monthly payment plans to select individuals. To discuss payment plan options please contact us. Q: Can I pay multiple settlements at one time? [Show Answer] A: Yes, once you have signed in to the settlement system you have the option to pay multiple settlements simultaneously. Awesome

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:50pm

    Re:

    Damn, that didn't out so well, a second try

    From their FAQ


    "Q: What if I have an unsecured wireless network/router?

    A: The Internet Service Provider (ISP) account holder is responsible for securing the connection and legally responsible for any infringement(s) that result from an unsecured wireless network/router.
    "

    They are claiming that it is illegal to have an unsecured router I suppose.

    ---
    "
    Q: What if I don't have money to pay the settlement right now? [Show Answer]
    A: CEG may offer monthly payment plans to select individuals. To discuss payment plan options please contact us.

    Q: Can I pay multiple settlements at one time? [Show Answer]
    A: Yes, once you have signed in to the settlement system you have the option to pay multiple settlements simultaneously.
    "



    Awesome

     

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  20.  
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    alternatives(), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:57pm

    Security?

    A: The Internet Service Provider (ISP) account holder is responsible for securing the connection and legally responsible for any infringement(s) that result from an unsecured wireless network/router.

    WEP - cracked in 60 secs.
    WPA - for under $40 you can buy the password via the thinkcrime group.

     

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  21.  
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    robin, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:58pm

    DMCA?????

    ...before we forward the DMCA notice to you.


    maybe someone can respond, but under what provision of the dmca would they file a motion with the court???

    i thought the dmca concerned itself with hosting files, not transmitting them.

    until i learn differently, i'm calling bs on this threat.

     

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  22.  
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    Squid, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 3:21pm

    Re: DMCA?????

    I may be able to help answer the last question about DMCA and notices. These types of notices come to an ISP with an IP address, a date stamp and some other info. In my experience, the works cited are typically movies, tv shows and software, although I have seen Ebooks as well. The specific area is called "transitory communications" and it is part of the DMCA or Digital Millenium Copyright Act of 1998. Basically, it gives ISPs immunity from prosecution for copyright violations by one of their internet users if they follow specific procedures. One of those procedures is to notify a user when the ISP is notified of claimed infringement. You can imagine an ISP couldn't do business in fear of being sued for someone downloading a copy of the latest Girls Gone Wild video without some sort of protection.

    Sorry for being long winded, there is so much more to the subject. You can check out the specific DMCA language at the US Copyright office.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 5:35pm

    Re:

    pre-settlement is entirely legal. not nice, but legal.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 5:36pm

    Re: Re:

    remove their ability to make large monetary settlements. dont share they cant do it. instead of giving them the chance of hundreds or thousands of dollars per item just buy them retail for a few dollars and really stick it to their bottom line. they will lose millions when you stop sharing.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 8th, 2010 @ 6:58pm

    This is an obvious scam.

     

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  26.  
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    btr1701 (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 7:43pm

    Looks like they're using the "honey-trap" model of catching infringers. Their own website lists the steps they take: Step 1 - Upload & Track Content is uploaded to the tracking system and monitored across multiple peer-to-peer protocols 24/7/365. When an infringement occurs evidence is collected and placed in a queue for authentication. Step 2 - Authenticate & Notify Infringement evidence passes a strict multi-stage authentication process involving steps such as fingerprinting and visual authentication to eliminate false positives. After authentication, collection notices are automatically generated and emailed to Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and individual infringers. Step 3 - Enforce & Collect Infringers receive a notice via email that directs them to Copyright Enforcement Group's branded collections website www.copyrightsettlements.com which contains a "pre-settlement" offer to pay a fine or purchase goods. Once a settlement is paid or goods are purchased the infringer is released from liability and the collection is split between the copyright owner and Copyright Enforcement Group. If an infringer doesn't pay the settlement or ignores the notice CEG's in-house legal team takes over until a collection is realized. So basically in Step 1, they upload content, hoping to get people to download it. If they're putting it out there for download, then how can they claim it's infringing to download it? Huge flaw in their business model.

     

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  27.  
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    btr1701 (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 7:47pm

    Honey-Trap

    Not sure what happened with my last comment. All the carriage returns were deleted. A little more readable this time:

    Looks like they're using the "honey-trap" model of catching infringers. Their own website lists the steps they take:

    > Step 1 - Upload & Track Content is uploaded to the tracking system and
    > monitored across multiple peer-to-peer protocols 24/7/365. When an
    > infringement occurs evidence is collected and placed in a queue for
    > authentication.

    > Step 2 - Authenticate & Notify Infringement evidence passes a strict multi-
    > stage authentication process involving steps such as fingerprinting and
    > visual authentication to eliminate false positives. After authentication,
    > collection notices are automatically generated and emailed to Internet
    > Service Providers (ISPs) and individual infringers.

    > Step 3 - Enforce & Collect Infringers receive a notice via email that directs
    > them to Copyright Enforcement Group's branded collections website
    > www.copyrightsettlements.com which contains a "pre-settlement" offer to
    > pay a fine or purchase goods. Once a settlement is paid or goods are
    > purchased the infringer is released from liability and the collection is split
    > between the copyright owner and Copyright Enforcement Group.

    > If an infringer doesn't pay the settlement or ignores the notice CEG's in-
    > house legal team takes over until a collection is realized.

    So basically in Step 1, they upload content, hoping to get people to download it. If they're putting it out there for download, then how can they claim it's infringing to download it?

    Huge flaw in their business model.

     

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  28.  
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    GeneralEmergency (profile), Apr 8th, 2010 @ 8:17pm

    Re: Honey-Trap

    Because the CEG text is NOT clear, what we need to know is:

    1) Does the CEG upload the CEG customer's copyrighted content into non-distributive download and compare system...

    -OR-

    2) Does the CEG upload the CEG customer's copyrighted content into distributive system that tracks the downloaders.

    Also..

    3) Does CEG obtain explicit written permission from the copyright holder to "COPY" the CEG customer's copyrighted work to their system regardless of what the CEG "Tracking System" actually does?

    If the CEG system -IS- distributive -AND- CEG has explicit permission from the copyright holder to copy the works to the system, how is this not "authorized distribution" when someone downloads the work?

    Also...If CEG -does not- explicitly obtain permission to distribute the copyrighted works in question and the "Tracking System" is distributive in nature, could you not entrap CEG themselves for copyright infringement?

    Alan

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 9th, 2010 @ 3:26am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Uhhh, that's exactly what they want. Your idea of "sticking it to the man" is giving in to their threats.

     

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  30.  
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    Johnny Movie Fan, Apr 9th, 2010 @ 4:18am

    It is an Immigration Attorney!!!

    This shady outfit is just a front for an immigration and social security attorney in California. Same exact address! This clown has no copyright infringement experience, so I wouldn't even bother giving him the free press. It is really the Law Offices of Hoyt Minkoff--what a joke. He is just a solo, so he is not going to be able to even handle any kind of volume of alleged infringers, and doesnt even appear to know what he is doing in this area of law. Check out his lame website. http://www.minkofflaw.com/

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 9th, 2010 @ 6:49am

    Re: It is an Immigration Attorney!!!

    I know! Same deal with the "US Copyright Group". They are really a small bankruptcy law firm called Dunlap Grubb & Weaver with virtually no experience handling this type of case. See www.bankruptcyinva.com and compare to www.savecinema.org. They didn't even bother to change the logo! Losers. Anyone who gets contacted by them should file a BBB complaint.

     

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  32.  
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    alternatives(), Apr 9th, 2010 @ 7:42am

    Re: Honey-Trap

    Looks like they're using the "honey-trap" model of catching infringers.

    Does anyone know what IP's they use so you can download from them and force a legal fight? Perhaps put up your own content for them to get from you - in violation of your licence agreement?

     

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  33.  
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    Andrew (profile), Apr 9th, 2010 @ 8:59am

    Limited liability release


    If your info is kept secret, what's to keep copyright holders from suing again? And does the company make sure it covers all copyright holders for a piece of content? Will it indemnify users if they're threatened or sued again?


    The deal they're offering looks extremely limited. Their liability release sample states


    TO ALL TO WHOM THESE PRESENTS SHALL COME OR MAY CONCERN, KNOW THAT

    The RELEASOR, in consideration of the settlement amount received from RELEASEE on DATE, receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, releases and discharges the RELEASEE, RELEASEE's heirs, successors, and assigns from and against all claims, causes of actions, lawsuits, damages and demands whatsoever, specifically arising from, relating to, or in connection with CASE NUMBER.

    This Liability Release applies only to the foregoing CASE NUMBER and extends to no other claims, causes of action, lawsuits, damages and demands, which, if existing, shall survive this Liability Release.


    So it's only these copyright holders for these alleged infringements. Download again tomorrow and they can threaten to sue again. And presumably the same if they sign up another copyright holder of an already infringed work, or if the copyright holder employs another company like this one to threaten the same people again.

    In fact there could be big cost savings here if these firms just shared their databases of alleged infringers, maybe alongside a score of how likely they are to pay up (much like a credit rating), and took it in turns to offer pre-settlements.

    Also from the FAQ


    Q: Can I pay multiple settlements at one time?

    A: Yes, once you have signed in to the settlement system you have the option to pay multiple settlements simultaneously.


    Well, I'm excited.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 9th, 2010 @ 9:20am

    Copyright Settlements TOS?? You agree to watch porn?

    Did anyone even read their terms of service?? It sounds like it's a cover for an online adult website:

    Legal Terms & Content Warning

    The settlement pages of CopyrightSettlements.com may contain references to adult titles and/or content that could be offensive to some users. Additionally, users settling copyright infringement cases via CopyrightSettlements.com are entering into a legally binding contract and as a result are required to be 18 years of age or older. If you are not 18 years of age or older please have your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) sign in on your behalf.

    Please read the following carefully; Under the penalty of perjury, by clicking on the sign in button you agree to these terms:

    1. I am an adult, 18 years of age or older.
    2. I am requesting and agreeing to view sexually explicit material for my personal use in my private home or office.
    3. I personally and without coercion will make selections of such material and these images and products without violating the community standards of the area in which I live.
    4. I will not exhibit these images to minors or anyone else who might be offended by them.
    5. I have read and agree to the Terms of Use.


    Really? "I am requesting and agreeing to view sexually explicit material?" Sign in with your case number and password for a fake copyright threat, and you automatically agree to have porn thrusted (sorry) into your harddrive and onto your screen??

     

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  35.  
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    gcr, Apr 10th, 2010 @ 5:49am

    Looks like something like this could make a good phishing scam. Or just plain old fraud -- they claim to sell you a settlement, but have no claim, and their release is useless.

     

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  36.  
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    Sambo, May 27th, 2010 @ 5:27am

    Great idea!

    So can anyone set up a business like this?.. (Sounds like a clever money maker to me..)

    This is a good way to loosen up the wallets and give our economy a good kick in the rear.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 8:08am

    I'm setting up the US Tag group...

    We'll be sending letters to all US households claiming 'mattress tag infringement' by all those individuals who removed the tag from their bed.

    There is a very clear warning on the tag that it's not to be removed, so obviously anyone who has removed the tag needs to be identified and fined appropriately.

    However if you agree to our one time settlement offer, for only $1000 we will agree to release individuals from all liability for removing their mattress tags.

    /sarcasm off

    Yes the tag says 'not to be removed except by consumer', but imagine how many people out there have removed their tags, if they don't have the tag, then they don't know what their rights are, and I'm sure that at least 2-3% would pay up....

    I'm patenting this idea an suing anyone who actually tries to implement it....

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 20th, 2010 @ 7:50pm

    Got one of these e-mails

    I got one of these e-mails today. Should I just ignore it?

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 22nd, 2010 @ 7:11pm

    Re: Got one of these e-mails

    "I got one of these e-mails today. Should I just ignore it?"

    I didn't, and I paid $80 for their allegation. I can't afford to fly from NY to CA to fight their civil suit. I thought it was over with. Then two days later I got another notice. I emailed them and they said "each act of downloading or uploading is separate and this is a second case of infringement." The only thing different was port number and time.

    They are a small law office specializing in immigration law, but the problem is, if they file with their court and you don't show up in a civil suit they win by default. This isn't small claims here. All they have to do is file some papers to win. Even if you had open wireless for two days like I did before securing it, you can be sure they've got enough to convince a judge that you should pay.

     

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  40.  
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    Perps (profile), Jul 9th, 2010 @ 7:19am

    Re: Re: Got one of these e-mails

    I got one of these emails. I was wondering what you have done sinse you posted you got a second settlement notice? Also what the previous commenter has done sinse you were saying you might just ignore it? I have been emailing back and forth with there email. I keep just asking them "well what if I didn't do it" and I'm not really getting anywhere. I'd prefer not to pay this fee. I wonder if they actually know at this point who I am. Did my ISP give them my information? Thanks.

     

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  41.  
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    Dave (profile), Jul 13th, 2010 @ 1:22am

    If you get a letter or email.

    Hi,

    If you get a letter or email from them contact dave@ccs-labs.com. Send me your case number and contact details we will contact them and request to see their technology to test it for court compliance - if they refuse we will get a court order to force them.

    If their technology is as suspected not forensically sound a report will be made public - and no one will need to pay again.

    Simple.

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 16th, 2010 @ 10:32pm

    Re: Got one of these e-mails

    You're not going to get anywhere. It's one computer and a staffer working for an attorney named H0yt Mink0ff. They use different names to make you think it's a big operation.

    If you settle, the next fee is even higher. They will claim that since you are torrenting, the program just kept uploading copies of it. Is it even true? Who knows, who has money to fight?

    I see Dave, below, is offering a (free?) service to determine if their software is forensic quality. I think if you give him a case number, he'll probably find out that these guys do NOT use forensic software and they are running what is essentially a lawful scam. As Dave puts it on his website, they word things very carefully to make you THINK they've got you where they want you.

    Dave's site (below) seems to be a company that either does forensic certifications or sells software to copyright holders that would qualify for use in court. If you give him your case number to check for you, it would probably benefit you both. This lawyer will stop using software that cannot be admitted in court, and Dave gets to shut down someone using competing software. This is win-win, it seems to me -- you should send him your info and shut that Copyright Enforcement Group scumbag down.

     

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  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 27th, 2010 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: Got one of these e-mails

    I was the original poster that said I got one. I paid it and have not heard from them again. I will state that I did download it and then immediately stopped and deleted the torrent so I did not redistribute it. I even moved the file to a different directory.

     

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  44.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 28th, 2010 @ 5:05am

    What where you accused of downloading? When did you get your first email? Got mine on July 9th.

     

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  45.  
    identicon
    Thomas, Sep 16th, 2010 @ 1:12pm

    Got one of the emails...

    Got one of the emails today. Comes from Copyright Enforcement Group and is for a porn torrent. States the company is representing Devils Film. It lists my I.P., Hash, file name, date/time, file size, etc. So, based on what was posted above in response #42, I emailed Hoyt Minkoff to see his relation to the company. Here's the email he sent back less than 10 minutes after I emailed him:

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Dear Thomas,

    I have a solo law practice and I practice exculsively immigration and social security disability law. I have absolutely no involvement with copyright cases. I use a shared office / reception setting under the Bowers Office Center at 3333 Bowers Ave, Suite 130. I share this mailing address with at least one hundred other entities.


    I believe the confusion originated from comments posted on Techdirt. Apparently, someone using the name "onominous coward" thinks that based on my address I must be a front or something. The company that I think you are looking for is called the "Copyright Infrigement Group" who uses this same address as .

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    So, I'm still assuming this is a scam email and that I shouldn't have anything to worry about in regards to NOT paying the "settlement"? My concern is this: what if I DID download the item? Or that someone DID piggyback on my internet account? What is the legality of this and should I pay? Or is it a 100% scam?

     

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  46.  
    identicon
    Thomas, Sep 16th, 2010 @ 1:30pm

    Another response from Hoyt Minkoff

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    Thomas, Sep 16th, 2010 @ 1:31pm

    Another response from Hoyt Minkoff

    Woops, hit a wrong key.

    Here's the email he sent me just a few minutes ago.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Dear Thomas,

    I have a solo law practice and I practice exculsively immigration and social security disability law. I have absolutely no involvement with copyright cases. I use a shared office / reception setting under the Bowers Office Center at 3333 Bowers Ave, Suite 130. I share this mailing address with many other professionals including many lawyers, financial planners, accountants and such. Another law firm using my address is Immigration law partners, also legitimate.

    I believe the confusion originated from comments posted on "Techdirt." Apparently, someone using the name "onominous coward" thinks that based on my address I must be a front or something for this copyright group. The company that I think you are looking for is called the "Copyright Enfrigement Group" who uses this address as a virtual office. As you might not be aware, many professionals in Silicon Valley use shared office receptions to cut down on unnecessary administrative and reception costs.

    Based on the tone of your letter I believe I share your frustration with their predatory operations. Please feel free to call me at the number listed on my website if you have any further questions. FYI (408) 200-9897. I am licensed in Colorado (license #38709) and practice federal law in California and sometimes in Arizona for deportation cases. You can even look up my bar registration at the Colorado Supreme Court website.

    Regardless, I hope you shut the predatory SOB's down.

    Thanks, Hoyt

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


    Starting to think he knows nothing about this company and seems even he thinks it may be a scam. Maybe we could have him prosecute them as he can say he works in that building and has never heard of or seen them?

     

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  48.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 2nd, 2010 @ 4:30am

    I recieve 3 notices in a week, all for the same porn movie. I dont know if i should see if if I can pay once and get it over with. but i dont want them to know who I am.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    social security attorney, Oct 26th, 2010 @ 8:52am

    Interesting

    I really hope that this is not true. That is just such a crazy thing to think about and way to try and regulate copyrights. I don't know if this is going to be the best method to control it. I don't have an answer on what the best way would be, but I know that we can come up with a better solution than this.

     

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  50.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 29th, 2010 @ 9:25pm

    I have received a email stating that I need to pay $125 for a copyright infringement. So I am wondering if there is anyone out there that has been sued or know someone that has been sued by these people? I want to ignore this blackmail but I worry that it could become something worst later.

     

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  51.  
    identicon
    ChaosOrder, Dec 2nd, 2010 @ 1:47pm

    what to do...

    just got 4 of 'em in the last month.
    didn't torrent 'em.
    someone was piggy backing off my wifi.
    one of the "pre-settlements" are due this saturday.
    haven't contacted 'em yet.
    did visit their website.
    not sure what to do.
    don't want to give 'em any personal info.
    seems like a fear tactic scheme.
    i have torrented just not this stuff.
    any advice?
    anyone not pay and have any repercussions?

     

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  52.  
    identicon
    John Doe, Dec 9th, 2010 @ 11:17pm

    Got one through abuse@charter (long)

    Without any consideration of my rights to cease and desist, I am told in the following letter that if I don't pre-settle they WILL oh so sternly sue me. I don't know what to do. If it's legit, I'd happily settle if it makes this go away, but I'm afraid they would just keep coming after me anyway. Want this to stop haunting me every day. Considered contacting the FBI to see if this "legal extortion" should just be ignored. They really like to repeat the case # and automatic password links a lot.

    -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
    Hash: SHA1

    ***NOTE TO ISP: PLEASE FORWARD THE ENTIRE NOTICE***
    November 8, 2010
    Re: Notice of Unauthorized Use of Registered Copyrights Owned by Elegant Angel Inc
    Case #: xxxxx

    Dear Sir or Madam:

    This notice is intended solely for the primary Charter Communications internet service account holder. Someone using this account has engaged in the illegal copying and/or distribution of pornographic movies. This notice may contain the titles of those movies, and therefore may contain text that is offensive to some readers.

    Copyright Enforcement Group, LLC, ("We") represent Elegant Angel Inc. Elegant Angel Inc owns all right, title and interest to the registered copyrights listed below.

    Evidence:

    Infringement Title: Curvy Girls 4
    Infringement File Name: Curvy.Girls.4.XXX.DVDRip.XviD-STARLETS
    Infringement Hash: 1ce07840ea42f6113033a3aaa04ad61b5b4fbabe
    Infringement File Size: 1478909170 bytes
    Infringement Protocol: BitTorrent
    Infringement Timestamp: 2010-11-07 14:14:28 North American Eastern Time
    Infringers IP Address: xxxxxx
    Infringers Port: xxxxx

    The following files were included in the download:
    File 1: Curvy.Girls.4.XXX.DVDRip.XviD-STARLETS/CD1/starlets-cg4-cd1.avi
    File 2: Curvy.Girls.4.XXX.DVDRip.XviD-STARLETS/CD2/starlets-cg4-cd2.avi


    You are hereby notified that your unauthorized copying and/or distribution infringes the registered copyrights of Elegant Angel Inc under the U.S. Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. 106. In this regard, demand is hereby made that you and all persons using this account immediately and permanently cease and desist the unauthorized copying and/or distribution of the registered copyrights listed in this notice or otherwise owned by Elegant Angel Inc.

    You may also be held liable for monetary damages, including attorney's fees and court costs if a lawsuit is commenced against you. You have until Thursday, December 23, 2010 to access the settlement offer and settle online. To access the settlement offer please visit http://www.copyrightsettlements.com/ and enter Case #:




    If you fail to respond or settle within the prescribed time period, the claim(s) will be referred to our attorneys for legal action. At that point the original settlement offer will no longer be an option and the amount will increase as a result of us having to involve our attorneys.

    Nothing contained or omitted from this correspondence is, or shall be deemed to be either a full statement of the facts or applicable law, an admission of any fact, or waiver or limitation of any of the Elegant Angel Inc's rights or remedies, all of which are specifically retained and reserved.

    The information in this notice is accurate. We have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of herein is not authorized by the registered copyright owner, its agent, or by operation of law. We swear under penalty of perjury, that we are authorized to act on behalf of Elegant Angel Inc.

    Sincerely,

    Dale Spislander
    Copyright Enforcement Agent

    Copyright Enforcement Group, LLC
    8484 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 220
    Beverly Hills, CA 90211

    Local: (415) 655-4205 Ext. 1
    Toll Free: 877-5-COPYRIGHT (877-526-7974)
    Email: support@copyrightsettlements.com
    Website: www.copyrightsettlements.com




    If you fail to respond or settle within the prescribed time period, the claim(s) will be referred to our attorneys for legal action. At that point the original settlement offer will no longer be an option and the amount will increase as a result of us having to involve our attorneys.

    Nothing contained or omitted from this correspondence is, or shall be deemed to be either a full statement of the facts or applicable law, an admission of any fact, or waiver or limitation of any of the Elegant Angel Inc's rights or remedies, all of which are specifically retained and reserved.

    The information in this notice is accurate. We have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of herein is not authorized by the registered copyright owner, its agent, or by operation of law. We swear under penalty of perjury, that we are authorized to act on behalf of Elegant Angel Inc.

    Sincerely,

    Dale Spislander
    Copyright Enforcement Agent

    Copyright Enforcement Group, LLC
    8484 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 220
    Beverly Hills, CA 90211

    Local: (415) 655-4205 Ext. 1
    Toll Free: 877-5-COPYRIGHT (877-526-7974)
    Email: support@copyrightsettlements.com
    Website: www.copyrightsettlements.com]]>

    - ----End ACNS XML

    This is an automated email. If you have questions or concerns, please visit us at http://www.copyrightsettlements.com/contact_us.html. Replies sent to dmca@copyrightsettlements.com are not read.

    -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
    Version: GnuPG v2.0.16 (FreeBSD)

    iJwEAQECAAYFAkzYeQcACgkQVzNgJiQevV7mSAQAn14TF+4Vj/I04tpggfzJH3Gy
    AaW7YwiXd75SIgZEfaB89iE8WteKJt6+ bJp/+Abzkhej/1JngG/Ev+Qeuc+CoCkG
    resgmKna06w5OLthsXFBnJMzDmGzz/r+n7qzws3WBZSwrsOedGMC14ohAMlRjt7K
    UYJXFv0ihKaVOoWORY8=
    =PxRX
    -----END PGP SIGNATURE-----

     

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  53.  
    identicon
    me too, Dec 16th, 2010 @ 2:38am

    Re: Got one through abuse@charter (long)

    me too same email exactly! Has anyone ignored this entirely?

     

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  54.  
    identicon
    yUP, Dec 16th, 2010 @ 4:12pm

    To John Doe:

    I got that exact same letter from charter on a different porn movie and it was for $125. I jsut paid it, hopefully its alright, i've gotten rid of all of it though too, I don't need this crap right now. It was from the same people too What did you do?

     

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  55.  
    identicon
    coward, Dec 18th, 2010 @ 2:53am

    me to

    my internet has been shut off since the day before this was sent, and honesty i did not download this, we had our wifi unlocked for a xbox 360 party and never got around to re-securing. I went to the library to check my email and got this we have till Monday 12/20/10 to respond merry Christmas, so they are trying to ruin my kids Christmas by taking their present money... Anyone not paid and gotten repercussions. I don't know what to do, really nervous, and cherry on top our ISP was in the fiancees name who doesn't even know how to use a computer, so i don't want her to get in trouble.. HELP any traction from David.....

     

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  56.  
    identicon
    coward, Dec 18th, 2010 @ 2:55am

    Re: If you get a letter or email.

    Has anyone given you the info and have you gotten any traction?

     

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  57.  
    identicon
    coward, Dec 18th, 2010 @ 3:18am

    Re: me to

    BTW

    http://local.yahoo.com/info-57181031-fgs-business-center-virtual-office-beverly-hills

    The address is for a virtual business, and there is no BBB record for them could not find anything indication state bar information either.

    http://club.myce.com/f94/south-dakota-isp-battles-us-copyright-group-file-sharing-lawsuit s-315362/

     

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  58.  
    identicon
    helpful coward, Dec 20th, 2010 @ 12:24am

    Copyright Enforcement Group (CEG) is just a front for the attorney Ira M. Siegel. He files lawsuits on behalf of producers and improperly lumps hundreds or thousands of defendants into one lawsuit (and only has to pay one fee per lawsuit). Then he gets a judge to order discovery and issue subpeonas to ISPs to turn his list of magic IPs that he *says* are illegal downloaders into actual names. Then he or scumbags he hires try to get the defendants to settle without ever actually going to trial. Anyhow, his name and info is on each of the complaints filed by CEG that initiated a lawsuit. Here is one:

    http://www.slyck.com/misc/patrick_complaint.pdf

    As stated above, "CEG" is just something that Siegel simply set up using a sham rent-a-secretary virtual office in a building with a different address than his law office. If you look at the complaint(s) for CEG cases, it's actually Ira M. Siegal behind them. Here is the info on CEG, followed by Siegel's law practice. They appear to be separate, but it's the same guy... the court documents don't lie.

    Copyright Enforcement Group LLC
    8484 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 220
    Beverly Hills, CA 90211
    (310) 526-8610
    Toll Free: (877) 526-7974
    supportteam@copyrightenforcementgroup.com
    support@copyrightsettlements.com
    salesteam@cop yrightenforcementgroup.com
    legalteam@copyrightenforcementgroup.com
    pr@copyrightenforcementgroup.co m
    support@copyrightsettlements.com

    Law Offices Of Ira M. Siegel
    433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 970
    Beverly Hills, California 90210-4426
    Tel: 310-435-7656
    Fax: 310-657-2187
    Ira M. Siegel, Cal. State Bar No. 78142
    irasiegel@earthlink.net
    http://www.facebook.com/irasiegel
    http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ira-s iegel/5/46a/a30

     

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  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 21st, 2010 @ 7:29am

    Got two of them about a week ago. I have had an unsecured wifi connection for a long time and had no idea that it was "illegal" or my responsibility if somebody else used it for something illegal.

    I have till January 22nd. 250 total dollars if I settle.

    I have found plenty of info about people getting these, but hardly anything about what the repercussions have been to those who ignored it.

    Here is an interesting link from a lawyer who basically says to ignore it...

    http://nctritech.wordpress.com/2010/09/24/did-your-isp-forward-you-a-dmca-copyright-infring ement-notice/

     

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  60.  
    identicon
    nctritech, Dec 25th, 2010 @ 9:47am

    I AM NOT A LAWYER.

    To the AC above me: the title of my blog is "Random musings from a COMPUTER BUSINESS OWNER." Please don't assign the title of "lawyer" to me when it is very clear I am no such thing. It's very dangerous to the reader who is facing such a letter to think I am a lawyer. Thanks.

     

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  61.  
    identicon
    anonymous man, Dec 30th, 2010 @ 7:12pm

    Crazy

    I'm here to warn others who got the notice. I thought I'd feel relieved after I paid CEG via website. Not true. I'm still under stress and still losing sleep. I have a loss of apetite that will last for days. I don't want to use my computer anymore. They played on my emotion with their loose accusation. I never watched the films they claim. I felt I had to protect my identity whether or not I was in the wrong. Thats why it is immoral and underhanded to threaten legal action to anonymous. The Copyright Enforcement Group only want automated money, not justice. Its very possible to feel shamed even when your in the right: They are counting on it. Thats what makes it a scheme. These porn lawyers are acting immoral and causing damage to normal people and normal families who don't know any better about computers.

    This is my opinion: I don't recommend visiting their settlement website at all. I think you should call your ISP and complain about the notice, as they blindly forwards these things. I think you should call the lawyers offices via phone and talk to them until they think and stop. Contact the EFF.org. Use twitter. Lastly, mount a boycott against the porn companies in league with these lawyers, like Diabolic etc. They don't need you as a fan. The last resort should be paying up. Never offer your identity. You won't be any better off submitting to their will.

    Overall I don't feel its moral to pay them. They are running a destructive scheme, based on social shaming. This has nothing to do with justice. The porn these companies create is not artistic, it is profanity. Complain to all parties involved when you get a notice. Don't give your identity.

     

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  62.  
    identicon
    Thomas, Dec 31st, 2010 @ 1:08pm

    What happens when you DON'T pay.

    Well, I'm the Thomas listed above around September 16th or so. I did NOT pay up and have had NO legal action taken against me or any further emails. DO NOT PAY THESE GUYS AND JUST IGNORE THEM!! If you did NOT download the file in question, then you have no problem with a lawsuit. They would lose and you would also be able to countersue for emotional distress, extortion, and pain and suffering. If you DID download the file in question, then stop torrenting for at least a month or two. That way, you followed the Cease and Desist order.

    Again, do NOT pay them a dime. They have no case.

     

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  63.  
    identicon
    Shelley, Jan 1st, 2011 @ 11:46am

    How to get your money back.

    Here is what to do: If you paid, just call your credit card company and issue a charge-back. Tell them you didn't receive the adult dvd they promised. It costs them the processing fee and you get your money back.

     

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  64.  
    identicon
    Boba Fett, Jan 3rd, 2011 @ 1:41pm

    FTC Complaint website wizard

    If you were affected in any way you can easily and anonymously file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission website using the information found in the comments.
    Link here:
    https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/

    Its quite friendly and asks for things like how much they asked for and if they threatened you legally or not. You can enter multiple business addresses/websites. They leave space for your story. You don't have to fill out every line and they don't require you to leave them any of your contact info.

     

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  65.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2011 @ 3:07pm

    Just got an email from CEG for 14 complaints

    Yeah they sent me a notice through my ISP, I use Qwest, these complaints go back to October. Anyway I probably made th mistake of calling them, but I said I didn't know what they were talking about and that I didn't recognize these files. They took my number. Yeah I'm a little bit scared but I made a complaint to the FTC, I used their Military section. Anyhow, if push does come to shove I will fight it.

     

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  66.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 23rd, 2011 @ 7:30am

    Spoke with internet provider

    I got one of these threat letters from the same company. It came through a notice from my internet provider, Charter Cable, with a link to the "Copyright Settlements" site demanding I pay $125. I called Charter Cable's Security Resolution team and found out some interesting information. For one thing they said this is just a warning. They told me that even though the letter reads to be very threatening and demands immediate action, they are just warning letters. I also found out that this company did not have any of my personal information, including my name. The ISP I have and most ISP's do not submit any personal information to these groups without a subpoena. In a nut shell their advise was to ignore it and try to fix the problem with open wifi. They did allude that if I contacted the group personally I would be giving up my personal information and opening myself up for possible action against me. So, it doesn't look like there is much for these companies to go on.

     

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  67.  
    identicon
    Teddy, Feb 10th, 2011 @ 8:25pm

    Re: Spoke with internet provider

    What happens if you ignore these "threats"??? I also received a notification identical to the one above a few days ago, but a different torrent obviously. I finally punched in the numbers online and the "copyrights settlement" people want me to settle with 125$.

    Is this for real? I am losing sleep over this. Somebody help me out please! Do I need to get a lawyer?

     

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  68.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 11th, 2011 @ 2:23pm

    Ignore it. They don't have your info until you give it to them. Just lay off downloading for awhile, especially from the type of media that caused you to get the letter. I got a letter in December and the payment due date was last month. Nothing has happened. So don't worry, this is just a scheme started by a couple of scumbag lawyers that think they can scare people into giving them money.

     

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  69.  
    identicon
    Thomas, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:08am

    Teddy, if you look above to lines 45, 47, and 62, those are me. I was supposed to pay up in October. It's now the end of February. I went to their website and put in the case number and everything so I could see what the movie I was charged with downloading was going to cost me. After that, I did nothing more. No payment was made.

    As of today, nothing has happened. No legal action or even another email has come forward. All I did was lay low for about a month or two and all is well.

    I also use Charter btw. Just don't do anything and don't send them any money. File a complaint on the FTC website or FBI website. I used the FBI site as they have a cyber terrorism section.

     

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  70.  
    identicon
    anon, Mar 1st, 2011 @ 7:09pm

    I recieved a letter from CEG...I attempted to find JW Releasing, Ltd. who is listed as the copyright owner. I checked the US copyright office website and can't find them. Did a google search and can't find them. Anyone else unable to locate the copyright owner in the letter?

     

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  71.  
    identicon
    concerned, Mar 1st, 2011 @ 9:03pm

    I paid and gave my info (dumb of me), I am concerened that now they have my info and could come after me more, I realized what I did and called my credit card company and told them I think I paid a scam and would like my account changed which they did. Has anyone done what I did and had anything more happen to them?

     

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  72.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 11:09am

    I spoke with an Attorney this morning. She mentioned a lot of Ira Siegel's (CEG)cases were granted "ex parte" subpoenas for discovery at the end of February.

     

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  73.  
    identicon
    Anon, Mar 8th, 2011 @ 6:25pm

    Got one too

    This is crazy. I never even saw the movie in question. As someone posted above, here is a link to one of his lawsuits: http://www.slyck.com/misc/patrick_complaint.pdf.

    We've heard of tons of people getting these letters, we've heard from many, above, who have ignored them without consequence. One thing we haven't heard of is someone who ignored then got sued. Anyone?

     

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  74.  
    identicon
    uuzoo, Mar 12th, 2011 @ 12:22pm

    Re: Spoke with internet provider

    I too received a note by mail from Charter saying that CEG claims I downloaded an adult film which I didn't. I never even heard of it. I have wireless and I've wondered if someone hacked into my pc. But, Charter told me the same thing when I called them. That it was just a warning. I too don't know what to do. But, I can say this is that I'm not paying a dime to those crooks. I did contact the EFF as well as get some free legal advice online. I haven't heard anything yet. I plan on contacting FTC as well. I'm being accuse of something I didn't do.

     

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  75.  
    icon
    uuzoo (profile), Mar 15th, 2011 @ 6:58pm

    Spoke to an attorney.

    Well, I talked to a attorney in my state that was referred to me by EFF, and he said that there is no law that someone has to have a secure wireless internet. CEG is saying that even if someone uses your wireless without permission you're still held liable. Not so. That's what the attorney said. Also, he said that what they are doing is extortion. He wants to see my complaint that they sent to Charter. I'm gonna fax it to him. One more thing. He also said I should not send any money until he reads the complaint. I'll know in a couple of days what's going on.

     

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  76.  
    identicon
    jv, Mar 24th, 2011 @ 7:23am

    Re: Spoke to an attorney.

    recieved one of these letters... and i dont want to pay for something i didnt do any info on what the attorney said?

     

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  77.  
    identicon
    lorenzo, Mar 29th, 2011 @ 10:28pm

    I've gotten letters from my isp a few years ago about torrents, so I got rid of the torrent software and blocked it on my router the best I could. my wireless router is wep secured, but from what I read and have seen other people do with cell phones, it only takes a few minutes to hack into the wifi connection of a home wireless router. I'm guessing this is what has happened to me, but there is no way to know for sure, so the most I can do is change passwords and attempt to secure it better.

    many years ago, when dsl was new, I got a phone call from my isp about some death threats made on a news group. to this day, I have never used a news group and not even sure what it is. never heard anything good about them, so I have no interest. back then I didn't have wireless. I never heard another word about that incident after that first phone call.

    you have to keep in mind, this is the country where people are guilty until proven innocent. my family has experienced this more then once, and it's not something to wish on anyone.

    personally, the whole thing looks shady. I would never pay money to any company who sends out automated threatening emails. it feels to much like a scam. the people who have paid, maybe they're in the clear now. but I'm guessing most people will take the road I'm taking and wait it out. if you have paid, I would let it go. don't fuel the fire by filing a charge back with your bank. don't email them, it likely contains your name. I would recommend not even visiting their website or logging into their system, as these things can be tracked to your same ip address.

    I have to put my foot down any time someone tries to scare me into doing something. if I'm ever sued for this claim, I'll drive there myself, represent myself, and hope the truth sets me free. I plan to use the $20 documents package. http://blogs.findlaw.com/strategist/2010/12/lawyer-who-helped-copyright-defendants-with-self-help-fo rms-sued.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+FLStrategist+%28Str ategist%29

    legit or not, this stinks of scam and extortion.

     

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  78.  
    identicon
    lace, Mar 31st, 2011 @ 7:17pm

    so what if my neighbor has been downloading off my IP address?

    So i let my neighbor use use my security key for the internet. After having my internet (what seemed to be) disconnected and not knowing why, i called qwest and asked why, they said i had a virus or something and needed to get it figured out w/in a week & they sent me an email. After reviewing the email like a million times i realized i am being threatened w/ a lawsuit if i dont pay $625 within basically 20 days... I talked to my neighbor and he said the porns look familiar. I KNOW HE DID IT cause I have nothing AT ALL to do with porn! I called the guy dealing with my case and he says I am responsible cause its MY IP address and there is no way to fight it, basically pay the 625 now or pay 1500 a piece for each (of the 5) porns. I am a nervous wreck about this and dont know what to do?? HELP ME PLEA

     

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  79.  
    identicon
    lace, Mar 31st, 2011 @ 7:45pm

    oh theres more, did i screw myself over?

    So when i read it last night, out of being retarded and freaked out, when i went to the copyright settlements site i emailed them through the "contact" area and sent them an email asking what was going on and telling them this was a huge mistake, i also called and talked with someone today for a long time, he has my 1st and last name and prolly phone number... is that enough info for them to link to my IP address to file further action against me? should i pay it or ignore it? he doesnt have my address or bank account number or anything like that but now im afraid they can track me down by my name... What do you guys think?

     

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  80.  
    identicon
    riley, Apr 29th, 2011 @ 9:18am

    all signs point to a scam

    I just got 2 notices. I called the number listed and it went to an answering service. They wanted my name and number so they could call me back, but i didnt give it to them. i then tried to probe the answering service for info and she couldnt tell me anything.

    From what i gather, the bottom line here is that this is BULLSH*&T and we shouldnt pay.

    I can guarentee mine is. the date in question was Easter and my family was at my brothers house, no one was home. However, this website needs to be shut down!!

     

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  81.  
    icon
    Crazy (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 2:52pm

    Abuse@charter.net

    Well I got my emails from charter on 4-29. A total of 4 extortion letters from "Copyright Settlements" all for the same movie. I talked to charter internet security staff and was told there has been a total of 20 email notices from the same company for the same movie, I just haven't recieved all of them yet. $125 x 20 = $2500 for one movie.

    It appears they are downloading movies and tracking the IP of the uploaders then sending a bill for each time they download the same movie over and over again. I deny any liability and have changed my password on my wireless network.

     

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  82.  
    identicon
    facetoplamm, May 5th, 2011 @ 2:40am

    same boat

    got one a few days ago myself, flipped out, i didn't download the file, logged into their site with the info they gave me and emailed them..got a response back saying im still legally responsible for anything on my connection (which is bs) i emailed a lawyer today and waiting bac from him..sent a complaints to the FEDs. I'm not paying it. I have read that many have just because they don't want to be exposed about the fact they watch porn..i watch porn..my girlfriend and I watch porn together..but neither of us downloaded the said file..however ima little worried of the fact that they have my full name now..but if its a giant scam I don't think legal action will be taken....from the history on every other site it seems no one has been taken to court yet.

     

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  83.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 5th, 2011 @ 6:02am

    ISP was served witha subponea

    My ISP, Verizon, was served with a subpoena to turn over all the information they have for me with my IP address (Name, address, email address, MAC address). I am sure other people will be getting letters from their ISPs letting them know this as well. Looks like Ira/CEG is going after Does 1-1257 on this one. So I figure there are about 1257 people getting letters. My ISP says I have 30 days to quash or vacate the subpoena or they will then have to turn over my info.

    More info:
    http://archive.recapthelaw.org/cand/232674/

     

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  84.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 6th, 2011 @ 8:02pm

    Re: Spoke with internet provider

    Hey, I wrote the "Spoke with internet provider" post back in January. Here it is in May and I never heard anything again after ignoring the letter. As a precaution I installed the "Zap Shares" program to prevent this from happening again. I read that some people got subpoenas, but I never did. If you get one of these letters my advice is to ignore it like I did.

     

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  85.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2011 @ 6:02am

    We will see

    Not sure if ignoring it would be the thing to do or not. This does look like it is now grinding it's way through the legal system. The link above shows all the legal documents that have been filed.

     

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  86.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 6:58am

     

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  87.  
    identicon
    ano yo!, May 25th, 2011 @ 8:40am

    so from ive gathered upp.. people go to this site http://www.copyrightenforcementgroup.com/
    they upload files they want monitored.. and when an infringement occurs.. a collection notices is automatically generated and emailed to the persons ISP.. which is forwarded to the costumer.. from there that link sends the costumer to www.copyrightsettlements.com. wich offers them a pre-settlement to pay a fine or purchase goods. and once a settlement is paid or goods are purchased the "INFRINGER" is released from liability and the collection is split between the copyright owner and Copyright Enforcement Group.

    aaaaaand

    If an infringer doesnt pay the settlement or ignores the notice CEGs in-house legal team takes over until a collection is realized.

     

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  88.  
    identicon
    ano yo!, May 25th, 2011 @ 8:52am

    i just finished talking to the Alex Cruz from copyright enforcement group.. he just told me his client just wants to get paid for his material! haha. and by no way was i excepting guilt.. as soon as i pay.. they split the money, and its over with. he said its the easy way!... i think im going to pay this..and hope it doesn't bit me in the ass later!!! :/

     

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  89.  
    identicon
    Roberto, May 29th, 2011 @ 2:19am

    Distribution to Minors?

    So if CEG actually uploads a torrent AND seeds it and a minor happens to download it, wouldn't that constitute distribution of explicit material to a minor? I mean they have laws that say when displaying nude magazines you have to black it out since they'll be posted at gas stations where kids will be. What they're doing is basically allowing minors to download THEIR content without any age verification or what not. Just seems that this business model opens them up to law suits. Anyone know if there's basis to a lawsuit against them for this?

     

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  90.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2011 @ 6:38am

    New update

    Law Offices of Ira M. Siegel

    By Certified Mail & Email
    June 07, 2011

    Re:
    Case Name: Media Products, Inc. DBA Devil's Film v. DOES 1-1257
    Case No.: CV-10-04471-MEJ
    United States District Court for the Northern District of California

    Title of Infringed Motion Picture: DON'T TELL MY WIFE I ASSFUCKED THE BABYSITTER

    File Name: Dont.Tell.My.Wife.I.Assfucked.The.Babysitter.XXX.DVDRip.XviD-NYMPHO
    File Size: 1,461,071,728 bytes
    ISP: Verizon Internet Services
    Protocol: BitTorrent

    We represent the Plaintiff in the above-identified case.

    Pursuant to a Court-approved subpoena, the Internet Service Provider ("ISP") named above and other ISPs have disclosed subscribers whose Internet accounts have been identified as having been used to download from and/or make available on the Internet unauthorized copies of the above-named motion picture in violation of the U.S. Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. 101 et cetera).

    You have been identified as one of those subscribers, in particular as Doe XXXX in Case No. CV-10-04471-MEJ, who has infringed Plaintiff's copyright in the above-named motion picture. The complaint in this case can be viewed online at http://cv-10-04471-mej.irasiegellaw.com/. We will formally name you as a defendant in that case if you do not reach a settlement with us by the close of business on Monday, June 27, 2011.

    YOU SHOULD CONSIDER CONSULTING WITH YOUR OWN ATTORNEY IN CONNECTION WITH THIS CASE.

    In connection with this case, we will seek, among other things, an award against you for damages of up to $150,000 for willful infringement, and up to $30,000 for non-willful infringement, under the statutory damages provisions of the Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. 504(c)), costs and attorney fees, and a permanent injunction.

    Do NOT delete any files relating to the above-identified motion picture from any of your computers unless and until Plaintiff's claim against you is resolved by settlement or otherwise. If you do, in addition to damages, we will seek sanctions against you for spoliation (i.e., destruction or alteration) of evidence.

    To settle your infringement now, the settlement fee is $1,500.00. Also, as indicated above, the settlement fee must be received by us, on behalf of Plaintiff, by the close of business on Monday, June 27, 2011.

    Settlement payment in the form of a check or money order should be made payable to "Law Offices of Ira M. Siegel," with Case Management ID: 3548 written on the remittance/advice line of the check or money order.

    The payment, along with your signature on the Liability Release Agreement (see attached document) should be sent to this address:

    Law Offices of Ira M. Siegel
    P.O. Box 16952
    Encino, CA 91416

    With respect to the Liability Release Agreement, read it carefully. You will see that we have accommodated the reasonable interests of a defendant such as yourself. Once the money represented by your check or money order has actually been received in my attorney-client trust account, I will return to you the attached Liability Release Agreement signed by me on behalf of Plaintiff, along with a Settlement Date and Release Security Code. Shortly thereafter, a dismissal of you, identified by your Doe number, IP address and timestamp, from the case will be filed with the Court and sent to you as well.

    Juries and courts do take copyright infringement very seriously. As noted above, you should consider consulting with your own attorney in connection with this case. You and/or your attorney may research similar cases relating to unauthorized downloading of media, such as in the music industry.

    We look forward to resolving this case with you according to the terms set forth in the Liability Release Agreement. If we do not, then you may formally be brought into the case without further notice.

    Sincerely,

    Ira M. Siegel

     

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  91.  
    identicon
    Super Duper, Jun 9th, 2011 @ 10:50am

    in response to #90 Post Above

    What was initial settlement amount?

    When ISP sent you the emails

    1. How many different email/cases you had?
    2. Did you log in to each case and checked how much they are asking per case?
    3. Was the total amount they aske that time same as $1500 they are asking now?

    I need to know as I also received 2 or 3 emails. I haven't checked my cases yet. Not sure should I take a chance, as some people didn't get subpeona.

    Thanks.

     

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  92.  
    identicon
    conquis7ador, Jun 9th, 2011 @ 7:50pm

    Re: You paid, what happened?

    So did you end up paying? I have no problem paying as long as I don't have to worry about it down the road.

     

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  93.  
    identicon
    Amy, Jun 14th, 2011 @ 9:15pm

    Re: New update

    I recieved the same certified letter today. It's addressed to me because the internet is in my name. My husband suggests I ignore it. Should I?

     

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  94.  
    identicon
    Falcon, Jun 15th, 2011 @ 12:25am

    Copyright Enforcement group

    I got a similar email but not on downloading porn or anything. It was over a RSS feed from another popular blog that had a picture in question was from this RSS feed and it was exactly what was show on my website but the picture was a thumbnail version and it did point back to the original website.

    http://www.autoblog.com/2011/06/01/sti-version-of-subaru-coupe-unlikely-to-go-turbocharg ed/

    I in turn shutdown the website and will no longer participate in blogging any longer.

    Scared to death.

     

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  95.  
    identicon
    wlpc, Jun 15th, 2011 @ 2:30pm

    CEG

    I also received a notice from these folks a few days ago. It is true that adult content was downloaded (not me personally) on my ISP which Charter gladly turned over to them. (I believe Time Warner is not doing so as yet). I did pay for one already via credit card only a couple of days ago. Then I found another notice in my mail and a 2nd case. There were 2 cases at $200 each. Now the 2 cases are linked together for a total of $400 even though I already paid for one and have the receipt to prove it. I tried calling and left many messages and emails but no one ever got back to me. Finally, I told one of the flunkies answering the phone that I would pay via check but needed to drop it off in person. Alex Cruz (415-358-2691) finally called me back and said for security purposes they do not deal directly with the public and there was no way to personally drop off the payment. He said he would have his tech people call me about the "duplicate" case #.

     

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  96.  
    identicon
    Freaked Out, Jun 17th, 2011 @ 7:58am

    I just got one of these letters....

    Hi Guys,

    Just got 4 of these letters in the space of 14 minutes. 2 of these letters or for 1 porn file and 2 are for another porn file.

    I logged in and the settlement fee is $200. I didn't log in from my home account, just from a mobile phone account.

    I received the letter through a VPN provider who does not give out my details to a third party.


    I'm also from Australia, should I be worried? They technically don't know my name or anything, and I'm wondering if they could get a court order to find my name even though it's a civil matter?

    Any help is appreciated it, I'd rather pay up $800 then to be slapped with 4 sets of $1500.00 fines.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

     

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  97.  
    icon
    Super Duper (profile), Jun 30th, 2011 @ 4:51pm

    I am the Same Person #91 Above :: I PAID

    I had received total 6 eMails from ISP (Charter). Each one for $200. However they were all for the same file. I chose payment plan paid portion of one case (50%) last night.

    I called the # (Message Service) left my number to call back. Got call back, talked to Alex (same # as messenger service but extension 112). I told him it's the same file, bla bla bla, at the end he dropped other 5 cases.

    I choose to pay $200 in 60 days and get rid of any future hassle.

     

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  98.  
    identicon
    Anonymous, Jul 3rd, 2011 @ 10:29pm

    How to Pay??

    I also received one of the emails from Charter.. While I did not download the files in question I do have 2 sons... nuff said..

    Anyway, I am planning on paying the $200 fine they list on their website... But don't want to give them my actual name and visa number. So I'm thinking about buying a VISA giftcard and using that to pay the fine. Has anyone else tried this?

    The only issue I can think of is that the "Copyright Settlement" website requires my name and address... I don't exactly know how the visa giftcard works.. Can I setup the card under a different name and address?? one I make up? or use the whitehouse address??

    Thoughts??

     

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  99.  
    identicon
    Anonymous, Jul 3rd, 2011 @ 10:41pm

    Re: How to Pay??

    Looked online and found some information about the gift card idea..

    "Can I use my Visa Gift card for online or phone purchases?

    Yes. However, to make an online or phone purchase, you will need to register your card. You can do this by either calling the issuer, or by visiting their web site.
    When you make an online or phone purchase, the name, address, and phone number you use will need to be exactly the same as the information you provided when registering your card. If the information is different, the transaction may be declined.
    You can verify or update your information by visiting the card provider's web site, or by contacting them using the toll-free number provided in your card documentation. "

    Looks like all I have to do is register the card and come up with a name and address... Looks like "Ben Dover" is going to be paying this bill..

     

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  100.  
    identicon
    Chris, Jul 10th, 2011 @ 12:00pm

    Do they have...

    Do they have International Jurisdiction for these court suits? I have received an email but I'm from Australia. I'm wondering if these copyright suits are exclusive to the USA?

     

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  101.  
    identicon
    Web noob, Sep 12th, 2011 @ 8:56pm

    So has anybody paid it and still suffered any consequences? If $200 is all it takes to get this stress out of my life then that worth it.

     

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  102.  
    icon
    Super Duper (profile), Sep 19th, 2011 @ 8:23am

    Re: #101

    I paid $200 in 3 installments. Last payment went out beginning of this month. They sent me a notice 10 days ago relieving from all charges/bla bla bla.

     

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  103.  
    identicon
    suze, Sep 24th, 2011 @ 8:40am

    Does anyone have any more recent info on this? Early comments indicated to ignore the email but later (after confirming that there have been subpoenas) people indicate they are paying the settlement. I spoke with a lawyer who said it was best to wait until I get something in writing, but I'm losing sleep over this and I don't know how good his advice really is. They sent out 8 redundant notices totaling $1600, which I expect is a ploy to ratchet up the pressure.

     

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  104.  
    icon
    Crazy (profile), Sep 24th, 2011 @ 12:57pm

    I had ten notices back in May, they wanted a total of $2250. The file in question was one 8 min scene from a 2hr movie. I ignored them and so far 5 months later I haven't received anymore threatening emails.

    My advice is to ignore them. These are scare tactics from small time ambulance chasing lawyers looking to make a buck from threatening people.

     

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  105.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 5th, 2011 @ 2:53pm

    Does it matter so much if what I downloaded is issued recently(All about Kagney Linn Karter)?
    I also received a notice. After reviewing all the information above, I decide to ignore and see.

    Another question, can I prolong the due date of the settlement another 60 days without give out my information? Or it is totally nonsense and danger to me?
    Thanks!!

     

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  106.  
    identicon
    Super, Oct 7th, 2011 @ 2:45pm

    Did they(CEG) really sue any people?Do they have the ability to do that since with a so tiny office of 200 SF(http://www.loopnet.com/Listing/15885634/8484-Wilshire-Blvd-Ste-220-Beverly-Hills-CA/), probably no more than 1 employee there.

     

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  107.  
    icon
    Noreen (profile), Oct 20th, 2011 @ 10:01am

    Got my own emails recently

    Any more ideas about this situation. It wasn't me who downloaded anything. So now what? I don't want to pay but was wondering what to do...

    The ISP addy that's on my notice doesn't match mine but then I don't understand all of it either.

     

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  108.  
    identicon
    Anon, Oct 23rd, 2011 @ 6:33am

    He is violating several portions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
    806. Harassment or abuse
    A debt collector may not engage in any conduct the natural consequence of which is to harass, oppress, or abuse any person in connection with the collection of a debt. Without limiting the general application of the foregoing, the following conduct is a violation of this section:
    (1) The use or threat of use of violence or other criminal means to harm the physical person, reputation, or property of any person.

    807. False or misleading representations
    A debt collector may not use any false, deceptive, or misleading representation or means in connection with the collection of any debt. Without limiting the general application of the foregoing, the following conduct is a violation of this section:
    (2) The false representation of
    (A) the character, amount, or legal status of any debt; or
    (B) any services rendered or compensation which may be lawfully received by any debt collector for the collection of a debt.

     

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  109.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 27th, 2011 @ 8:50pm

    I just got 6 emails too, all for different cases, is there any recent development on this? I am terrified. they ask for 1200 in total and I just dont have that kind of mind.

     

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  110.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 27th, 2011 @ 9:06pm

    I have a question for all you legal minded people. Hypothetically, if someone decides to just ignore it all, can he/she still get served a subpoena/lawsuit, say..... a year later? Or is after a certain time, you can no longer subpoena/suit a person?

     

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  111.  
    identicon
    PRYME, Oct 29th, 2011 @ 5:32pm

    Jesus Christ

    I want to know also Please! What is the longest time someone has gone without paying???? Mine is a total of $400! I don't want to pay if they use my info to come back after me!!!

     

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  112.  
    identicon
    holycrapyoupeoplearestupid, Oct 30th, 2011 @ 11:38pm

    I got one of these letters last March, deadline of May to pay, didn't pay, 4 months later, nothing. Why? Because it's a scam and it works like this.

    1. Set up torrent file.

    2. Track file.

    3. Get John Doe Subpoena from the various ISPs for all IP Addresses that have downloaded your copyrighted file. (cost = $300)

    4. Send scary legal letter to all downloaders, demand extortion money by threatening huge lawsuit for a case that you have no ability to effectively argue and no resources to actually file. (you've got to file the case in the state/jurisdiction where the person downloaded the file, most of these lawyers aren't practiced in copyright law and would have no idea where to even begin).

    5. Sit back and wait for the people who think you're legit to send you money $$$. Note their names so you can see if their IP address downloaded any other content, hit them up again, and again, maybe you actually represent the copyright holder and maybe you don't!***


    ***http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110509/11235214213/dispute-over-nude-nuns-copyright-lead s-to-second-firm-copying-first-firms-lawsuit.shtml

     

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  113.  
    identicon
    nctritech, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 4:49pm

    Updated my Copyright Infringement Notice site, you should read it.

    I'm the blogger who was linked to in earlier comments on this page, and since I'm still seeing many daily visitors coming from here to my old blog post on the subject, I thought it would be a great idea to let you know that since I was originally linked to from here, I've not only made a copyright infringement notice website, I've very recently expanded it with a quick and dirty guide to damage control for people who have received a letter or are paranoid about being sued for any reason. The URL is http://copyright-infringement-notice.com/ and I would appreciate any suggestions anyone has to make it better. Thanks!

     

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  114.  
    identicon
    Phil, Nov 14th, 2011 @ 10:31am

    Re: Ira Siegel's (CEG)cases were granted "ex parte"

    what does that mean- ? just got a subpoena from him to my isp to release my info - what do i do.. im sick over this..? any info is gr8ly appreciated..

     

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  115.  
    identicon
    Phil, Nov 14th, 2011 @ 10:39am

    Re: ISP was served witha subponea

    I got a subpoena today also from the same guy ecxept there are 1475 does in my case.. they want my info from my isp and i have 10-14 days to contest this to court and isp (charter) - what should i do..? I sick over this cant eat or sleep and will probably cause a divorce for me bc its in my wife name and its a porn allegation.. not good.. please be detailed cus i need to do something about this.. please help!! thx in advance.. ur the only person i could find with my same issue..

     

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  116.  
    identicon
    Phil, Nov 14th, 2011 @ 10:43am

    Re: New update

    what happend with this? - i just got subpoena letter which he wants my info from isp.. what did you do ?

     

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  117.  
    identicon
    Phil, Nov 14th, 2011 @ 10:43am

    Re: Re: New update

    what happend with this? - i just got subpoena letter which he wants my info from isp.. what did you do ?

     

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  118.  
    identicon
    Phil, Nov 14th, 2011 @ 10:49am

    Re: Ira Siegel's (CEG)cases were granted "ex parte"

    I got a subpoena today also from the same guy ecxept there are 1475 does in my case.. they want my info from my isp and i have 10-14 days to contest this to court and isp (charter) - what should i do..? I sick over this cant eat or sleep and will probably cause a divorce for me bc its in my wife name and its a porn allegation.. not good.. please be detailed cus i need to do something about this.. please help!! thx in advance.. ur the only person i could find with my same issue..

     

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  119.  
    identicon
    Kevin, Nov 25th, 2011 @ 6:51pm

    Any updates i have same problem

     

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  120.  
    identicon
    CCS LABS, Nov 26th, 2011 @ 6:24am

    Re: We can help....

    Send us the case reference number, your name, address etc - and we will contact them on your behalf.

    Do Not Pay !!

     

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  121.  
    identicon
    John, Nov 29th, 2011 @ 6:22pm

    Re: Re: We can help....

    Where do I send it to

     

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

  122.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 10:51pm

    Somewhat scared

    I received 12 letters (in the mail) of infringement from charters internet security team. I have 45 claims against me. I won't admit to anything. The first pre-settlement offer expires on dec. 10 so we'll see what happens. I've def lost sleep over this, my wife and I fought over it a few times and I'm pretty scarred as to how things are going to pan out. They want $200 per claim, thats $9000, which I don't have. if I get supenaed, hopefully they will see i'm currently in bankruptcy and will drop everything. Please help with any advise you may have. Thank you.

     

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

  123.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 11th, 2011 @ 8:14pm

    Updates?

    Anyone care to share their info/situation? Especially people who have not paid and pre-settlement dates expired. Also if you've been mailed a so called subpoena or served one.

    Phil, any updates on your situation?

    Thanks!

     

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

  124.  
    identicon
    kc, Dec 12th, 2011 @ 1:00pm

    Dec 5 was my due date

    I did not pay

     

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

  125.  
    identicon
    thisGuy, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:10pm

    Re: Check this out

    To KC.

    Did anything happened to you since you didn't pay??

     

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

  126.  
    identicon
    unknown, Jan 9th, 2012 @ 4:02pm

    So I got mine today and it just seems from reading all these comments that you're screwed if you do and you're screwed if you don't. You can pay them but they get your information and if you don't they chase you down. Anonymous coward has been posting here since April 8, 2010 and his last post was December 11, 2011. Just knowing that is depressing in itself. Many people on here said not to pay but it seems like it is getting worse for those people. I'm guessing most of us feel helpless at this point. Most of the people that said nothing happened didn't take into consideration that the company or scammers (I don't know what to believe anymore) have many of us trapped in this and its just a matter of time before they strike. It may not happen overnight but it does seem like they are attacking slowly. I've read all of 'anonymous cowards' comments and in the beginning he had given me hope that this was all just a scam. At the end of this it fourm he seems helpless. Even with Phil. He also thought this could not escalate but now he is still questioning his own motive and trying to find a way out of this black hole. If there is anyone who has successfully survived this horrible ordeal by not paying and it has been 6months or longer without a notification, please step up. I've been researching all day and I feel like I've gotten no where at all.

     

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

  127.  
    icon
    Bill (profile), Jan 18th, 2012 @ 9:47am

    Re:

    OK, Heres what I did. I got an email also from Charter stating that I had infringed on 2 copyrights, which I had, and the settlement amount was $400.00 for both titles. I settled, not wanting to worry everyday about getting "something" in the mail at a later date. What I did was create a temporary email addy, opened up a post office box, settled anonymously (which copyright enforcement group allows you to do)with a postal money order. I mailed this to them with all my temporary info; email and po box. Received my letter from them yesterday releasing me of the infringements. Will close out my po box and delete my temp email addy. I know a lot of people on here say just to ignore it, but the email I got from Charter had me pegged. I feel much better than having to worry every day about "if" they are going to follow through with the threat, which they have done in the past. Maybe they will or maybe they wont. Hope this helps someone. As of now, they have no info on me except my ip addy.

     

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

  128.  
    identicon
    kc, Jan 25th, 2012 @ 3:19pm

    01/25/2012 {So far So good}

     

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

  129.  
    identicon
    Metal Goddess, Jan 26th, 2012 @ 1:04pm

    Odd

    Ever since the megaupload bust, I've been curious and reading a lot of stuff. What I find odd is that many of you seem to have wi-fi, are being accused of downloading from peer to peer torrent groups, and have an ISP called Charter. I rather wonder if your ISP is in cahoots with those people. Is there anyone who has a different ISP that has gotten contacted by these rather shady people? I actually read their website out of curiosity and they actually have a satellite system. Those folks must be raking in some serious cash.

     

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

  130.  
    icon
    dubalo (profile), Jan 27th, 2012 @ 7:09am

    Re: Re:

    What site did you use for your temp email?

     

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

  131.  
    identicon
    Metal Goddess, Jan 27th, 2012 @ 8:23am

    Re: Odd

    Someone brought up an interesting point to me. It seems most of this guy's clients are pornographers. Is there some chance this guy is a front for pornographers? Trying to make these pornographers some cash since I seriously doubt they make much from the trash they put out?

     

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

  132.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2012 @ 2:45pm

    Re: Re: Odd

    Yahoo

     

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

  133.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2012 @ 2:27pm

    Torrent Proxy

    Guys, make yourself a favour, and pay for a torrent proxy, I know it is $6.50 a month but come on, that is cheaper than Netflix and you can download more than just movies, I haven't received any notification since I have the service and can download pretty much at the same speed.

    Believe me, it is worth it.

    Do your research and find the appropiate one for you.

     

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

  134.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 26th, 2012 @ 3:46pm

    Update

    Any updates on you guy's situations?

     

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

  135.  
    identicon
    Dl, Apr 12th, 2012 @ 1:21pm

    Re:

    i got a charge from CEG also from JW releasing ltd. i cannot find any information on them. has anything happened from this?

     

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

  136.  
    identicon
    KC, May 15th, 2012 @ 4:42pm

    I DID NOT PAY

    i did not pay and 6 months later nothing...its a scam

     

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

  137.  
    identicon
    JohnheDoesit, Jun 11th, 2012 @ 4:11pm

    Re: So what happened?

    What's the latest on your situation?

     

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

  138.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Jul 18th, 2012 @ 7:06am

    Bill,

    Wondering if you are still there...I plan on doing the same as you.

    Question I have though:
    1) When applying for your PO Box they require your real name and address. But I believe they can't release that information to anyone else, correct?

    2) Did you reference your IP address on the money order? What did you put on the money order for "purchaser, signer for drawer" and I assume you put your POBox for the address on the money order correct?

    3) Did you mail it or drop it off at their office? What address did you mail it to or drop it off at?

    4) What did you use the email addy for? I don't see anything that they would use that for

    5) In the return address to your PO Box did you just list the POBox and no name? or did you list your IP address as the "name"

    6) Have you heard anything back from the since? from your ISP or via email / mail?

     

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

  139.  
    identicon
    anonymous, Jul 22nd, 2012 @ 1:47pm

    Re:

    Mike,

    Is this one of the CEG cases? If so, which one?

    Regarding your P.O. Box question. I am pretty sure the US Postal Service would only release the identity of an owner if subpoenaed.

     

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

  140.  
    identicon
    DuckSaysQuack, Aug 25th, 2012 @ 9:28pm

    Has anyone settled i.e. pay their fees and its been a year or longer and have not been bothered anymore?

    It seems like a lot of commentators are saying...

    1. They didn't pay and after a period of time (months), there is a subpoena or lawsuit filed with them identified as a 'Does XXXX' and their ISP potentially identifying them.

    2. Those that did pay end up with more notices (not sure if repeat or new offense) or because they guys are exploiting people even more.

    TL;DR If you paid, did the problem really go away

     

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

  141.  
    icon
    FogManduRad (profile), Oct 20th, 2012 @ 1:10pm

    I second DuckSaysQuack i.e. #142 comment

    Has anyone else basically just paid the money and had them go away permanently? I'm looking to do this. If paying them is going to get them to stop from harassing me in the future, then i'd rather deal with it that way.

    But one individual mentioned that once they get your name - and thus associate it with your IP address/name/file - they will continue to ask you for more money.

    Anyone?????

     

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

  142.  
    icon
    Dave (profile), Oct 21st, 2012 @ 4:05pm

    The solution is coming soon

    We are about to release a beta version of a self-service digital forensic application which you can run on your computer. It will tell you exactly what your position is and if nothing is found that you are being accused of downloading then an ECA (Early Case Assessment) certificate is produced which you can send to the complainants and your ISP.

    When the application is finished a limited number of people will be allowed to download it and run it for testing purposes and to ensure that the system functions as expected. The beta testers will then have free access to the application when released properly. The application will be released for only 10 around $15.

    If it turns out that nothing is found you would be entitled to counter-sue with bone fide digital forensic evidence to support your claims against their untested, un-validated assertions.

     

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

  143.  
    identicon
    screw em, Oct 26th, 2012 @ 6:53pm

    proceed to the bathroom...

    ...and wipe ur ass with this shit. its a scam. i got 46 letters all within a week about a year ago. i freaked out initially and sought advise from forums. after lots of reading and actually talking to a guy i know that works for my isp that sent the letters, this stuff is a joke as they cant prove anything, it's a trick and a really dirty tactic. if u call the isp security team, you're still ok as they could give a shit less what you do with your connection. if you talk/give info to/pay the infringement folks, one you're dumb as hell, but worse, you're busted and most likely need to get yourself some real legal advise. most of the time, they just want their settlement money but if you read the fine print, they can/will involve you in their next lawsuit. so again, if you received a letter, do something constructive with it... toilet paper, paper airplane, burn it, frame it, whatever.

     

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

  144.  
    icon
    Dave (profile), Oct 26th, 2012 @ 8:32pm

    Re: proceed to the bathroom...

    You have not been keeping up with the news. your 46 letters last year will get you banned by your and other major ISPs for copyright infringement very soon. Don't ignore the letters!

    See the following for details:
    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2011/07/major-isps-agree-to-six-strikes-copyright-enfor cement-plan/

    http://www.extremetech.com/internet/122747-isps-to-become-copyright-cops-this-summer

    and on the delay in implementing it:
    http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/07/13/1751208/isp-six-strikes-plan-delayed

     

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

  145.  
    identicon
    Jon Doe, Dec 4th, 2012 @ 5:24pm

    Re: The solution is coming soon

    Is this software available yet and does it stand up in court since it doesn't seem like the ISP or Ira Siegel actually care whether or not you actually possess the files he accuses you of possessing?

    Has it ever been used in these cases to squash a subpoena? Has a certificate from this program ever been produced and given to an ISP which made the ISP not expose the information of a Jon Doe defendant?

    Thanks

     

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

  146.  
    identicon
    Charter Doe, Feb 6th, 2013 @ 2:06pm

    Settled.

    I got an email from Charter with a settlement offer from Seigel for downloading a movie which probably was a porn movie. For the sake peace of mind I settled for $200. Even if I was innocent, if they sued me, I had to go through the headache of proving that in the court. I didn't want that. No further mails from them anymore. Their website says "Case has been settled"!

    I talked to them to make sure they don't come after me after I settle and the IP being dynamic is assigned to someone else who downloads it and so on... As per them it is case to case basis and if IP is assigned to someone else who downloads and gets caught, letter will go to the ISP.

    I have secured my IP, hid the SSID, hoping nobody hacks into my network.

     

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

  147.  
    identicon
    Clarence, Feb 7th, 2013 @ 2:58pm

    Also settled. took more money away.

    I also settled, mostly out of panic and due to my ISP and Student life at my university to do so, but 2 days after I did, 5 withdrawals/expenses from a not so far away walmart were issued to my card! so no about 900 were taken from me.

    is this whole thing a scam?

    now that they know my address/name, will they keep chasing me? can they redirect my new CC from arriving to my hands? will they knock at my footstep to see if I still dont have the files? im panicking even more!

    no lawyer or financially to counter-sue. Should I try my bank to return my 400$ from the settlement too. If so, will they sue me again by letter now? omg! I think I think too much, but the possibilities for more extortion are endless!

     

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

  148.  
    identicon
    Charter doe, Feb 26th, 2013 @ 3:54pm

    Re: Also settled. took more money away.

    >> expenses from a not so far away walmart were issued to my card!

    I paid as well but no fraudulent charges were made on my card. May be some spyware or may be your card info was taken from some other website where you used your card.

    >> now that they know my address/name, will they keep chasing me?

    I asked them the same question and as per them each instance is a case by case basis. Say for example tomorrow my IP address (since it is a dynamic IP) is issued to someone else and he downloads something, will they come after ME since they have my info now and it is associated with my IP? They said, each case is on case by case basis and mail will be sent to the service provider who will then send the mail to whosoever the IP assigned.

    I think we have a reason to believe in what they said because the system is automated.

     

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

  149.  
    identicon
    James Kingbob, Jul 9th, 2013 @ 8:42am

    Copyright notice for pictures used on my blog?

    Hi guys

    Just received a few copyright notices for alledgely using a few copyrighter pictures on my blog. The want me to pay $1500 ($500 for each picture).

    I have no money, I am student and am in fact over $10,000 in debt due to university loans. I am also from the U.K if that makes any difference to CEG.

    Should I pay? I disabled my blog so no more people can view it.

    I am not ever sure my ISP was contacted as CEG have just sent me an email to my email address that was available to see on my blog.

    How do I know if they went through my ISP and should I pay?

    Thanks

     

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

  150.  
    identicon
    me3, Aug 26th, 2013 @ 2:18pm

    Re: Copyright notice for pictures used on my blog?

    What happened and what did you do with that so far?

    Some days after you I got the same as you. People shared and uploaded uncopyrighted pics to my site but they said must responsible for everything under my domain.

    I'm from another country in Europe. I'm considering that I can pay that some hundred bucks but I definitely do not want to be followed after they get all of my info.

    Anybody from non US here too? What did you do and what happened after months or years.

    Thanks!

     

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

  151.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2014 @ 3:17am

    Re: I DID NOT PAY

    KC, it's been 3 years now. Did anything happen at all?

     

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


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