Suggestion: When Trying To Quash A Subpoena To Reveal Your Identity... Don't Use Your Real Name

from the just-a-suggestion dept

There have been plenty of cases where a person or company gets a subpoena to try to identify an anonymous online person -- such as in various file sharing cases. It's also not uncommon for those anonymous internet people to fight the subpoena, and it's quite possible to do so anonymously. Apparently, no one informed that to one guy who decided to fight a subpoena by Worldwide Film Entertainment over an alleged attempt to file share the movie The Gray Man. Apparently, in filing the challenge, the guy used his real name and address:
Comcast notified its subscriber in this case, one Mr. Simko, of Worldwide Film Entertainment's efforts to learn Mr. Simko's identity.

And here's the part that makes this little vignette so charming: rather than challenge the plaintiff's efforts to unmask his identity, Mr. Simko filed a motion to quash the subpoena USING HIS REAL NAME.

The court denied the motion to quash. The basis for denying the motion is kind of an aside (the motion to quash phase was not the right time to challenge venue or knowledge of the infringement).

What's noteworthy about the case is Mr. Simko's decision to voluntarily waive his anonymity. Not only did he challenge the subpoena using his own name, he filed as an exhibit the letter he got from Comcast notifying him of the subpoena. Right there, in all caps and as plain as day were Simko's name and address for all to see.
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Filed Under: anonymity, subpoena


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  1. icon
    Niall (profile), 27 May 2010 @ 4:45am

    Re: Re:

    Hang on, Mike is actually reporting 'against' someone on the filesharing side for doing something daft. Isn't this where you Shillonymous Clones all accuse him of kinds of anti-IP guff? And yet he's actually mentioning both sides of the issue (such as he did with the Jammie case etc.).

    Plus, where is the bad in dealing with any problems (potential or otherwise) with due process which all too often seem to be ignored by the corporate bottom-feeders - when it suits them?

    Last but not least - Mike doesn't appear to be issuing ANY opinion about the guy filesharing or whether he 'should have' or 'shouldn't have' done it. All he is doing is highlighting where the guy made a mistake. Honestly, if this story had been about someone denying a red-light camera ticket on the grounds that they weren't driving by using proof that they were, would you all knee-jerk respond by accusing Mike of hating the legal system and wanting people to jump reds?

    I get so bored by this endless torrent of mindless anti-Mike moaning that isn't even original, backed up by evidence, or even featuring the most self-evident basic logic. I know Mike can get all worked up about some odd things, but to me, that's how I learn more about this more. At least Weird Harold (and the old TAM) made some vague attempt to avoid childish name-calling and to make a real point that made you think - even if that thought was often "naah" :)

    So go back to your childish tea-party and don't come back until you've learned to debate like anyone else out of kindergarden. No-one actually here is impressed with name-calling and complete lack of evidence or reasoning, especially from people who can't even admit to being themselves.

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