US Copyright Group Says ISPs Who Don't Cough Up User Names May Be Guilty Of Inducing Copyright Infringement

from the uh,-good-luck-with-that-one... dept

Thomas Dunlap, the lawyer who set up US Copyright Group, which mimics European operations like ACS:Law in threatening to sue tens of thousands of people on flimsy evidence in mass automated lawsuits for alleged copyright infringement if they don't pay up, sure has some interesting legal theories. We had already noted that at least Time Warner Cable was fighting the subpoenas, and in Dunlap's response, he's claiming that ISPs that don't just roll over and hand over the info open themselves up to charges of contributory copyright infringement under the Grokster standard put forth by the Supreme Court.

I can't see how anyone could possibly find Time Warner guilty of inducement for not handing over subscriber info -- especially not under the standards in the Grokster ruling. Those include that the company had to promote that its service could be used for infringement, that they failed to filter out those infringing uses when possible and that the business plan depended on a high volume of infringement. I don't see any of those three things applying to Time Warner and not handing over customer info on subpoenas. This seems like more bluster from Dunlap to try to get Time Warner Cable to just given in and hand over the names, so he can send out letters demanding payment.

Filed Under: automated lawsuits, copyright, inducement
Companies: time warner cable, us copyright group


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2010 @ 12:48pm

    Re:

    The problem is that too many Americans are intentionally kept ignorant of the issues. There aren't nearly enough informed Americans to really have an impact on anything. The mainstream media in this country is completely rigged by laws that allow a few people to control and monopolize most media outlets outside the Internet. Not everyone has Internet access and not everyone who does have Internet access is aware of blogs like Techdirt.

    Sweden did a nice job of advertising the pirate party, for example. They got fliers and took to the streets. Americans need to do the same I suppose, that way a larger audience can be exposed to these issues. Hold up signs that says, "Copyright shouldn't last 95 years or the lifetime of an artist plus 70 years!!!" that will quickly get attention. From there on you can hand out brochures directing people to organized websites that document the harm that copyright and patents cause to society and that explains to people how damaged our legal system is from all sides. For those who don't have the Internet but have computer access perhaps you can hand out mini CD's (they'll play on your regular CD player) or regular CD's (whichever is cheaper) that has a bunch of information (ie: text or perhaps audio for a regular CD player for those that have no computer but have CD player access) explaining the harm that patents and copyrights cause. The website should also explain how our mainstream media is being controlled and coerced by laws intended to foster ignorance and what people can do to fix it and ensure wider Internet access. There are ways to reach those who either don't have Internet access or who are unaware of blogs like Techdirt and only mostly watch mainstream media news or keep distant from the news.

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