Lawyer Tries Selling DIY Legal Response Kit For Those Hit By US Copyright Group Suits

from the pro-se-me dept

With US Copyright Group (really DC law firm Dunlap, Grubb and Weaver) filing tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals accused of file sharing certain movies, there's been something of a scramble for some of those accused to find legal help. While the EFF put together a list of lawyers interested in helping those accused, one of them, Graham Syfert, has realized that many of those accused really can't afford a lawyer for their defense, and so he's put together some worksheets to help those who wish to defend themselves, pro se, against USCG. Apparently, he was trying to charge $99 for the worksheets, but after TorrentFreak raised questions about the price, he's dropped it to $9.99. As Syfert told TorrentFreak:
"My dream would be to have 10,000-20,000 people file all three documents to the lawyers and severely cripple the entire process and show them that you shouldn't be allowed to join so many defendants."
That seems a bit unlikely but for those accused of sharing a movie, and without the means for full legal representation, at least there's some alternative.


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  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 6:38pm

    People should create the equivalent to LLC's to sign for services this way they are not directly liable for any thing that happens and can protect their assets.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 6:40pm

    If corporations can use LLC's so the people should be able to use similar mechanisms, that is how big corps protect themselves and that is how the people should protect themselves, when they try to abolish those constructs they will do so knowing that it will hurt them too.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 6:41pm

    If corporations can use LLC's so the people should be able to use similar mechanisms, that is how big corps protect themselves and that is how the people should protect themselves, when they try to abolish those constructs they will do so knowing that it will hurt them too.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 8:48pm

    Uh...I can only wonder what will happen when someone files these papers pro se, and then a few days later receives in the mail formal papers filed with the court by plaintiffs' attorneys. What now? No form for that...

     

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    AW, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 8:58pm

    Not getting where the $99 is pricey. I think it's still below fair market value if they are done up right. $9.99 is a steal and the guy is probably going to get creamed with requests and hopefully so. Monetizing defense is nothing new. Making it affordable for people is, especially when those who seem to fight still lose.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:03pm

    It's a nice idea, but I'm pretty sure every single one of those motions would be denied. What's worse, I find the lawyer's motive to be completely suspect. He wants to "severely cripple the entire process" with tens of thousands of motions? I think he should be recommending that people file motions only if they have a good argument based on the merits of their case. Encouraging people to file motions for the purpose of "crippling" the court, while he makes money off of it no less, is a terrible thing to be advocating. I know that judges pretty much hate nothing more than a frivolous motion.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:09pm

    "Those tempted [to pirate Graham's product] should keep in mind though that sharing copyrighted material without consent can sometimes lead to trouble, but it’s highly probable they know that already."

     

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  8.  
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    Spointman, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:10pm

    Re:

    Read the docs. They're the basic motions to quash and dismiss the case without revealing your identity. Even if you hired a lawyer yourself, odds are he'd file something pretty similar to those as his first step.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:13pm

    Re:

    But what do they have to lose? Tens of thousands of people are being sued for a price under that of defense counsel, it would make more sense for people to just settle regardless if they are actually guilty or not. It really is extortion. And even if every one of these motions are denied, I'm ok with that. "Only if they have a good argument based on the merits of their case"? These people aren't attorneys, they may have never experienced the American legal system beyond Law & Order. They do not know if their case has the slightest chance.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:18pm

    If I could think of a single reason to quash or dismiss that would apply to most defendants, or even some of them, I'd draft the documents myself and give them away for free. These motions are losers and this guy knows it. He's profiting from it, and he's advocating crippling the court with it. I'm not a fan.

     

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  11.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:23pm

    Re: Re:

    If I'm USCG and I'm trying to figure out which of the people who didn't settle with me to sue first, I'm going to sue the people who filed these frivolous motions. They made me waste time filing an opposition motion. I think people filing these things are painting targets on their backs. Something to think about.

     

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    Dave Lord, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:58pm

    Please help me

    Does anyone know where I can download a pirate copy of these worksheets?

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 9:59pm

    Re:

    Seriously, are you mentally ill or something?

    What is different from the twats that file thousands of blind suits without good enough proof expecting to get a settlement to get paid?

    Abuse of the courts is not in question anymore, one side is abusing it and the other will fallow suit that is a no brainer, now when the judiciary recover its sanity people can talk about morals or whatever.

    If the law allow it people should use it to defend themselves against parasites that are exploiting the system to extract money from others.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:02pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I think not, they should file everything they got even if gets them nowhere, they are thousands and if you have to file a opposition motion that is ok by me and probably everyone being target, your feelings are irrelevant to the issue.

     

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  15.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:08pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Frivolous motions"?

    I guess that asking the courts to dismiss what is basically blackmail is "frivolous". Oh, you're right, they aren't paying a ton of money to lawyers so that they can do it instead... yeah, them defense stealers are destroying the lawyering business!

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:10pm

    Re: Re:

    I'm sorry if me expressing my honest opinion makes you question my sanity. Such a response on your part, in my opinion, is childish at best.

    I disagree that USCG is abusing the courts. The courts apparently disagree as well. If the courts felt they were being abused, trust me, we'd be reading articles about that.

    My point is that people should worry about really defending themselves. In my opinion, filing a motion that you know will get you nowhere is a complete waste of time.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I think it's frivolous because it's going to fail. These types of motions will fail practically every time. I don't care who writes the motion, be it a lawyer or a layman. To me that's not defending oneself.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Even if it's going to fail, which you can not prove, that doesn't make it frivolous.

    and have you ever heard the saying, the best offense makes a good defense?

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:55pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Not if your honest opinion is insane.

    and who are you to determine that a motion will get someone nowhere or that their response is any more frivolous than your initial suit. Let the court make that decision.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 1st, 2010 @ 10:58pm

    Re:

    The only thing crippling the court is these frivolous lawsuits suing people for copy"right" infringement. These copy protection laws should be abolished before ever even having the chance of cluttering up our legal system.

     

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  21.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 11:24pm

    Re:

    He was charging $99 for digital copies of a few documents, something that costs nothing to produce. It's the same reason $18 is generally considered too much for a CD. As the linked article says, TorrentFreak pointed out that at $99 it makes him look like someone else trying to make a buck off these questionable lawsuits. At $10 it looks more like trying to help out while recouping some time and effort.

     

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  22.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 1st, 2010 @ 11:28pm

    Re:

    It's a nice idea, but I'm pretty sure every single one of those motions would be denied.

    Would you like to explain your reasons for this conclusion? You've said it over and over again here, but so far haven't offered any explanation.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 12:54am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Who cares what you think you are not even a lawyer yet.

    When you prove yourself maybe people will respect you, but believe me anyone trusting a student that don't now squat about life is and idiot so please shove it sunny, go rant to people who believe you.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 12:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Who cares if it fails the goal is to swamp the opposing mother F so he gets to work for a change.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 1:01am

    Re: Re: Re:

    And by the way the courts disagree with you they clearly more than once have asked congress to remedy the situation because of those types of lawsuits.

    So either you are misinformed, and idiot or a liar.

    I'm inclined to believe you are a F liar, just because I already saw people tell you that and argue before and you deleteriously seem to forget those things.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 1:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yes it will fail, but can you imagine the time it will take to fail with 10's of thousands of motions to look at?

    After that you can be sure no judge will allow ever that much people on a case.

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:05am

    Re: Re:

    You may have overlooked my point. Yes, the DIY forms are filed with the court. They are not, however, the end of the matter. What happens if the court rules against the DIY defendant and/or the plaintiff files related documents challenging the DIY form filings. Now what happens to the DIY'er who hoped filing the forms would be the end of it?

     

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  28.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You are right that I cannot prove they will fail. I have, however, done extensive research of these types of motions in these types of cases, and almost invariably they have failed.

    Of course a good defense is called for. I am saying that filing these types of motions at this stage of the proceedings gets the defendants nothing and does not advance their cause. In other words, I wouldn't call it a good defense.

    If a defendant actually committed the infringement, their best option most likely is to settle. Otherwise, it usually works out that only the lawyers win in the end. It happens all the time.

     

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  29.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:43am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I don't think it would really work like that. I'm not sure what grounds would then exist that the judge could sever the defendants with that don't exist already now.

     

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  30.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:50am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm a law student that's done a lot of research on this exact issue. I also work for a federal judge, and I read motions filed with the court all the time. I research issues just like this one for the court when the judge wants more information.

    I wouldn't call my opinion "insane." Far from it. I'd call it well-reasoned.

     

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  31.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:50am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "What happens if the court rules against the DIY defendant and/or the plaintiff files related documents challenging the DIY form filings. Now what happens to the DIY'er who hoped filing the forms would be the end of it?"

    Oh Noes - The sky is falling!

    And you suggest they just roll over because of a funding problem? Nice. I'm guessing you are not a lawyer.

     

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  32.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I am making educated, informed statements based on my research. What research have you done? I've read every single motion to quash in a p2p case that I could find in Westlaw and Lexis. Believe me or not, I really don't care.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The question is, does it hurt? nope
    What happens if thousands do the same thing? could it help? possibly.

    So why not?

    Because you don't like it?

    C'mon you can do better than that can't you?

     

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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 5:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "If a defendant actually committed the infringement, their best option most likely is to settle"

    And what about; Ma & Pa Kettle who do not own a computer, the newborn baby, the dead or the laser printer? What do you suggest these people do - just give up because you said so?

     

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  35.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    What I meant was that if the court thought the defendants in one of these p2p cases were misjoined, the court would then remedy that error. The remedy would be severance. At this point in the proceedings the defendants aren't being severed because they aren't misjoined. Nor are the cases being dismissed for any other error. If there was an error, the courts would be all too happy to act on that.

    If the courts are asking Congress to change things, and I'm not aware that they are, then that doesn't mean the courts think there is an error with these cases, not a technical error anyway. It actually means they can't find an error. Again, if they could find an error, they would act on it.

    If I am in error in any of what I'm saying, I most certainly would like to know exactly how I'm wrong. I'm obsessed with understanding such things, and I'm the first to admit when I've made a mistake. I'm not spouting off my uniformed opinion. Quite the opposite.

     

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  36.  
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    Michael, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:03am

    Re:

    At that point, you are in the same boat you were in before filing the papers (minus the $10). However, the US Copyright Group probably will not file anything with the court - their business model is based on avoiding actually going to court.

    IF they go to court, it will be for a small number of cases in which there was obvious and willful infringement. They need a court case or two to help scare the pants off of the people they are shaking down (somewhat like breaking a few legs to make everyone pay up).

    Making it easy to respond with legal documentation is a big hit to their plan. Now, when they open a response letter, it could be legal documentation rather than a settlement check. If enough defendants did manage to take this path, it could cripple their operation.

     

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  37.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:03am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The way it works is that those types of arguments would be defenses to be raised at trial after the plaintiff has presented their case-in-chief. Those arguments are meaningless at the motion to quash or motion to dismiss phase of things. By the time a defendant could make such an argument, they will have already racked up more in legal fees than just settling in the first place.

    That's the sad reality.

     

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  38.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I am making educated, informed statements based on my research."

    Your educated and informed statement was that the motion to quash is frivolous.

    I thought that frivolous litigation addressed no legal merit or standing.

     

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  39.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:08am

    Re: Re:

    I've read every motion to quash and every motion to dismiss in a p2p case that I could find in the legal databases. There just aren't any good arguments that would apply to most people in these USCG cases. If there were a magic argument that could get defendants out off the hook, I'd be sharing that argument with whomever would listen.

    If somebody knows of a good argument, please, do share.

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Did you research also the quantity of false positives that 10's of thousands of lawsuits bring to the table also?

    Did you research the impact that such motions in that number could do to a case? is there any precedents for that?

    So you an inexperienced dude, without no knowledge of real world litigation, no experience at all with people and their behaviors assume it is not a valid or worth because it has a high margin of failure?

    Situation awareness is not your strong point is it. The law is not the only thing at play in the courts there are other factors that you are failing to take into account.

    This is war and every bit that can be done to harass and weaken the resolve of the other side is a valid tactic, those people transforming the courts into cow machines should not have an easy time at it.

     

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  41.  
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    Michael, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:09am

    Re: Re:

    You do not think like a lawyer (or at least not like an underhanded lawyer).

    The name of the game for USCG is the path of least resistance. You sue the people that ignored you and you have the most evidence against. They only want a few big wins and they need guaranteed wins. If they have any loses, the game gets a lot trickier for them. They are playing a game of poker - and they are mostly bluffing. As soon as you get someone that comes up with a reasonable defense from the beginning, you want to seek easier prey.

    Remember, their goal is not to win court cases and get new case law on the books. Their goal is to get the maximum number of small settlements as possible.

     

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  42.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    More than one court has voiced their displeasure with the carpet bombing tactics being employed by people in this and other cases. I find it hard to believe that a law student would unaware of these cases.

     

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  43.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:14am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "get defendants out off the hook"

    You say that as if their guilt is assured. What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty ... I know, it's only words and never seen in the real world.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    All of the motions to quash in the USCG cases that I've read were without merit. Saying, "I didn't do it!" or "I don't have a computer!" is not grounds to quash a subpoena. Those are defenses to be raised much later in the proceedings.

     

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  45.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:19am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "By the time a defendant could make such an argument, they will have already racked up more in legal fees than just settling in the first place. That's the sad reality."

    And that is why this practice needs to be stopped.
    Our court system is being abused in order to squeeze money out of innocent people and all you have to offer is - too bad, so sad.

     

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  46.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    They may be innocent, or they may not be. I don't know. Off the hook just means not listed as a defendant in one of these cases.

     

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    herodotus (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:36am

    "I'm sorry if me expressing my honest opinion makes you question my sanity. Such a response on your part, in my opinion, is childish at best."

    Yes, I agree. There is rather too much of that sort of thing around here.


    "I disagree that USCG is abusing the courts. The courts apparently disagree as well. If the courts felt they were being abused, trust me, we'd be reading articles about that."

    Well, yes, you are a law student, no? I am sure that you could also explain why the $600,000 in damages awarded to the plaintiff in Liebeck v. McDonald's Restaurants is a perfectly reasonable settlement.

    And I am sure that you could also explain why the nearly 20,000 lawsuits that U.S. Silica was served with in 2003 alone were not an abuse of the courts.

    And I am also sure that you can tell us all why it is perfectly reasonable to sue the maker of the lawnmower that some negligent idiot ran over a child with, and why the 2 million dollar verdict against the lawnmower manufacturer is a sensible use of tort law to further justice and personal responsibility in our time.

    The problem is, to those of us who are not law students, these lawsuits make no sense whatever. And the system that allows them to occur seems, well, less than perfect.

    But then, we stand little chance of gaining anything from these kinds of lawsuits, whereas you, as a law student, stand to gain from such suits, whichever side you end up working for.

    It's cool how the legal profession seems to remain a growth industry even during a major recession.

     

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  48.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There may be some innocent people, but I would bet that the vast majority actually infringed the works in question--and willfully. That's just my opinion of course, and obviously I can't back that up.

    I don't really see it as abusing the courts, but obviously other people do. I'm not sure what I could do about it if I did agree. That's a policy question. What I'm focused on is the reality of how these things work in court. If I'm a defendant, I'm worried about that since that is what actually matters.

     

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  49.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:40am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I find it odd that nobody has filed a motion to quash based on incorrect assumptions and accusations from the other side.

    With 10's of thousands of defendants I'm sure there is a few in there that were never supposed to be defendants, actually I believe that the number is more than a few since those people are not professional investigators and probably did use the cheapest way to get the information.

    More if people are TOR nodes they can say they have no responsibilities and issue a motion to dismiss since the accusation may be correct but target at the wrong person.

    TOR is a proxy server where people can be an exit node and they have no control over what others do, they could be considered service providers and protected under the DMCA rules, the law in the U.S. even make it so people discouraged to manage exit nodes in any active way so they don't create liability for themselves.

    http://www.torproject.org/eff/tor-dmca-response.html
    http://www.torproject.org/eff/t or-legal-faq.html.en

     

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  50.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:51am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    1. I am a lawyer
    2. I practice, in substantial part, copyright law.
    3. I have seen DYI forms before, but not in the context of a court pleading such as here.
    4. If the plaintiff does challenge the DIY defendants' filinga and serves a copy on such defendants, the only thing of use to defendants provided by the "forms" seller is telling them that a copy of the Fedral Rules of Civil Procedure can be downloaded from a link on the seller's website. For all intents and purposes this would be wasted effort since the defendants, unless they have significant legal training, would not have a clue what to do next.

    Now, if you happen to have differing views because you are likewise familiar with pleadings, I would be interested to hear them.

     

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  51.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    What part of "innocent until proven guilty" do you not understand?

    These people are not proven guilty and therefore are by law innocent. Is this not correct?

    Innocent people are being subjected to extortion and the justice system is twiddling its thumbs.

     

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  52.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:52am

    Re:

    I agree that the damages in these cases are completely ridiculous. That needs to be fixed, and it's Congress that must fix it ultimately.

    The joinder of so many defendants in these p2p cases for the purpose of limited discovery, i.e., putting a name to the IP address, isn't a bad thing, in my opinion.

    The courts are certainly abused all the time, I just don't think these p2p cases are an example of that. I get why other people could think so. I just disagree.

     

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  53.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Does it hurt the defendant to file the motions for squash and dismiss?

    Does it offers any rewards if does work?

    It get simple after that about what one should do, file all the motions the law permits, because there is no downside to filling it, but not filling those deprive one from the benefits if it does work.

    Besides if they will harass you, one should harass them to the full extent of the law.

    Don't agree?

    Those actions don't need you too.

     

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  54.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:02am

    You can buy the package for $9.99, and the comments for $0.99 here: http://store.payloadz.com/go/?id=842325

    I'm buying the documents he's offering, and I'm going to read through them and look up all the citations to see if there's any meat on his arguments.

     

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  55.  
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    abc gum, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Good for you.

    My view is that your "what ifs" do nothing to aid those being subjected to extortion.

     

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  56.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I do get "innocent until proven guilty." I'm not sure what your point is though. The plaintiffs have enough evidence to file suit against the defendants. That's what matters at this point.

     

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  57.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    How about a motion to dismiss based on the fact that somebody is a TOR node and it is the wrong party to sue and it is protected under the DMCA since TOR is a service provider.

     

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  58.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:21am

    Re:

    Back to the library to see what can be done next and a lot of networking.

     

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  59.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    That argument would be a defense (and a good one, if true) to be made later in the trial. Such arguments are not grounds for dismissal early in the proceedings.

     

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  60.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 7:43am

    Re:

    I've read through the documents, and as I expected, there's no meat there. The sole argument for quashing the subpoena is lack of personal jurisdiction. The problem there is that the subpoena to the ISP is for the purpose of identifying the Doe defendant. Jurisdiction cannot be challenged until the Doe defendant is identified. You can't argue that the court doesn't have jurisdiction to subpoena an ISP for the purpose of determining if the court has jurisdiction. Every time I've seen this argument made in a p2p case it has failed.

    The documents also are designed around the presumption that USCG will replace the Doe defendants with a named defendant in the same lawsuit once the Doe defendant is identified. This is not what USCG is doing. As we have already seen, they are dismissing the Doe defendant lawsuits and filing new lawsuits against each defendant individually in the proper jurisdiction.

    In my opinion, these DIY forms accomplish nothing, at least at this point in the proceedings.

     

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  61.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:22am

    Re: Re:

    So it is part of the motions one needs to go through.

    Does it not bring more work to the other side?

    That is the whole point isn't it, to wear out the other side.

     

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  62.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The plaintiffs have enough evidence to file suit against the defendants. "

    Says who, the plaintiff? Who makes that determination. The motion to dismiss is so that the judge can determine if the plaintiff has enough evidence for the case to continue. Otherwise I can claim that I right now have enough evidence to sue you for defamation simply because you disagreed with me on this forum. That's just silly.

     

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  63.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I don't expect an insane person to know the difference between insanity and good reasoning. You calling yourself well reasoned is like trying to measure the accuracy of a ruler with itself.

     

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  64.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:45am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I think it's best to let the judge, and not you, make that determination.

     

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  65.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The judge makes the determination that on its face, the plaintiff has a case. How are USCG's cases defective?

     

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  66.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Rather than a personal attack, why don't you point out the flaws in my reasoning. That would be more productive.

     

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  67.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 8:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm telling you as a matter of fact that such defenses are not grounds for dismissal. Do you know something about procedure that I do not?

     

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  68.  
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    btrussell (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 9:04am

    Re: Re:

    "i.e., putting a name to the IP address, isn't a bad thing, in my opinion."

    All you can put on the IP Address is a mailing address. Address the letter to the occupants.

     

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  69.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 9:22am

    Re: Re: Re:

    The ISP gives USCG the name and address of the subscriber of the account, and then USCG goes after that subscriber. The idea is that it's a reasonable inference that the subscriber is the right defendant. Of course, there will occasionally be people wrongfully accused, but this doesn't make the inference unreasonable. Most of the time, it's the right person.

     

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  70.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 9:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    People have already pointed them out and you keep ignoring them.

     

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  71.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Huh? I really don't know what you're talking about. Make a point if you like, and I'll address it. I think I've demonstrated more than most that I don't back down and I'm happy to respond to criticism. I'm also happy to be proved wrong. I welcome it.

     

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  72.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:05am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Most of the time, it's the right person."

    I would like to know how you came to that conclusion. Settling out of court is not admitting guilt.

     

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  73.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:12am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I'm telling you as a matter of fact that such defenses are not grounds for dismissal. "

    Again, let the judge make that determination, not you. If you are right then maybe the judge will agree and you should have nothing to worry about.

    "Do you know something about procedure that I do not?'

    What does that have to do with anything. The motion to dismiss is partly meant to ward off frivolous lawsuits that overcrowd our court system. To some extent the word frivolous can be a subjective term. I think it is best to let the judge make that determination and not the person filing the lawsuit.

    Also, since the legal system should be intended to serve the public will perhaps the public should have a say in what constitutes a frivolous lawsuit and, as a member of the public, it is my opinion that these mass suing are frivolous and not only should they be dismissed, those who pursue them should be punished and fined. Perhaps the defendants feel the same way which is why they file for a motion to dismiss. In fact, I bet if someone sued you in such a lawsuit you would do the exact same thing, chances are you would do it for any lawsuits that someone filed against you. You may come here and lie about it but inwardly you know better. and so why should someone else do something different? I'm sure, when it's you doing it, you'll find some justification but when it's someone else doing it against you then you will claim it's not justified. Just like how IP maximists proclaim piracy is wrong and then they themselves plagiarize others without giving credit. If the defendant feels the lawsuit is frivolous then the defendant should file a motion for dismissal. Then the judge can either agree or disagree. Of course you won't agree, you're the one filing the lawsuit, but that doesn't make the lawsuit any less frivolous. Everyone who files a lawsuit will claim that the lawsuit isn't frivolous yet frivolous lawsuits are still filed and thrown out. That's why the person filing the lawsuit shouldn't be the one to decide whether or not the lawsuit is frivolous, because that person has a conflict of interest. and in these mass filings, hopefully the judge will agree that the lawsuit is frivolous and, if not, well then I disagree with the judge and as a member of the public I demand that our legal system be fixed.

     

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  74.  
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    TJGeezer (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:25am

    Re: LLC's

    "when they try to abolish those constructs they will do so knowing that it will hurt them too"
    Between thousands of people replying with these kits and (I hope) someone coming up with an equally inexpensive way to file a legal LLC, people would be turning their own bullying tactics right back on them. That sure appeals to the 10-year-old mischief maker who lives inside me.

     

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  75.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I haven't seen very many that were adjudicated where the person was actually found innocent, and there are lots where they were found liable. You are right though that if they settle, we don't really know. I am saying that courts think it's reasonable to presume that the IP subscriber is the proper defendant, at least at the early stage of the proceedings, and I agree. If it came to be shown that more often than not, the wrong party is identified using this method, and there was a better method that could be used, then I would change my opinion. As it is though, I can't think of a better way to identify the potential infringer. What else would you go by?

    Imagine that car causes a hit and run and a witness gets the license plate. Wouldn't the police investigate the registered owner of the car? That's the logical place to start. Maybe someone else was driving the car, and maybe it was stolen. Doesn't matter. The place to start is with the registered owner. I know it's not a perfect analogy, but it gets the gist of what's happening here.

     

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  76.  
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    TJGeezer (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, the DIY forms are filed with the court. They are not, however, the end of the matter. What happens if the court rules against the DIY defendant and/or the plaintiff files related documents challenging the DIY form filings. Now what happens to the DIY'er who hoped filing the forms would be the end of it?
    Honest question here, because I really don't get your point. In what way, if I'm the DIY filer, am I any worse off than before? I know I've saved your lawyer's fee by filing the first steps myself, but how am I worse off?

     

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  77.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm not worried about it.

    I would hardly call these infringement cases frivolous. The plaintiffs are showing that they own the copyright and the copyright was infringed, and there is a reasonable basis to think that the subscriber in question is the infringer. It's the opposite of frivolous.

    You are free to your opinion as I am to mine. I can tell you though that if a judge agreed with your interpretation, then that judge would dismiss such a case. Can you point to a similar case where the judge dismissed it as frivolous? I can't.

     

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  78.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 10:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    If you put everybody in jail, chances are most of the people will be guilty of something! Let's do it!

     

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  79.  
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    Dave, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 11:32am

    He's not crippling the court

    the US Copyright Group is the one crippling the process, not this lawyer providing forms for people to help defend themselves.

    USCG's extortive practices need to be severely punished. Their business model is predatory, using the scales of justice not to weigh the merits of the case, but to bludgeon people into submission.

    Hopefully, the people will realize that the bullshit copyright laws we have on the books need to be repealed to prevent this kind of travesty in the future.

    Expand fair use to include non-commercial infringement, and don't tax artists for the marketing benefits they receive from independent file sharers.

     

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  80.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 1:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I'm not worried about it."

    With all your complaining about it you sure could have fooled me.

    "I would hardly call these infringement cases frivolous."

    The harm caused by allowing them to go forward far outweighs the benefits. The legal system should enact and enforce laws to the extent that their enactment and enforcement causes greater good than harm. Our copyright system itself is harmful and to the extent that it advances these frivolous lawsuits it needs to be corrected.

    "The plaintiffs are showing that they own the copyright and the copyright was infringed, and there is a reasonable basis to think that the subscriber in question is the infringer."

    What basis? For all I know the IP address could have been made up. If you allow these extortion attempts to succeed based on someone claiming to have an IP address it can lead to all sorts of systematic abuses. and don't think these abuses can't happen, given the opportunity governments will abuse such power and there will be people that will abuse it as well. What guarantee do I have that the plaintiff didn't just randomly or blindly go after a bunch of random IP addresses, knowing that many will settle, without putting very much effort into actually ensuring that they had a case. Because the plaintiff said so?

    "Can you point to a similar case where the judge dismissed it as frivolous? I can't."

    Then I would say that our legal system needs to be corrected. How do I know that the IP address in question wasn't just made up?

     

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  81.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 1:24pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Imagine that car causes a hit and run and a witness gets the license plate."

    Imagine that someone made up the license plate to gain settlement money from people.

    I think it needs to be taken on a case by case basis. Some cases are legitimate and others are frivolous. Defendants should file for a summary judgment to ward off the frivolous cases and have our judicial resources be channeled towards more important uses. If the case is legitimate the judge will say so. If it isn't, the judge won't let the case move forward.

     

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  82.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 1:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Can you point to a similar case where the judge dismissed it as frivolous?"

    There are some frivolous cases where the plaintiffs eventually lost, after the defendant had to spend tons of money and resources fighting the case. and that's part of the problem and why it can get people to prematurely settle even though they did nothing wrong.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 2:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I don't know how you determined that these cases cause more harm than good. I'd say that's far from a foregone conclusion. And the lawsuits aren't frivolous, at least not in the legal meaning of the word.

    How do we know the plaintiffs aren't making this up? The plaintiffs filed sworn declarations and the lawyers signed their names to the complaints. In a court of law, this is sufficient. And this is nothing new, the legal system has done it this way for centuries.

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 2:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, people can lie. What's your point?

    Why would the defendants now win on summary judgment? Do you have any idea what you're even talking about? I haven't seen anything to think the answer is "yes."

    There is absolutely no way one of these cases will be thrown out as being "frivolous." I don't think you know the legal meaning of the word.

    Frankly, I think this "debate" has gone way past the point of diminishing returns. I'm trying to respond to you, but honestly, you're just coming across as angry, misinformed, and misguided.

     

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  85.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 2:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Of course frivolous cases exist. What's that got to do with this case?

     

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  86.  
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    monkyyy, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 2:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    2nd.... it will also riase legal fee`s for any future copyright lawsiuts

     

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  87.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 3:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I don't know how you determined that these cases cause more harm than good."

    They cost a lot of people tons of money for no good reason. Either people settle, which costs money, or they fight these lawsuits, which costs money. Sure the lawyers benefit but that hardly justifies the costs to society. and the laws that these suits are based on, copyright law, themselves are detrimental to society and these lawsuits are part of the detriment they cause.

    "I'd say that's far from a foregone conclusion."

    I'm sure you think that 95+ year copyright length is beneficial to society as well. The laws are harmful because they're intended to be and the lawsuits are also harmful.

    "And the lawsuits aren't frivolous, at least not in the legal meaning of the word."

    Then the law needs to change, it needs to change to punish these people that massively file lawsuits.

    "The plaintiffs filed sworn declarations and the lawyers signed their names to the complaints."

    and what's the punishment for making something up and what's the burden of proof to show that they made it up? The punishment for purposely making this stuff up, if intent is proven, is far less than the punishment for infringement, even if the infringement can't be proven to be intentional. False alarms have occurred and what have the punishment been against these lawyers for those? "Oh, I'm sorry, it was a mistake, sorry for the trouble." That's not enough.

    When suing thousands of people all at once how much time and effort do you suppose these accusers have put into ensuring that each of them is probably guilty? How much time could they have put into each case? Even if they put a measly hour into each case that amounts to 1000 hours if 1000 people were sued. I highly doubt that these lawyers put that much time into it and that they were very careful in the process. They were likely sloppily done and that should invalidate most of these mass filings. The excessive harm that allowing some lawyer the ability to put a few hours into suing a thousand people, with little investigative time per case, for something as miniscule as copyright infringement alone should be very suspect. and exactly where are the benefits to society?

    "And this is nothing new, the legal system has done it this way for centuries."

    and the legal system has rejected frivolous lawsuits as well, and many of these lawsuits are frivolous, causing much more harm than good, and should be rejected. The fact that you can not see the harm, and lack of benefit, to society done when one lawyer can cause such a huge detriment to so many people for something as miniscule as copyprivilege infringement is disturbing.

     

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  88.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 3:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "What's that got to do with this case?"

    It's not just one case, it's many cases, and they're mostly just frivolous attempts to collect money. Allowing these people to continue with such sloppily filed widespread lawsuits on thousands of people only invites systematic abuse for lawyers to sue everyone for no reason in hopes that they can collect settlement money.

     

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  89.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 3:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I don't think you know the legal meaning of the word."

    The legal system should either adopt a meaning that allows these lawsuits to be thrown out and the lawyers filing them to be punished for them or the legal system should adopt some other reason to have these lawsuits thrown out and the lawyers/entities filing them punished.

    "you're just coming across as angry, "

    I am angry.


    "misinformed,"

    Disagreeing with how our legal system does something isn't being misinformed.

    "and misguided."

    The only thing that's misguided is a legal system that thinks 95+ year copy protection lengths is acceptable. I'm not misguided when I say that our legal system is broken.

     

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  90.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 3:39pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    (I'm angry but I have good reason to be angry. I'm not angry at you, I'm angry at our broken legal system).

     

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  91.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2010 @ 12:25am

    Lawyers lying? No way...

     

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  92.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2010 @ 7:30am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    and here is another example of one of these abuses.

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100902/02075110872.shtml

     

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  93.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 4th, 2010 @ 7:04pm

    Re:

    It's a nice idea, but I'm pretty sure every single one of those motions would be denied.

    I have read that a "motion to quash" is viewed very, very leniently by judges. Often, hand-written letters will do. Don't know about the other forms, though.

    If the motions are denied, how would this hurt the defendant's case? The worst that would happen is that he or she is in the same boat as they were in the first place, less $10.

    Perhaps you think this:

    If I'm USCG and I'm trying to figure out which of the people who didn't settle with me to sue first, I'm going to sue the people who filed these frivolous motions.

    I doubt that. First of all, if people can't afford to pay for lawyers, they'll likely settle if this fails. Secondly, the USCG is going to sue everyone who doesn't settle, but they're going to sue the ones with deep pockets first, because they're the ones who will actually be able to pay the damages. That's not these people.

    Encouraging people to file motions for the purpose of "crippling" the court, while he makes money off of it no less, is a terrible thing to be advocating.

    And yet you defend the USCG for doing exactly the same thing. Interesting.

     

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  94.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 4th, 2010 @ 7:32pm

    Re: Re:

    The judge will allow a poorly formed, handwritten motion to quash to be filed, only to deny the motion.

    USCG isn't filing frivolous motions for the purpose of crippling the court like the lawyer offering the DIY kit was apparently advocating. To me there's a difference.

    You are probably right though that filing a motion to quash won't hurt anybody. It won't help them either.

     

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  95.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 4th, 2010 @ 10:21pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    USCG isn't filing frivolous motions for the purpose of crippling the court like the lawyer offering the DIY kit was apparently advocating.

    You may think a motion to quash is "frivolous," but there's a reason those motions exist. You've already admitted one of the subpoenas is invalid (Midcontinent Communications).

    The lawyer is not doing this "for the purpose of crippling the courts." He is giving defendants the tools to legally defend themselves.

    His point is that the only way these lawsuits will not cripple the courts, is if the defendants don't exercise their legal rights.

    The fault is with the people who joined the defendants in the first place. They are the ones who are crippling the courts, and they are the ones who Syfert wants to slow down.

    With good reason. You actually said:

    Encouraging people to file motions for the purpose of "crippling" the court, while he makes money off of it no less, is a terrible thing to be advocating.

    While the USCG's actions aren't "for the purpose" of crippling the courts, they certainly have that effect. Unless the USCG is stupid (unlikely), the USCG knows it - and doesn't care.

    And they are doing it for no reason other than to make money off it.

    This is a terrible thing to be advocating... and an even worse thing to be doing.

     

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  96.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 6:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Actually, the plaintiff joining the defendants into one suit made way less works for the courts, not more. Had they filed thousands of different suits for the purpose of discovery, that would have been more of a burden on the courts. I know the court would have collected more in filing fees, but that's not the point. I'm talking about the court's time, not their fee collection.

    USCG is doing this to collect money for their clients. Their clients are the victims. Victims sue in tort for the purpose of collecting damages. Lawyers collect a fee for their efforts. Of course it's about money.

     

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  97.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 12:56pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Actually, the plaintiff joining the defendants into one suit made way less works for the courts, not more. [...] I know the court would have collected more in filing fees, but that's not the point.

    Saving money on filing fees is absolutely the reason that the USCG joined all these defendants. The only way this can make less work for the courts, is if the defendants did not exercise their legal rights. In other words, they're only making less work for the courts on the presumption that they can trample on defendants' rights.

    You're basically advocating against defendants' rights, because the courts would be inconvenienced. I'm sure the court system would be a lot less clogged if we did away with Miranda rights too, but that's not the way it works. If a bunch of police officers arrest people without reading them their Miranda rights, you don't blame the people who were arrested when they stand up for their rights. You blame the police officers for wasting the court's time.

    USCG is doing this to collect money for their clients. Their clients are the victims. Victims sue in tort for the purpose of collecting damages. Lawyers collect a fee for their efforts. Of course it's about money.

    Syfert is doing this to help defendants. The defendants are the victims. Victims stand up for their rights for the purpose of not having to unfairly pay damages. Syfert collects a (tiny) fee for his efforts. Of course it's about money.

    It amazes me that you blame the lawyers for the defence, while you praise the laywers for the plaintiffs, though they are doing the same thing.

    I'm going to go out on a limb here and say you're not studying to be a defense lawyer.

     

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  98.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 1:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    My point was that by joining all of the defendants for the purpose of discovery, USCG put less of a burden on the courts. I don't see this as trampling on defendants' rights. Neither do the courts. I'm all for defendants' rights, but in the USCG cases, there is prima facie evidence that the defendants infringed on the plaintiffs' rights. In other words, there is prima facie evidence that the plaintiffs are victims.

    Syfert isn't helping any of the defendants by getting them to file motions to quash that are going to lose every time. Not in my opinion. If I knew of a good argument that defendants could make in a motion to quash, I'd share that information. It just doesn't exist.

    At this point, I don't see any problem with the subpoenas being issued to the ISPs and the defendants' true identities being made known. The courts don't have a problem with this either.

    I don't know what kind of law I'm going to end up practicing. Just the other day I had lunch with a judge and we talked about a job clerking with the Court of Appeals. In general though, you can take classes on litigation, but you don't really focus on the offense or the defense. You just focus on litigation.

     

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  99.  
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    BobJ (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 1:40pm

    So please, everyone mail in your forms. You may not win, but you have nothing to loose.

    I agree that if everyone does there own Self Help kit the court will need years to read them all

    by then the USCG lawyers will have given up JUST LIKE what happened with the MP3 cases years ago, once they realized no one was paying and everyone had either self help legal forms or real lawyers they ran out of money and gave up.

     

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  100.  
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    BobJ (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 1:42pm

    In case you did not get the link and adivce above. . . .

    Many are getting these letters. Looking at news reports it is about 50,000

    The cost to hiring a lawyer is more than the out of court settlement so its hard to win.

    Here is an interesting web site offering self help to block the release of your name to USCG.

    http://torrentfreak.com/lawyer-offers-self-help-to-sued-bittorrent-users-100829/

    The link to the forms are in the text toward the bottom.

     

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  101.  
    identicon
    alternatives(), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 2:40pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I don't know what kind of law I'm going to end up practicing.

    My guess is the kind of law you'll be practicing will be marked by incompetence and if the scales of Justice are working your will have many bar grievances filed against you.

    All one has to do is read
    http://www.techdirt.com/article.php?sid=20100902/11385710880#c461 and note your inability to answer a direct question due to your inability to comprehend what is written.

     

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  102.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 2:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I answered the question you linked to as best I could. Read through that thread and you'll see. And I've been answering everybody's questions on techdirt all day long, including every single one of yours. Not sure what else I can do to please you. If anything, your questions and your lack of a response to my answers only demonstrates your ignorance and inability to debate me. That's OK, we can't all be winners.

     

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  103.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 4:48pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    My point was that by joining all of the defendants for the purpose of discovery, USCG put less of a burden on the courts.

    As I made clear, it only puts less of a burden on the courts if the defendants do not excercise their rights. If they do, the burden on the courts is the same.

    What the USCG is doing is counting on general ignorance of tort law, solely to save themselves money in filing fees.

    I don't see this as trampling on defendants' rights. Neither do the courts.

    Apparently at least one court does, or else the USCG wouldn't be required to work with the EFF and the ACLU. Those letters exist so that defendants know their rights, including filing motions to quash. In other words, Syfert is helping defendants do exactly what the court wants them to do.

    If the court doesn't have a problem with the defendants filing motions to quash, why do you? Even if those motions won't succeed, why are you so opposed to people trying, when the court isn't?

    Defendants have a right to file these motions. If that clogs the courts, too bad for the courts.

    I'm all for defendants' rights, but in the USCG cases, there is prima facie evidence that the defendants infringed on the plaintiffs' rights.

    The evidence presented to the court does not prove that the defendants infringed on the plaintiffs' statutory rights. It does not even show that the defendants' material was actually what was downloaded. It is solely a list of IP addresses and timestamps. So, the "prima facie" evidence doesn't even show that the USCG's clients are "victims" in the first place.

    I know you've said otherwise, but the documents you've quoted don't prove your point.

    And I really wish you'd drop the "victims" weasel word. The plaintiffs haven't produced any evidence that the downloads harmed them economically. There is no indication that the lawsuits will decrease infringement. And there is no indication that they are even interested in either of these goals. The USCG pitched these lawsuits as an additional revenue stream. That's all this is.

    Syfert isn't helping any of the defendants by getting them to file motions to quash that are going to lose every time.

    It doesn't hurt their cases, and the motion to quash has succeeded at least once. What makes you think they won't succeed again?

     

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    average_joe (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 5:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    We can go round and round, Karl, but I don't see the point. The judge ordered that USCG work with the EFF to give the defendants information about filing motions to quash. I promise you that each motion to quash that comes in will be denied. We can check the dockets from time to time and see that this is true. The ones that have come in so far have been denied.

    The evidence presented to the court doesn't prove there was an infringement, but it is prima facie evidence of it. There is more than IP addresses and timestamps. There are sworn declarations. The plaintiffs' investigators downloaded the files and watched them to verify what they are. We've been over this before. If it isn't prima facie evidence, then a motion to dismiss would be successful. We can watch the docket for that as well. I promise you motions to dismiss will be denied.

    I won't stop calling the plaintiffs victims because they are victims. If the court doesn't agree, then the plaintiffs will lose. Again, we'll watch the dockets and see what happens.

    The motion to quash has not succeeded in these cases. I don't know what you're talking about.

     

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  105.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 8:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    We can go round and round, Karl, but I don't see the point.

    Perhaps not. One final salvo, then, and I'll let it rest.

    There is more than IP addresses and timestamps. There are sworn declarations. The plaintiffs' investigators downloaded the files and watched them to verify what they are. We've been over this before.

    Yes, and the last time we went over this, you presented no evidence that the plaintiffs' investigators watched the video files. Or in fact that the plaintiffs did anything other than download the torrent metadata, connect to the swarm, and record IP addresses and timestamps.

    If you have evidence, present it, or at least quote the salient passages. Until then, I'm going with what the USCG lawyers actually said in interviews, and the evidence I linked to above.

    I won't stop calling the plaintiffs victims because they are victims.

    The correct term is "plaintiff." The correct way to describe them is "people who have suffered no measurable harm, and are using the legal system to line their pockets."

    You want to make an appeal to pity by calling them "victims," fine. You're really just hurting your own credibility.

     

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  106.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 5th, 2010 @ 9:14pm

    Dear average_joe and anyone else that wants to comment

    Back to topic

    Lets say my "friend" got one of those letters.

    What do you suggest?

    Option 1-
    do nothing at all, wait and get a letter from USCG to pay and ignore it, wait and see if you ever get sued directly.

    Option 2- File the self help form letters to delay things a better even though you may not win, hoping they leave you alone.

    Option 3-
    Just pay it when you get the USGC letter, try negotiate down in price since the new starting price is now $2900

    Option 4-
    Get a lawyer now, be willing to pay the $2,000 retainer to start

    Option 5-
    Do nothing now, wait for the offer letter from USCG then get an attorney

    Yes I know you can give legal advice here, but we no we do not know you name so you can get in trouble so please help

     

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  107.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 5th, 2010 @ 9:20pm

    Sorry late at night,
    what I was trying to say is I know you cant typically get legal advice over the web as we are not your client, but we DO NOT know who any of you are so please offer up some advise, you CAN NOT GET in trouble

     

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  108.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 6th, 2010 @ 5:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Karl, why bother going 'round and round' with someone who lacks the ability to understand questions asked of it.

    Go look in the Deebi does Dallas article. You'll see when asked a direct question with a yes/no answer it chose to not answer the question but instead spewed out text that had nothing to do with the question.

    you can't have a debate with the insane.

     

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  109.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 6:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Karl, the last sentence from the court document that I already quoted indicates that the plaintiff's investigators watched the files. Remember? I don't know how that can possibly be "no evidence" in your book. And you can go read the court filings yourself which make it PERFECTLY 100% CLEAR that they watched the videos. I don;'t care if you believe me or not. I know what I'm talking about. You do not.

    Think what you want, Karl. In a court of the law, the plaintiff is the victim. No court would agree with you. The law doesn't agree with you. Reality doesn't agree with you.

    Keep getting it wrong. I prefer the truth.

     

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  110.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 6:03am

    Re:

    Did your friend download the movie as alleged? Or are they truly innocent? My answer depends on that fact.

     

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  111.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 6:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Good lord.

    I answered question after question after question. You can't comment on the substance of my answers, so you try to get me by pointing out what you think was me not answering a question. That question was so stupid, it didn't even deserve an answer, yet I tried to answer it as best I could.

    Grow up, little child.

     

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  112.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 6th, 2010 @ 6:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I answered question after question after question

    Typing in some text is not answering a direct question. You could have chosen yes or no and answered the question.

    If this was a court case I'd be moving the court to find your answer non responsive and not germane. And then move for summary judgment.

    Best hope you never get a client who knows that filing bar grievances would make you unemployable because you are not a competent entity.

    Grow up, little child.

    And as you can see, when it is on the loosing side - shown to be wrong - it resort to name calling.

    Karl - it's not worth you time to respond to it. Better to cull through its past 400 postings, find where its demonstrated that it can't read or understand and post links to those exchanges as a way to let others know it is not sane or unable to read and understand English at a minimum.

     

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  113.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 6th, 2010 @ 6:59am

    Re:

    Look at it's past posting history.

    Advocating for the copyright laws as written.

    Then read this post:
    http://www.techdirt.com/article.php?sid=20100902/11385710880#c369

    "For example, I think excessive statutory damages are crazy and that the term given to rights holders is too long. "

    Some deep seated sociopathic behavior there - advocating for laws it says it does not agree with. Not a creature of honor. Don't expect any kind of meaningful and helpful response from a sociopath.

     

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  114.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 7:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Funny how you have no response to any of the substance of my posts. Why can't you debate on the substance? We both know the answer--it's because you've got nothing.

    Good grief, little child.

     

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  115.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 7:09am

    Re: Re:

    I think the law can be improved. Just because I think that doesn't mean that I must also think that the law shouldn't be applied as is. There is a rational basis for the law as its written. My opinion doesn't comport with the majority of those in power. That's OK. That's how the real world works. One day when you grow up I'll explain it to you. Back to your Legos, little child, let the big people talk.

     

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  116.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 7:10am

    Re: Re:

    And I'm flattered that you read through my past posting history. Thanks for the compliment.

     

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  117.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 6th, 2010 @ 8:05am

    Friend had Wireless open to the public and we are pretty sure other near by users were connecting. Friend did not download.

     

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  118.  
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    alternatives(), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 8:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Why can't you debate on the substance?

    Why can't you?

    Taken from the 410th to 432nd posts of yours:

    "Don't you have anything intelligent to say"
    "And you have nothing substantive to say"
    "You are the one adding nothing to the debate. Grow up."
    "What have you added to the debate? Nothing of substance, that much is perfectly clear."
    "Why don't you have anything intelligent to say?"
    "Bye bye, little child. ... asinine posts. Grow up, little baby. ... like a big boy, ... You are vapid."

    And a money shot:

    "Some many posts, yet nothing of substance to say. Sad, sad, sad. You've got nothing to offer? Sad."

    We both know the answer--it's because you've got nothing.

    I believe that http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100903/11144710895.shtml#c594 shows you are the one with nothing. A blank bodied post. A post that has actually nothing in it.

    Good job in showing the nature of the empty vessel of your soul.

     

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  119.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 9:04am

    Re:

    Well, first of all, I'm not a lawyer, nor should anything I post be construed as legal advice. People should never take legal advice from people on the internet, especially from me.

    That having been said, here's what I think: If it were me, I would contact the plaintiff and let them know my position. I wouldn't tell them my real name or address, just the IP address that they used to identify me in the complaint. As things stand now, only a "Doe" is being sued. They have to replace the "Doe" in the complaint with the name of a real person in order to go after them. I would watch the docket to see if they amend their complaint to include my real name as a defendant. The word on the 'net is that USCG has retained lawyers in multiple jurisdictions to handle the cases. USCG isn't going to replace the "Doe" in the complaint with a named defendant, but rather, they are going to file new complaints against each named defendant. I'd wait to see if they actually file a new complaint against me. If they do, then the next step would be to read the complaint and see if there's any reason to move to dismiss. Assuming there isn't, USCG would get an order for the defendant to turn over their computer for analysis. I'd gladly hand over my computer with the hope that the expert would find nothing and the case be dismissed by USCG at this point.

    There's a lot of ifs, I know, but it really depends on what USCG does next. Perhaps your friend will never hear from them again, perhaps not. If I didn't do it, I wouldn't settle since I'd have nothing to hide. I would be extra careful to watch the docket though to make sure they don't amend their complaint to put my name on it. I wouldn't want to default by failing to file an answer.

    Hope this helps a little.

     

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  120.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 11:27am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Okay, Joe. I can't let this rest, because now you're either lying, or don't remember what you actually posted.

    Karl, the last sentence from the court document that I already quoted indicates that the plaintiff's investigators watched the files.

    Here's the sentence you're referring to:

    In addition, the downloaded audiovisual torrent files were reviewed by Guardaley in order to confirm that the files were in fact copies of substantial portions of the motion picture to which Plaintiff holds the exclusive licensing and distribution rights. (See Decl. of Patrick Achache 15-17.)


    Read carefully: they reviewed the torrent files, which do not contain the movie, or any portion of the movie. They contains metadata (such as a filename, filesize, and IP). Which means they merely examined the metadata.

    As I said, I'm not going to pay money for court documents, just to prove you're wrong on the internet. But here's a (free) quote from Ahache, describing the process:

    According to a declaration from GuardaLey's Director of Data Services, Patrick Achache, the company identifies BitTorrent users sharing Far Cry in two ways. First, it simply searches P2P networks for Far Cry, then connects to the swarms and logs the IP addresses of those sharing the file — not subtle, but it works. Second, it reviews "server logs obtained from P2P networks to determine the users who were offering the files of this copyrighted movie."


    Since P2P networks don't keep server logs, I assume he means ISP's, unless Guardaley runs a "honeypot" tracker.

    And here's how one USCG lawyer described the process to The Hollywood Reporter:

    According to Thomas Dunlap, a lawyer at the firm, the program captures IP addresses based on the time stamp that a download has occurred and then checks against a spreadsheet to make sure the downloading content is the copyright protected film and not a misnamed film or trailer.


    And I found in a forum post (from you, interestingly enough) that one of Ahache's declarations is up on Sribd. Here's how he described the evidence:

    For example, on the December 7, 2009 Guardaley found the following IP addresses sharing the same file with the same hash, same name, same file size, and operating over the same ISP (Time Warner Cable) with not more than five hours between them:
    [...snip]
    All those infringers only had one specific file in connection: Far Cry 2008 DvdRip ExtraScene RG.avi.


    Only information from metadata. No indication that he had watched the movie, or even downloaded it.

    If you have any evidence that either they downloaded the file, or that human eyes actually watched the films in question, then let us all know. So far, your evidence only proves you wrong.

    It sounds almost exactly like the technology that Logistep uses - which is the tech firm used by ACS:Law. We all know how well that turned out.

    Since IP addresses are not good evidence, it's no surprise that many of the accused are probably innocent.

    To use your word, victims.

    Now, in theory, if those victims proved their innocence, they could countersue for attorney's fees. Yep. And all they would have to do is have all their computers and electronics confiscated, and submitted for forensic analysis (probably destroying all their data); front tens or hundreds of thousands in lawyers' fees, until the case was settled; lose hours and months out of their lives, and possibly their jobs; and, even then, only get attourney's fees at the judge's discretion.

    Right. The likelihood is that they'll settle. So, these victims will end up paying thousands of dollars for something they didn't do, because the alternative is even worse.

    And the USCG knows this, and doesn't care; in fact, they're counting on it. Because they don't care one whit about guilt or innocence. They only care about generating a revenue stream for their clients. They know the easiest way to do this is to use the law to bully people who don't have the means to fight back.

    It's like something out of Gulliver's Travels. And one quote from that book seems appropos of the USCG and their clients:
    "I cannot but conclude the bulk of your natives to be the most pernicious race of little odious vermin that nature ever suffered to crawl upon the surface of the earth."

     

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  121.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Okay, apparently I'm wrong:

    Next, Achache must verify the content in the file. "I or one of my assistants have watched a DVD or VHS copy of the motion picture provided by Plaintiff," he writes. The team then accesses the downloaded files and confirms "that they contain a substantial portion of the motion picture identified in the Complaint."


    The last sentence sounds like Ars is merely quoting your source, which did not say they downloaded the files. But that source did not have the "watched a DVD or VHS copy" statement. So, all told, Achache is saying (or at the very least implying) that his team did in fact download and watch the film being torrented.

    Good thing I'm a diligent researcher and found that out on my own...

    The points about IP addresses being questionable evidence, and the skewed incentives for innocent defendants to settle and for plaintiffs to ignore guilt or innocence, still stand.

     

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  122.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There's no need to build up a circumstantial understanding of things when you can get it straight from the source. It's all right there in Patrick Achache's sworn declaration to the court:

    "Once Guardaley’s searching software program identifies a file that is being offered for distribution using BitTorrent protocol that corresponds to the motion picture for which Plaintiff owns the exclusive licensing and distribution rights, “Far Cry”, or once such a file is identified directly from our search or our review of server logs, we obtain the Internet Protocol (“IP”) address of a user offering the file for download. When available, we also obtain the user’s pseudonym or network name and examine the user’s publicly available directory on his or her computer for other files that lexically match Plaintiff’s motion picture. We then download the motion picture that the user is offering using BitTorrent Protocol.

    ***

    We downloaded the motion picture file and other identifying information described above and created evidence logs for each Doe Defendant.

    ***

    As part of my responsibilities at Guardaley, I have been designated to confirm that the digital audiovisual files downloaded by Guardaley are actual copies of the motion picture entitled “Far Cry”. It is possible for digital files to be mislabeled or corrupted; therefore, Guardaley (and accordingly, Plaintiff) does not rely solely on the labels and metadata attached to the files themselves to determine which motion picture is copied in the downloaded file, but also to confirm through a visual comparison between the downloaded file and the motion picture
    itself.

    As to Plaintiff’s copyrighted motion picture entitled “Far Cry”, as identified in the Complaint, I or one of my assistants have watched a DVD or VHS copy of the motion picture provided by Plaintiff. After Guardaley identified the Doe Defendants and downloaded the motion pictures they were distributing, we accessed the downloaded files using Guardaley’s proprietary software application, which stores the files downloaded. We opened the downloaded files, watched them and confirmed that they contain a substantial portion of the motion picture identified in the Complaint."

    Game, set, match. Why do you ever doubt me, Karl?

     

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  123.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm glad you see your mistake. Always go to the source whenever possible. Like I said, the filings make it PERFECTLY CLEAR that they downloaded and watched the files in question. One day perhaps you'll stop do..ubting me.

     

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  124.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I doubt anyone who makes claims without evidence. It's in my nature.

    See, all I wanted you to do was post this info, or even link to it. You didn't do that, so I didn't believe you. Simple as that.

    Thanks for posting it now.

     

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  125.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Next time I won't be so lazy and I'll get you the quote you seek. Happy to help.

    Have a great holiday. I'm about to fire up the grill, pop open a beer, and get my barbecue on. :)

     

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  126.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 3:34pm

    Re:

    Obviously I'm not a lawyer, but I'll tell you what I think I know.

    The "ignore it and it will go away" approach is never a good idea when it comes to legal matters. So, Option 1 is not recommended. You almost certainly will get sued.

    Which letter did your friend get? A letter from the ISP informing them that their info is being subpoenaed, or a settlement offer from the USCG? I'm assuming the former.

    If so, then by all means go with Option 2. It can't hurt. Be aware that a challenge to jurisdiction will likely just result in the USCG filing in a different venue, not that they'll drop the case. But you never know.

    If you do nothing, then the ISP will turn over your records, and you'll be getting a "settlement offer" from USCG in due course.

    At that point, you have two options.

    Option 1: Pay the settlement. (You can try negotiating, but good luck with that.)

    Option 2: Hire a lawyer.

    You should only do Option 2, if:

    - You believe you can prove your innocence - remember, this is a civil trial, so there's no "innocent until proven guilty;"

    - You don't mind having all your computers and electronics confiscated by the USCG, and the loss of all of your data;

    - You're able to foot all your legal bills during the lawsuit; and

    - You're willing to take the suit all the way to the courtroom. Remember: even if the USCG drops the case, you still have to pay your legal bills. You would have to counter-sue for your legal costs, and it's unlikely the USCG would settle. And even if you do counter-sue and go before a judge, there's a chance your suit would lose, even if you're completely innocent.

    You could of course consult with a lawyer to see how strong your case is. This consultation by itself will likely cost more than settling, but there's a few pro bono lawyers around.

    These websites might be helpful:
    http://subpoenadefense.org/
    http://news.cnet.com/8301-31001_3-20006528-261.html
    https:// www.eff.org/issues/file-sharing/subpoena-defense

    So, to sum up: do everything you possibly can to avoid your ISP giving info to the USCG. Because once you get a settlement letter, you're fucked - whether you're innocent or not.

    If you can't even afford to pay the settlement, then you'd better start selling everything you own and find a nice cardboard box to sleep in.

     

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

  127.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 4:05pm

    Re: Re:

    If it were me, I would contact the plaintiff and let them know my position.

    If it were me, I would not do this under any circumstances.

    The plaintiffs don't seem to be concerned with guilt or innocence - they just want settlement money. Though this situation isn't listed in the USCG's FAQ, it's likely they'll still sue your friend, at least if they're like most "copyright enforcement" services.

    For example, the Copyright Enforcement Group (the operation who the USCG's website infringed upon) makes it explicitly clear that they will still sue in this situation:

    If you are unfamiliar with the copyright protected file or content, we normally find that the infringement was the result of a spouse, child, roommate, employee, or business associate uploading, downloading or otherwise sharing or displaying the copyright protected material over your internet connection. Infringements can also result from an unsecured wireless network. In any of these scenarios the Internet Service Provider (ISP) account holder is still legally responsible for the infringement(s) and settlements fees.

    Contacting them directly would just give them ammo to use against you.

    I believe the only way to present this evidence is if the case actually goes to court. That's an option, if you're willing to go through what I described above.

     

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

  128.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 6th, 2010 @ 4:30pm

    I wonder how true their claim is that you can be liable for someone using your unsecured wireless to infringe. I doubt it's a clear cut as they indicate. I'll have to research that one sometime...

    My idea for contacting them was that if you explained that it couldn't possibly have been you or anyone you know, and that you intend to happily work with them to establish your innocence, then maybe they wouldn't file a suit against you. As it is now, we don't know who they are suing and who they aren't. I don't think it could hurt to make them think you're a dead end.

     

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

  129.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 10th, 2010 @ 5:39pm

    Ineteresting Judge ruling today
    PLUS the same Judge saying to NOT use you name in these forms (hint hint)

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/09/questionable-whether-lawyers-can-sue-14000- p2p-users-in-one-court.ars

     

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

  130.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 10th, 2010 @ 6:25pm

    Re:

    That is interesting. Thanks for the link.

    I just looked on the docket, and somebody did file one of those DIY motions to quash. As I suspected, the motion was denied.

    In fact, several motions to quash were denied today:

    "ORDERED that the motions to quash subpoena filed by Randy Ansell [Dkt. # 15], William Wright [Dkt. # 20], Elise Buel [Dkt. # 21], and John Doe [Dkt. # 35] are DENIED"

    It's interesting that the Judge is ordering USCG to show cause why the uncovered defendants should not be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. USCG is just going to dismiss the defendants and refile anyway, so this doesn't really get the defendants much. They're still going to receive a settlement offer in the mail once their identities are made known to USCG, and they still are likely to have a new suit filed against them in the proper jurisdiction if they don't settle. The order today changes nothing as far as I can tell.

    I'm off to read Judge Collyer's complete order. I'll report back if there's anything interesting in it.

     

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

  131.  
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    average_joe (profile), Sep 16th, 2010 @ 7:59am

    The docket has really heated up in the "Far Cry" case this past week.

    Tons of people have filed the DIY motions, and several attorneys are now on record as representing various "Does."

    The judge already denied one of the DIY motions to quash, so I imagine she'll deny all of the other ones too.

    All of these will be moot soon since presumably USCG will be dismissing all of the defendants with prejudice here shortly, just like they did in the other cases.

    That September 30 deadline to show cause is coming soon. I predict they'll dismiss before then so the order to show cause is mooted.

     

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

  132.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 16th, 2010 @ 7:18pm

    Several more motions to quash were denied today.

    From the docket:

    "Docket Text: MINUTE ORDER denying [66] Motion for Protective Order; denying [67] Motion to Quash or Vacate; denying [67] Motion for Protective Order; and denying [77] Motion to Quash for the reasons stated in [44] Memorandum Opinion. Plaintiffs shall file a response to the motions to dismiss in accordance with the Local Rules. Signed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer on 9/16/10. (KD)"

    and

    "Docket Text: MINUTE ORDER denying [43] Motion to Quash; denying [47] Motion to Quash; denying [49] Motion for Protective Order; denying [50] Motion to Quash; denying [52] Motion for Protective Order; denying [53] Motion to Quash; denying [55] Motion for Protective Order; denying [56] Motion to Quash; denying [58] Motion for Protective Order; denying [59] Motion to Quash; denying [61] Motion for Protective Order; denying [62] Motion to Quash; denying [64] Motion for Protective Order; denying [65] Motion to Quash; denying [68] Motion to Quash; denying [69] Motion to Quash; denying [70] Motion to Quash; denying [72] Motion to Quash; denying [73] Motion to Quash; denying [74] Motion to Quash; denying [80] Motion to Quash; denying [81] Motion to Quash; denying [83] Motion for Protective Order; denying [84] Motion to Quash; denying [86] Motion for Protective Order; denying [87] Motion to Quash; denying [88] Motion to Quash; denying [90] Motion for Protective Order for the reasons stated in [44] Memorandum Opinion. Signed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer on 9/16/10. (KD)"

    Like I said, the motions to quash were losers.

     

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

  133.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2010 @ 8:06am

    QUESTION: how did you find out that all those motions to quash by number were denied.

    Is there a web site? Can you also look up other related cases for other movies?

     

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

  134.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 18th, 2010 @ 8:26am

    Re:

    Sure. You go to http://www.pacer.gov/ and set up an account.

    For the "Far Cry" case, go to http://www.pacer.gov/findcase.html and click on "Search the PACER Case Locator" and log in.

    For Region, enter "District of Columbia"
    For case number, enter "1:10-cv-00453"

    From there, click on the link to the case, and then select "History/Documents" to see the docket. You'll want to highlight the box to "display docket text."

    It's 8 cents per page to view the documents, so you'll need a credit card when you set up the account.

    If you keep your balance below $10 per quarter, they don't charge you anything. So the first $10 is free.

    For other cases, you'd need to know the case number and the court.

    Good luck.

     

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

  135.  
    icon
    Knobbdy (profile), Sep 21st, 2010 @ 9:47pm

    Re: Re:

    Could you help me interpret something? I'm seeing "leave to file GRANTED" or just "leave to file" hand-written at the top of the page for most or all motions by defendants. I'm assuming that means "motion denied; you're still stuck in the case"??

    A million thanks for your detailed comments on this and the Hurt Locker case. Yours are the most informed I've seen (and I've done a lot of looking)

     

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

  136.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 22nd, 2010 @ 4:37am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Leave to file just means the judge is letting the motion be filed with the court.

    Once leave to file has been granted, then the judge reads the motion and decides whether to grant or deny it.

    Glad I could help. Good luck!

     

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

  137.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 25th, 2010 @ 5:49pm

    *****NEW INFORMATION****

    Does this help anyone?
    In the Hurt Locker Case the Judge ordered USCG to show cause the then said in there reply while quote a source that users sometimes share IP addresses

    In case 1:10-cv-00453-RMC Document 109 Filed 09/24/10 Page 17 of 22
    the Plaintiff quoted

    is more difficult and less accurate because there is no official source for the information, users sometimes share IP addresses

    To me it means the Subpoenas could all be just random shared IP addresses now

     

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

  138.  
    icon
    average_joe (profile), Sep 26th, 2010 @ 7:36am

    Re:

    I read through that Plaintiff's Opposition to Motions to Dismiss, and that quote you're pointing to is taken from the http://whatismyipaddress.com/ website.

    Plaintiff's Opposition: http://www.scribd.com/full/38152403?access_key=key-20ldzba56a26m0ubegoy

    Look at the whole quote:

    Similarly here, the moving Doe Defendants have not established that their techniques conclusively establish the location of any particular Doe Defendant. In fact, the website cited in the omnibus motion http://whatismyipaddress.com/) provides the following disclaimer when a user clicks on Additional IP Details: This information should not be used for emergency purposes, trying to find someones exact physical address, or other purposes that would require 100% accuracy. (emphasis added). Additionally, that very same website has a page dedicated How accurate is GeoLocation? which states: Determining the physical location down to a city or ZIP code, however, is more difficult and less accurate because there is no official source for the information, users sometimes share IP addresses and Internet service providers often base IP addresses in a city where the company is basing operations. Accuracy rates on deriving a city from an IP address fluctuate between 50 and 80 percent, according to DNS Stuff, a Massachusetts-based DNS and networking tools firm. See http://whatismyipaddress.com/geolocation-accuracy.


    All they are saying is that it doesn't make sense for the plaintiff to use the IP addresses to try and guess the defendants' jurisdictions before filing since the IP addresses are not 100% accurate. The very website the defendants' counsel said plaintiff could have used has a warning about how inaccurate it is. The part about users sharing IP addresses is of no help to defendants at this point of the proceedings. That sort of information could be helpful later when the defendants get to mount their defense, but for now it gets them nothing.

    I think more importantly, Plaintiff's Opposition explains why these motions to dismiss are all going to fail. Any one reason listed is sufficient to deny these motions. Just like the judge has been denying all of the other motions, she will now be denying all of these motions to dismiss. The simple fact is that at this point of the proceedings, the motions to dismiss are premature. Read Plaintiff's Opposition for all the reasons why.

    Let's review what's happened:

    (1) Improper Joinder: EFF and others argued that the defendants should be severed or dismissed for misjoinder. USCG wrote a memo showing cause why they shouldn't be severed or dismissed and the judge agreed. All motions arguing misjoinder are denied.

    (2) Motions to Quash: Several defendants bought the DIY motion to quash from Affinity Law and filed them. Other defendants joined into an omnibus motion written by a group of lawyers. All of these motions to quash argued jurisdiction which is a non-starter. The whole point of discovery is to determine jurisdiction. All motions to quash are denied.

    (3) Motions for Protective Order: Several defendants also moved to proceed anonymously. The judge says that none of the defendants have a cognizable claim of privacy. All motions for protective order are denied.

    (4) Motions to Dismiss: Several defendants have moved to dismiss based on lack of personal jurisdiction. The judge has not yet ruled on any of these motions, but local rules dictate that USCG file a response within a short period of time, which they did. I linked to USCG's response above. My prediction is that the judge will deny all of the motions to dismiss either this week or next.

    It's really obvious that the defendants are just trying to get out of having their information revealed to USCG by their ISP. The simple reality is that there's no way to stop it.

     

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

  139.  
    icon
    soula (profile), Mar 16th, 2011 @ 2:55pm

    Legal filings are not copyrighted. So as soon as theyre filed and made public, they're fair game for everyone else to use! Woot! Just like the p2p law firms, which rip off of each others' legal filings in their ironic fashion. For example, go to pacer, and search for case 10-cv-06254, that's the First Time Videos vs Does 1-500 case filed by Steele Hansmeier. Go to the document list. Documents 73-76 are the Motion to Quash, Motion to Dismiss, Motion for Protective Order, and Affadavit in support of those motions. Ding! Free! Enjoy!

     

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

  140.  
    icon
    soula (profile), Mar 16th, 2011 @ 3:03pm

    By the way, it's really great that the Steele Hansmeier firm voiced their opposition to the motion to quash due to the inherent fallability of IP addresses as an identifying tool. They just dug their own grave by affirming a strong defense for the defendants! If their IP wasn't good enough to identify where the computer containing the IP was located, then it sure as hell isn't good enough to identify who the person was that downloaded the allegedly infringed file! This is getting so silly.

     

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


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