Copyright

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
copyright, pre-settlement

Companies:
us copyright group



Mass Infringement Pre-Settlement Lawyers Team Up To All Fail Together

from the good-luck dept

We've noted how in the past year, a bunch of "pay up or we'll sue" law firm operations have popped up, signing up confused and short-sighted copyright holders, who believe that shaking down fans is a business model that can work. Of course, to date, this legal strategy has been failing pretty spectacularly in court. It is true that some folks just pay up but as these lawsuits continue to have trouble in court, people will begin to realize that paying money to someone who just demands it probably isn't a smart move. Of course, one of the issues is that none of the law firms actually have the manpower to follow through and sue people, so it should come as little surprise that some of the law firms who have recently been losing in court, including Kenneth Ford, the lawyer for Axel Braun, as well as Dunlap, Grubb & Weaver (which is the law firm behind US Copyright Group) are teaming up to try to work together. I guess they figure it's better to fail together, rather than to watch each fail alone.

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  • icon
    btrussell (profile), 11 Jan 2011 @ 4:11am

    Sorry, but that song/movie is on my "pending list."
    http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/5563/125/

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

  • icon
    Teddy_Bear (profile), 11 Jan 2011 @ 4:30am

    Way I see it.

    DGW gets a few firms in or near major metro centers to file these mass shakedowns in multiple courts to avoid the jurisdictional issue. This only serves to keep the "settlement mill" running. They still don't have the ability, the manpower or even the intention to take any signifigant number of people to trial. What needs to be done is to force a court to make a decision on misjoinder and make these shysters file individual suits.

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

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 11 Jan 2011 @ 4:35am

    I had a professor in high school who had a saying. "When the going gets tough, the fluff'll get slutty". Seems to apply here.
    Sure would be nice to collect some of the money these firms waste.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2011 @ 4:50am

    Any court "losses" so far have only been directions by the court to refile in other ways. They haven't lost anything, just made it even more expensive for the pirates when they finally get caught.

    By banding together (and probably adding in lawyers all over the country) they can refile in many jurisdictions, once again starting the process.

    The only "mill" here is the piracy that keeps grinding out the free copies, day in, day out.

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

  • icon
    iamtheky (profile), 11 Jan 2011 @ 5:28am

    3 of the 4 linked items get websensed because of the word porn in the title, may i offer a vote for websense friendly titles.

    That and not reusing a link in the span of a paragraph.

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

  • identicon
    big al, 11 Jan 2011 @ 6:30am

    M_O_N_E Y

    hummmm i'd love to see how the split for this joining is going to be.... now you have 2 sets of lawyers to support.
    oh that's right it's just for the 'JUST CAUSE" as we all know..

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

  • icon
    average_joe (profile), 11 Jan 2011 @ 6:47am

    Maybe USCG can show these porn guys how to plead a case that won't have the bulk of the defendants severed before they get their addresses to use for the settlement offers.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2011 @ 8:55am

      Re:

      That certainly would be to the plantiff's benifit, personally I won't shed any tears for missed pre-trial gains from people who were severed by a judge.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2011 @ 3:36pm

      Re:

      The problem isn't the argument -- it's the fact that the defendants are not joindered correctly at all. If we're following the conventions to the letter, none of these cases would be against more than one defendant, or a few at the most -- and those that stick together would have severance be their first tactic, as the joinder would be flimsy at best.

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

      • icon
        average_joe (profile), 12 Jan 2011 @ 3:57pm

        Re: Re:

        The problem isn't the argument -- it's the fact that the defendants are not joindered correctly at all. If we're following the conventions to the letter, none of these cases would be against more than one defendant, or a few at the most -- and those that stick together would have severance be their first tactic, as the joinder would be flimsy at best.

        How do figure they're misjoined? I thought USCG has done a good job pleading sufficient facts to justify joinder under Rule 20. The judges have agreed.

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

  • identicon
    lordmorgul, 11 Jan 2011 @ 8:32am

    Extortion

    Extortion by a licensed lawyer is still Extortion. No way to sugar coat the truth there. These guys are operating an extortion racket... and lots of stupid Americans who do not know their rights are simply paying them money.

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

  • icon
    Teddy_Bear (profile), 11 Jan 2011 @ 11:53am

    Blah blah blah..still doesn't address the fact that the "game" here is to strong arm cash out of people based on an IP address alone. With no intent to actually sue anybody. What percentage of IP owners (people paying the ISP) are actually the people doing any ALLEGED downloading? These cases if the ever do go to trial are going to sink faster than the Titanic.

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

  • identicon
    Teddy_Bear, 13 Jan 2011 @ 5:02am

    I don't think the judges have ever properly addressed the joinder issue. They appear to be avoiding it at present. Eventually a real decision on the issue will have to be made.

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


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