Another Convicted Felon Tries To Use The DMCA Process To Erase DOJ Press Releases About His Criminal Acts

from the also:-PATENTS! dept

Looks like another convicted felon is abusing the DMCA process in hopes of cleansing the web of his misdeeds. Chad Hatten of Houston, Texas, was arrested on multiple counts related to ID theft and access device fraud. Hatten stole credit card numbers to buy gift cards to resell at a discount. He was indicted in 2005 and sentenced to 66 months in prison in 2006.

Now that Hatten is (presumably) no longer behind bars, he's been doing a little DIY SEO work. His first attempts to get the DOJ's press releases delisted by Google occurred in 2012, which would line up with the termination of his sentence.

In his first two attempts -- both filed under "music" -- it appears a third-party link removal service failed to achieve Hatten's objectives.

These links are lsited as blocked , when using the URL removal tool, yet continue to appear in search results.

The link targeted was the DOJ's press release announcing Hatten's indictment. His second 2012 DMCA targets the announcement of his conviction.

The links targeted in 2012 have since rotted away, which perhaps explains the six-year gap between Hatten's removal efforts. The targeted releases have since resurfaced with new URLs. So has Chad Hatten. This time he's brought... someone else's patents? And warnings of impending violence.

protected work. Additionally, the high page rank of this result places lives at stake. Please at least manually lower this result. Someone could die as a result of this appearing so high.

More detail on the DOJ's deadly press releases can be found in yet another Hatten takedown attempt -- one that also includes someone else's patents as the supposed "original work" being infringed.

If anyone actually reads this, this link is 12 years old, and is ruining my life. It is placing my safety at risk. Please either remove this, or manually lower the page rank. I could die as a result of this link.

If it's difficult to discern why a publicly-posted press release might be viewed as potentially deadly, it's even more difficult to comprehend the inclusion of someone else's patents in the DMCA takedown notice. And yet, that's what Houston's Chad Hatten has done. He's dragged along someone else he found in his frantic vanity searches in hopes that their intellectual property will somehow push his bogus takedowns past Google's spot checkers.

This is the so-called "original URL" listed in Hatten's request:

While there may be those engaged in credit card theft who dabble in chemistry from time to time, it's highly doubtful the convicted Chad Hatten is also the inventor Chad Hatten, employed by Illinois-based energy company, Coskata Inc. It's also doubtful Chad Hatten the DMCA abuser could explain the following in layman's terms:

Processes for controlling the concentration of co-produced oxygenated organics in anaerobic fermentation broths for the bioconversion of syngas to product oxygenated organic compound

And, even if it was Hatten's (the convict's) patent, a DMCA notice has nothing to do with patents and would never be able to stop this sort of infringement no matter how many URLs it delisted.

But wait! There's (one) more!

Hatten also engages in the more expected form of DMCA abuse: fraudulently claiming information he wants delisted is actually his own creation. Targeted by this DMCA notice is a PDF of Hatten's unsuccessful appeal of his conviction, as rejected by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

According to Hatten's DMCA, the federal appeals court decision is "my writing." Proof of Hatten's "creation" supposedly can be found at (listed as "Original URL"), a URL which automatically redirects to Joe Moore's IMDb page… as it has since 2013. (The first few years of that URL's history are very different from its current incarnation as a promotional redirect for a second unit director. [But SFW.])

None of this represents how the system is supposed to work. But all of it demonstrates how easy it is to abuse. Google tends to vet DMCA notices pretty well, but it's unclear if other search engines are as attentive. Of course, to many people Google represents The Internet, so hitting up Google with bogus takedown notices is the only stop they'll ever make. Chad Hatten's attempts have fallen short of his DIY right-to-be-forgotten goal, but there's plenty of evidence out there that the DCMA process works just well enough (in terms of abuse) that it's always worth a try.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Use markdown for basic formatting. HTML is no longer supported.
  Save me a cookie
Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.