Once again one of the RIAA's John Doe cases has been dismissed for improper joinder of unrelated John Does, this time in the case targeting Ohio State University students, Arista v. Does 1-9, in Columbus, Ohio.
Magistrate Judge Mark R. Abel held that the mere use by the defendants of the same internet service provider (the university) did not give rise to any basis for joinder under Fed. R. Civ. P. 20, dismissed as to all John Does except John Doe #1, and ordered the RIAA to file separate new cases against each of the dismissed John Does within 20 days.
The judge did not, however, question the sufficiency of the complaint, or the plaintiffs' showing of a need for ex parte discovery.
[Ed. note. How many times does this have to happen before the courts start awarding sanctions against the RIAA's attorneys? The RIAA attorneys have NO NON-FRIVOLOUS ARGUMENT for why they should be joining these defendants. They have simply been taking advantage of the fact that the cases are ex parte and are hoping the judges don't find out about the earlier rulings. Also, when will they finally be held in contempt of the November 2004 order in Fonovisa v. Does 1-41?]
April 18, 2008, Order and Opinion of Magistrate Judge Mark R. Abel, dismissing complaint as to John Does 2-9*
* Document published online at Internet Law & Regulation
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