Wednesday, October 15, 2008

RIAA opposes motion to quash in State University of New York at Albany case, Arista v. Does 1-16

In Arista Records v. John Does 1-16, the case targeting students at the State University of New York at Albany, the RIAA has filed papers opposing the John Does' motion to quash.

Plaintiffs' Opposition

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Anonymous said...

Defendants’ motion to quash asks this Court to immunize them from liability for violating Plaintiffs’ copyrights.

No, Defendants have asked that the law be followed as written and that they not be dragged into extortion when you not only have no proof of any actual crimes against them. (Attempted Distribution is Not a Crime no matter how often you want to claim that it is.) Also they don't want to be dragged into extortion when your method of identification may identify ISP account holders or dorm room occupants, But Does Not identify the actual infringer sitting at the keyboard of an unknown computer during the time your agent Media Sentry conducted their illegal investigations.

Plaintiffs have gathered substantial evidence showing that the Defendants are significant copyright infringers.

Where is this evidence then that ties directly to people you haven't even identified yet? You've certainly not presented any of it in *any* of your cases so far.

If the Court were to grant Defendants’ Motion, this case
would be over before it began.

As well it should be when you have no evidence to start with.

Defendants are wrong because the First Amendment does not protect copyright infringement.

I wasn't aware that the First Amendment was so detailed in what it protected and what it excluded from its protection.

Additionally, even if Defendants had some minimal First Amendment interest, it is substantially outweighed by Plaintiffs’ interest in pursuing copyright infringement.

Only because we say so.

Specifically, Defendants seek to exclude evidence obtained by MediaSentry because MediaSentry allegedly failed to register as a private investigator in New York.

Allegedly you say? Don't you know that they don't have a NY PI license? Everyone else knows this.

MediaSentry’s work retrieved only information that Defendants placed into the public domain

The Public Domain you say? Aren't you the people who insist that the Public Domain doesn't even exist? And how can Defendants put something into the Public Domain if it's not theirs to put in there? And if they did put it in the Public Domain, doesn't that mean that it is no longer copyrighted? After all, it is a Transformative Work in so much as someone took your obviously bulky filled with unnecessary fluff files and transcoded them down to their core essence.

In this case, joinder is appropriate under the standards articulated in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and also best serves the goals of efficiency and judicial economy.

Oh, joinder is now appropriate under *every* circumstance that can possibly serve the goals of efficiency and judicial (and especially Plaintiff) economy. Well Golly Gee! Let's just join every Defendant in the entire country into one gigantic case for all crimes on the book and hold our trial in front of one judge. Think of the economy of being able to fire every other judge since they'll have no work to perform.

copyright infringers like Defendants unlawfully distribute billions of perfect digital copies of Plaintiffs’ copyrighted sound recordings

1) They're hardly perfect digital copies. They're highly compressed copies too often made by amateurs who don't even know how to compress them properly. 2) By this statement the Defendants are already judged guilty by the RIAA Plaintiffs. I thought you weren't guilty until actually proven so.

copyright owners can often observe infringement occurring on P2P networks but cannot (without assistance from the courts) identify the true names and locations of the infringers.

You have observed NOTHING! You know NOTHING! And you lie to the court every time you claim otherwise.

Plaintiffs gathered substantial evidence of Defendants’ illegal conduct.

Here you don't even know who the people are whose names are going to be turned over to you yet you say you have "substantial evidence" that these are the correct Defendants. And just where is that evidence? Remember, people don't have unique IP numbers assigned to them – even when you include timestamps. Only Internet connected devices have IP numbers and you're not suing any of them.

Even if Defendants have a minimal First Amendment interest, it is substantially outweighed by Plaintiffs' interest in pursuing copyright infringement claims.

There they finally said it. Record company copyright claims are more important than the First Amendment.

I can't go any further. This filing is so full of crap that any refutation of it only doubles its own 29 pages to an unmanageable posting length.

The only reason I do bother to post here is in the sincere hope that this helps some of the Defendants in these cases against what I see as an outrageous misuse of the law on the same scale as what Direct TV managed to pull off a few years ago against people whose only "crime" was the purchase of entirely legal smart card writing devices. They had no evidence in those cases either of misuse but were allowed to wield the judicial hammer far too freely by the courts.


Anonymous said...

I just have to keep telling myself that the RIAA has to win every single one of these motions, whereas the Does they are suing only have to win one to stop them.

I hope this judge will at the very least require some proof that the RIAA has the right person and not some ip address with no other information. Maybe the Does attorney could also argue that because of the college environment, with friends of these students visiting on a regular basis, there is no way to point the finger at any one particular individual?

I don't know. I just keep hoping that one day I'll read your blog and there will be a big 128pt font headline saying something like "RIAA Lawsuites Bite The Dust".

Anonymous said...

If this man was a judge and he understood these issues well he would be completely insulted by this Plaintiff's filing.

{The Common Man Speaking}

Anonymous said...

If the RIAA provides an IP address and a timestamp the best that the college/university can provide in return is a MAC address and maybe where that MAC address was plugged into their system. If wireless at the time, maybe not even that. They might have a list matching students to MAC address(es) that the students provided at the beginning of the semester, or might not if students are allowed to simply plug in hardware in their dorm room.

Now there's no law that says that it's illegal to change your MAC address, or assign that MAC address to other devices (e.g. a router).

I wonder what would happen if the university said that this MAC address was matched to the supplied IP address and timestamp, and 10 different people showed up in court with 20 different devices (computers, routers, printers, cell phones) all of which had the same MAC address. This would certainly demonstrate that the IP address + timestamp cannot identify a single computer, and we're not even into the question of who was actually using the computer to conduct the purported infringement at the time in question. How could any judge let any of these people be sued? It would be like trying to determine which identical twin committed the murder despite eyewitnesses and DNA evidence.

Now I would expect the RIAA to demand forensic investigations of ALL the hard drives, yet would a judge allow such a fishing expedition when the multitude of the people are certainly innocent? And what if no illegal music was found on any of them, or even worse, on more than one of them? And then what if nobody claims the computer that the infringing files are found on. How do you sue a computer that you can't tie to any owner?


Anonymous said...

New York Att General’s Opinion of 1919.... 1919, that was the year that Prohibition was established.
Quasi-criminal? What is an unlicensed investigation? Is it Criminal of Quasi-Criminal?