Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Judge orders plaintiff's counsel to show cause why Does 2-201 should not be severed in MA case

In New Sensations v. Does 1-201, a Massachusetts case, the judge -- in response to an ex parte motion for expedited discovery -- sua sponte ordered the plaintiff's counsel to show cause why the case should not be severed as to Does 2-201.

September 21, 2012, Order to Show Cause, Hon. Richard G. Stearns, US District Judge

Commentary & discussion:


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Ray Beckerman, PC

Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Porn suits" -- interesting article by Paul Rapp, Esq.

Interesting article by Paul Rapp, Esq., a Massachusetts attorney:

Porn Suits

 This article originally appeared in the 9.20.12 issue of Metroland.

In recent months there has been a flood of federal copyright infringement lawsuits that are having a severe impact on a lot of innocent people.  These lawsuits are a variant on the P2P suits brought by the major record companies and movie studios several years ago, a strategy that was a public relations and a financial disaster for the various companies.  These new suits are fine-tuned and efficient, and they’re brought by little-known companies that could care less about their public image.  These are porn suits.
            It works like this: a porn company hires an “investigator” to monitor bit-torrent activity for a particular movie.  The investigator collects all of the internet addresses that were downloading from a torrent over a 2-3 month period, and divvies them up by state and by the internet companies supplying service to the internet addresses.  The porn company lawyer then starts a lawsuit against all of the internet addresses in a given state that were on the torrent for a given movie.  The cases are captioned “[Porn Company] v. John Does 1-120.”  The cases all have multiple John Doe defendants, often over 100.   The porn company then gets the court’s permission to engage in early “discovery” so it can get the real names associated with the internet addresses that were identified by the investigator.  Permission is routinely granted, and the porn company subpoenas the internet companies (Time Warner, Comcast, etc.) for the names.  The internet companies then contact each of its subscribers, explaining that the subscriber is going to be named in a lawsuit for downloading a porn film (and these films have charming titles like “Anal Cum-swappers 2” and “OMG I’m Banging My Daughter’s BFF”) in 30 days.  The subscriber’s options are (1) to do nothing and be named in the lawsuit, (2) go to court to quash the subpoena, or (3) contact the porn company’s lawyer, who will demand $3000 to quietly let you out of the lawsuit, with your good name intact.......

Complete article

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Ray Beckerman, PC

Monday, September 17, 2012

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Court severs & dismisses in Media Products v Does 1-26 and 2 related cases

In Media Products v. Does 1-26, Media Products v. Does 1-40, and Patrick Collins v. Does 1-4, three cases pending in Manhattan before Judge Harold Baer, the Court has severed and dismissed as to all defendants other than Doe #1.

September 4, 2012, Opinion & Order, District Judge Harold Baer

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Ray Beckerman, PC

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

8th Circuit upholds constitutionality of $9250-per-work statutory damages in Capitol v Thomas

In Capitol Records v. Jammie Thomas-Rasset, the US Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit:

-held that the award of $222,000, or $9250 per song, is not an unconstitutional violation of due process, and
-did not reach the "making available" issue.

Decision of US Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit

Commentary & discussion:

it's my blog dammit

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Ray Beckerman, PC

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Doe #83 moves to dismiss in Massachusetts case, Media Products v Does 1-120

In a Massachusetts case, Media Products v. Does 1-120, Doe number 83 has filed a motion to dismiss.

Defendant Doe 83's memorandum of law in support of motion to dismiss

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Ray Beckerman, PC