Trolls and shills: John Steele uses decoys to file lawsuits in troll-friendly jurisdictions

Posted: November 6, 2011 by SJD in Prenda
Tags: , , , ,

Today I received an interesting email regarding 11-cv-01741-JDB case, “Hard Drive Productions, Inc. v. Does”, filed in DC. Paul Duffy is listed as plaintiff’s attorney in this case. One of the defendants had forwarded his email conversation with Duffy/Steele. Yes, you read it right: with both. The victim gave me his permission to share the emails.

On a side note, I personally think it was stupid to admit anything even if it was merely trolling for fun (and I believe it was: “Since then I stopped using Bittorrent and removed all the movies I downloaded up to day [sic] (including about 8 from of the Hard Drive Productions)” — it can’t be serious). Be careful, guys, even when not talking seriously: one mistake and a troll gets a huge gift: an admission of guilt. Trolls don’t have any sense of humor, or at least it is overwritten by their sense of greed in most cases.


Paul Duffy

So, what’s interesting here is that my correspondent wrote to Paul Duffy, but got a reply from John Steele. Steele did not even bother CC-ing to Paul Duffy. What does it mean? Paul Duffy is just a façade, proxy. Steele is the one who runs this case. Paul Duffy is not a copyright lawyer (and even not a divorce one), and Steele uses him only because he has a DC license. DC so far has been friendly to trolls, but it may change soon. I strongly believe that Wayne O’Bryan from Virginia is exactly the same — a mere proxy. Proxies do not write complaints or motions — they just forward correspondence and sign documents when needed. Isn’t it just another solid proof that these con artists don’t have a slightest intent to litigate? I would understand using a local attorney as a representative, but Paul Duffy lives and works in Chicago, what the hell?

Well, this is not really a “discovery”. It was clear to me that someone, most likely John Steele, was behind the DC lawsuit. But now I doubt no more.

From: John Doe from Chicago
To: pduffy@pduffygroup.com
Date: Fri, 04 Nov 2011 16:58:10 -0500

Mr. Duffy,

I’m one of the potential defendants on 11-cv-01741-JDB case. I did download the movie, although at that time I did not think it was illegal. Since then I stopped using Bittorrent and removed all the movies I downloaded up to day (including about 8 from of the Hard Drive Productions).

Since I don’t do it anymore, I believe I should be dismissed from the case. Let me know my options. I’m willing to pay a reasonable amount. I’m a student, so I can’t afford much.

After you tell me the amount you expect me to pay, and if it works for me, I’ll tell you my IP and Doe#.

Also I would like to see the release agreement if possible.

John Doe


From: jlsteele@wefightpiracy.com
To: John Doe from Chicago
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2011 09:16:42 -0500

Mr. John Doe,

I need your IP address so that my client can determine how they wish to proceed.


John Steele
Licensed only in
the state of Illinois

jlsteele@wefightpiracy.com
1111 Lincoln Road, #400
Miami Beach, FL 33139

T: (305) 748-2102
F: (305) 748-2103


NOTICE: THIS EMAIL IS INTENDED TO BE PART OF A SETTLEMENT NEGOTIATION AND IS NOT ADMISSIBLE UNDER FRE RULE 408.

NOTICE:
This communication is covered by the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, found at 18 U.S.C. 2510 et. seq. and is intended to remain confidential and is subject to applicable attorney/client and/or work product privileges. If you are not the intended recipient of this message, or if this message has been addressed to you in error, please immediately alert the sender by reply e-mail and then delete this message and all attachments. Do not deliver, distribute or copy this message and/or any attachments and if you are not the intended recipient, do not disclose the contents or take any action in reliance upon the information contained in this communication or any attachments.

Circular 230 Disclosure: Pursuant to recently-enacted U.S. Treasury Department regulations, we are now required to advise you that, unless otherwise expressly indicated, any federal tax advice contained in this communication, including attachments and enclosures, is not intended or written to be used, and may not be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any tax-related matters addressed herein.


From: John Doe from Chicago
To: jlsteele@wefightpiracy.com
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2011 13:37:49 -0500

Mr. Steele,

Since you did not answer my question, I will probably wait and see. Yesterday night I read a ton of information about this and similar cases and I’m convinced that this is not the worst strategy. Revealing my IP address prematurely, without knowing the amount you would claim, is stupid. If the amount is reasonable, I would pay and move forward with my life. If it is too high, I would probably spend money on a good IP lawyer (as far as I know, neither you nor Mr. Duffy specialize in copyright). Given the latest developments on the case, it is quite probable that I can even find a good lawyer who would defend me for free, as the chance to claim court fees is rather high.

So, it’s your call: either you let me know the amount, or you won’t hear from me any more. I offer you money (given that your claim is reasonable), so it is up to you: take it or not.

John Doe.


From: jlsteele@wefightpiracy.com
To: John Doe From Chicago
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2011 14:06:27 -0500

After careful thought, our client, AF Holdings would prefer not settling with you at this time. Im sure it would be much easier for you to find an attorney to work for free in DC than simply deal with our firm like an adult. Keep your insults and save up for the litigation. I think e should wait until your isp gives us your information before any settlement options are discussed.

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Comments
  1. Blight says:

    Absolutely fantastic. What a toolshed.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Well this one was an easy guess because Steele Hansmeier has been behind the other Hard Drive Productions trollsuits, so if someone else was taking their cases now that might be news in and of itself.

    However, it is quite interesting to see this as previously his proxies had been identifying themselves as affiliates of Steele Hansmeier along with their own @wefightpiracy.com emails and everything. This one uses the proxy firm’s contact information. Sounds like Johnny Boy realizes his reputation precedes him and doesn’t want the courts to see his name on anything.

    Also interesting that he insults the guy for wanting to get an attorney, when the troll letters (i.e. http://anonsofliberty.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/john-steele-settlment-scam-letter.jpg ), say “We strongly encourage you to consult with an attorney to review your rights in connection with this matter.” It’s even underlined in the letter. Does this mean Steele doesn’t believe the advice he provides in his own settlement letters?

    • I tend to think that Steele felt insulted because the guy reminded him that he was not a copyright lawyer. I read Steele’s posts on various forums and have an impression that he is quite an insecure person, and it shows when someone questions his experience and skills. Is it only me who sees that?

      • Sloop John D. says:

        I thought the same thing, SJD. The reaction by Steele was childish and immature. How old is this troll anyway? Twelve?

        • Sloop John D. says:

          Another thing…he got his “client” wrong. Its Hard Drive Productions, Inc. in this particular case. What a great lawyer, he gots mad skillz.

        • Sloop John D. says:

          Furthermore, Mr. Steele has the English skills of a Nigerian Prince. () = edits

          After careful thought, our client, AF Holdings (ummm, this case is Hard Drive Productions, Inc.) would prefer not settling with you at this time. Im (I’m) sure it would be much easier for you to find an attorney to work for free in DC (,) than simply deal with our firm like an adult. Keep your insults and save up for the litigation. I think e (?) should wait until your isp (ISP) gives us your information before any settlement options are discussed.

        • Anonymous says:

          Holy crap, that’s crazy! I wonder how much time he spent consulting with them on that decision!

        • Anonymous says:

          Reminds me of a recent Sperlein filing, Celestial Inc. v. Does – 10 (2:11-cv-08512-GHK -MRW), where the filing is for Does 1-10 but the complaint itself discusses 32 Does, and then he gets the date mixed up so it is not clear what happened in 2011 and what happened in 2010… And a bunch of stuff happened in November 2011 even though the case was filed on 10/24/2011, so we have time traveling infringers in that one… The lack of even basic proofreading by these guys is stunning. Too busy copy and pasting and filing more cases.

        • What? Sperlein is back in trolling business? That’s news to me. I can’t find anything in Pacer, would you be so kind to point me to the info?

        • Anonymous says:

          http://ia700704.us.archive.org/34/items/gov.uscourts.cacd.514600/gov.uscourts.cacd.514600.docket.html

          Just for you SJD, docket from Recap with links to the archived documents. I made a typo up above, the filing was 10/14/2011. IANAL but the complaint looks like a typo-filled inconsistent mess, like some baaaad copy and paste happened. The alleged dates of infringement are back in 11/2010, seems like an awful long time to wait because by the time subpoenas go out and get processed ISP records of those IPs may be long gone. Makes me wonder if that case was meant to be filed months and months ago and just got found stuffed in the wrong drawer or something.

        • Thank you. Sloppy indeed. I did not write about it, but there was a filing when he messed up with names and addresses in the certificate of service. As a result, according to the document, summons were sent to totally unrelated people.

          My favorite phrase “there is honor among thieves” is not there :( Seems like he reads this blog and satisfied my request.

          Also, I like the movie name: “Big Dick Glory Holes, vol. 6″ – how classy!

          So, he is back on the train – I regret to admit that I overestimated Sperlein’s mental abilities…

  3. John Doe # says:

    Amazing they guy even asked to settle and to be given an amount and they wouldnt even do that. You would think Steele would at least throw out a number.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Well the guy admits he downloaded the movie and then deleted it from his system, notice Steele wanted an IP first. He would be a perfect candidate to make an example of with a named suit if they can figure out who he is. That’s assuming whoever wrote the email is actually a Doe and not some anon trying a little social engineering (and successfully establishing that Duffy is a front man). A couple of anonymous emails may not constitute a usable admission of guilt anyway, but if this guy is a Doe, and he admits downloading it and he were to end up named he would be in a tight spot.

    • John Doe # says:

      There still is the general question of whether or not downloading a movie with no copyright warning before hand is illegal. If the movie has a copyright warning in the beginning and the person then the person deletes it has an infringement occurred. Also what if someone deleted that warning is there still a crime? Finally the way bittorrent works is while downloading you are sharing and you still may not have seen any copyright warning so you cant possibly have known that while downloading and sharing it was copyrighted material. All defenses that have yet to be used in a court of law but seem reasonable. Just thought I would share my thoughts.

      • Anonymous says:

        And many if not most of the works involved in these suits do not have a copyright registration (although an application is pending for many) which raises issues as to whether statutory damages are even available for some infringements. But if you haven’t noticed the trolls have been happy to file lawsuits, ask for settlements and threaten to name people irrespective of these potential issues.

        It seems reasonable to assume that when a Doe contacted them, admitting guilt and offering to settle, they were salivating at the chance to get a good individual suit candidate. This may be why the Doe was referred to Steele and got a response from Steele instead of the proxy. Steele himself was recently blustering on this site about how they had filed their first 10 named suits and were gearing up to go after individuals. Could be FUD, but if they go down that road do you think they would rather pick individuals at random or focus on people that were foolish enough to admit guilt in correspondence?

      • On2ndThought says:

        Downloading a copyrighted work that does not include a warning is technically still a crime.(The act of removing the notice is also a crime with up to a $2,500 fine). However, there is such a thing as innocent infringement which has as of yet to be applied to file sharing. There was a case last year that involved a college student who has been fighting the RIAA over muic she downloaded when she was 14 to 16. She was found to be an innocent infringer by a Judge because she proved to him that she was convinced that p2p was like internet radio. Her fine was reduced from about $28k to around $7k. Naturally, the RIAA appealed and the initial $28k ruling stands(32 songs @ $750). Unfortunately, the Supreme Court has refused to hear her appeal despite one justice acknowledging how a lack of notices on digital files is not something adequately covered by current law. Will be interesting to see if the argument comes back up. Especially since the internet is satuarated with free porn so one could reasonably argue that they thought it was amatuer free content.

  5. Sloop John D. says:

    Not “news” per se as the letter I got from my ISP identified Steele as the Troll…even the copy of the subpeona has Steele’s name attached. It wasn’t until I looked the case number up that I even was aware thata Duffy was the proxy. (he appears a n00b lawyer at that)

    What’s more confusing is the subpeona was filed in the District Court for the Norther District of Illinois…not DC where the case is being heard. I am fairly new to the legal system, but something seems odd to have cross District action like this happening. Is this unusual?

    • Yes, as I said, it was not really a “discovery”, even the fact that people discuss this case in the “Steele Hansmeier” thread is quite telling. I wanted to write about it to spread awareness among those who don’t follow Steele’s cases attentively. For me, Steele’s behavior can only be described by the word “brazen”: he does not bother to cover his tactics carefully, but at the same time he does not advertise his involvement with proxy cases. I agree with the commenter above that “Sounds like Johnny Boy realizes his reputation precedes him and doesn’t want the courts to see his name on anything.”

      Remember, judge Miller ordered Timothy Andersen (yet another proxy) to disclose his relationship to Steele? And you know what? Mr. Andersen basically told the judge to go f$%^ himself:

      Further, the Court ordered Plaintiff’s counsel to disclose his association with attorney John L. Steele, Esq. Plaintiff has carefully reviewed the Court’s Order and respectfully believes that it is inconsistent with the spirit and letter of the Federal Rules.

      Then he even tried to defend Steele and attack judge Shadur:

      The Court’s views on Mr. Steele—and by extension, Plaintiff—have obviously been impacted by the sealed pleadings of putative infringers who have been impliedly granted the right to proceed pseudonymously. In its order, the Court heavily criticizes Mr. Steele, who has never even appeared before the Court.

      …and what’s most egregious, he accused the anonymous filer of lying:

      …Based on the Court’s discussion, the sealed pleadings discussed attorney John Steele, Esq. According to the Court, an anonymous filer claimed that he was called by Mr. Steele regarding this action, that Mr. Steele conveyed an offer of settlement to the anonymous filer and that Mr. Steele informed the anonymous filer that he would be named as a defendant in the case should the settlement offer be rejected.

      Plaintiff is confident that the sealed pleading contains false representations. Contrary to “Doe Defendant X’s” representations, Mr. Steele has not personally “cold called” Virginia-based infringers in this action.

      I have no slightest doubt that it was indeed Steele who called the anonymous filer. How wonderful it would be if the guy had recorded the conversation… But scumbags know when it is safe to lie: no proof of the conversation exists, yet if they think they fool general public (and judges) this way, they grossly overestimate their IQs.

      To finish on a good note, judge Miller denied Andersen’s Motion to Reconsider outright.

      • Anonymous says:

        Things are going to get pretty awkward if Andersen has to answer “yes.”

      • Sloop John D. says:

        Have you ever read Steele’s blog? Not his copyright blog, but his divorce blog. He’s a sad, sick puppy.

        • On2ndThought says:

          Favorite quote:
          “First, I started my own firm a few years ago. This means I don’t have to take on clients I do not like, or that I think are scum bags. And the associates in my firm know they don’t have to represent scum bags.”
          Second favorite:
          “”Standing up to a bully, whether some blowhard attorney, or an 8th grader feels good.Try it sometime.”

          —-He may have been a decent guy at some point,or he carefully planned his statements to try to get more clients. Going with the latter

  6. Whatever says:

    Notice how it only took 29 minutes for Hard Drive Productions to prefer not to settle after careful thought … on a Saturday.

    • Anonymous says:

      To be fair, maybe he just got his emails mixed up and after some drawn out discussions with AF Holdings regarding another Doe, he sent that response to the wrong person ;)

  7. CTVic says:

    Another telling comment by our good friend Steele:
    “Im sure it would be much easier for you to find an attorney to work for free in DC than simply deal with our firm like an adult.”
    Obviously dripping with sarcasm, yet alludes to the fact that Steele knows and recognizes how difficult and expensive it is to find legal representation in DC. We already know they’ve shopped for and found friendly judges to get their balls rolling. This is yet another major benefit to the trolls when the defendants/Joes/victims can’t easily do anything to defend themselves in the early stages of these cases.

    Keep on talking, buddy (pronounced douchebag). The more you let your ego take over, the more the rest of us know about what goes on in the vacuum between those ears.

    • Steel Johnson says:

      Isn’t Steele going to face the same problem of having to find an IP lawyer if he wants to litigate one of these?

  8. DieTrollDie says:

    Thanks SJD! I saw this last night and I got a good chuckle. John John John…. ;)

    DieTrollDie :)

  9. [...] effort by the Trolls to find some Does they can win a trial (non-default) against  see this post (http://fightcopyrighttrolls.com/2011/11/06/trolls-and-shills-john-steele-uses-decoys-to-file-lawsuit…).  Even if they can win an actual trial, they risk exposing all their methods, software, and [...]

  10. john steele says:

    You guys think that is something, I’ve got something coming your really going to like . . .

    • Steel Johnson says:

      In the Internet age, I’m not sure if it’s appalling or appallingly appropriate that so much grief is wrought by one who can’t keep “your” and “you’re” straight.

  11. john steele says:

    Happy hour! Time to go laugh at the pirates and have a beer (we prefer piraat ale).

    BTW, you guys are still missing several states and several local counsels. Look harder.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Time for Happy Hour?? Sounds like you already had a few too many.
    Hey…. Can you send us the RFCexpress or PACER links for those 10 individuals you filed individual cases against two weeks ago?? You know… The claim you made on Oct.29 I guess we are not looking hard enough for those either.

    • Anonymous says:

      there was 9 k-beech named suits filed not to long ago in the Pennsylvania east district, don’t really know anything about them, k-beech is one of those lawsuit happy companies who have filled several John doe suits this year.

      Just look at copyright cases in rfcexpress for the Pennsylvania east district, easy to find.

      no, I am not steele if you are wondering.

  13. DieTrollDie says:

    Yes John, we know we are not a professional law firm and it takes us some time to ID your operations. It does happen over time. :) We also understand that some people will decide to settle – it is their choice. You are bound to make some money, we just like to make sure you actually have to do some work for it. I know your firm makes lots of money off these operations. Please tell us how much more you would make if we didn’t educate those who wish to be educated. Going back to the large scale IP address subpoena cases in your friendly courts – impressive. As far as what is to come from you……. Bring it out in the open and then we will see. Talk is cheap. Wait… what is your hourly rate? I bet your customers pay a handsome fee to hear you speak for them. BTW Piraat Ale is good, but I think you might like this one better – http://www.stonebrew.com/arrogantbastard/ ;)

    DieTrollDie :)

  14. anon says:

    Yawn….another FUD attempt.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Very poor FUD attempt. His appearance a few weeks ago was much more interesting.
    I think this guy does more harm to his scam then this site could ever do.
    Big bark, big ego, no bite.

  16. Anonymous says:

    will the Real Slim Shady please stand up!

  17. rob8urcakes says:

    I reckon Paul Duffy IS the John Doe lol

  18. DieTrollDie says:

    Here is a recent court document (1:11-CV-03831, First Time Videos v. Does 1-76) where John Steele has Paul Duffy act for him in IL. http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/illinois/ilndce/1:2011cv03831/256480/45/

    Cut/Paste -
    —————————————————————————————
    Plaintiff, pursuant to Local Rule 83.17, respectfully requests leave to substitute counsel

    of record, and states as follows:

    1. Counsel of record for Plaintiff is John Steele of Steele Hansmeier PLLC.

    2. Plaintiff wishes to substitute Paul Duffy of Prenda Law Inc. as its counsel in this matter.

    3. Mr. Steele has relocated out-of-state. Mr. Duffy is located in Chicago, Illinois.

    DieTrollDie :)

    • Anonymous says:

      same story with case 1:11-cv-05414 in N IL. Mr. Duffy is the actor as of today.

      • Anonymous says:

        And also with the following NIL cases:
        - 1:11-cv-05416 (Boy Racer, Inc. v. Does 1-17)
        - 1:11-cv-05417 (First Time Videos, LLC v. Does 1-23)
        - 1:11-cv-03864 (Hard Drive Productions, Inc. v. Does 1-25)
        - 1:11-cv-03866 (Hard Drive Productions, Inc. v. Does 1-35).

        On the side note, the following NIL cases have been voluntary dismissed by Steele:
        - 1:11-cv-04825 (Pacific Century International Ltd. v. Does 1-34)
        - 1:11-cv-04488 (MCGIP, LLC v. Does 1-24)
        - 1:11-cv-04486 (MCGIP, LLC v. Does 1-20)
        - 1:11-cv-03863 (Hard Drive Productions, Inc. v. Does 1-27)

  19. john steele says:

    OK. I will stop with the snarky comments. Let me just present what has come out this morning:

    1. California – 3:11-cv-02330 EDL. Judge Laporte just kicked out all the MTQs saying Does lack standing. The judge cited 9th Cir. App. decision to say you guys have no standing to even be in court, which was a first. That will be going in future pleadings for sure.

    2. Illinois – 4:11-cv-03035. Judge Hibbler just kicked out all the MTQs saying that the Does lacked standing.

    3. Texas – 4:11-cv-03035. Judge Miller just kicked out all the MTQs saying there is no standing.

    I will be more than happy to provide pdfs of the orders to anyone who emails me. My point is that I believe this website is misleading people by citing one or two old rulings and seem to ignore the daily rulings that come out in our favor.

    And since I’m retired now, I have the time to blog.

    • Before accusing me of being misleading, read the FAQ first:

      Try to fight back. File a motion to quash the subpoena or dismiss multiple Does. An outcome of such a motion is uncertain — it is really depends on the judge, and since it costs virtually nothing to you, it is worth trying. Even if you don’t succeed, your effort is not in vain: judges’ awareness of this scam grows, and if this judge receives many motions like yours, it may alter his initial opinion on the matter. In addition, trolls normally write and file an opposition to every motion; therefore they spend their time. And more of a troll’s time is wasted, less time he has to inflict damage to the society.

      Who are you trying to convince? People here are already aware that motions to quash don’t work in the overwhelming majority of cases. But since it’s not a rocket science to file a motion, it’s a win-win action: look at some of your cases — I’m not sure that 2 judges in VA and one in DC would be aware of your scam if not for the amateur motions.

    • DieTrollDie says:

      John, as stated by SJD, most of us understand that MTQ don’t always work. Just because these motions do not work is NO reason to give up my hard earned money for something I didn’t do. Just because your client has copyright problems does not mean we are all guilty of piracy. The business model is nothing but fear=cash settlement. Here is something that does work – Not settling with you or the others – the overwhelming case histories support this. You do not take people to trial. Your new tactics may change to naming people, but the first TRUE court case your firm (or others) bring to trial is going to be a test.

      DieTrollDie :)

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t worry John, when we organize the class action suit against the trolls, we’ll be sure to include you so you can come out of retirement.

    • Blacksheep says:

      So what are you saying they are throwing out MTQ..? what chances do we have then..

  20. Anonymous says:

    Steele…. Welll one thing is for sure. You know when to make an exit. Nice move to retire and get a percentage of the action before this whole thing blows up.

  21. john steele says:

    Another MTQ one:

    California – 3:11-cv-03822-MEJ – Judge Maria-Elena James explains the joinder issue is silly.

    To ‘sophisticated janedoe’ – It does cost more to settle after the MTQ is denied. My former clients always settle for a higher amount, due to the cost of litigation and so on.

    As opposed to this site, I will be fair when it comes to making announcements about rulings. In fact, I will post any rulings that come out, whether they are in our favor or not. People can add up the win/loss column on their own.

    I agree that the first trials will be a big test. Why do you think deeper pockets with a lot more attorneys are running the litigation now?

    To ‘anonymous’ – Thank you.

  22. Anonymous says:

    You say former clients in one sentence and then say “in OUR favor” in the next. Come on John! Get your game straight. Which one is it?

  23. Anonymous says:

    John let me help you on the reporting of rulings…. Kabooom. You are down to what.. 1-2 judges in Cali. Spero, Grewel, and Ryu have seen enough.

    HARD DRIVE PRODUCTIONS, INC.,
    Plaintiff,
    v.
    DOES 1-130,
    Defendants.
    ___________________________________/
    No. C-11-3826 DMR
    ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S EX
    PARTE APPLICATION FOR LEAVE TO
    TAKE EXPEDITED DISCOVERY IN
    PART, SEVERING DOE DEFENDANTS
    2-130 FROM ACTION AND
    DISMISSING CLAIMS AGAINST DOE
    DEFENDANTS 2-130

  24. Anonymous says:

    oh it gets better.. Trying to learn how to use scribd to get the whole thing up..

    such discovery is limited to Doe 1, as follows:
    Plaintiff is granted leave to serve immediate discovery on Doe 1′s ISP by serving a Rule 45 subpoena
    that seeks information sufficient to identify Doe 1, including the name, addresses, telephone numbers,
    and email addresses of Doe 1. However, when Plaintiff receives the ISP’s response to the subpoena
    arrives, Plaintiff may take no further action with respect to Doe 1, be it further discovery or sending
    Doe 1 a settlement letter. Rather, Plaintiff shall submit a new motion for expedited discovery as to
    Doe 1 that sets forth with specificity a discovery plan that addresses the court’s concerns as expressed
    in this order.

  25. anon says:

    John,

    Why did Paul Duffy dismiss this case within three days of it being filed?

    1:11-cv-02031-RLW

    Could it be because the case was assigned to Judge Wilkins?

    Reminds me of those cases you dismissed earlier this year when they were assigned to Judge Shadur.

    Judge and forum shopping – Winning!

    • pissed off says:

      I would think that the Judges Or SOMEBODY would put a stop from trolls staring a case and than stopping when they find out which judges is seating for it.

      I cant believe that the judges are letting this go on as long as it has. I would think they all would have heard about the Fishing attempts by now.

  26. The pirate hunter says:

    U.S. District Court

    District of Columbia

    Notice of Electronic Filing

    The following transaction was entered on 11/22/2011 at 5:48 PM EDT and filed on 11/22/2011
    Case Name:
    OPENMIND SOLUTIONS, INC. v. DOES 1-565
    Case Number:
    1:11-cv-01884-EGS
    Filer:
    Document Number:
    4
    Docket Text:
    ORDER granting [3] Plaintiff’s Motion for Leave to Take Discovery Prior to Rule 26(f) Conference. Signed by Judge Emmet G. Sullivan on November 22, 2011. (lcegs6)

    4 for 4 in DC. Yep, the end is in sight all right. Another 565 Does might disagree though.

    Good news BTW, we started filing against individuals on Monday. I know, no one will believe me. But in a couple of days our new site will be up with PDF’s of the complaints. I am just glad I can finally satisfy the Does who complained that Does are not sued.

    Oh, since I know talk is cheap (especially on this site), if any of the Does wish to be moved to the top of the list and get named right away, email me and I will try to accommodate you.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Anonymous says:

      “we started filing” “our new site will be up”

      Short retirement?

    • TrollTrasher says:

      Color me VERY skeptical about these individual suits. What are the odds these are Does voluntarily dismissed from earlier cases after their personal info was obtained from their ISP’s and the trolls realized they’d basically be slam dunks for default judgements in their favor? I have to imagine that’s the hope of the trolls here as opposed to actually going to trial and legal battle. They’ve shown zero desire/ability to share their “infallible” investigation systems, or to actually spend anything except the bare minimum in pursuing these suits so as to maximize their profits. Now all of a sudden they’re going to be going all out and fighting tooth and nail to expose piracy? Please. This is just a variation on the same trend we’ve seen; the trolls just switch up/modify their game to keep the scam going without actually going to court to fight this out with someone. Be upfront, troll hunter; you’re counting on NONE of these cases actually ending in anything except someone settling out of court or getting a default judgement. One of these Does actually fighting back (or being able to fight back) is your nightmare.

      And bragging about the DC suits? Really? You and your ilk basically fled to there and Florida to start filing mass suits again because they were getting the kibosh around the country.

      • DieTrollDie says:

        I would have to agree with your assessment. Most likely these are cases they think are slam dunks. A good canidate for a default judgement OR the Doe made incriminating statements/admissions to downloading/sharing the movie prior to Steele agreeing to the settlement. This could also be part of program to try and “shame” people into settling when their name shows up on their Web site. Yes, can’t wait to see the details on the “infallible” software they use.

        DieTrollDie :)

        • TrollTrasher says:

          Heh, should we take odds on any of these cases actually reaching trial? Might be able to clean up if we can get Steele himself to pitch in to the betting pool.

    • Anonymous says:

      John,

      We knew about the individual cases two days ago. We are not stupid. People here are checking RFCexpress and PACER and on top of all your moves. We are anxious to see how you plan to deal with these 17 cases.

    • TrollHunters says:

      n00b troll got the case number wrong. correct case is 1:11-cv-01883-EGS.

  27. Nope says:

    We got a letter for supposedly downloading of 10 min. of a porn movie. If we lose, do I get a free copy of the WHOLE movie? Who in there right mind even needs to download porn? All of the companies that Steele represents, people have uploaded to streaming sites such at Tube8 and XHamster. Why not go after these companies and not individuals? I can see all the FTV Girls videos I want for free streaming all over the net. Plus, I was a former subscriber to FTV, so doesn’t that give me the right to own multiple copies, as subscribers can download movie files? Also, what about the people that have unsecured WIFI at home, or whose WIFI security has been breached. Has the judges taken this into consideration? I’m afraid that the courts won’t understand the technology. Obviously Johns Steele doesn’t.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Interesting letter concerning this topic…. I received this notice. Funny I repair computers for a few bucks on the side… virus removal, reinstall OS’s, build and repair hardware… desktops and laptops. I know that some time around the time period my IP is in question I had a few laptops brought to me…. several were infested with all kinds of issues, viruses, backdoors and had to actually be nuked (reformatted) to regain control of the system, total data loss for my customers and one of the other ones I think needed a new hard drive, not like I’m gonna keep records since I’m just consulting and only getting about $25 for the quick look at and I tell them where to buy the hard drive from and what one they need, they get it and I put it in for them. Given that I’ve gotten this and I haven’t downloaded any porn intentionally now I’m being forced to consider if helping a few folks out fixing their computers to make a few extra bucks is worth the headache when I’m gonna get blamed for whatever their machine is doing while I have it connected to my internet connection so I can see first hand what it’s problem exactly is. I constantly discourage the use of P2P and bit torrents due to the ease of virual infections to everyone I talk to that especially is looking to P2P download stuff. From the sound of the title I figured it was a porn about some chick, whom I don’t even recognize the name of, getting her throat choked. Please I’d sooner feel and see the real thing.

    • If a doctor cures STDs, and some inspection founds syphilis bacteria in his biohazard wastebasket, does it mean that this doctor is an infidel dog, who spends nights in brothels? That’s how ridiculous trolls’ accusation may be.

  29. Anonymous says:

    FYI: If any attorney is acting as the legal representative for a case in DC, a jurisdiction in which that attorney is not licensed–and has not sought admission pro hac vice–then he is engaging in unlicensed practice of law:

    http://www.dcappeals.gov/dccourts/appeals/cupl/index.jsp

    Unlicensed practice of law is an ethics violation in every jurisdiction, and it is a reportable offense warranting discipline against the offender.

  30. [...] we witness how Paul Duffy, Steele’s apprentice, follows in his master’s steps. Duffy was no luckier with his DC cases [...]

  31. [...] second lawsuit assigned to an “inconvinient” judge « Fight Copyright Trolls on Trolls and shills: John Steele uses decoys to file lawsuits in troll-friendly jurisdictionsjohn doe on General issuesDanny on Frederic Abramson: respected lawyer or just another [...]

  32. John Doe Comcast says:

    Hey Guys…

    Yesterday I received a notice from my ISP (Comcast) that my personal information was going to be handed over to Paul Duffy (ie. John Steele) by the 01/21/12 if I don’t send in the proper paperwork to the District Court for the District of Columbia where I seek to quash or to dismiss this motion. I am kind of scared shitless because even in this litigious society it is the first time that I am sued (or have someone going through the motions of suing me)… What should I do? Apparently the Judge is Emmet G. Sullivan… Any idea about this judge? Any recommendations on how to send the MTQ? Should I send this anonymously? identifying myself but having this motion Sealed? PLEASE HELP!

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m on the same notice as you from Comcast. Scared shitless as well. What a nice present for X-mas/new year’s…. terrible. I am seeing where Judge Facciola (new Judge assigned to the case) has submitted a Show Cause Order in this case on Dec 23. I currently have lawyered up, and am wondering what should be done also? My lawyer will be handling this for me from now on, but does this “Show Cause Order” mean that the lawsuit could be dismissed and I dont need the lawyer anymore? I just don’t want to pay these queers money if the lawsuit is going to end up being dismissed.

      Thanks – Does 1-565

  33. [...] case was filed by the troll lawsuit factory Prenda Law. I briefly mentioned it when I introduced a troll Paul Duffy, John Steele’s puppet (Steele pretends to be [...]

  34. [...] curae brief in the Hard Drive Productions v. Does 1-1495 case « Fight Copyright Trolls on Trolls and shills: John Steele uses decoys to file lawsuits in troll-friendly jurisdictionsAnonymous on John Steele and his gangAnonymous on John Steele and his gangcj on [...]

  35. [...] should be listed instead of Duffy. Steele|Hansmeier vanished from the scene for a while. There was talk of John Steele’s retirement in [...]

  36. [...] Conduct (Remember: Prenda Law is incorporated in Florida and Illinois, and both John Steele and Paul Duffy — the actual and the fake boss, respectively — are Illinois-licensed attorneys, thus [...]

  37. [...] irrelevant: it is a common belief that Paul Duffy is a no one, a nominal president of Prenda, a patsy, that he does not write motions, does not argue in courtrooms, does not reply to emails. During [...]

  38. [...] couldn’t miss the fact that I repeat this statement over and over again. The very first time I mentioned Duffy about a year ago, I did use the word “decoy”; and just a week ago I [...]

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