As you may recall, M. Keith Lipscomb’s porn extortion enterprise hit a bump in the road last October when Judge Baylson of the Eastern district of Pennsylvania, more or less, directed Lipscomb to bring some of his copyright troll lawsuits to a verdict so as to ascertain whether these lawsuits were legitimate or not. Of course this direction is contrary to the usual porn copyright business model, which is to obtain the personal identifying information of the person who pays the ISP bill, harass the shit out of said person to pay thousands to settle, and then dismiss the lawsuit once it gets either (a) uncomfortable due to heightened judicial scrutiny or (b) grows stale with the maximum settlements deemed achieved. Aside from the Fantalis matter in Colorado this is the first lawsuit in which a copyright troll’s evidence will be tested in a court of law. Accordingly, SJD and others have been reporting on this lawsuit as it progresses and SJD’s coverage is here, here, here, and here.
Question: How do you gather and refine your evidence to prepare for a trial (the first of its kind in the US) which is set to begin on June 10th? Answer: If you are M. Keith Lipscomb, in the most overreaching and last minute fashion humanly possible.
One example of this has been his sloppy, roughshod trampling of privacy concerns in the third party discovery of ISP Verizon which has been covered by others, including TechDirt, as well as the incredibly invasive demand for “Six Strikes” info.
A more recent example of this overreaching and slipshod trial preparation was disclosed last week when Lipscomb filed an Emergency Motion to allow the plaintiff entry into John Doe 16’s home for the purpose of making forensic copies of his hard drives. The basis for this motion is that the copies of the hard drives previously provided by this party are unreadable which Lipscomb just discovered on April 30th due to the illness and resulting death on April 26th of one of his two experts witnesses. Conspicuously absent from this motion is an affidavit from the surviving expert witness explaining why the copies are unreadable and when this problem was discovered.
Keep in mind the trial is set to begin on June 10th and discovery should have been completed some time ago.
In opposition to this motion the attorney for John Doe 16, Ronald Smith, points out with well-deserved indignation that Lipscomb’s expert witnesses had been sitting on these supposedly unreadable copies for 4 months!
It appears unequivocal that Defendant’s counsel first learned of this problem on May 1, 2013, after the scheduling of this case for Trial. How or why, with a period of over four months, could the parties not be made aware of the difficulty in discovery and now at the midnight hour request an opening of the discovery process when trial is only days away. At this late juncture, not only has Defendant’s counsel for John Doe 16 been prejudiced, but perhaps other counsel in this matter who have indicated that they have had no choice but to settle.
Furthermore defense counsel underlines what by now is obvious:
Plaintiff’s counsel has been egregious in the handling of this case and at this late date the rewarding of and opening of discovery will not only penalized John Doe 16 but the other parties as well.
A telephone conference is scheduled for tomorrow regarding this example of sloppy and overreaching trial preparation and let’s hope that Judge Baylson is not in a forgiving mood.