Questions from an anonymous poster
So, the questions.
There is a lot of hyperbole, anger, and creative pictures out there regarding copyright litigation. Is there a few things we can agree on?
10 Points that should be automatically agreed to by everyone
1. Copyright infringement is against the law and covered by Title 17 of the US Code.
2. People that do actually commit copyright infringement (pirates) are wrong and according to our laws, liable.
3. Being named in a lawsuit does not mean that you are a pirate, just that your alleged to be one.
4. Pirates are not going to report themselves to the copyright holders on their own.
5. There is disagreement over whether the current laws are fair to pirates and alleged pirates.
6. Plainitff’s attorneys are not expected to have all the evidence necessary to win their case the moment they file the complaint, including attorneys that represent copyright holders (trolls).
7. IP address are not people, nor does irrefutable proof exist via ones ISP that if an IP address is observed illegally downloading infringing material, that means the subscriber of the internet account with that IP address is liable.
8. No one likes to be involved as a defendant in copyright infringement cases.
9. It is possible for someone to be named in a copyright litigation case that did not personally download the copyrighted material.
10. #9 does not mean all cases involving copyrighted content should be disallowed. Otherwise, any type of case in which a defendant has ever won should never be allowed to be filed again, including ever criminal charge in history.
11. The legal system does not allow people to appear anonymously unless granted leave to do so first by the court.
12. Legally produced porn, and adult content owners, deserve the same constitutional rights that other companies receive, and should not be discriminated against because of what they produce.
13. There is a method for changing laws you don’t agree with. Part of that process occurred earlier this month on the 6th.
14. If a defendant in a case states he didn’t do whatever he is being accused of, the Plaintiff is not required to drop the case.
15. Pre-suit litigation is favored by every judicial branch in the US, including the United States Supreme Court who has been clearly articulating that central premise since 1898.
5 points that trolls think is accurate, that almost every attorney will agree with, but that pirates may not agree with:
1. Discovery in America is liberal, and all that is required to receive the requested information is for that information to reasonably lead to relevant information. In other words, even if the subscriber is not the pirate, if knowing who the subscriber is might reasonably lead to knowing who the pirate is, then the subscribers information is discoverable.
2. To date, piracy is hurting entire industries, and if everyone can get away with stealing content rather than paying for it with NO risk of getting caught, piracy will increase or at least continue to be very high.
3. Whether or not you agree with the laws, they are the laws. You do not get to pick and choose which laws to follow AND get to pick whether the consequences apply.
4. If content producers receive money from a pirate through litigation, or pending litigation, it is legally permissible. Granted, almost every pirate and pirate friendly site does not like that producers might make money from copyright litigation, but this dislike is based on subjective hate of porn producers and trolls, and not based on the law.
5. If the content being stolen was a non-profit film on caring for sick children, and any settlement money received went to the Red Cross, pirates would
still be upset about having to pay anything if they were caught
My answers (initially posted as a reply) are divided one per comment below to facilitate discussion (Rob Cashman’s idea).