Guardaley | X-Art
“No Agenda” show about copyright trolling: “It’s a complete Mafioso operation!”
One of the most recent episodes of “No Agenda,” a popular podcast show, discussed, among other things, the copyright trolling phenomenon. One of two show hosts, Adam Curry, told the story about x-art.com (Malibu Media) and its owner, Adam’s former colleague, Brigham Field and his relations with “mobster” lawyers.
Apparently, it was the first time Adam heard about this legal plague. However, he (as any person who was taught the difference between good and bad by his parents) immediately recognized that it is nothing else but a “Mafioso operation” and that this “business” is ethically wrong no matter how lucrative it is.
There is an interesting bit: the porn purveyor gets only 10% of the collections. Seemingly, Brigham Field and his wife Colette are not really on top of what is going on and simply receives checks from the trolls who use his copyrights to harass citizens into paying ransoms. News outlets, when talking about these cases, often name plaintiffs, but barely mention troll lawyers (and sometimes do not mention them at all). However, such a small cut of the loot a pornographer receives leaves no room for speculation who is the boss.
In addition, Adam mentioned that “they stopped doing this because they thought it is inherently wrong.” I’m not sure if he meant x-art/Malibu Media by “they” at this point: Malibu Media still actively files mass lawsuits across the country; in 2012 alone copyright trolls have filed 144 cases in 11 districts against more than 2000 Does on behalf of Malibu Media (between 2/08/12 and 5/24/12; that’s almost 2 troll cases per working day filed nationwide!)
“No Agenda” has about half a million listeners, so it is great that so many people became aware of the ongoing scam.
I remixed only relevant 7 minutes of the episode for this post, but I encourage you to visit “No Agenda” website: listen to their podcasts and contribute.
Thanks to commenters who spotted this news last week, and of course to Adam Curry and John Dvorak.
38 responses to ‘“No Agenda” show about copyright trolling: “It’s a complete Mafioso operation!”’
Wow. They actually sent summons to all 14 of the does. Not the best news.
Please be more specific. Otherwise we would think that by “they” you mean Adam and John.
To the active cases link
Says summons issued.
How is that possible? They id John Does already? If so, the names should be filed, not John Does 1-14. Trying to fool the judge, maybe.
It’s not bad news either though. Nothing has changed, the trolls still don’t have a case unless these 14 does admitted guilt. It seems more like a move to gain credibility with the judge, this doesn’t mean these cases wont still be dismissed, but now he can at least say that defendants have been served. The trolls have got to try something drastic, they’ve been losing on a lot of fronts lately.
No worries, it is s bureacratic snafu, the summons were automatically generated in the name of “John Doe” not in the name of any particular person.
Malibu Media is the porn purveyor plaintiff for 144 copyright troll cases between 2/08/12 and 5/24/12. That’s almost 2 troll cases per working day filed nationwide only for Malibu Media!
case list by attorney:
M. Keith Lipscomb/Lipscomb Eisenberg & Baker (17 cases)
Jason A. Kotzker of Kotzker Law Group (45 cases)
Leemore L Kushner of Kushner Law Group (35 cases, none in Calif. northern)
Jon A. Hoppe of Maddox Hoppe Hoofnagle & Hafey (22 cases)
Christopher P. Fiore of Fiore & Barber (17 cases)
David Wayne O’Bryan of O’Bryan Law Firm (8 cases)
Thanks! I’ll update the list shortly.
I think a disconnect that is happening is the 10%. I wonder if its actually being “sold” as them only getting 10%, or rather the trolls are telling the clients –
This is gonna cost you nothing out of pocket and each one we catch gets you $350.
This could explain why the porn companies are gunho on this. To them it looks like a small amount that wouldn’t shock anyone, and who isn’t going to pay $350 because they got caught. They don’t question the validity of the IP gathering, they are told its airtight. They assume each case is only for a small amount, and if they find out else-wise its to late. The money is rolling in, and rather than have to look at cutting costs or trying a new business model they can just keep doing it how they used to.
I wonder if anyone has thought to reverse the forensic evidence test — that is, get a court order to rifle the porn producers’ and Prenda et al’s own servers. I bet they would (a) find amazingly damning material there and (b) muck up the extortion racket’s operations for at least as long as they were poking around inside the machines’ innards. I would be happy to underwrite someone’s forensic adventures, just to see what pus they might squeeze out of these torture machines.
The porn producers’ servers would be especially revealing, especially the drug sessions and the kiddie porn files normally kept under lock and key. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander: the whole lot of them may be culpable for conspiracy to molest underage kids. Think about that when you’re planning your defense strategies.
Or maybe some decent citizen will finance an expeditionary force and do it wholesale, like the sociopaths do, smoke out the hive and then smash them with the full force of public opinion.
Speaking of which, has anyone else noticed that Mr. Steele’s remarks resemble those of de Sade? Wait, not all at once! Reading his fascinating self-revelations, I feel like I’m watching Nosferatu, the first film vampire, but without the cool.
PS A lot of Czech girls are victims of trading in sex slaves. You’d think the US government that sets the stage for troll extortions would be equally attentive to the status of the women used as bait in these mafiosi schemes. Are any US Attorneys listening? Why are you just sitting there?
According to PACER, Malibu has filed 238 cases, that a lot of cases in less than six months.
is this file missing or is it a connection issue?
the embedded player states “file not found”
and the “Download this fragment.” states: “The connection has timed out The server at […] is taking too long to respond.”
Just noticed this comment… It works for me, so I hope it was a temporary glitch.
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