Thanks to Jason Sweet and Dan Booth for the hilarious news, a must-read order denying ex-parte discovery re-requested by copyright troll Marvin Cable in Patrick Collins, Inc. v. Does 1-79 (12-cv-10532), Discount Video Center, Inc. v. Does 1-29, et al. (12-cv-10805-NMG), and Patrick Collins, Inc. v. Does 1-36 (12-10758-GAO).
While two major posts are promised and overdue¹, I cannot help posting Magistrate Sorokin’s
smackdown ruling dismantling Marvin Cable’s copyright troll cases: a good excuse is that it does not take a lot of my time, as the document is self-explanatory, easy and fun to read.
Read the embedded order below. A couple of teaser quotes:
The Plaintiffs’ proposal — i.e., that the Court permits the Plaintiffs to subpoena the names of the subscribers and that the Court then leave it to the Plaintiffs to figure out the rest pursuant to informal communications — is unacceptable.
The Plaintiffs’ lack of interest in actually litigating these cases as demonstrated by the history of this litigation also weighs against permitting ex parte discovery.
The course of action the Plaintiff has stated it intends to pursue also suggests an improper effort to engage in judge shopping and evidences a disregard for the Court’s limited public resources.
…a bad faith effort to harass the third-party subscriber…
…the Plaintiffs have repeatedly said one thing and done another.
The Plaintiffs’ counsel has also repeatedly said to the undersigned, and to other judicial officers of this Court, that he intends to litigate the claims he has brought. Yet to date, counsel has sued well in excess of one thousand Doe Defendants in this District, and as far as the Court is aware, he has never served a Complaint upon a single individual defendant.
So, essentially, Sorokin calls out Marvin Cable on his lies in virtually every paragraph of this 8-page document with a nearly 3-D hint sticking out of a flat document surface: GTFO of Massachusetts’ courts with your ill-conceived mass cases!
No matter how unbelievable it sounds, some people are so obtuse they can miss such a hint, and I have a bad feeling that our hapless troll may put on his John Adams costume once again — to entertain us and to anger judges. And it won’t end well.
A great Order that will, hopefully, resonate across the country. As Booth & Sweet pointed out in their tweet earlier today, “Judge Sorokin gave Cable just enough rope to hang himself.” The Order reads like an indictment of Cable’s overreaching, lying and overall craven behavior before the court (this indictment applies to most if not all copyright trolls). The second act of this comedy will be if and when Prenda gets rolling now that the audience has been warmed up.
- TorrentFreak: Judge Stops BitTorrent Trolls From Harassing ISP Account Holders by enigmax (11/13/2012).
- ArsTechnica: Judge blasts troll for “lack of interest in actually litigating” by Timothy B. Lee (11/13/2012).
- TechDirt: Yet Another Judge Blasts Copyright Trolling Operation by Mike Masnick (11/15/2012).
Judge Sorokin finally brought the hammer down on Marvin Cable today and recommended dismissing the above-mentioned cases without prejudice for failure to serve the defendants.
On 11/16 Marvin Cable replied to the Order to show cause featured in this post trying to keep these cases on life support.
Judge Sorokin was not impressed:
The Plaintiffs advance several reasons in support of a finding of good cause. None have merit. […] The Plaintiffs have no one but themselves to blame for their inability to utilize information gleaned from the quashed subpoenas. The Plaintiffs engaged in the violations necessitating the Court’s remedy by telling third parties to whom Congress has accorded some measure of statutory privacy protection (i.e., the subscribers) that the Plaintiffs had sued them (the subscribers) for copyright infringement when the Plaintiffs had plainly not sued them. Moreover, the Court did not apply the 120-day rule at that time, but rather the Court gave the Plaintiffs another opportunity to propose a discovery plan tailored, as required under the law, toward identifying the identity of the persons the Plaintiffs chose to sue. As already explained, the Plaintiffs failed to advance this type of proposal.
…the difficulties, delays and rulings in this case all result from the Plaintiffs’ actions or inaction. The Court has repeatedly given the Plaintiffs ample opportunity to proceed properly with their cases. Since the Plaintiffs filed these cases, they have repeatedly failed to advance a plan compliant with the straightforward rules of procedure for limited ex parte discovery in order to learn the identities of the persons they have sued. In light of the opportunities they have had to make such a proposal, my previous rulings on these proposals and the Plaintiffs’ conduct of this litigation, I RECOMMEND that the Court find that the Plaintiffs have failed to establish good cause to extend the deadline, and that no other reason exists to exercise its discretion to permit an extension of the deadline. Accordingly, I RECOMMEND that the Court dismiss these cases pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(m) for failure to effect timely service.
¹ In Colorado, Malibu Media v. Fantalis et al docket is overwhelmed with new extremely interesting activity; In Illinois, John Steele reached new lows in the turd of a lawsuit Guava (Lightspeed) v. Skyler Case: the hearing that took place this past Monday, and recently filed fraudulent federal cases deserve detailed attention.