Copyright trolls Prenda Law, Paul Duffy, and John Steele commence three lawsuits v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and our community
Initially those lawsuits have been filed in state courts so loved by Prenda (St. Clair County IL, Cook County IL, and Miami-Dade FL), but were promptly removed to the federal level by the defense lawyers. So, now we have:
- Paul Duffy v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and Does 1-10, ILND 13-cv-01569 — Jason Sweet and Erin Russell represent Paul and Alan.
- Prenda Law v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and Does 1-10, ILSD 13-cv-00207 — Jason Sweet and Erin Russell represent Paul and Alan.
John Steele v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and Does 1-10, (dismissed) FLSD 13-cv-20744 — Brad Patrick represents Paul and Alan.
Here is one of the complaints (the other two can be found in Jordan Rushie’s blog post):
Alan Cooper and his attorney Paul Godfread are the main targets, obviously because they brought some uncomfortable questions to the daylight. Stifling the criticism of Prenda’s actions is the second, but not a secondary goal.
Who are the Does 1-10? If you read through largely identical complaints, you’ll see the answer: us. Us: me, DieTrollDie, dozens of community members who spend our personal time and resources to keep public aware of the predatory practice known as “copyright trolling” — abusive lawsuits with a declared goal to stop online piracy, but in reality designed to coerce quick settlements from alleged file-sharers, guilty or not. This is achieved by leveraging the social stigma attached to pornography and by insane, disproportionate statutory fines meant to be applied to large, commercial-scale infringement. We have been diligently reporting on lawsuit abuses, and it is not a surprise that those who benefit from such abuses are eager to shut us down.
I will avoid commenting on these three cases for the time being; will restrict myself to only reporting facts. Anyone with half brain can see all the flaws and the real goals of these cases anyway (as well as the answer to the question: “Why are there three nearly identical lawsuits, not one?”). Feel free to discuss these lawsuits, but be aware that if discovery is granted, your identity will most likely be revealed to the plaintiffs (I cannot do anything about it), so don’t say what you would not say openly.
As for me, I stand by everything I wrote. Maybe the words I have chosen were overly emotional, but everything I said has been based on provable facts and good faith. In addition, I never tried to smuggle my opinions as facts.
This country is still a world leader in free speech, and I hope that the outcome of these lawsuits will only strengthen my and many others’ pride.
At least one of the cases, John Steele v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and Does 1-10, FLSD 13-cv-20744 was dismissed without prejudice by John Steele today.
As DieTrollDie reports, WordPress has notified us that it received a ridiculously overreaching subpoena asking for all the blog visitors (not even posters, visitors!) since 1/1/2011. Note that the subpoena is issued from California and signed by Duffy in connection with St. Clair county case. This case was removed to the federal level.
Happy International Woman’s day!
This is the email I received from WordPress this morning:
Thank you, we’ve received your response and will take no further action on this subpoena until the judicial process is completed.
- EFF announces its intention to fight the subpoena, and WordPress refuses to comply with this subpoena.
- EFF to represent bloggers against copyright troll.
- Answers are filed in the Prenda’s defamation lawsuits.
- Prenda Law Sues Critics For Defamation by Mike Masnick.
- Prenda Law Issues Subpoena For IP Addresses Of Every Visitor To Critic Blogs For The Past Two Years by Mike Masnick.
- Trolling firm digs deeper hole with defamation suit against critics by Timothy Lee.
- Prenda Law wants IP address of every anti-troll blog reader by Joe Mullin.
- Salon: “Die, troll, die” goes to court by Andrew Leonard.
- BoingBoing: Copyright trolls facing legal sanctions for in-court fraud file defamation suits against identity theft victim and online critics by Cory Doctorow.
- DailyDot: Copyright trolls demand list of everyone who visited blogs by Kevin Collier.
- TorrentFreak: Copyright Trolls Order WordPress To Hand Over Critics’ IP Addresses by Andy.
- Linuxexpress (cz): Copyrightový troll chce po WordPressu adresy kritiků by Lukáš Jelínek.
- InfoSecurity: Copyright trolls will not go quietly.
- Philly Law Blog: Prenda Law, John Steele, and Paul Duffy file suit against Alan Cooper, his lawyer Paul Godfread, and anonymous John Does by Jordan Rushie.
- Copyrightclerk: Paul Duffy, John Steele, and Prenda Law strike the anti-troll community.
- TorrentLawyer: Prenda Law Inc. sues the anti-troll internet community by Rob Cashman.
- Legal Satyricon Alleged Copyright Troll Sues Critics by Jay Wolman.
- Popeheat: Prenda Law Researches Streisand Effect, Says “I Gotta Get Me Some Of That” by Ken White.
- Cheapass Fiction: Copyright Trolls Going Too Far by Aelius Blythe.
- niko[pik] (fr): Un organisme anti-piratage somme WordPress de fournir les adresses IP des visiteurs de sites opposants.
196 responses to ‘Copyright trolls Prenda Law, Paul Duffy, and John Steele commence three lawsuits v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper and our community’
It feels like a law firm got its feeling hurt on the internet and is crying to the courts.
Looking at the rating bar above I imagine scumbags from Prenda breaking mouse buttons trying to hit “1” in a desperate rage. “These guys supposed to shit their pants! Why aren’t they afraid of us?”
Click to access gov.uscourts.cacd.543744.59.0.pdf
Click to access gov.uscourts.cacd.543744.59.1.pdf
Click to access gov.uscourts.cacd.543744.59.2.pdf
Pietz’ response to the OTC regarding Gibbs’ sanctions is up, ready for Gibbsmas. After this I expect we’ll see a Brett Gibbs v. Morgan Pietz et Internets lawsuit, in addition to Prenda, Steele, Duffy and friends v. Pietz and Internets.
You can see why John is desperate to shut us up. Pietz has done his homework and there is some great stuff here like “there is widespread interest in a subpoena to obtain testimony and records from the Minnesota bank that employs the notary who supposedly notarized Mr. Mooney’s signature on legal pleadings filed in other jurisdictions.” (OMFG+)
There are also some examples where our work proved directly useful to Pietz’ efforts. For example, he uses Google Maps imagery of the defendants’ homes and overlays the range specifications of a 10 year old wireless router to show how many neighbors are in range. Pietz is obviously a clever guy and the diagrams are a great touch, but it was people on this board that pulled apart Gibbs’ claims about the “remote” location of the homes within hours of his filing and called him out for conveniently failing to provide any technical specifications for any equipment involved to provide a factual backing to his claims. I give Pietz a lot of style points, going from our gnashing of teeth to submitting a wifi router manual with its range specifications as an exhibit was a super-smooth move. We also had many people picking apart Gibbs’ constantly shifting state of employment with Prenda and Prenda’s various clients, and that has been put to use to further undermine Gibbs’ credibility.
I have no doubt that Pietz and many other Doe defenders are smart and resourceful enough to figure all this stuff out for themselves with enough time and effort. But many useful pieces of information are served up on a platter by the collective intelligence of this community, freeing them to build a better overall narrative or engage in the awesome PI work of their own that Nick and Morgan are doing for this case.
We are on top of everything Prenda is doing and have left them no room to maneuver. John’s named Doe shock and awe campaign is a failure. Alan Cooper is coming back to haunt him. Pietz and Ranallo are unwinding the web of relationships between him, his associates and his clients. The Livewire/APLG rebirth with stock photos of a fake executive team was just pathetic and appears to be going nowhere.
We are winning, and that is what the defamation lawsuits are really about. We are winning and John can’t stand it and he’s got nothing. Viewed in that light, given his ego and history of bluster, it’s surprising that he would admit this in such a public, spectacular and doomed fashion. He must be very desperate and that means this is not the time to be intimidated and back down, it is time for us to finish what he started.
You know, there’s another aspect to this that I don’t quite understand. The Plaintiffs (Prenda, Steele, and Duffy) all allege that they have lost business, to the tune of 100k each, as a result of defamation turning away potential clients. Three questions:
1. Does anyone really want to work with them? Do they have a shred of evidence that someone considered them, then changed their mind and went to a competitor? Do they HAVE competitors? Or has the business model been comprehensively hulled as a result of their poor performance in the courts? Does their practice of voluntary dismissals indicate that they really are pressing thier clients’ cases vigorously? If you were their client, would you be happy when the Prendoids abandon case after case?
2. Do they have the spare capacity to even handle a new client, should one present themselves? Given the increasing number of court-mandated actions to which them must respond, do they have any left over time to spend considering a new client’s case?
3. Given that Steele is branching out to actually create content, instead of enforcing other producers’ copyrights means that their law business if becoming increasingly inwardly focussed. I would love to see a timeline of cases filed per client, coded to show any client NOT a shell corporation of Steele’s. I think that would show that their practice is less that of outside counsel and more inside counsel. That would blow a hole in thier argument that they can’t get clients because we allegedly called them names.
Inquiring minds want to know.
Your second point here is a really excellent question. In the complaints, Paul Duffy lists himself as sole owner and employee of Prenda Law. With that being the case, how many cases can one attorney be reasonably expected to handle while still effectively serving his/her clients needs? Considering that they have cases in which hundreds if not thousands of people are possibly being sued, that would be a gargantuan task for a single practitioner, one which I don’t think it actually feasible for Mr. Duffy to handle. The same point of reference can also go into affirmative defenses discussing the fact that the cases which are brought by these attorneys are most likely not intended to ever see the inside of a courtroom. Even with Of Counsel appointed, how can one single attorney expect to properly prepare a case against 140 different people. If I were looking for someone to represent me, I would want to make sure there was plenty of support available. Their own pleadings seem to say they do not have that in place.
Here’s a great thought experiment. Call them. Ask for a consult for a copyright case. See if they’ll actually make an appointment. No? Then they aren’t in the market for new clients. (cue rim-shot sound effect)
Actually, now, they’d HAVE to answer every call and treat it as a serious inquiry. Otherwise, they’ll lose their case.
You really have to be talented to so thoroughly paint yourself into a corner like this.
You ask: 1. Does anyone really want to work with them?
If you look at the first submission to Slashdot regarding Prenda, someone commented claiming to have seen Steele in “Full Preacher Mode”. This person further claimed that only a few pornographers were interested in teaming with the lawyers to pursue downloaders for infringement. It seems that while the adult producers like the money, pursuing downloaders has the potential to bring a lot of bad publicity, opens up the firms to counter-claims thus becoming a long-term liability, and can put their copyrights and business model in jeopardy. Think about it this way… if willing clients were stepping right up, would AF Holdings and Ingenuity have come to exist?
I am loving the fact that someone hijacked wefightpiracy.com so that it redirects to Pirate Bay.
I wouldn’t be surprised if they did it themselves and they’ll try to blame it on the community. I can see Gibbs whining about it now at the sanctions hearing.
A scorpion and a frog meet on the bank of a stream and the scorpion asks the frog to carry him across on its back. The frog asks, “How do I know you won’t sting me?” The scorpion says, “Because if I do, I will die too.”
The frog is satisfied, and they set out, but in midstream, the scorpion stings the frog. The frog feels the onset of paralysis and starts to sink, knowing they both will drown, but has just enough time to gasp “Why?”
Replies the scorpion: “Its my nature…”
On information and belief it seems that Gibbs still fails to understand how bittorrent works.
On page 2 and in footnote 3, the complaint states that the users downloaded the entire film and was confirmed. The complaint states that “complete and useable” copies of the films were downloaded.
In the footnote, the complaint states that Hansmeier’s software “accurately reflects that the infringers are illegally downloading useable and complete”
Essentially on information and belief, they’re, I believe, claiming that the entire file was available.
I think they’re saying that a complete download was completed. Given the way that bittorent works, this must have been downloaded from MULTIPLE sources.
And the accused possibly uploaded a snippet to the tracking software
Therefore, on information and belief, the entire film was available, confirmed by downloading it from multiple sources, and because the person uploaded enough of a snippet they must have downloaded the entire film.
Speaking of which, if Wright stated that if the download was aborted, infringement might not be an issue. Doesn’t that also mean, then, that if you didn’t upload the whole thing that they can’t go after you for distribution?
Generally speaking, upload speeds in the US are horrendous. From what I looked at from Comcast and ATT, the upload speeds are usually 1/6 to 1/15 of the download speed. Depending on the size of the file, it would be near impossible to download a “complete and useable” copy from one person.
Also, apologies for the sarcastic italics. Couldn’t help it.
Lets say someone tries to download something with 1 seeder then the person who starts downloading it may be considered as a “distributor”? without having the whole file wouldn’t he have to be seeding for like 3 days straight in order to be distributing rather than one download a file and stop sharing it once done? don’t you have to have the whole file in the 1st place to be distributing the whole thing ?
It’s really not that hard to tell if someone has completely downloaded a file on bittorrent. If you have a client attached to the same swarm then you will see the person switch from downloading to seeding when the whole torrent is downloaded. In fact, it has been theorized that Hansmeier’s software is simply a modified bittorrent client which logs who the downloaders and seeders are. Of course, the real interesting question is whether or not they had to participate in the swarm in order to connect to it and monitor it since most torrent servers will disconnect clients which don’t upload to the swarm.
yes but these cases aren’t about downloading somuch as they are about UPLOADING. distribution is where the copyright violations occur and there is no way to prove that they uploaded a full copy unless they were the only seed/peer and a whole copy was downloaded just from them.
Why don’t they name what people distribute in my new demand letter it says i was Subsequently distributing illegal downloads through bit torrent and it doesn’t make sense they don’t name what the file was, Thats what make me nervous is they dont wanna name the file or a site they just say that and do you think they want people to call and find out?
Regarding the wefightpiracy.com redirect.
This definitely looks like an inside job. First off, it’s not a DNS redirect. Someone actually modified the source code of their site. I find no proof that wefightpiracy runs a standard CMS, either it’s home brewed or it’s not a CMS at all.
Rarely, when a site is actually hacked, source compromise, does the hacker do a simple redirect. They had full access, they could have put up any message in the world they wanted, why do a redirect to the piratebay? There’s always a defacing, when source is compromised. After yesterday, why wouldn’t a misguided hacker taken claim for all this work? He could have. Why is no-one claiming it? Hackers boast, and Prenda is considered an internet enemy.
Finally, a DNS redirect can take time to fix, because of DNS propagation and you need to contact your provider. In this case, they just need to fix the source. Why hasn’t it be done yet?
Inside job. Only thing that makes sense. Be prepared for the blame.
Tend to agree. The first mention of the redirect I’m aware of is in the comments to Doctorow’s post on BoingBoing. This comment was made on 12:52 AM PDT:
More than 12 hours passed since then, and no one cared to fix? Leaning towards an inside job.
it should be wefightpiracy.org Working as of time of posting
they are uploading their cases to the .org version so .com might be done for.
Yeah mine get redirected to the .org one now
Same here, pity @BittorrentBetty is no longer with us. Her and @Bittorrentbull must have had a mutual suicide pact.
Copyright clerk posted Gibbs’ 90 page manifesto of objections on twitter:
The TLDR version of it is that everything Pietz has said is irrelevant and/or hearsay and/or speculation and/or lacking knowledge and/or argumentative.
It’s pretty amazing really. For instance, in Item 29, they dispute Pietz’s contention that “I do not believe this
is an isolated incident, of local counsel from Prenda using Mr. Gibbs’ email” address on pleadings,” when Gibbs’ email address is in complaints all over the place, from Sunlust
According to Google Translate, prenda is ‘take’ in Italian.
Click to access gov.uscourts.cacd.543744.66.0.pdf
Someone has RECAPed Judge Wright’s latest order.
The Master Assclown is about to have bigger problems than people saying mean things about him on the Internet.
In light of the parties’ recent representations made in response to the Court’s Order to Show Cause, the Court hereby orders the following:
1) The following persons are hereby ORDERED to appear on March 11, 2013, at 1:30 p.m.:
a) John Steele, of Steele Hansmeier PLLC and/or Livewire Holdings LLC;
b) Paul Hansmeier, of Steele Hansmeier PLLC and/or Livewire Holdings LLC;
c) Paul Duffy, of Prenda Law, Inc.;
d) Angela Van Den Hemel, of Prenda Law, Inc.;
e) Mark Lutz, CEO of AF Holdings LLC and Ingenuity 13 LLC;
f) Alan Cooper, of AF Holdings LLC;
g) Peter Hansemeier of 6881 Forensics, LLC; and
h) Alan Cooper, of 2170 Highway 47 North, Isle, MN 56342.
2) Brett L. Gibbs is hereby ORDERED to serve a copy of this order on the
persons in subparagraphs a–g above by March 7, 2013.
3) Morgan E. Pietz is hereby ORDERED to serve a copy of this order on
the person in subparagraph h above by March 7, 2013.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
March 5, 2013
Holy crap! This is how I feel right now: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=np6vAuS0KNs
Is this good or bad for them lol?
If this isn’t the worst thing that could happen for Prenda, et al’s enterprise, I don’t know what is. All of them, under oath, in the same courtroom. It’s time for the truth!
It should be fun to see the excuses they come up with to try to weasel out of this, but they don’t have much time. I wonder how many will show up vs. risk a bench warrant, at this point Wright is virtually trolling for an excuse to make things even worse for Prenda. Apparently he wasn’t moved by Gibbs’ attorneys’ Object The World strategy.
Maybe they can amend their lawsuits against Godfread, Cooper and the Internet to include Judge Wright as well.
Anyone who doesn’t have a REALLY REALLY good reason for not being there (like “I got pushed in front of a train on the red line” or dead in a ditch) will have the U.S. Marshals banging down their door and taking them into custody. If they don’t take this seriously, and something tells me they won’t, some seriously bad shit will happen to them. Gibbs et al tried to disqualify Judge Wright for BS reasons, he’s now returning the favor.
This is the absolute worst case for them. They will all be together, most likely under oath, so the old cat and mouse game of referring to someone who isn’t there won’t work. They will have to answer the identify theft questions.
Plus, just from the standpoint of travel… sucks to be ordered to show up in CA in 6 days. Hopefully, Mr. Cooper can make it. He’s the only one I feel bad for…
This is awesome. The downfall.
If Pietz or Paul Godfread are reading this, and have Alan Cooper of MN in trouble funding his trip, please send a notice via comment here with an email address or other contact information so we can help (assuming that’s legally proper). I’d happily throw some money toward his travel and lodging. I should note that Alan Cooper’s suit in MN was filed in forma pauperis, so I’m assuming he doesn’t have much in the way of funding.
pretty much was the only reason for him to OSC for that information in the first place, glad he followed through and that Pietz so clearly and concisely summed things up. Wright should extend a formal invitation to the local white collar division of the FBI.
Be sure to make a special note of the fact that The Real Alan Cooper of AF Holdings, LLC is ordered to appear. I actually missed it the first time because of the two Alan Cooper listings.
Total bluff call on Wright’s part.
How will Prenda handle it?
I think a number of people just soiled themselves, and they weren’t pseudonymous critics of John Steele worrying about yet another of his ridiculous lawsuit threats.
I was thinking about that too when I read the order, how are they going to bluff their way out of this. Also how are Gibbs going to proof that he actually “served” the order to the Cooper of AF Holding given that it’s likely the person doesn’t even exist.
Are they just going to try to lie outright if Cooper of AF Holding end up not showing, and agree on some sort of excuse for his absence. Maybe they will risk it since they might think a bench warrant for a non-existence person won’t hurt them, or that they have no other choice.
Remember, Wright has backed Gibbs into a corner by first getting him to admit he has some form of contact info for Lutz, Steele and Hansmeier, as well as corporate addresses for their relevant companies. Given the way things are going it is a safe bet that Gibbs will do everything he can to make sure they are informed of their duty to appear in a way that will cover his ass and satisfy Judge Wright. I’ll bet at minimum he pays a processor server to attempt to serve each and every one of them and brings the receipts on Monday.
He can also bring copies of the Steele, Duffy and Prenda v. Internets complaints for added insurance; since they are now on the public record as avid readers of this site, they really have no excuse for being unaware they have a court appearance scheduled on Monday.
The way I see it, Gibbs is screwed either way. It’s just a matter of how many others he’s gonna take with him. This will be a circus. I’m just wondering who Wright will have remanded into custody first because odds are someone will be for either being a prick to Wright or invoking the Fifth. Steele would be well-advised not to stand in front of Wright and pull his usual act because, well, find out what happens when you piss off a retired Marine hehe.
If you read the Hansmeier deposition, you’ll get to the part where he says that he doesn’t know what is meant by a real person (in reference to Salt Marsh). I wouldn’t be surprised if they do bring in the cat and try to pass it off as the real Alan Cooper (as someone had joked about on another post).
And once again.
U mad bro?
Goddamn I wish @BittorrentBull was with us and didn’t delete his account (spoilation at this point?)…
No, I don’t think there’s much chance of spoliation. He doesn’t control the data of that account, Twitter does. It can be subpoena’d if necessary, and it should be held on their master control server.
This has been a tough few days for a lot of us. Many of us questioned our very freedom of speech and the fairness of a legal system that requires wealth to protect our rights over a long haul. With the news from California, things are looking better. I’d like to say that I’m happy to live in the most just country in the world, even though it’s not perfect, and I fully believe that the truth will out!
Cross-commenting from the ‘hedge’ post: I can see the butthurt from users a-g already. “I don’t have the money to travel”, “I have a court date elsewhere!”, “I don’t belong to that company that you named”, “I have a head transplant scheduled”, “My dog is sick”, “All the flights are full.”, “My rental car wouldn’t start.” Dollars to donuts, of the 7 trolls named, at most, three will show up, and John Steele has the least chance of all.
Then, there’s this:
Gibbs: “But Judge! I tried to serve them, but I couldn’t find them by the 7th!” I rate that as a 70-30 chance he’ll pull this excuse. Then the Judge jails him, and Gibbsie then whines “But Your Honor, I can’t serve them from jail!” Round and round we go.
Here’s my question: what are the ranges of sanctions can Judge Wright impose on a) someone not there, and b) someone who is there? If he determines that there was a fraud upon the court, does that mean a different suit, or can he send them to the slammer immediately?
I would be REALLY interested in seeing if he (Steele) manages to get some sort of motion up before a court on that day. In Illinois, it’s possible, as 3 business days notice are what most judges in ND IL require. Then he could claim to Judge Wright that he had a motion hearing before one judge which he couldn’t miss. Then it becomes a question of when he receives notice and then when he files a given motion. He’s in so many jurisdictions, it would be really difficult for Judge Wright to monitor them all and contact the judges directly. Don’t be surprised to see that kind of tactic.
Well the Judge has the US Marshalls Service at his disposal and, short of shooting someone, a federal judge can pretty much do anything. According to someone much wiser than me you do not try to disqualify Judge Wright unless you can make it happen, trolls and their cohorts should be terrified at this point.
And let’s not forget, Prenda’s motion to disqualify Wright was hardly a simple statement of facts. They had to make it personal, insulting, and filled with their usual bravado, hyperbole and self-pity. Take another read with the benefit of hindsight and try to imagine WTF they were thinking:
Click to access gov.uscourts.cacd.543744.35.0.pdf
The integrity of our judicial system rests, in large part, upon the assumption that judges will regard the matters set before them with impartiality. The United States Constitution contains various safeguards to ensure that, where a judge is unable to regard a particular matter impartially, that judge shall be removed from considering the case. The story Plaintiff now sets forth is rather simple: Honorable Judge Otis D. Wright, II simply abhors plaintiffs who attempt to assert their rights with respect to online infringement of pornography copyrights. Honorable Judge Wright’s abhorrence of such assertions of right under the Copyright Act has risen to a level such that a neutral observer would have reasonable grounds to question Honorable Judge Wright’s impartiality. Indeed, in light of Honorable Judge Wright’s conduct,
Plaintiff contends that it would be impossible to convince a neutral observer that Honorable Judge Wright regards this particular type of case impartially.
Interesting… John Steele has voluntarily dismissed without prejudice his suit in FL http://ia601607.us.archive.org/33/items/gov.uscourts.flsd.416314/gov.uscourts.flsd.416314.6.0.pdf
The Prenda suit in IL appears to have some problem with the removal to Federal court
Nothing appears new on PACER for the Duffy suit.
What about our favorite porn pusher / pimp “I forgot how to spell my own name” Mr Webber?
Oh sorry wrong case. Wasn’t Lutz in that hearing in Florida also?
Wow, Colette. Did you pick the right bunch of lawyers to fight for your case or what? I’m hoping you’re reading all this!
Prenda is seeking ALL ip addresses of EVERYONE who visited FCT or DTD since 1/11.
That’s going to work.
That is the funniest shit I’ve ever seen—didn’t SJD put up something about 500,000 unique visitors a while ago? Good luck sorting all that out. It’s amazing to me how this just gets more and more asinine as the days go on…I think we all knew that once the wheels came off they would do so in spectacular fashion, but this is even more that I could have hoped.
I am sure I am not unique. Ar home, I read FTC and DTD on a laptop. Yeah, home IP. Then I sometimes get it on the iPad. Another IP. Or my phone. Another IP. At work. that makes 4. Or sometimes via a hotspot or a Starbucks/B&N wifi hotspot. 5/6/7. So, how many of those will Prenda try to track down?
Then there are all of the corporate entities that allow internet access for their employees. And the Google bot and other spiders. How is dear Peter going to unravel all of these entities?
Just because someone reads the blog does not make them a poster. A poster does not equal a libeller. And most, if not all, of the comments in the complaint are opinion, protected under the First Amendment.
The fact that the drafter of this subpeona chose to ignore these simple deductions is clear evidence of bad faith at the very outset.
I notice that our good friend Mr Hoerner is on the case on this one. Too bad Judge Wright didn’t order him to appear at the March 11 hearing.
“Well, I know from reading the blog sites that you two participate in that I shouldn’t believe everything I read on the Internet.”
– Paul Hansmeier, 19 Feb 13, Deposition, Doc 69-1, Pages 157-158.
Appears Paul Hansmeier is referring to fightcopyrighttrolls.com & dietrolldie.com – please correct me if I’m wrong Paul.
I think it is important to recognize that FCT and DTD are effectively political organizations, trying to effect legal, cultural and social changes. As such, outing anonymous speakers and suing for political speech and rhetoric is an attack on basic constitutional freedoms. Maybe some press releases to the wider media on this theme would help.
Maybe they are planning on trying to get the IP addresses, contacting the ISPs to get the contact info and then will start contacting everyone and saying that they will be named in a federal defamation lawsuit unless they pay $3,400 today. Prenda is branching out from copyright trolling to libel trolling!
Anonymous @4:46pm — I don’t think you’re far off the mark. Libel and defamation litigation is potentially a lengthy and expensive affair. Since all the plaintiffs are lawyers, they seem to be under the impression that their costs are negligible, so the threat of litigation against a normal, hard working, non-lawyer Americans who are already seeking help in potentially embarrassing legal matters is strong. I’d like to notify those who would bring suit against commenters or operators of this site that (a) defending a case like this is a legitimate lawyer’s wet dream, so I think there will be plenty of pro bono lawyers waiting in the wings, (b) the truth will come out, and (c) I wouldn’t be surprised if commenters and/or operators of this blog already have retained counsel who are briefed on the behavior of alleged copyright trolls. As much as there looks like an opportunity for a settlement cash grab here, there is also an excellent opportunity for disbarment, sanctions, and judicial referral of criminal charges against lawyers who may have committed fraud or vexatious litigation.
And yet, they run into the issue of actually proving who did it, which is the crux of Judge Wright’s “issue” with Prenda’s practices. As in, they don’t make any effort at all, or half-ass it. It’s really convenient that these suits happened to be filed right when Gibbs’ (and now the rest of “the gang”) has been ordered to appear in front of Wright on Monday. Dear God I wish they allowed cameras in federal courtrooms. Maybe Wright would make an exception?
The “business model” (not my words, Judge Wrights’s…sue him for defamation heh) of Prenda is in some seriously deep shit so, instead of quitting while it’s way way WAYYYYYYYYYYYYY behind, it decides “Well wouldn’t it be a brilliant idea to file a lawsuit against Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper, and 10 Does, send a subpoena to WordPress requesting every single IP that has visited this and DTD’s site since January 1, 2011. Paul Duffy v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper, and Does 1-750,000, Prenda Law v. Paul Godfread, Alan Cooper, and Does 1-750,000. Can you imagine the look on the ILND and ILSD judges’ faces when the complaints are amended to contain 3/4 of a million people? Slack-jawed. Based on what I’ve observed thus far (I’d be really interested to see how one could be liable for libel simply for reading something but…I will refrain from commenting on that), I would not be surprised if it ended up like that.
Hey SJD, since you dug up some Troll IPs, how about a best hits compilation of Troll posts to the site? Between you and DTD there must be plenty of great material.
I remember Steele being particularly juvenile, with the world watching it would be a great way to go on the offensive, give everyone a laugh, and most importantly some insight into the character of these characters.
Actually, that’s not a half-bad idea. True, the defense of “everybody else is speeding” never works, however, a ‘Greatest Troll Hits’ compilation will demonstrate to the court that the trolls are active participants in this evil ‘defamation’ site. Particularly because SJD never censored their posts.
“Your Honor, FCT is open to all. Anyone can post here. Why, here’s a bunch of posts by that herd of trolls. We let them defend themselves. Look, they’re engaging in the same behavior they are accusing us of doing. Still, we let them have their say, so a disinterested reader was getting both sides of the story.”
I’m just visiting this site so I can claim that my IP address was subpoenaed by Prenda.
Hey there, Prenda! *waves* How you guys doing?
This is a lesson for you 1Ls in how not to defend criminals. If your client is about to be sentenced, the last thing you want to do is stir up news media interest in the case. Your guy will get 3x as much jail time.
I alluded to something a long time ago. What I alluded to was control of the internet. Who wants to control the internet? When you realize “who” that is then you might come to understand “who” might be in back of everything that has been going on. Although the Prenda gang may be all getting called before the judge, the tell-tale sign will be to see what actually happens. My guess is it ends with nothing more than a hand slap, for publicity sake. IMO certain individuals were given a directive to cause mayhem on the internet, and given carte blanche to do so. Has anyone been disbarred or imprisoned??? No. Only slaps on the wrist at best. Now this site will be attacked. Will they win? Well, since the 1st Amendment actually no longer exists (fact), what do you think? They will try to bully this site away, and the sad part is, they will actually be “allowed” to do so.
5-star indicator above the post is pretty important. 4/5 out of 26 votes? That means the pissed-off trolls broke their pointing fingers clicking a mouse button to vote “1.” Seriously; most people either ignore this entirely, or vote “5,” “4.” to vote “1” one should absolutely hate what is written. And who hates what is written here?
A Barbara Streisand fan?
Yes, I don’t have an access to the underlying distribution, but with high certainty I can say that “1” was clicked 5-7 times.
Could “sloppy” tablet use lead to accidental ones or twos being hit while swiping, tapping and pinching? I know for a fact that I’ve accidentally clicked some twitter links on the left while trying to swipe down on the left to get to recent comments. 🙂 You’re most likely right about it being due to cranky trolls but I’m just throwing some other shit out there. on a 7 inch tablet your mobile site looks more like the desktop site as compared to using a phone.
Speaking of swiping and tapping, the newer 7 inch tablets are pretty nice and cheap and fast enough for basic browsing and the orbot app+ properly configured mobile Firefox for android gets you tapped into Tor for quick and simple and relatively anonymous browsing on android 😉 Seems like a necessity when dudes are trying to sue you for simply browsing the web. Fuck. It’s how I’m rolling now.
Best of luck to you, DTD, and all of us in the anti troll community. Peace!
Thought id make doubly sure my VPN IP appears here. They are going to have fun with that one
What makes VPN preferable to Tor?
VPN is likely to be much faster. IMO, if you’re just browsing or posting and nor streaming, dl’ing or upl’ing large files or data sets, then tor is likely sufficient for the cost (FREE). Other thoughts? Don’t want to be giving wrong advice when it comes to anonymous browsing.
Agreed. Tor is incredibly slow when I use it. Also, I can’t download any of these PDFs on the various troll and troll fighting sites with Tor. It always gives me a warning about wanting to use an external application, could reveal true IP, etc. So, to be on the safe side I signed up with a VPN. I’ve noticed my performance is still slower with a VPN (my ISP could be throttling I suppose) but still better than Tor. For the record, I do not illegally download but with the six strikes, antics from trolls like Prenda, etc. I’ve decided to use a VPN for certain activities (like reading this site for instance).
I know it is dismissed, but I just noticed that Steele used Livewire Holding’s phone number as his own in his signature block.
Funny, isn’t it?
Looking at defamation, I’m going to quote Judge Wright, who I may or may not agree with:
“Have you noticed, that every representation made by a lawyer with Prenda Law is not true.”
I’d love to see Prenda sue a Federal Judge. Oh wait. They can’t. But a Federal Judge can be quoted, especially in a libel-proof plaintiff defense. Yes, yes he can.
I have nothing productive to contribute to this thread. I am just posting here so my name gets added to the new “John Doe” list that the trolls are accumulating. It also gives me a voice when this whole thing goes class action. I want some skin in that game too.
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