In CASD Judge Dembin finds Malibu Media geolocation tech not supported by evidence, denies third party discovery.https://t.co/kU7voe1kdv lol
— Raul (@Raul15340965) March 19, 2016
The allegation that the IP address at issue likely resolves to a physical address in this District is not supported in any of the declarations filed in connection with the instant motion. (See ECF No. 4). In its Memorandum of Point and Authorities filed in support of this Motion, Plaintiff again asserts that it employed geolocation technology to trace the physical address of the offending IP address within this jurisdiction, and adds the name of the software employed, but again provides no evidentiary support for its assertions, referring back to the ¶5 of the Complaint. (ECF No. 4-1 at 20).
As there is no evidence supporting the allegation that Defendant would be subject to this Court’s jurisdiction, the instant Motion must fail.
This line of argument follows the ruling of a Florida judge Ursula Ungaro, who two years ago didn’t’ allow Keith Lipscomb to proceed with his copyright shakedown scheme in a couple of cases. Notably, Judge Ungaro didn’t simply deny early discovery, but first issued an order to show cause, i.e. gave Lipscomb a chance to disprove the judge’s reasoning, and only after she was not satisfied by the troll’s response, the cases were killed.
Plaintiff fails to offer any evidence to support its allegation that the infringing IP address was actually traced to a location within this judicial district. Nothing in the declarations Plaintiff submitted with its Ex Parte Motion explains what steps Plaintiff took to trace the IP address to a physical point of origin within this Court’s jurisdiction.
Moreover, neither Plaintiff’s Complaint nor its Ex Parte Motion establishes how Plaintiff was able to correlate Defendant’s IP address to Time Warner Cable. Plaintiff’s Complaint is accompanied by a chart that lists Time Warner Cable as the ISP and identifies the physical location as San Diego, California. (Compl. Attach. #2 Ex. A, at 1, ECF No. 1.) Plaintiff does not explain how the “physical location” was determined and whether the location indicated on the chart refers to the ISP or to the Defendant. Because Malibu Media has not offered any evidentiary support for these allegations, the Plaintiff has not met its burden to show that it made a good faith effort to specifically identify the Defendant as a person who can be sued in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.
Note that not every judge in the Southern District denies Malibu Media’s fishing requests. For example, magistrate judges Jan M. Alder, William V. Gallo, Barbara L. Major do allow early discovery¹. Unlike in the Northern District, where all the trolling cases were assigned to the same judge, in the other three California districts judges were drawn randomly, which understandably led to rulings, which were opposite to one another.
Anyway, an uphill battle called Motion to Quash became a bit more realistically winnable for California troll victims, who should cite the following early discovery denials.
Whats interesting is that MaxiMind, for the US, claims between only a 67% and 84% accuracy rate when accuracy is measured within 50km. The accuracy for exact postal address is only 22%-46%.
- TorrentFreak: Judges: Geolocation not good enough to pinpoint pirates
- Consumerist: Judges Tell Porn Copyright Troll That Geolocation Tools Aren’t Enough To Pinpoint Pirates
All three cases have been dismissed today without prejudice (1, 2, 3). Indeed: why bother contesting the denials when the majority of judges rubberstamp ex-parte requests? Busy bees at 2 Biscayne Blvd don’t have time to cry over these silly stumbles.
An important read on the geolocation tech:
- Fusion (Kashmir Hill): How an internet mapping glitch turned a random Kansas farm into a digital hell
This Court cannot rely on plaintiff’s unsupported assertions regarding the use and accuracy of the geolocation technology. As no reliable evidence was presented to support the allegation that defendant is subject to this Court’s jurisdiction, the instant Motion must fail.
More recently denied discovery motions from Magistrate Brooks:
Total of 12 as of today.
Magistrate Dembin denied yet another one — in CASD 16-cv-00452.
¹ Maybe there are more orders — both granting and denying early discovery, — and I could check all the dockets, but I’m very unhappy about my quarterly 3-figure PACER bills. I will be more than happy to do more research: the Donate button is on the sidebar.