reply to post by PrisonerOfSociety
Haha, I remember the pinball case, it was massive. The "Dream Pinball" case was a classic case of entrapment. The game was leaked onto the gnutella
network (iirc), and the edonkey network, both of which are a lawsuit gold mine due to the fact most people openly broadcast everything they are
sharing. They then sat back and let the people do all the work while they sat there collating data. Dream Pinball was a crappy little boutique game,
hardly worth the manufacturing costs. It was more cost effective to leak the game and sue the downloaders than rely on the game itself for revenue. It
was indeed a dirty tactic.
The advice your brother got might sound odd, but it is correct. The best thing you can do is do nothing. Nether confirm nor deny any knowledge in the
first instance, throw the letter in the trash and take steps to minimise getting another (it is just a notice
of infringement after all). It is
rare for anyone to be sued unless they are repeatedly showing up on the radar, or they have been found to be openly sharing a large quantity of items.
I know of people who have received several notices, yet no legal action, and it is these people the disconnection tactic is meant to stop.
The old tactic of sending out masses of notices in the hope that some people will bite is not so prevalent since an increasing number of individuals
have decided to challenge them, and have won or have had the cases thrown out. Judges are also becoming increasingly intolerant of the methods used
bring people to court. This is why there have been high profile cases, in order to get some precident in law, rather than the "shooting into the sky
on the off chance a bird flys by" approach.
This is how it goes.
Companies like WebSherrif/Safenet/MediaDefender, collect thousands of hours of data. They have the ips, the time and date, and the filename of the
infringing file. They then separate the ip ranges into the different isps and send each pile of infringing ips to their respective isp. The isp then
charge the antip2p company a fee to match those ip addresses with the account holder. Your isp knows exactly which account holder was assigned which
ip at the time and date specified.
Then one of two things happens.
1 Either your isp forwards a notice to you on behalf of the copyright holder (they never get your info), or
2 your isp has an agreement where they send all account info to their (antip2p) lawyers, who then send an infrigement onto you.
In order to know where you stand, you must find out if your isp protects your data (1), or if they have an agreement to share your data (2). If it is
the latter, then any subsequent infringement may be blamed on you even though someone else now has the ip. If it's the first then the antip2p folk
need to keep submitting data for the isp to deal with. You must keep in mind that it is profitable for your isp to charge for handling this data (iirc
Virgin Media made over £18k from handling one batch of 155 infringements).
On your first notice, ignore it. Consider using more private methods if your going to commit questionable legal acts (use private sites, blocklists,
usenet, seedbox). If after that you get a 2nd, think about whether its worth it, tighten up more, share with smaller groups, don't use direct peer to
peer connections (use usenet, seedbox payed for by prepay, ftp). If you receive a 3rd, your unlucky, file sharing ain't your thing, buy stuff like
As someone who's spent many years in this scene I can only tell you that a notice of infringement isn't worth the paper its printed on. But I'm no
lawyer. If you receive anything demanding you pay money, seek legal advice as nine times out of ten it really is just a fishing exercise designed to
get you to pay up on the threat of court action (the court action itself being nothing more than a threat).
As for the innocent until proven guilty thing. Someone has an agreement with the isp, that person has the responsibility of ensuring that the internet
provision is not being used for anything illegal (a contractual agreement, check T&C and/or AUP/FUP). But then thats like saying it's your fault some
drunk stole your car and killed someone with it, because you left the keys in it.
[edit on 15-9-2009 by quackers]
[edit on 15-9-2009 by quackers]