Copyright Troll Under The Bed – Site B, LLC v. Does 1-51, 1:13-cv-05295 (NDIL)

UTB1Here is one of the cases I came upon while looking at the copyright infringement cases opened up during July 2013.  Site B, LLC v. Does 1-51, 1:13-cv-05295, NDIL.   Complaint_05295(IL)   Complaint_EX_A_B_05295(IL)   The case was filed by Michael A. Hierl and Todd S. Parkhurst, Hughes Socol Piers Resnick & Dym, Ltd., Chicago, IL.

As I suspected it is one of boiler plate design copyright troll complaints adapted for use with low-budget/low-grossing movie.  The movie in this complaint is “Under The Bed,” a horror movie first released in July 2012.  The movie has an effective registration date of 5 Nov 12, with Site B, LLC (CA Registration) as the owner and certification by Ben Rabbers, Sherman Oaks, CA.

The complaint opens with the statement -

The Motion Picture has significant value and has been created and produced at considerable expense. The Motion Picture is currently available on DVD for rental or purchase from Amazon and iTunes.

I don’t know what the movie cost to produce, but with a rating of 4.3 out of 10 (IMDb), I probably would rate its value as less-than significant – but that is subjective.  Amazon will release the DVD on 30 Jul 13, for $9.99 (pre-order price).  After the release, the movie can be purchased for $14.99.  I expect soon after the DVD release, you will be able to find it used for approximately $5.00.

The complaint has a single charge of copyright infringement by 51 Does who reside in the Northern District IL jurisdiction.  The SHA-1 hash file for this case/movie is D7D28385F747F9F397EE6B2DE63DEBDFE9A43528, BT File name: Under The Bed(2012) [1080p].  The date range of the activity is 19 Apr – 28 May 13, with largest number of Does being recorded on 20-21 Apr 13.  As usual with these cases, there is no information showing how all the Does interacted with each other over the course of the swarm.

The plaintiff claims all the Does are properly joined because –

By participating in the same swarm, each Defendant participated in the same transaction, occurrence or series of transactions or occurrences as the other Defendants in the swarm.  The foregoing acts of infringement constitute a collective enterprise of shared, overlapping facts and have been willful, intentional, and in disregard of and with indifference to the rights of Plaintiff.

This of course is the “jointly and severally liable” aspect of these cases which could get Plaintiff into trouble if they actually end up serving non-settling Does.  The actual serving (complaint/summons) of Does in these low-budget movie copyright infringement cases has yet to happen (to my knowledge).  From my assessment, these Plaintiff/Trolls/Cases are in the very early stages, similar to what the porn copyright infringement cases were at the beginning of 2011.  I expect these cases to be milked for as many settlements as possible and then dismissed without prejudice so the Plaintiff/troll can move onto new cases.  If we do see any complaint/summons being served, it is likely to be against defendants who have a high chance of defaulting.

As far other Site B, LLC cases, they are listed on the copyright registration for the dramatic work, “Late Phases.”  This appears to be another horror movie that is still in the filming/production stages – Fangoria Article.  I would expect future Site B, LLC (or Late Phase LLC) complaints to be filed for copyright infringement once this movie is released or at least shown at some horror movie festivals or screenings.

The next step will be Plaintiff’s early discovery request for ISP subscriber information on the recorded public IP addresses.  I don’t know the judge in this cases, but it is likely the early discovery will be approved and the 51 Does will start to receive their notifications from their ISPs.

Until the Northern District of IL decided to kill these types of mass Doe cases based on joinder, the problem (and case filings) will continue.

DieTrollDie :)

About DieTrollDie

I'm one of the many 'John Does' (200,000+ & growing in the US) who Copyright Trolls have threatened with a civil law suit unless they are paid off. What is a Copyright Troll? Check out the Electronic Frontier Foundation link - http://www.eff.org/issues/copyright-trolls
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4 Responses to Copyright Troll Under The Bed – Site B, LLC v. Does 1-51, 1:13-cv-05295 (NDIL)

  1. CrackTrack says:

    I was one of those 51 Does. I got a letter from my ISP saying they are giving my info to Site B if i dont file a motion to stike/quash/dismiss by the 18th of October. I was told by a lawyer I contacted that had a blog post about the case that my best bet is to settle. Had a feeling he was just looking for my money.

    • DieTrollDie says:

      The advice given by attorneys is often case-by-case, but is also influenced by the specific troll and the defense attorney. Second opinions are not bad to seek. I still do not believe this Troll will go forward with taking people to trial. They may name and serve a few, but it will likely be on a case-by-case basis. The goal IMO is to milk this for as many settlements as possible and then close the cases.

      As I haven’t seen any Site B cases filed since 24 Jul 13, they may be done with this experiment into copyright trolling. If this is the case, the Troll lawyers are likely trying to generate settlements to recoup the monitoring fees, filing fees, and work hours they put in. For the two Site B cases (1:13-cv-05292 – 40 Does AND 1:13-cv-05295 – 51 Does), I expect they will try to get people to pay $3-4K. If they can get 50% of the Does (45) to pay $3K, they will get $135K. Even if they have costs/fees of $10K, there is still $125K to split between the copyright owner and Troll lawyers. The amounts can vary, but it can be a great revenue generating business model. It would be great to find out why this content owner stopped taking part in this.

      DTD :)

      • CrackTrack says:

        I will keep you posted on what happens. Thank you for the all information on the site!

      • DieTrollDie says:

        I would speak with or write to the ISP legal department and have them double-check the information they provided the Troll. If they notice a mistake, they can inform you and the Troll. The fact that your current address is different than where you resided during the period of alleged infringement AND the IP address is different is not a big deal. If the ISP states that you (as the ISP subscriber) had the IP address at the time of infringement, then the Troll is going to stick with you. The ISP will also be able to tell them what your residence was at the time; vs. what it is now. NOTE: Redacted the name of the Troll and State. If you email me (doerayme2011@hotmail.com) the case number, I will look into it a bit.

        DTD :)

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