Get Out There And VOTE!

I hope everyone is able to get out and vote today.  No matter who your for, please take the time and effort to do this.  The only one I will say NOT to vote for is the BitTorrent Copyright Trolls.  😉   Find Your Polling Place

DieTrollDie 🙂

“A share in the sovereignty of the state, which is exercised by the citizens at large, in voting at elections is one of the most important rights of the subject, and in a republic ought to stand foremost in the estimation of the law.” {Thomas Jefferson}



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Answering A BT Copyright Troll Summons/Complaint

CaveatI’m not an attorney and I’m not practicing law. This is simply my thoughts and views based on what I see concerning BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Infringement Trolls. If you decide you need legal advice, please hire a knowledgeable attorney. IF you truly cannot afford an attorney, here at least is one possible option.

*** In case you missed it, here is an article worth reading from Attorney Robert Cashman, “DieTrollDie Re-Blog: How copyright trolls are forcing defendants deeper into the federal cases, and how to respond.” ***  It is very possible that the Troll attorneys are dragging these cases out now to increase billing of the Plaintiff.

Pre-Article Note: On 17 Oct 16, Judge John Durragh issued a Final Judgement and Order on the infamous “Prenda v. The Internet,” case (1:13-cv-01569).   judgement_order_prenda_01569il   The judge awarded the Defendants $162, 448.74 in attorney fees/costs, $11,758.20 in sanctions, AND $500,000 in punitive damages! Thank you everyone who took part in this. Suck It Steele!


For a while now I have been seeing some of the Trolls actually amending their Multi-Doe complaints – to name the non-settling ISP subscribers as Defendants. This was also noted by attorney John Whitaker in his article “Dallas Buyers Club & Cobbler Nevada: Sample Pro Se Answer” (14 Mar 16).

While the Trolls and their supporters may claim this clearly shows they are not afraid to prosecute these cases, I find it highly suspect. From all of the cases I have seen, this is simply a tactic born out of necessity. Prior to using this tactic, the Troll settlements were for the most part entirely dependent on how much Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt (FUD) they could induce on a Doe. If a Doe decided to ignore the settlement demand, the Troll was out of luck (and a settlement). This is why I originally wrote the Richard Pryor Response (RPR) article in 2012. Ignoring the Troll for the most part was the right thing to do. This even led to infamous Troll, John Steele (Steele/Hansmeier & Prenda Law) to gloat that it pushed them to start naming Defendants and increased settlements. Too bad John Steele couldn’t see that it would also lead to the legal fights that would help bring them down.

Now I believe the Trolls who work with Voltage Pictures have also decided to use this tactic to increases their settlement rates. The advantage in using this tactic (Naming & Serving OR Naming & Waving Service) is it increased a Defendants FUD and requires them to take some sort of action. Hopefully (for the Troll) it brings the Doe to the settlement negotiation table. After all, settlement generation is the goal of this business model – PERIOD. Even if a named Defendant does not respond to the summons/complaint, The Troll can easily motion the court for a default judgement. The default judgements are unlikely to get them any real money, but it does allow them to claim they are serious and move onto new cases.

The Trolls are of the opinion that people will be too scared to file an answer OR once they hire an attorney, some sort of settlement will be eventually worked out. I have no doubts there have been innocent Does/ISP subscriber who have paid a settlement for no other reason than to avoid a costly defense bill. Many Defense attorneys do offer reasonable flat rates for people who only wish to settle. What you will not see is a reasonable “flat rate” cost for defending a Doe – it just isn’t a reality and I understand why. For those Does who wish to fight, their Defense attorneys will inform them that the cost to fight may be more than if they simply paid the settlement. Even if you are successful in getting the Troll to turn tail and run, there is also NO guarantee the court will have the Troll cover their legal bills. The Trolls know this and are using it to their advantage.

So What Can An Innocent Doe/ISP Subscriber Do If They Don’t Have The Finances Available To Hire An Attorney?

– They Can File An Answer On Their Own

Here is small part from attorney Whitaker’s article on the basics of an answer. – “Answer the Complaint. What that means is for every numbered paragraph in the Complaint, you have to either admit it is true, deny it is true, or say that you don’t have sufficient information to either admit or deny.  Resist the urge to tell your story in the Answer.  Just don’t do it.  Admit. Deny. Insufficient information.  Nothing else.”

I will also add that lying on such a document is dangerous and can get you in trouble – don’t do it.

So in saying that, here is a basic answer template and the amended complaint it is based on.   def-answer_template   amend_complaint_01073az


My answer has a little bit more than Whitakers’, but you can edit it to suit your particular situation.  The first part of the answer simply states the overall denial of Plaintiff’s claims and informs the court that Troll/Plaintiff has named the ISP subscriber as the Defendant for no other reason that he/she pays the bill for the service. The next section addresses each numbered section in the amended complaint and is either an admission, a denial, or lacks information to respond. The last section asks the court to dismiss the case and grant the Defendant other relief (Injunction, show cause order, & contempt finding).

So IF You Are Inclined, Here Is What You Will Need To Do

  • Obtain a copy of the amended complaint in which you are named. Edit the answer template – change the District, Plaintiff, Defendant, and Case number, first paragraph, etc. Do NOT simply slap you name on this and submit it to the court – at best you will look the fool. You need to make it your personal document and understand what it all means.
  • Next go through the complaint and read each numbered section. Answer each section with an admission, denial, or that you lack information to respond. You can add some additional bits to some of the sections, but it is not required.
  • The last section is where you ask the court to take action. This can be requesting a dismissal, a jury trial, sanctions, etc. If you are not comfortable with asking for anything, then simply edit it to say something like, “Defendant having fully answered and pled to the causes of actions herein, Defendant requests this case be dismissed with prejudice.”  Note: information on FRCP 11 can be found at the following Cornell Law Web page – Rule 11. Signing Pleadings, Motions, and Other Papers; Representations to the Court; Sanctions

Print, Sign, Date, Mail, etc.

Once you think you have your Answer ready, take a long reread of it. Make sure you are comfortable with it and it reads well. Also make sure your contact information is correct. Print out a copy and then sign both sections (the answer & the certificate of service). Make at least two copies of the signed/dated answer & service.  Mail the original answer to the district court – see the court’s Web site for the address. I would also add the name of the judge and case number to the address – Attn. Judge Smith, 2:16-cv-00123.  You can also submit the answer in person if you are near the court – contact the court for specifics. Mail one of the copies to the Troll office via certified mail (return receipt requested). You can find the Troll address on the docket. Keep the last copy for your records.

Once the court receives the answer, they will add it to the case docket and it will be available via PACER. This matter has now been pushed back to the Troll and his ability to motion for a default judgement has been stopped. The Troll will likely then attempt to contact you and “settle” the matter. He may offer a reduced amount or even claim they will move forward with depositions and a computer forensic analysis that will end in their favor.

Advantage Defendant

At this point, the main advantage for the Defendant is the Troll will have to take otherwise costly steps to get a Defendant to settle. Advancing the case to Discovery is the next main step. Doing so will require the Troll to spend more time, effort, and money. These cases were not designed to stay profitable with the added expense of a full discovery. The Defendant on the other hand only has to expend time and some effort. The Troll also realizes that there will come a point where Troll/Plaintiff’s costs in trying to force a settlement will exceed the ability and financial situation of the Defendant to pay. By holding out, a defendant can hopefully get the Troll to agree to dismiss the cases outright and not pay anything.

If the Troll wishes to move forward, a deposition of the Defendant is the most likely next step. If the deposition only discloses the Defendant denies the infringement, denies any BT usage, and/or doesn’t knows how it happens, the best the Troll can do is suggest that it MUST have been an authorized network user because WiFi hacking is unlikely.  A Defendant claim of an “Open” WiFi is unlikely to be believed, but proving otherwise will be hard for the Troll. A forensic examination of the computers is a possibility, but an expensive one. Plus if no evidence is found, expect the Troll to claim you hid the computer or destroyed evidence. Such a scenario has been seen in previous Malibu Media LLC cases. This then leads to a motion for summary judgement, with the Troll claiming all the facts show the Defendant to be the offender and destroyer of evidence. Unless there is clear factual based evidence to support such a claim, the court is unlikely to rule in their favor.  The only good thing for the Troll at this point is even if a court dismissed the case with prejudice, a Pro Se Defendant is not going to have any attorney fees that they can be made to pay for. The best a Pro Se Defendant can do is claim whatever misc. costs he incurred in defending himself.

So is filing an answer right for every Defendant?  No.  Each case, court, and Troll/Plaintiff is different. Do what is best for you and remember that these cases are designed to run as cheap as possible (for the Troll) and anything that adds more time and costs reduces their profit margin.

– Suggested reading – Troll Poker & Talking To The Trolls

DieTrollDie 🙂   “Sometimes the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer.”  {Ferengi Rules of Acquisition # 208}

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“London Has Fallen” BT Copyright Troll Case, 2:16-cv-02028 (NV) – 23 Does

lhf_chazr1Hello everyone!  I decided to throw out a post on a London Has Fallen (LHF) BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Infringement law suit in Nevada, 2:16-cv-02028, filed on 28 Aug 2016, by Copyright Troll Charles C. Rainey (AKA: CHAZ).  Previous article concerning CHAZ.  Nothing too exciting about this Troll case. In fact it is pretty standard format for the multi-Doe Copyright Troll cases filed in jurisdictions like the Northern District of IL (NDIL). The case is against 23 ISP subscribers (John Does) in the Clark County region of NV. The John Does are ISP subscribers of Cox and CenturyLink, with BT activity between 1-22 June 2016.   docket_11oct16_02028nv   complaint_02028nv   complaint_02028_ex1_nv   complaint_02028_ex2_nv   discrequest_doc3_02028nv   decl_d_arheidt_doc3_ex1_02028nv

The only things linking these Does is the alleged downloading/sharing of Troll/Plaintiff’s movie (SHA1 Hash: 632613270A1D1F66429CA070C9ED5CB980357471). There is ZERO evidence (vs. simplistic & wrong claims) in Troll/Plaintiff’s complaint to show that ALL of these NV public IP addresses shared Plaintiff’s movie BETWEEN themselves and thus are properly joined under one case.

the infringement complained of herein by each of the Defendants was part of a series of transactions over the course of a relatively short period of time, involving the exact same piece of the Plaintiff’s copyrighted Work, and was accomplished by the Defendants acting in concert with each other; and {Page 3, section 10 (b) of complaint}

Short time – 22 days???  Exact same piece of evidence??? – That is BS in my opinion. They likely only have a few Bytes of data  from each public IP address and the data in it is NOT the “same.” They likely only are tied back to the torrent file via the SHA1 Hash number – nothing to really link all the IP addresses together. It is more likely that a BT client would have connected with another BT client in another State or somewhere else on the globe. To infer that they all shared same data because they were in the same NV county is just plain stupid.

The sheer chance of such a proper joinder is extremely unlikely. Please see these two previous DTD Articles concerning declarations from Delvan Neville, Amaragh Associates, LLC.   1 in 10 Duodecillion   1 in 300 Million (Also read about “Never Convicted” Troll Forensic Stooge, Patrick Paige)

As the range of “Hit Dates” in this case range similarly to those from the second soak (weeks, not a single day), the connectivity is almost certainly closer to the 0.05% average seen in the second soak, and thus the likelihood that there is any series of transactions that could link these 20 peers together in some fashion is 0.00000000000000000000000000000000000001% or a 1 in 10 duodecillion chance.

Hopefully a defense attorney/doe in one of these NV multi-Doe cases will use something like this to challenge joinder. Remember that these cases are built on the premise of doing everything “on the cheap” to maximize profits. The ability to file multi-doe cases is a key aspect of that model. A multi-doe case only costs $400 to file (same as if against one John Doe) and the costs of running it is split between all the Does. For this case, the Troll is seeking an initial settlement amount of $4,900 per Doe.   lhf_settlement-ltr_02028nv   So if the Troll is only able to get 50% of the Does (11 Does) to pay $4,900, they have made $53,900!!!   This is why the Trolls prefer the multi-Doe cases and single-Doe cases have not replaced them. Single-Doe cases can (and likely will) be filed, but they are more costly to run – thus reducing profits.

Troll/Plaintiff makes the following claims against the ISP subscribers

  • Direct Copyright Infringement – The ISP subscriber was the offender.
  • Contributory Copyright Infringement – The ISP subscriber took part in a BT swarm and therefore contributed to each other Doe’s (in this case) infringing activities.
  • Vicarious Copyright Infringement – Each ISP subscriber is liable because the infringement took place over the ISP connection the Defendant pays for.  The ISP subscriber failed to supervise the use of their Internet connection, allowing it to be used to unlawfully download/share Plaintiff’s Work.

What a load of crap. Not surprising, as we have seen the Contributory and Vicarious claims tried in various jurisdiction in the past. I believe all such claims have been previously shot down in various courts. The problem is for most cases, a defense attorney is never hired and thus these stupid claims are never challenged.

The Troll even goes on to ask for the court to grant the maximum damages award of $150,000 per Doe for this garbage movie (my opinion).

In support of the early discovery request, the Troll uses a declaration from DANIEL ARHEIDT, a consultant retained by the forensic investigation service, MAVERICKEYE UG (German company). Arheidt’s name is not new and was part of a declaration by Doe Defender Morgan Pietz, concerning “IPP, GUARDALEY, AND THE “ORAL CONTINGENCY AGREEMENT” MALIBU MEDIA, LLC HAD WITH ITS KEY WITNESS.”  doc9_decl_pietz_00223md    Adheidt is simply another one of the German stooges used to make claims they are not willing to back up or even be questioned on. He is part of the same operation as Daniel Macek, Darren Griffin (Fictitious person IMO), and the likes of the Anti-Piracy Management Company (APMC) or whatever they are calling themselves now.   Transcript of APMC Slides



apmc_d_macek1So we have the same tried and true BT Copyright Troll template format that has been making money since at least 2010. We will have to wait and see if NV is as Troll friendly as the NDIL, or if it decides to make the Trolls answer some uncomfortable questions.

If you are part of this case or another multi-Doe NV case, please keep me informed of your situation. There is no way the Troll can actually bring each of you to trial if you fail to respond. The costs in time and money to run multiple individual case (broken out from a multi-Doe case) OR one case with multiple NAMED Defendants is prohibitive to them. Now that doesn’t mean this Troll/Plaintiff will not name and serve a few unresponsive Does. It is a game they play to appear to be serious of taking people to trial. My suggestion (non-attorney) is IF you can handle the stress and uncertainty, to take a wait and see approach. Monitor PACER (Register for your PACER account) and pay particular attention to any requests to either depose the ISP subscribers OR to amend the complaint to NAME the ISP subscriber as the Defendant. If you see this happening, consulting with an attorney knowledgeable on BT Copyright Trolls is advisable. Otherwise I don’t generally suggest talking to the Trolls – ANYTHING you say (even if innocent) will be used against you.

– Suggested reading – Troll Poker & Talking To The Trolls

DieTrollDie 🙂  Dana Barrett (as The Gatekeeper): “I want you inside me.”  Dr. Peter Venkman: “Go ahead! No, I can’t. It sounds like you’ve got at least two or three people in there already.” {Ghostbusters, 1984}

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DieTrollDie – October 2016 Update

dtd_mix1I have seen this on the horizon and have dreaded it. Based on personal issues, I have scaled back my previous writing activities concerning BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Trolls. I don’t have plans to shut down; my articles will just be infrequent for now. The site will stay up and I will answer/reply to any questions/comments. ALSO, please continue to send me stuff – inquires, settlement letters, voice mails from Trolls, etc., at In fact I just replied to one Doe on 27 Sep 16.  Also remember to follow me on Twitter (, as this is a very fast way to get the word out.  Most of the questions I get do not take that much work to respond to and it helps keep me current on the antics of the Trolls.

Just remember that BT Copyright Trolling is fluid and thing can change very fast. Don’t assume the Trolls will not change their tactics to keep the settlements rolling in. Also remember that anything on this site is NOT legal advice – If you need legal advice, please consult with a knowledgeable attorney on BT Copyright Trolling. What you get here is FREE suggestions/thoughts/views, etc. Take this with your analysis and make the best decisions for YOUR situation – everyone’s situation is different.

For now I will leave you with a couple good articles to reference, as well as what I have been seeing recently.

Bottom Feeding Trolls (CEG-TEK, Rightscorp, etc.) – These bottom feeding Trolls are trying to scrape up easy money via DMCA take-down notices backs by fear of a possible law suit if you don’t settle. Don’t believe the hype – CEG-TEK/Rightscorp Page   Don’t contact the Troll – Stop the BT activity on your network (don’t let it start back up later) – move on with your life.  NOTE: Both Rightscorp & CEG-TEK have a client that does sue ISP subscribers – I believe only one client each (please correct me if I’m wrong). BUT, for the vast majority of people who get these notices forwarded through their ISP, the chance of it becoming a law suit extremely low in my opinion.  Here is a recent article in which the script used by Rightscorp was disclosed – this goes to show you how desperate these fools are to try to stay variable.  Techdirt Article – Rightscorp Phone Script

London Has Fallen (Troll) – CEG-TEK and Law Suits – I have been hearing from a few Does/ISP subscriber concerning CEG-TEK notices on London Has Fallen (LHF), the movie, in areas there have been actual law suits filed in. The Does are worried that because the LHF files in their State/jurisdiction, if they don’t pay CEG-TEK, a law suit will follow. I have seen nothing to suggest that if you don’t pay CEG-TEK for a LHF claim, a law suit will follow. CEG-TEK and the Troll attorneys who file real cases for LHF do not generally work together. To do so would require agreements (financial, etc.) to make sure a CEG-TEK settlement would not kill a real copyright infringement case filed by a Troll attorney – a valid release of liability from CEG-TEK would do that.  NOTE: It could happen; I just don’t see the greedy fools on either side wanting this headache of coordinating this. It is just easier IMO for the Plaintiff to give a list a public IP address to each group (CEG-TEK & Troll Attorneys) and let them work their operations separately.

Multiple-Doe BT Copyright Infringement Law Suits – These are still the big money makers and a favorite in the Northern District of IL. One $400 filing fee a case with 15-30 Does.  Troll/Plaintiff is almost assured a court will grant early discovery and an ISP will provide the subscriber information on most of them. Then it is just a matter of sending out settlement demand letters and negotiating settlements.    I recently saw that for one Troll attorney, the initial settlement amount was $3900. That is a good bit lower that what I was previously seeing – $5-7K. So this tells me that the Trolls want to make it easier for people to settle. They are hoping that a lower amount will increase the number of settlements and thus increase their profits overall. This may also be in response to more people using VPNs and streaming content instead of using BT.  So if the Trolls get only a 50% settlement rate on $3900 for a 30 Doe case, the return on a $400 filing fee is $58,500. Not bad. The good news for the Does in these cases is there is no way Troll/Plaintiff can take all of the unresponsive ISP subscribers to trial. Actually they will not take anyone (IMO) to trial. It is too costly and risky to do so; plus it would be a logistical nightmare for them. They will name and serve some of the unresponsive ISP subscribers (hard to say who or how many). It really depends on the particular Troll attorney and how he/she feels about the particular Does. Naming and serving unresponsive people does have the effect of getting more settlements. For the one who don’t, they simply motion for a default judgement and move onto the next case. Each situation is different, but I’m of the opinion to take a wait and see approach on multiple-Doe cases – don’t contact the Trolls – get an attorney if you receive a summons/complaint or a deposition subpoena. Monitor the case in PACER – check it at least once a week. If you don’t see the complaint being amended to NAME the Does/ISP subscribers, getting served with a summons is unlikely IMO.

Single-Doe BT Copyright Infringement Law Suits – I consider these the more serious BT Copyright Troll cases out there.  Generally the Troll picks the IP addresses that have a long history of continued BT usage (2-3 months +)and are sharing a large number of files in BT – a good portion appearing to be copyright protected content not belonging to the Plaintiff. This is where Malibu Media LLC and a few other non-porn Troll/Plaintiffs ply their trade.  The cases are generally run the same as in the multi-Doe cases, except for the Troll is less likely to ignore a non-responsive doe/ISP subscriber. Based on their analysis of the BT activity (time & duration) and shared BT content, the Troll believes the ISP is either the offender or can readily identify who is. Things I would possibly expect from these cases – 1) Settlement demand letter from the non-Malibu Trolls; 2) Troll requests a waiver of service be signed by the ISP subscriber; 3)Troll requests the court to allow a short (2-hour max) deposition of the ISP subscriber; 4) The complaint is amended with the name of the ISP subscriber; 5) Named Defendant is served with a summons/complaint.

As Malibu Media operation is not being run by Keith Lipscomb anymore, it is hard to say how it will go.  I assume they will be aggressive as that previously worked well in getting settlements. Due to some ongoing law suits (Malibu Media verse Defendants & Malibu Media verse Lipscomb), I think they may take it down a notch – we will see. Malibu Media needs these cases to fund their defense against Keith Lipscomb’s law suit against them. One thing I still expect from Malibu Media and other Plaintiff’s who file single-Doe cases is to only seek a “walk away” deal after the cost to the Defendant exceeds what an early settlement would have initially cost. This insures that Defense attorneys will tell future clients of the associated costs of fight back even is innocent. It may cost the Troll in time and some money, but it is considered an investment in the future cases.

DieTrollDie 🙂

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Criminal Contempt? (John Steele/Prenda Law) & Cobbler NV Cuts & Runs

11 August 2016 Update – Cobbler Nevada Case (3:15-cv-00866(OR)): On 3 Aug 16, Troll Crowell filed two document (and exhibits) in response to the Defendant’s Motion for attorney fees and costs (link below).   Docket_11Aug16_00866(OR)   Doc48_TrollResponse_FeesCosts_00866(OR)   Doc49_Decl_Resp_FeesCosts_00866(OR)   Doc49_Decl_EX1_00866(OR)   Doc49_Decl_EX2_00866(OR)

As I said he would, Troll Crowell went and filed some garbage. Here is the bottom line of what Troll/Plaintiff claims.

Defendant is NOT the prevailing party – funny… According to the judge, HE is most certainly the prevailing party on the “Indirect” copyright infringement claim – dismissed WITH PREJUDICE.  As to the “Direct” infringement claims, Troll/Plaintiff was given a second chance to file an amended complaint that adequately allegedy the Defendant was responsible – but FAILED to do so.

ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE. The Court ORDERS plaintiff to show cause in writing, within 21 days, why its Second Amended Complaint 41 should not be dismissed for failure to cure the deficiencies identified in the Court’s Order of Dismissal 39 and the Court’s Findings and Recommendation 35 , or for failure to identify the Doe defendant in a timely manner, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(m). Ordered on 7/13/2016 by Magistrate Judge Stacie F. Beckerman. (gw) (Entered: 07/13/2016)

It is a funny read. I also find the Declaration from Troll Crowell (and Exhibits) to be on equal level – crap.  Troll Crowell goes onto claim (and show deposition excerpts) that the Defendant knew about the infringement activity and didn’t do enough to stop it at the location. ??????  The judge already dismissed the INDIRECT claim WITH PREJUDICE. That argument and claimed obligation to Plaintiff already FAILED. Next.

He then goes on to claim that in November and December 2015, Troll/Plaintiff asked the Defendant to sign a “Complaint and Stipulated Consent Judgment that fully resolves this matter without any assessment of costs, fees or damages.” Troll Crowell claims that the Defendant did not confer with Troll/Plaintiff prior to filing its motion – but admits that there were emails and phone messages dealing with this issue.  Nice try – I’m sure the judge is going to buy that! Note: In Document #48, the Troll claims he will attached the “Complaint and Stipulated Consent Judgment,” but he does NOT (Doc # 48, bottom of page 3). The only thing he attached was the email (Exhibit 2). I would love to see what they tried to get the Defendant to sign.

Last laugh – Here is an example of how Troll greed overpowers common sense – Troll Crowell states that they tried to get the Defendant to sign the Stipulated Consent Judgement in Nov & Dec 2015. Why offer such a “walk-away” deal???  Because at this stage they already knew they would have a hard time making either infringement claim (Direct or Indirect) stick. This was even after they amended the complaint (naming the Defendant) on 4 Nov 2015.  Their greed prevented them from simply voluntarily dismissing the case and avoiding the potential award of attorney fees/costs. They were probably worried the Defendant would file an answer and not simply a motion to dismiss. I assume the Defense will respond and hopefully soon the court will award fees/costs.



Prenda_Idiots1Are You an Idiot And/Or a Criminal???

The crazy world of Prenda Law (AKA: John Steele & Paul Hansmeier) doesn’t seem to stop. Even when given advice from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to “stop digging” (First Rule of Holes), they kept going.

On 19 July 2016, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, ruled on the Steele and Hansmeier’s appeal on the contempt sanctions imposed on them (3:12‐cv‐889‐DRH‐SCW(SDIL) – Lightspeed Media v, Anthony Smith). I will not go too far into this, but ruling is worth a read IMO.   49-Lightspeed-Opinion_PrendaLaw_2016   Techdirt Article

Bottom line: The appeals court ruled that since Hansmeier is in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, he CANNOT appeal the sanctions (has NO standing) – PERIOD – Appeal Denied. The sanction award against Steele was vacated and returned to the District court for corrective action because the contempt sanctions were determined to be CRIMINAL in nature (v. Civil).  Steel needed to be afforded his rights IAW the 5th Amendment of the US Constitution. 

This is enough to show that we must vacate the existing contempt order and remand for further proceedings. We make no comment on what type of contempt Smith may wish to seek, whether the court might re‐consider the possibility of civil contempt, or whether criminal contempt could be justified once the proper procedures are followed. We are confident that the district court will take a fresh look at these questions in light of this opinion.  {page 15, Doc # 49, 15-2440(7th)]

So back to the District court we go. I’m sure the District court will handle this. I would love to see John Steele afforded his 5th Amendment protections. Take the 5th John Steele. Your direct testimony is NOT required to ensure contempt sanctions are levied. Appropriate due-process will be afforded and the results will not be to your liking.  John Steele and Paul Hansmeier are turds (my opinion) and the courts are not too fond of the stench they have made.

Cobbler Nevada – Attempts To Cut & Run – Attorney Fees & Costs Likely

JustStupid1In my previous article (Cobbler NV LLC), I wrote about how Plaintiff/Troll was in hot water after the court dismissed the complaint (Both WITH & WITHOUT Prejudice) for Direct and Indirect Copyright Infringement against a single Defendant (3:15-cv-00866(OR)). The court did allow Troll Crowell to refile an amended complaint NLT 18 July 2016.

On 5 July 2016, Troll Crowell did file a Second Amended Complaint (SAC) – a sad joke of one – IMO.  This “Joke” did not go over well with the court.

On 13 July 2016, the court issued a “Show Cause” order (NLT 3 Aug 2016) to Plaintiff – requiring the Troll to explain why its SAC should not be dismissed for failure to cure the deficiencies previously identified by the court when dismissed on 8 June 2016.

Now it appears that Troll Crowell is maybe slightly smarter that John Steel and Paul Hansmeier when it comes to holes – stop digging. So on 19 July 2016, Troll/Plaintiff dismissed the case without prejudice.  Doc45_Vol_Dismissed_00866(OR)

That same day (19 July), Defense Attorney David Madden filed a motion for attorney fees and costs.   Doc47_Mot_AttorneyFeesCosts_00866(OR)   By the length of the document, it appears Attorney Madden had this motion ready to file as soon as the dismissal occurred.

The motion is well worth the read, as it spells out clearly what BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Trolling is; the history of this particular case; that this Defendant is the PREVAILING PARTY for the Direct and Indirect copyright Infringement claims; and that he should be awarded reasonable attorney fees and costs due to the following factors.

  • Frivolous Claims – “Plaintiff brought two claims against Defendant GONZALES: one was legally inadequate, and the other was re-asserted against an unknown party who remained unknown despite fourteen months of litigation and considerable inconvenience, anxiety and expense borne by Defendant (and now, even that claim has been dropped).”
  • Claims Were Overaggressive And Improper – “… Plaintiff has pressed futile claims (both the legally-insufficient indirect-infringement claim, and the direct-infringement claim unsupported by any relevant factual allegations). Here, and in its hundreds of other cases, even if Plaintiff is not intending to capitalize on the wide and unpredictable liability a target faces and the substantial attorney fees its counsel are able to rack up, it has undeniably maneuvered itself into a position where those statutory damages and fees incentivize the overreaching settlements that reward and encourage this litigation strategy.”
  • Objectively Unreasonable – “One of Plaintiff’s claims was dismissed with prejudice on Defendant’s 12(b)(6) motion, and the other was dismissed sua sponte by the Court.”
  • Compensation & Deterrence – “As discussed earlier, Plaintiff COBBLER NEVADA LLC has no reasonable infringement claim against Defendant GONZALES, and it never should have brought suit against him in the first instance. But now, having done so, Plaintiff should be charged for the full amount of cost and expense it has forced Defendant to bear.”  AND “…failing to award fees to the prevailing defendant here will encourage the filing of even more “thin” cases – equivocal allegations that threaten everyone but fail to clearly implicate anyone, and allegations that (even if true) fail to create liability – the cases quite literally pay for themselves, if Plaintiff risks no downside by filing them.”

I do expect Troll Crowell to file some sort of garbage in opposition to the motion for fees and costs. I think Troll/Plaintiff is going to have a hard time convincing the court not to awards fees and costs. Taking 14 months to run a single Doe/Defendant case is a joke – Telling the court that their intentions in pursuing this case were purely honorable is insulting. Hopefully the court will send a message to the idiot Plaintiffs, Troll Attorneys, and the German BT Monitoring Apparatus. We will see.

DieTrollDie 🙂   “Consider the black widow spider. It’s a timid little beastie, useful and, for my taste, the prettiest of the arachnids, with its shiny, patent-leather finish and its red hourglass trademark. But the poor thing has the fatal misfortune of possessing enormously too much power for its size. So everybody kills it on sight.”  {Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein}   

Posted in Carl Crowell, Cobbler NV LLC, john steele, paul hansmeier | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

How NOT To Run A Single-Doe BT Copyright Infringement Case, 3:15-cv-00866 (OR)

TrollHolio1Here is another example of how a BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Troll can run their cases – POORLY.  This case is 3:15-cv-00866, Cobbler Nevada, LLC, v. John Doe, District of Oregon, filed on 20 May 16, by Drew Taylor and Carl D. Crowell, Crowell Law.   Doc1_Complaint_00866(OR)   Doc3_Discovery_00866(OR) Doc8_Motion FRCP45_00866(OR)

The case appears to be the standard single Doe/IP address/ISP subscriber case Crowell Law has been filing for some time.  These single Doe cases appear to be more focused on going after IP address within their jurisdictions that have a longer history of BT activity (1-2+ months) and many “other” (non-Plaintiff) files/content being shared via the BT client. The Trolls appear to be under the impression that because of this, there is a greater chance of settlement – regardless of what the evidence may show.

The only thing that was a bit unusual was the two claims for relief – 1) Copyright Infringement (Direct); 2) Indirect Copyright Infringement. I find this funny that the Troll would try to run both of these claims, it has been tried before multiple times before in BT cases and they generally don’t work out well for the Troll.

The use of the dual claim is simply a “shot-gun” method of trying to cover all targets. The Troll is hoping that if for some reason the Direct Copyright Infringement fails, the Indirect claim will still hold up. When in all likelihood, trying to use both makes it appear that the Plaintiff hasn’t got a real clue on who the true offender is. AND it looks like the court in this case has got the same idea. Stupid Troll.   

This Doe/ISP subscriber did not respond to the Troll (settlement demands), was deposed, and eventually named/served as the Defendant.  At the end of December 2015, the Defendant hired David H. Madden, Mersenne Law LLC, OR, and a Motion to Dismiss Troll/Plaintiff’s second claim for relief (for Indirect Copyright Infringement) was filed.   Doc27_Def_MTD_00866(OR)   On 18 Mar 16, the court issued a  Findings and Recommendations report on this case.   Doc35_FindingsRec_00866(OR)

Essentially the court dismissed the Indirect Copyright Infringement claim WITH PREJUDICE, and dismissed the Direct Copyright Infringement claim WITHOUT PREJUDICE.   Doc39_Order_00866(OR)

Yes, the court said that NOT ONLY is your “Indirect” claim a load of crap – so much that I’m dismissing it so you cannot file it again against this Defendant, BUT I don’t believe you even pled the “Direct” Copyright Infringement claim enough to convince me that the ISP subscriber was the likely offender.

Twombly and Iqbal do not allow Plaintiff to guess at who is liable, and attempt to confirm liability through discovery. “Plausible” does not mean certain, but it does mean “likely,” and Plaintiff has not pled sufficient facts to support its allegation that Gonzales is the likely infringer here. Accordingly, the district judge should dismiss Plaintiff’s claim for copyright infringement. See Omar v. Sea–Land Serv., Inc., 813 F.2d 986, 991 (9th Cir. 1987) (“A trial court may dismiss a claim sua sponte under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6).”).  {Doc #35, FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION}

I will not go into too much of all the pleadings on this (It is well worth reading IMO), but Troll/Plaintiff clearly only targeted the Defendant because his name was on the ISP account and they figure they could either force a settlement, get him to name the offender, or accept a walk-away deal.   Doc38_DefResponse_00866(OR)


While Defendant GONZALES did not initially challenge Plaintiff’s first cause of action, Plaintiff’s counsel acknowledged at oral argument that it knew a number of other individuals resided at the site of the alleged infringement (Exhibit A, Hearing Transcript, 6:7-15) and that it did not know “whether or not [GONZALES] was for sure the first party direct infringer.” (Id., 6:2-4) Plaintiff had admitted in its initial pleadings that it only knew the defendant by way of a computer address (Complaint, doc. 1, ¶12; Ex Parte Motion to Expedite Discovery, doc. 3, p. 2) and Plaintiff’s counsel was unable to offer a single fact uncovered during early discovery that would make Mr. GONZALES a more likely candidate for the role of direct infringer.  {Doc #38, DEFENDANT’S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF’S OBJECTIONS TO MAGISTRATE’S FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATION}

Troll/Plaintiff was allowed to amend the Complaint for Direct Copyright Infringement no later than 18 July.  On 5 July, Troll Crowell filed his Second Amended Complaint (SAC) against “DOE-” and NOT against the ISP Subscriber (Previous Defendant).   Doc41_SAC_00866(OR)

I find it exceedingly funny that in this SAC, The “Defendant,” has reverted back to the IP address assigned to ISP subscriber, with a note that there is 2-3 other regular occupants at the residence, to include the previous Defendant.  They also did not mention any of the “Other” files that were being shared by the BT client on this IP address. I guess none of the other shared files could be associated back to the ISP subscriber or the roommates.

I know that Troll/Plaintiff deposed the ISP subscriber/Defendant and it got them nothing. I am unsure if they deposed the 2-3 “other” residents. So they could depose the roommates/occupants, but if that gets them nothing, the case is dead in the water in my opinion.

Some will ask why the Troll amended the complaint and did not simply let die. The view of this court was clearly that unless you can provide some reasonable information to point to why a person is a defendant – beyond a simple guess – then they have NOT reached a level where plausible equals likely.

Now I will say that the last dockets entries are interesting and funny.   Docket_15Jul16_00866(OR)   Three days after Troll/Plaintiff filed the SAC, the court ordered a conference call between all parties to take place on 11 July. The conference call took place, but nothing else is noted by it on the docket (a bit telling). Then on 13 July, the court issued another ORDER.

ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE. The Court ORDERS plaintiff to show cause in writing, within 21 days, why its Second Amended Complaint 41 should not be dismissed for failure to cure the deficiencies identified in the Court’s Order of Dismissal 39 and the Court’s Findings and Recommendation 35 , or for failure to identify the Doe defendant in a timely manner, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(m). Ordered on 7/13/2016 by Magistrate Judge Stacie F. Beckerman. (gw) (Entered: 07/13/2016)

I expect the Troll will now try to dismiss the case instead of trying to justify its actions. I have been wrong before, so we may see more a$$hatery from the Law Firm Clown Firm of Crowell Law (my opinion). It will also be interesting to see if the court allows the Defendant to seek attorney fees and costs from Plaintiff. One of Plaintiff’s claims was dismissed WITH PREJUDICE, so I believe the Defendant has a really good chance.  Well done Attorney David H. Madden.

DieTrollDie 🙂   “If I’m curt with you, it’s because time is a factor here. I think fast, I talk fast, and I need you guys to act fast if you want to get out of this. So, pretty please, with sugar on top, clean the fucking car.”  {Pulp Fiction, Winston Wolf}

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TaylorMadeClips – Digital Markings AND ‘Queen Of The Desert’ FAILS in AZ (2:16-cv-01021)

TaylorMadeClips – Digital Markings On Their Downloads???

TMC_Borghese_SettlementLTR_June2016Recently I started to get some emails from people who received settlement demand letters from Copyright Troll Mark Borghese, for movie clips from TaylorMadeClips (TMC). Here are my previous posts concerning TaylorMadeClips.  TMC1   TMC2   The settlement demand letters are essentially the same as before, so I will not fully upload them.

Now at first I figured this was just another round of settlement demand letters sent to emails somehow associated to an account on (The site alleged to have TMC content uploaded to). A simple search of the site did disclose some users apparently sharing TMC content.

By digging a little bit deeper I disclosed the recipients of the settlement demand letters had in fact purchased various TMC content, BUT did not upload anything to  Note: the contact information on the settlement letter was the same as what was used to purchase the TMC clips.

So it appears TMC is likely digitally marking (hidden water-marks) each download of their content/movies. The hidden code can be used to identify who purchased the clip – name, address, email, and possibly payment information. This information is passed to Mark Borghesse, who in turn sends out the settlement demand letter. This is not a new technology and in fact we have seen in the past a law suit targeting the initial uploader based on a hidden digital water-mark/code.  Previous DTD Post –  Kywan Fisher – Flava Works    The technology to do this is not new and it is amazing that we have not seen more content owners do this. This technology is something that most copyright trolls do not bother with. Here is one company – Digimarc.

So if the person who purchased the TMC clip did not upload it to, who was responsible?  I don’t have any reason not to believe the recipients, so the most likely scenario is somehow a third-party was responsible. The third-party was either given a copy of the TMC clip or somehow obtained it without the approval of the person who purchased it.

Either way, TMC doesn’t really care about the reason; they just want a settlement to be paid. It appears that TMC/Borghese is seeking $750 per title.

So what is TMC/Borghese likely to do if a settlement is not paid? They can continue to send emails/letters seeking a settlement under a threat of a law suit OR they can file a copyright infringement law suit. As Mark Borghese is only licensed in NV and Washington DC, TMC would need to hire attorneys in the jurisdictions of the offenders if they wanted to proceed.  NOTE: Borghese did previously file a couple of NV law suits against out-of-State Defendants in an effort to force a settlement – it worked.  So Borghese could do this again, but if challenged, there is a good possibility the case would be dismissed (improper jurisdiction) or at least transferred to the right jurisdiction (where the Defendant lives & requiring TMC to hire a local attorney). That of course is my non-attorney thoughts on the matter.  As they are only seeking $750 per title, it doesn’t look like they are too serious on filing law suits.  Saying that, I would be especially careful in sharing content among friends. Once you share something with another person, you have lost all control over it – once it hits the Internet it is GONE.  IF a law suit was ever filed, most courts are not going to look too kindly on the initial uploader/seeder verses someone who just downloads the content – my opinion.

Due Diligence???

What I really find interesting is the use of hidden digital markings/water-marks by this otherwise small fetish-niche company.  Notorious Copyright Trolls like Malibu Media/X-Art (which are significantly larger & have more money) do not use this technology (please correct me if I’m wrong). Why not??? I believe the Copyright Trolls and the German monitoring firms that support them do not want to see a slow-down in piracy of their content. If the copyright owners actually took step to deal with the initial seeder (the uploader) of their content, they might start to make an impact & lose settlements in the process.

‘Queen Of The Desert’ FAILS in Arizona (Case # 2:16-cv-01021)

Thanks to the Doe that forwarded me the following AZ ‘Queen Of The Desert’ case (2:16-cv-01021). Nothing out of the ordinary – Standard mass-Doe BT Copyright Troll case against 26 Does. Case was opened on 12 Apr 2016, with Early Discovery granted for the ISP subscriber information on 11 May 2016. Where it starts to gets interesting is on 14 June, when Judge Neil Wake files an Order telling the Troll that they need to name and serve each Defendant and show proof of service by 13 July (30 days to do this), or the case may be dismissed.   Docket_11Jul16_01021(AZ)   Disc_Motion_01021(AZ)   Disc_Granted_01021(AZ)   Doc10_01020(AZ)

So the Troll now has 30 days to amend the complaint with the true names of the Defendants (ISP subscribers), serve each Defendant with a summons/complaint, and file documents showing the service was accomplished.  So in true Copyright Troll form, attorney Gregory B. Collins, asks the court for 90 more days accomplish these tasks.  The Troll tells the court that Cox Communications is due to provide the ISP subscriber information on 30 June, so an extension out to 11 October is justified.   Motion_MoreTime_01021(AZ)

Well on 22 June, judge Wake issued another short, straightforward Order – DENIED. The Judge did tell the Troll that he would give them two more days (15 July), but that was it.   Order_01021(AZ)


As the message was made painfully clear, Troll Collins then dismissed Does # 8 & 25 WITH Prejudice AND all the remaining Does WITHOUT prejudice on 8 July.   2_Does_Dismissed_01021(AZ)   ALL_Does_Dismissed_01021(AZ)

So it looks like they were able to get two people to pay a settlement. Even if the settlement was only for $3K each, that means $6K on a $400 investment.  Even if they have to split their ill-gotten gains three ways (Copyright owner, Troll attorney, German BT Monitors), it is still over $1K each. Then back to filing more cases and hoping they don’t get Judge Wake again.

Wait And See Approach

This is exactly why in the multi-Doe cases I suggest taking a ‘wait and see’ approach and not contact the Troll.  It is a real possibility that Does # 8 & 25 would not have had to pay a settlement. Note: The Troll could refile cases against the 24 Does/ISP Subscribers, but in my opinion it is unlikely.  Each Troll attorney is different, but Collins doesn’t appears to want to name and serve Defendants at this time.

DieTrollDie 🙂

“Some ships are designed to sink…Others require our assistance.”


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Malibu Media sues its former counsel Keith Lipscomb and his firm for professional negligence and breach of fiduciary duty

Thank you Sophisticated Jane Doe/ The downfall of Malibu Media LLC/X-Art/Troll Keith Lipscomp is hopefully at hand.


Fight © Trolls

Keith LipscombM. Keith Lipscomb

Today Malibu Media (a litigation shell of a hardcore “barely legal” pornography producer X-Art), represented by its new counsel, Pillar Law Group, filed a lawsuit in Central District of California against its former counsel, Michael Keith Lipscomb and his firm, Lipscomb, Eisenberg and Baker (CACD 16-cv-04715). I reported about an apparent quarrel between X-Art and Lipscomb, but I did not know the details. Now we have an opportunity to peek into the reasons behind the breakdown and the specifics of the shakedown operation in general.

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Queen of the Desert – Forgettable Movies & BT Copyright Trolls

QOTD_Poster1The phenomenon of BitTorrent Copyright Trolling is something that moves like a snake through the grass. The Trolls adjust their actions as needed to best generate settlements, while maintaining the Fear Uncertainty, and Doubt (FUD) of their claims and evidence.   One recent snake is “Queen of the Desert,” (QOTD FILM INVESTMENT LTD.) an otherwise forgettable film that according to limited reporting, made less than $2 Million at the box office and had a production cost of at least $15 Million (One report claimed $30 Million). We call that a LOSS.

So what do you do with a flop??? You turn it into a reason to Copyright Troll and hopefully recoup some of your losses.  I don’t know how many cases have been filed or total John Does, but I would assume at least a couple hundred John Does.


Now as you take a look at the US Copyright Office records, there are six records for “QOTD FILM INVESTMENT LTD.” The copyright records are for the following: Blue-ray disc, printed material (screenplay), two Security Agreements, and two Copyright mortgage and assignment and power of attorney. The Troll of course only lists the copyright for the Blue-ray disc (movie). I would sure love you see what the mortgage/assignment and power of attorney documents have to say.   6_QOTD_Copyrights

Looking at one of the QOTD cases disclosed nothing new in the way of the BT Copyright Trolls.  The attached documents are the same general template based crap we have seen for some time – not too surprising.

Case Documents – Complaint_00928(NV)   Complaint_EX1_00928(NV) Complaint_EX2_00928(NV)   Motion_Discovery_00928(NV) Motion_Discovery_Macek_Decl_00928(NV)

What I did get a good laugh from was in the supporting declaration for Early Discovery by Daniel Macek, MAVERICKEYE UG (a German company – go figure! – AKA: Guardaley, IPP, & Excipio).  If you don’t know who Daniel Macek is, then read one of my articles concerning the Australian Dallas Buyers Club case.   Daniel Macek / AU DBC  

The bottom line (my opinion) is that Daniel Macek is a clueless stooge when it comes to Maverickeye. Here is what Attorney Morgan Pietz had to say about the German investigators in a MD Malibu Media/X-Art case.

Recent proceedings in Elf-Man, LLC v. Lamberson, E.D. Wa. No. 2:13-cv-395-TOR, ECF No. 50, 5/20/14, at 7:26 (attached to the Pietz Reply Decl. as Exhibit AA) corroborate Movant’s arguments that Guardaley, IPP and Excipio is run by the same group of people playing a global shell game. In ElfMan, Michael Patzer and Daniel Macek—the very same computer witnesses Malibu talks about in the instant opposition—were caught red handed trying to hide behind yet another series of phony shell companies. In addition, the proceedings also show how Patzer and Macek are trying to use the Hague Convention so as to avoid being hailed into American courts to be deposed about their supposed evidence of infringement.  (Case 1:14-cv-00223-MJG, Document 27, Filed 05/31/14)   Germans_Macek_27-main

Also, Daniel Macek was mentioned by name in the Anti-Piracy Management Company (APMC) presentation on Prezi. In the presentation notes section, the author states that Daniel Macek will provide the declarations (just like in this case) and they hope the judge “won’t question his qualifications too much.”



So things haven’t changed that much for the BT Copyright Trolls. So according to the docket in this case, the Troll was granted early discovery of the ISP subscriber data and sent out his settlement demands.  *** If you are a recipient of such settlement demand letters, please email me a copy – ***

Chaz RaineyIn doing some QOTD research I came across some documents from a Doe.  It appears that Copyright Troll attorney Charles Rainey, Rainey Legal Group PLLC, Las Vegas, NV, has requested $6,000 to settle this allegation (AKA: Pay to make it go away!). Now the amount is in the range of what I currently see as a “starting” amount of approx. $5-8K.

Well this Doe didn’t like what he was reading and fired off a response to Troll Rainey. Now I generally don’t recommend corresponding with the Trolls, as there is a risk of saying something that could be misconstrued or just sounding so nervous the Troll increases the threats to force a settlement. The Doe denied the downloading by him or family members and even told Troll Rainey that until recently they had an OPEN WiFi. The Troll Rainey of course told the Doe was he was still responsible and unless he paid the $6K, Troll/Plaintiff would seek the maximum damages. Troll Rainey claims that the Doe’s ISP “contract” and “contributory and vicarious” copyright law make the Doe responsible. What a load of crap. Take a read and tell me what you think.  Oh, and you have to LOVE that “PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL” footnote. LOL! As soon as the Troll sent the email, he voluntarily released control (AKA: consented) to the recipients (The Doe). If the Doe then released it and it made its way to the general public/Internet, it is gone for good.   emails_Redacted

I am in receipt of your email dated June 18, 2016. Despite the arguments made in your email, my client QOTD Film Investment Ltd. (the “Plaintiff”) is proceeding with its case against you and, in the absence of a settlement, will seek the highest possible award of damages allowable under the law. The subpoenaed information provided by your ISP, coupled with the data gathered from our third-party investigator, conclusively proves that your Internet access point was utilized to illegally download and disseminate the Plaintiff’s motion picture entitled QUEEN OF THE DESERT.

Meanwhile, further data gathered by our investigators shows that this was not an isolated instance. Indeed, the subject IP address, accessing the Internet from your home, is associated with dozens of illegal downloads.

While you may argue that you were unaware of the infringing activity occurring at your address, that is not a satisfactory excuse. Pursuant to your contract with your ISP, as well as under the laws governing contributory and vicarious copyright infringement, you are responsible for reasonably policing your Internet access point. Even if you were not directly responsible for the infringing activity, your failure to implement reasonable precautions for securing your Internet connection has enabled the unlawful pirating of our client’s intellectual property.

Furthermore, I feel it necessary to explain that your threat to change Internet Service Providers holds no bearing on whether or not we move forward in prosecuting this case against you. The Plaintiff in this case is the producer of the above-referenced motion picture and has no affiliation with your ISP. The only reason that your ISP was contacted in this matter was to acquire data pertaining to the above-referenced IP address. Indeed, your ISP is legally obligated to cooperate with our investigation of this matter.

Consequently, the arguments set forth in your letter fail to provide any basis for dismissing my client’s claims against you; nor do those arguments provide any grounds for reducing our original demand of Six Thousand dollars (USD$6,000.00).

However, if you can prove a financial hardship or special circumstances to justify a reduction in our original demand, we are happy to work with you. For instance, we generally offer demand reductions for current or former members of the armed services. We also reduce our demand in cases where individuals can demonstrate (either through tax returns or W2 statements) that their household income is below the median income for the region.

My client’s goal is simple: to stop Internet piracy. To this end, we have structured our financial demands to be high enough so as to strongly discourage defendants from engaging in any future infringing activity, meanwhile encouraging those some defendants to implement reasonable precautions against future infringements utilizing their internet access points.

Industry estimates claim that Internet Piracy annually causes up to $250 billion dollars in damage to our nation’s entertainment industry and accounts for the loss of more than 750,000 jobs. While many groups dispute the exact extent of the economic damage caused by Internet Piracy, analysts, academics and policy experts generally agree that Internet Piracy is a net loss for our nation’s economy.

We strongly encourage you to consult with an attorney to review your rights and risk exposure in connection with this matter. If you fail to address this demand, we will proceed to name you as a defendant in the above-referenced case and seek the highest possible award of damages against you.

Chaz Rainey Esq./MBA/LL.M.

Licensed in California, New York, Nevada, Texas, and the District of Columbia RAINEY LEGAL GROUP PLLC

+1.415.578.4600 (ph) / +1.888.867.5734 (fax) < >

San Francisco, CA – Las Vegas, NV – New York, NY

** Registered member of World Link for Law with over 70 law firms in 47 countries **

************PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL************

This transmission and any attached files are privileged, confidential or otherwise the exclusive property of the intended recipient and/or Rainey Legal Group, PLLC (“RLG”). If you are not the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of any of the information contained in or attached to this transmission is strictly prohibited. If you have received this transmission in error, please contact us immediately by e-mail ( < mailto: > ) or telephone (844-730-5100) and promptly destroy the original transmission and its attachments. Opinions, conclusions and other information in this message that do not relate to the official business of RLG shall be understood as neither given nor endorsed by RLG. Any U.S. federal tax advice or federal or state securities advice contained in this communication, including attachments, is not intended or written to be used and cannot be used to (1) avoid penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, (2) avoid civil or criminal liability for securities related activities, (3) or to promote, market or recommend to another party any transaction, investment or other matter addressed herein.

So what should you do if you are a Doe in some of these newer cases??? I suggest (in a non-attorney manner) to do your research and proceed cautiously. As the NV jurisdiction is a newer one for the Trolls, we don’t know how the Troll attorney/Plaintiff and courts will handle this. With these multi-Doe cases, it is highly unlikely the Troll the name and serve all the non-settling Does. The risk Troll/Plaintiff faces is if they name/serve a Defendant that fights back, they may not be able to cut and run like in previous years. A prime example of this can be found at – Judge thwarts copyright troll’s sneaky practice of securing safe retreat from potentially meritless lawsuits.  The Trolls are likely to think long and hard on who they actually go after (name & serve). IMO, it is simply easier and far less risky for them if they take whatever settlement they can scare out of people and move on to new cases. Greed is a powerful motivator, so we will have to wait and see what the Trolls do.  If you receive any settlement demands from the Trolls, please email me a copy –

DieTrollDie 🙂  I will accept the rules that you feel necessary to your freedom. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.”  [The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, Robert Heinlein]

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The Dangers of Talking To The BT Copyright Troll – They Are NOT Your Friends

*** Attention – If you are a John Doe (or named Defendant) in any past/present BT Copyright Troll case in the Chicago area, please send me an email. I have a reporter who is looking to talk with some John Does. Thank you. DTD 🙂 ***

Well the summer is heating up and I hope everyone is able to find some relief and enjoy themselves.  I recently got back from Las Vegas, NV, after experiencing 109’F.  ;(  Still it was a fun trip and good times were had.

Vegas_2016What is NOT a good time is dealing with BitTorrent (BT) Copyright Trolls.  I recently came across a list of questions one BT Copyright Troll was asking a John Doe/ISP subscriber who claimed innocence.  Now once again I will state clearly that none of what I’m talking about here is me trying to practice law.  This is just my thoughts and opinions on the various BT Copyright Troll antics.

Should You Talk To The Trolls?

Now in general, I’m usually very hesitant to suggest to people that they may want to contact the Trolls themselves and state their innocence. As I stated in my previous article, even if you are innocent, you could say something that gets misconstrued or you just sound so nervous the Troll figures some more pressure and you will pay up even if innocent.  YES, people do this.  These BT Copyright Trolling efforts are simply greed rationalized by the fact that peer-to-peer file sharing occurs.

Each BT Copyright Troll/Plaintiff is different and so is how each one runs their cases.   For many of the mass-Doe copyright infringement cases, I don’t suggest getting an attorney unless named/served or receive a deposition subpoena.  For many of the single-Doe cases, I do recommend at least talking with an attorney. With many of the single-Doe cases, the Troll for some reason appears to be more confidant and will go to the naming/serving stage with little hesitation. There is no hard and fast rules either; as well as things can change very fast. I have recently seen some mass Doe cases where the Troll got as many settlements as possible and finally named/served the remaining handful of Defendants.

In general I believe it is preferable to have an attorney speak for you, but if some reason it is not possible (no money, etc.), you can do it yourself.  Just be very careful.

So here are the basic questions a Troll attorney is going to be asking anyone who claims innocence. The questions will generally come in a written form (preferable to the Troll), but verbal is better than nothing. NOTE: One thing I didn’t see printed on the question form was that this was part a settlement negotiation. Why is this important???

This is important because without this, the questioning is simply part of the Troll investigation. As it is NOT part of a settlement negotiation, the protections of Federal Rules of Evidence (FRE), Rule 408 are not generally going to be applied. The Troll will simply state that you voluntarily agreed to assist them in their investigation.  So what is wrong with that???

  • Again, based on the past activity of BT Copyright Trolls, they are NOT your friends and they are NOT here to help you – even if innocent. ANY response to Troll questions needs to have (My Opinion) “(FRE 408) – Confidential/For Settlement Purposes Only” placed at the beginning and end of each page or other correspondence.

Now someone might say, “Well, the questioning isn’t part of a settlement, so FRE 408 doesn’t apply.WRONG! – A settlement doesn’t have to mean YOU (John Doe/ISP subscriber) are going to pay Troll/Plaintiff anything. It simply means you are coming to an agreement on how to settle the issue at hand (Copyright Infringement). If Troll/Plaintiff decides to drop the case against the John Doe/ISP subscriber based on the information provided, then a settlement has been reached. Making sure FRE 408 is plastered on all such correspondence is important; it generally makes is so Troll/Plaintiff cannot use the content of the settlement negotiation to prove their case. Now FRE 408 is not a perfect protection, but it makes it significantly harder for the Troll to use such information to prove their case. AND make no mistake, if YOU are a John Doe (IP address is listed in the complaint), this is an adversarial process and you want all the protections you can get.

So Here Are The Questions

Question No. 1. Identify all computers (including equipment which performs computational functions) and electronic storage devices used at your address, that may have had access to an IP address assigned to your address at any time in the 2016 calendar year, including providing dates of use, date of purchase, current location, any brand and model number or other identifying designation, and the storage capacity of each such device listing number of drives, model and size where available. If any such computer or storage device is no longer at the location, in your possession, or subject to your control, describe how, when and why you no longer have possession or control of the device.

Why This Question?

  • The only thing the Troll knows (at this time) is on specific dates/times, their BT monitoring service recorded a public IP address assigned to you (the ISP subscriber), the BT client used to share Plaintiff’s content (likely recorded at multiple times), and the “other” (non-Plaintiff) files that were also available to be shared via the BT client using your public IP address.
  • The Troll needs you to tell them what computers are/were on the internal network – behind your WiFi Firewall/Router. Otherwise they don’t have a clue. Now based on the specific BT client they recorded, they can make assumptions on what OS the BT client was running on.
  • They will also use this information to narrow down who is the most likely BT user, based on periods of use, specific user, and the types of “other (non-Plaintiff) files available via the BT client.

Question No. 2. Please identify all persons who are known to have used or operated any of the items identified in response to Question #1, including the computer or device used, nature of each person’s use, best known dates of use, each person’s relationship to you, and the current best known contact information including address, telephone number and email and representation by counsel if any.

Why This Question?

  • Same as above; the Troll only knows the name of ISP subscriber because of the ISP subpoena. Now once they have your name and address, they can do some Internet and Lexus/Nexus searches to see who is likely at the residence. Spouse, children, adult children, roommates, etc.
  • Again, the information provided will be used to select who the most likely BT user is. NOTE: I said “most likely” and not the person responsible. Bottom line is the Troll doesn’t care who did this, just that someone is going to pay a settlement to make the law suit go away (my opinion). The answers to these questions are NOT being used to rule out people; they are used to identify a specific target(s) for the Troll attorney.

Question No. 3. Please identify all clients or software used for peer-to-peer file transfers on any of the items identified in response to Question #1, including the name of the software, version, date of installation, the person who performed installation, any person who used the software, and date of removal or deletion if removed or deleted, and the person who removed or deleted the software.

Why This Question?

  • If they can get you to provide what BT client was used and it matches what their BT monitors recorded, they have more evidence. But even if the BT client doesn’t match, they will simply say that you are/were a BT user and likely a serial infringer of protected content. They will say you simply switched BT clients since they recorded the activity.
  • This information will also tie back to a specific computer and the person(s) who normally uses it – narrowing the target.

Question No. 4. Please state whether any file deleting programs or hard drive cleaning software has been used on any of the computers identified in Question #1 in the 2016 calendar year, including computer or device on which such software was used, the date of first installation of any such software, the dates of use, and the purpose of such use.

Why This Question?

  • The Troll is looking for anything to support their claims if/when a forensic analysis comes back with NO Plaintiff’s movie/content, NO torrent files, NO BT client, NO “other” (Non-Plaintiff) files shared by BT client, etc. Simply claiming a person deleted/wiped the files is standard Troll tactic when evidence is lacking. Another claim is that a person removed/hid/destroyed/donated the offending computer (where the BT client was run) from the residence. This was BT Copyright Troll attorney Keith Lipscomb’s (Malibu Media, X-Art) worry – as he stated in the closing arguments in the PA Bell Weather trial.
  • For most of the current Non-Malibu Media cases, the chance of a forensic examination is going to be unlikely at best. The simple imaging and analysis of one hard drive is likely to cost the Troll a $1,000+. Note: As of writing this article Sophisticated Jane Doe reports that it has been two months since the last Malibu Media cases was filed. As I previous said, things can change fast with the BT Copyright Trolls. Still we have other Troll/Plaintiff who are willing to file these cases.

Question No. 5. Describe your Internet service as made available for use at your address anytime in the 2016 calendar year, including make and model of any modems, network routers, WiFi routers, network access points, passwords used, and any changes made in the 2016 calendar year, and dates of such changes including changes to passwords.

Why This Question?

  • The Troll does not know how your network was set-up/run. Here is where they hope to lock you into saying that the network was password protected, you never gave out the password to others, and never saw any instances of unknown/unauthorized computers using your network. If you tell them that password changes were made at specific dates and the BT activity continued, they will assume it is from an authorized network user.

Question No. 6. Attached is a list of confirmed acts of distributions of copyrighted content in violation of U.S. Copyright Law observed as originating from the IP address assigned to you. Provide a list of all parties who had access to the Internet service at your address at any of the times and dates noted in the exhibit, including parties who may have left a computer running whether or not they were then present at the address.

Why This Question?

  • More narrowing of targets by the Trolls. Who had access to the network during the dates in question? Did someone leave a computer running a BT client for any time period(s)?

Question No. 7. Also attached is a list of BitTorrent activity observed associated with your assigned IP address. Please identify by item number any titles or files that you observed (through any means), shared, downloaded or attempted to download through the BitTorrent protocol at any time by file number. For each such identified title or file, state:

  • the BitTorrent client or software used;
  • the torrent web site, portal, or index used to find the torrent associated with each file;
  • the item from Question #1 that was used to operate the client or software;
  • the item from Question #1 where any such content was stored;
  • whether the content has been deleted;
  • the date of such deletion and the manner or software used for such deletion.

Why This Question?

  • The Troll is trying to narrow down who may have used the BT client to share Plaintiff’s movie/content. Even if you are the ISP subscriber and did NOT do this, saying that you knew of the copyright infringement activity via BT could give way to a claim of contributory copyright infringement against you. Essentially a Troll could claim that by YOU knowing of the BT copyright Infringement by another person and then allowing that person to use your network to do so, you have contributed to copyright infringement.   

Question No. 8. Identity any file you have downloaded in the last three years in whole or part using a peer-to-peer or BitTorrent protocol which is not identified in response to Question #7. For each such file, state:

  • The name of the file downloaded and common name of the content of the file (title of book, movie, etc.;
  • the BitTorrent client or software used;
  • the torrent web site, portal, or index used to find the torrent associated with each file;
  • the item from Question #1 that was used to operate the client or software;
  • the item from Question #1 where any such content was stored;
  • whether the content has been deleted; and
  • the date of such deletion and the manner or software used for such deletion.

Why This Question?

  • Again, on the chance that there is no evidence disclosed, the Troll attorney will be looking to point to something that they believe indicates you are responsible – going back three years! As BT is a large part of on-line copyright infringement, the Troll will claim you must be responsible – “Nobody use BT for purely legal reasons.”

Question No. 9. Describe all known BT related activity conducted by others through an IP address assigned to your residence in the last three years, including who conducted such activity, dates of such conduct, dates of notification of such conduct, and items identified in response to Question #1 that were used for such conduct and the basis for your knowledge.

Why This Question?

  • As previous said, if you tell the Troll that you knew of BT activity ongoing on your network, there could come a claim of contributory infringement, because you did not attempt to stop the illegal activity and let it persist.
  • Otherwise they are simply looking for evidence from you to point out who the infringer is/was. This of course comes out as a veiled threat IMO – do our investigative work OR you may be named/served with a complaint summons.

Question No. 10. Identify each website, blog or message board you have visited, or to which you have subscribed, posted or hosted, which refers to, relates to, or discusses, Internet piracy, BitTorrent, file sharing, or which provides information to people regarding suits which allege that people have committed on-line copyright infringement. For each site, identify any email used associated with the site, handle, user name, or any postings or communications made to or through such site in which you were a party to such communication.

Why This Question?

  • OK, you got to love this question! They are looking for you to implicate yourself by what you may have posted on-line. They need you to tell them what site/blogs you posted to, names used, email address used. They will then search the sites to see what was said and if it implicates you or others.
  • FUNNY, but if you read and/listen to the PA Bell Weather trial; you will see that Keith Lipscomb had very similar questions posed to the Defendants during depositions. 

Question No. 11. Identify any communication or documents received from your ISP or related to your Internet usage in the last three years including any changes regarding the terms of your contract or agreement, and any notices you have received, including but not limited to notices of copyright infringement or DMCA related notices.

Why This Question?

  • They are looking for information that shows that you (the ISP subscriber) knew that your network connection was using an excessive amount of data each month (caused by BT activity) and didn’t care – because YOU were responsible for the BT activity (or at least knew of the BT activity and did nothing).
  • Also if you received any DMCA take-down notices and what you did to stop the BT activity on the network. If you did nothing, then they will claim that is because YOU were responsible for it (or at least allowed it to occur).

Question No. 12. Please provide your travel history for any dates in 2016 in which you were not at your residence.

Why This Question?

  • The Troll wants to know your travel history in case you later claim to be out-of-town during the alleged infringement periods.

Your Decision

Now if you choose to speak with the Troll, please make sure you caveat your answers appropriately if needed.  If you are asked a question and are not sure of the answer, tell them that. Tell them you are unsure and will need to get back to them after you have had an opportunity to research the matter.  Some of the questions go back three years!  I don’t know about you, but going back three years on these otherwise normally mundane matters is going to be near impossible.  Don’t be afraid to state that you don’t know the answer to their questions.

Hopefully most of you will never be faced with this situation, but it is better to be prepared if it happens.

DieTrollDie 🙂

“Move according to your opponent.” {One lesson from Master Funakoshi}


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