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Copyright Troll USCG Violates Copyright

kdawson posted about 4 years ago | from the do-as-i-say dept.

Crime 97

omarlittle writes "The US Copyright Group — a company owned by intellectual property lawyers, which has been in the news for threatening downloaders of the movie Hurt Locker — has apparently stolen their site from a competitor. At one point, even the competitor's phone number and copyright statement were copied word for word on USCG's 'settlement' website. The competitor is reportedly going to send a Cease & Desist."

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Damn! (5, Funny)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 4 years ago | (#33085606)

If only there was some group that they could hire to fight copyright violations...

Re:Damn! (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | about 4 years ago | (#33085686)

...you mean like the ones they, err, ripped off? ;)

Comeuppance is gonna be real fun to watch happen... Pity that in the end, some really stupid anti-liberty precedent may come of it (I'm hoping not considering that this particular case is simple plagiarism, but given this crowd, I'm not holding out much hope for sanity...)

Re:Damn! (1)

negRo_slim (636783) | about 4 years ago | (#33085828)

If only there was some group that they could hire to fight copyright violations...

Well first start a multi-national conglomerate so you will have the resources then go sniffing around the united states congress, with enough money you can get whatever you want.

Re:Damn! (1)

willabr (684561) | about 4 years ago | (#33086038)

I'm a copyright novice and know very little about these type of things; But did they not leave the copyright notice refering to the correct copyright holder?,, mayby the two have something worked out, if they had left that out would that have been worse?

Re:Damn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086198)

having the (c) on there doesnt matter for damages or anything else. it used to.

Re:Damn! (1)

mysidia (191772) | about 4 years ago | (#33088820)

However, wholesale copying of someone else's work and the act of removing or tampering with their copyright notice can be a separate "offense"

Particularly if there was a written direction form management to remove it... the removal may be evidence of willful infringement

Basically.. since you surgically removed the notices and not much else, it's evidence that you saw the notice...

Re:Damn! (2, Informative)

Major Downtime (1840554) | about 4 years ago | (#33086124)

... If you have a problem...if no one else can help...and if you can find them...maybe you can hire...The A-Team.

Re:Damn! (4, Insightful)

jdgeorge (18767) | about 4 years ago | (#33086464)

Ironic it is. However, the real story is "copyright lawyers screwed by lazy web site developer." They paid somebody to create their website, and instead of just developing a web site, the lazy developer simply ripped off a site which served a similar business.

It's not as if the firm's lawyers sat around saying "I don't know how to design our site... why don't we just use that one and put our information on it?"

Re:Damn! (4, Informative)

chartreuse (16508) | about 4 years ago | (#33086736)

TFA doesn't mention any developers involved. Why don't you add to our knowledge and name them, since you seem to be better-informed?

A wholesale lifting of code (such as would be implied by their leaving their victim's phone number intact) could as easily have been done by a lazy, recklessly indifferent lawyer or lazy, supervised staff worker as by a lazy third-party web developer.

Moreover I really doubt there's a legally viable argument that USCG, filled with state-licensed members of the bar, doesn't ultimately have responsibility for approving and operating a website that collects evidence for use in court.

Re:Damn! (1)

jdgeorge (18767) | about 4 years ago | (#33087038)

It is definitely the responsibility of the law firm, which is why it's ironic.

However, the gleeful interpretation by The Not Very Fine Article and members of this site that these copyright lawyers willfully violated copyright is mere fantasy that's unsupported by any evidence.

Re:Damn! (1)

chartreuse (16508) | about 4 years ago | (#33088754)

...and leaving the victim's phone number in was just an simple oversight, way too difficult for mere lawyers to grasp or even notice, since web development is so hard .

I'll take your non-answer of my question as indication you don't have any evidence the development was done by an external firm. (Would it make a difference if it was a temp they hired who did it?) But maybe you're right, in which case I'm sure we'll hear about the lawsuit USCG (aka Dunlap, Grubb & Weaver) files against their contractor, and one by the victim, Copyright Enforcement Group, against said contractor for theft.

Re:Damn! (1)

EdIII (1114411) | about 4 years ago | (#33086772)

You're right, this is really a nothing-to-see-here story and it is really shameful. I want to destroy copyright trolls, copyright extremism, and software patents as much as the next person, but this is just "spin" at its best.

That being said, I do find it curious that a bunch of IP lawyers did not think to demand of the website developer a manifest of every single piece of copyrightable content on the site and its proof of proper licensing.

This would be like the BSA setting up a branch office without any regards to software licensing, auditing, best practices and then raiding their own branch office 3 months later.

All the projects that I have been involved in have that as a requirement. Especially for the graphics. You either have files, such as Adobe Photoshop PSDs, that proof you created it yourself, or purchasing receipts and copies of copyright notices/contracts attached to the final documentation for the site.

That level of professionalism though, is sorely lacking in the web developer community as a whole. An awful lot of barely competent one-man developer shows that have Starbucks as their office out there.

You presume too much... (1)

way2trivial (601132) | about 4 years ago | (#33088428)

Consider.

What would happen if the average "Mafiaa" espousing slashdotter (among who number some who do websites for a living) were to actually be hired by the RIAA or the MPAA.

maybe it wasn't sloth- but nefarious and deliberate.

Re:Damn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33093970)

Maybe they can hire, the A-Team?

Owned, bitches! (1)

segin (883667) | about 4 years ago | (#33085618)

They bitch left and right about piracy yet they themselves are pirates.

Re:Owned, bitches! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085728)

On the other hand, I thy manage to survive this, they must be really good at there job.....

Re:Owned, bitches! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085740)

Perhaps that is the reason they think everyone is? As they are doing it themselves all the time.

Ultimate Compliment (3, Funny)

slaxative (1867220) | about 4 years ago | (#33085626)

The ultimate compliment is plagiarism. So what if it is the purpose of your company to fight against that very thing.

LMFAO!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085632)

In other news, the US military suddenly suffered from a month of friendly fire, leaving America completely defenseless.

Anything for the cause... (2)

AndyAndyAndyAndy (967043) | about 4 years ago | (#33085636)

I'm such a firm believer in conservationism, I'm going to go print up 100,000 fliers to raise awareness!

(c) (3, Funny)

djdbass (1037730) | about 4 years ago | (#33085656)

Pot, meet Kettle*

* copyright 2010 djdbass. Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

Re:(c) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085756)

Pot, meet Kettle*

* copyright 2010 djdbass. Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

Re:(c) (1)

tokul (682258) | about 4 years ago | (#33085804)

Pot, meet Kettle*

* copyright 2010 djdbass.

Except for the part where you can't copyright generic idiom.

Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, 1870, revised by Adrian Room (Millennium Edition). Looks like copyright is expired.

Re:(c) (1)

orgelspieler (865795) | about 4 years ago | (#33086194)

And fraudulent copyright notices are punishable by fine! Not that I've ever heard of anybody being fined for trying to, for instance, copyright a blank form.

I even once tried to email copyright.gov when I found a fraudulent copyright notice on a public domain work. You know what their response was? If you own the copyright, you can sue them. So basically they don't investigate fraudulent claims, despite this being a possible way to get some extra income.

Re:(c) (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | about 4 years ago | (#33086270)

Part of the issue is that if they’ve done just about anything at all to it, they can copyright their “creative work” as a whole.

For instance, you cannot copyright information, so the information in the phone book is free for the taking. However the book itself (its graphics, fonts, layout and formatting) is copyrighted, so you cannot just cut the binding, scan the pages, and re-print exact copies of it.

Re:(c) (2, Informative)

daremonai (859175) | about 4 years ago | (#33086796)

This is mostly false, at least in the U.S. While the U.K. and other Commonwealth countries have the concept of copyright for "typographical arrangement," the U.S. does not. It also does not have copyright in the printed appearance of a font (as opposed to, say, the TrueType encoding of a font, which is copyrightable). So, out of your list, only the graphics (assuming they are original) would be clearly subject to copyright in the U.S.

Re:(c) (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | about 4 years ago | (#33087990)

While the U.K. and other Commonwealth countries have the concept of copyright for "typographical arrangement," the U.S. does not.

Citation needed. In the 1991 ruling on Feist v. Rural Tel. Service Co. you will find statements such as the following:

a compilation of facts may possess the requisite originality because the author typically chooses which facts to include, in what order to place them, and how to arrange the data so that readers may use them effectively, [however] copyright protection extends only to those components of the work that are original to the author, not to the facts themselves.

A compilation is not copyrightable per se, but is copyrightable only if its facts have been “selected, coordinated, or arranged in such a way that the resulting work as a whole constitutes an original work of authorship.”

Rural has a valid copyright in the directory as a whole because it contains some forward text and some original material in the yellow pages

Hence, Feist would have been infringing had they scanned and duplicated Rural’s telephone book, but since they only extracted the listings (facts) they were within the law in so doing.

Re:(c) (1)

daremonai (859175) | about 4 years ago | (#33090728)

Here's one, on sheet music; the author has written extensively on this area: http://digitalcommons.law.uga.edu/fac_artchop/375/ [uga.edu] .

Note you are misreading Feist - the "originality" being discussed is in the selection and organization of facts, essentially a work of scholarship. This would not apply to merely typesetting an existing (public domain) text.

Again, "typographical arrangement" is an explicit concept in UK and Commonwealth law, typically with a relatively short term (e.g., 25 years). So far as I know, there is no such thing in U.S. law.

Re:(c) (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | about 4 years ago | (#33092972)

Agreed, merely typesetting a public domain text would not be original enough to warrant a copyright. Perhaps you misunderstand me. As we have both reiterated, factual information / public domain works are not copyrightable. However, if a public domain work were to be reprinted with cover art, flyleaf summary, a foreword/preface, new illustrations, et cetera, it is almost certain that the work, as a whole, would be original enough so as to be copyrightable. The copyright would apply only to the originality of the entire work: not to the specific portions on their own which were clearly not copyrightable, naturally.

As such, it is a hasty generalisation to assume that because the primary work being published was within the public domain that the copyright was “fraudulent”. If anything, the publisher at the very least probably had enough reason to believe that it was a valid copyright, and successfully charging them with any crime (for “fraudulently” copyrighting it) would be very difficult if not entirely impossible.

Hence my reaction to orgelspieler’s outrage is similar to the reaction I have for people who want Obama impeached: You’re wasting your time; find something better to focus your attention on.

Re:(c) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086556)

I'm guessing you're the life of every party.

Re:(c) (2, Funny)

Dogtanian (588974) | about 4 years ago | (#33087168)

Pot, meet Kettle*

* copyright 2010 djdbass. Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

I regret to inform you that I already hold the copyright on your copyright warning, and you now owe me $100,000 and a bag of jelly babies if you don't want investigated by the FBI, sent to prison for 5 years and fined $250,000.

And the jelly babies have to be green.

Re:(c) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33092664)

Pot, meet Kettle
Pot, meet Kettle
Pot, meet Kettle

Copyright 2010 Anonymous Coward.

If you support this takedown (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085682)

You support the idea of copyrights and cease and desist orders.

Re:If you support this takedown (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085746)

You support the idea of copyrights and cease and desist orders.

I support the idea of copyright, however I support it within reasonable limits.

Re:If you support this takedown (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 4 years ago | (#33085830)

I want a group like this. One that will protect you from $150,000 judgments for downloading 24 songs. However, I want a group that will do so in the courtroom, not in back-room settlements.

Re:If you support this takedown (1)

russotto (537200) | about 4 years ago | (#33086158)

I want a group like this. One that will protect you from $150,000 judgments for downloading 24 songs. However, I want a group that will do so in the courtroom, not in back-room settlements.

I've given up on the courtroom. Now I'm hoping for a group to arise (with no connection to me at all of course) which will do it in back-alley settlements.

Re:If you support this takedown (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | about 4 years ago | (#33086612)

back alley with a baseballbat?

Re:If you support this takedown (2, Informative)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 4 years ago | (#33088342)

Watching an arsehole being hoist by their own petard is funny. But does not mean I like seeing nice people being blown up*.

(* Petard means explosive. From the French, "to break wind.")

OH MY FUCKING GOD !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085704)

Just wanted to put that in writing.

Live by the Pen, Get Bitchslapped by the Pen (1)

Infonaut (96956) | about 4 years ago | (#33085742)

Instant karma, reap what you sow... how ever you put it, they're getting what they deserve.

Now let's see who you REALLY are! (5, Funny)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | about 4 years ago | (#33085758)

*rips off rubber ghost mask*

*gasp* "It's old man copyright troll, the guy who runs the haunted bittorrent tracker site!"

"And I would have gotten away with it, if it wasn't for you meddling kids!"

Re:Now let's see who you REALLY are! (2, Funny)

AhabTheArab (798575) | about 4 years ago | (#33086094)

*rips off rubber ghost mask*

*gasp* "It's old man copyright troll, the guy who runs the haunted bittorrent tracker site!"

"And I would have gotten away with it, if it wasn't for you meddling kids!..."

"...and that mangy mutt of yours"

"scooby dooby dooooooo"

USCG == Coast Guard (4, Funny)

tekrat (242117) | about 4 years ago | (#33085764)

USCG stole something else as well then, their Acronym. USCG is the US COAST GUARD, not the US Copyright Group. These guys should get a clue.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1, Funny)

euxneks (516538) | about 4 years ago | (#33085996)

USCG stole something else as well then, their Acronym. USCG is the US COAST GUARD, not the US Copyright Group. These guys should get a clue.

Thank you so much for using "their" in the proper context! At last! I have read a slashdot comment with proper grammar!!!

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (2, Funny)

Cap'nPedro (987782) | about 4 years ago | (#33086098)

Thank you so much for using "their" in the proper context! At last! I have read a slashdot comment with proper grammar!!!

Your easy to please.

Ooh, it made me cringe typing that.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

BobMcD (601576) | about 4 years ago | (#33086298)

Thank you so much for using "their" in the proper context! At last! I have read a slashdot comment with proper grammar!!!

Your easy to please.

Ooh, it made me cringe typing that.

Hey now: your not being very nice.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

shr3dthegnarbrah (1867850) | about 4 years ago | (#33086632)

Can't we'll just get along?

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

Dunega (901960) | about 4 years ago | (#33087000)

Sure, but you know that you're problem is that your going about it the wrong way. They're should be an easier method so that there able to get things done their. I was going to continue but my brain started to leak out my nose.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086750)

But they capitalized "Acronym"

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about 4 years ago | (#33087680)

USCG stole something else as well then, their Acronym. USCG is the US COAST GUARD, not the US Copyright Group. These guys should get a clue.

Thank you so much for using "their" in the proper context! At last! I have read a slashdot comment with proper grammar!!!

Except, no! Usual american grammar uses the singular for groups such as companies, sports teams, etc.. So in this case, it should be "its", not "their"!
I fully expect someone to point out errors in my post. Such is the fate of anyone who posts about grammar!

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

spottedkangaroo (451692) | about 4 years ago | (#33086086)

Not all initialisms are acronyms. I am having some trouble pronouncing YouSeKahGuh anyway.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

Mister Whirly (964219) | about 4 years ago | (#33086704)

Yet you seem to be having no trouble spelling it.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (2, Insightful)

RicktheBrick (588466) | about 4 years ago | (#33086282)

At first I wondered why the Coast Guard was stealing from another site than I was thinking that the copyright group stole it from the Coast Guard. But atlas the article has nothing to do with the United States Coast Guard. It is a shame that /. uses the Coast Guard's acronym to get readers to view this story.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

pdxp (1213906) | about 4 years ago | (#33086426)

Actually they stole the Coast Guard's initialism, which is even worse because it's obvious that all the letters are the same when repeated out loud!

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

dlfretz (1250918) | about 4 years ago | (#33086506)

Run! It's the USCG armed with briefcases?

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | about 4 years ago | (#33086830)

I thought the same thing. The Coast Guard stole some one's website?

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (1)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | about 4 years ago | (#33087240)

As long as it wasn't the Navy's, Air Force's, Army's, Marine's, Local Police Department's or Boy Scout's website they stole I think the Coast Guard has a fair chance of fighting off any reprisal attack.

Re:USCG == Coast Guard (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33088146)

And if it was the Girl Scouts' website it'd be a pretty fair fight.

Damages: $67,000 per character. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33085776)

I'm just guessing, based on RIAA-type damage estimates.

they should be disbarred (5, Insightful)

grahamsaa (1287732) | about 4 years ago | (#33085778)

It seems to me that the most appropriate solution to this would be to disbar the lawyers that run this firm. What they've done is clearly unethical, and it's also obvious that they were aware of (or should have been aware of) the infringement (they are intellectual property lawyers, right?).

This will discourage others from behaving this way, and will make it impossible for some obviously bad actors to earn a living by behaving badly. Perhaps they could consider a new career in fast food? In any case, I have no sympathy for these people.

Re:they should be disbarred (1)

orgelspieler (865795) | about 4 years ago | (#33086444)

How do we go about getting somebody disbarred? Is there a public forum for filing complaints? I know for engineers, you just go to the State Board. So I guess you have to find out what state these guys (Dunlap, Grubb, and/or Weaver) operate in (VA?) and file a complaint with their state bar. Anybody know for sure?

Re:they should be disbarred (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086476)

The reality is probably simpler. They paid someone to create a simple site for them, similar to the original. That individual probably copied the site, changed the style, dropped in new blurb and went on his merry way.

Alternatively, they're the same people behind both companies, seeing as they're just a front, and caught caught. Now they're trying to make out they are independent.

Re:they should be disbarred (1)

Dhalka226 (559740) | about 4 years ago | (#33086740)

That individual probably copied the site, changed the style, dropped in new blurb and went on his merry way.

Did you look at the screenshots? They didn't even do that much. All they did was change the way it worked. The first site apparently sends you what it calls a case number and a password, while the ripoff sends only a Defendant Record ID. And they don't offer live chat, apparently, since they removed that button too (*snicker*).

What it looks like to me is somebody stole the entire website, including images, but forgot the CSS. The text on the copy is all default text (Times New Roman), the spacing on some graphics is off, etc. There's even a Verisign logo on one site that is conspicuously missing on the ripoff site. I don't know how it works specifically, but I wonder if the URL to the image checks the referrer.

That said, disbarment seems a bit much. I do wish they would get their asses sued rather than just sent a C&D though. What goes around comes around and all that. I'm sure the Copyright Enforcement Group will be happy to let them settle for a nominal fee.

Re:they should be disbarred (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33088036)

That's silly. What they really need is a $250000 fine, once per infringed web page.

That would be fair.

oh the irony (1)

jarrettwold2002 (601633) | about 4 years ago | (#33085780)

Oh the irony... This isn't an isolated incident on the internet. From wordpress templates, javascript libraries to full sites it seems like businesses go pirate happy with sites they like. Generally, they're stealing from sites that can't afford to go out, hire an attorney and sue. I have a handful of (horrible) stock photos that I've upped to a stock photo site, they tend to show up all over the place. They're free to use, but at least send me an email saying that you're going to use them.

Re:oh the irony (2, Funny)

Migraineman (632203) | about 4 years ago | (#33086246)

Take note, musicians ... this is ironic. (Yes, Ms. Morissette, [wikipedia.org] I'm talking to you.)

Re:oh the irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086654)

What are you ? Some kind of BEARDED hippie freak?

meh (1)

JackSpratts (660957) | about 4 years ago | (#33085888)

but, but, but it's ok, because they're fighting crime!

Honor? (1)

Nemesisghost (1720424) | about 4 years ago | (#33085938)

I thought there was supposed to be honor among thieves?

Oh sweet irony (1)

kjshark (312401) | about 4 years ago | (#33086050)

and this just in: "Family Values" politicians were caught cheating on their wives. Also, people protesting the American budget deficit support fighting two wars on credit. Where will it end ?
DAMN YOU LOGICAL PRINCIPLES !!!!

They did not steal anything (5, Insightful)

Husgaard (858362) | about 4 years ago | (#33086078)

copyright violation != theft

Re:They did not steal anything (0, Troll)

BobMcD (601576) | about 4 years ago | (#33086344)

word nazi != helpful

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

Shagg (99693) | about 4 years ago | (#33086392)

The differences between copyright infringement and theft are pretty fundamental to a lot of IP discussions.

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

BobMcD (601576) | about 4 years ago | (#33086544)

True, but colloquial use of words is pretty fundamental to ALL discussions.

You could rightfully say they 'ripped off' the site, could you not? And wouldn't that simply be a colorful synonym of 'theft'?

Are we genuinely to believe that the author claims the original site owners no longer have that property?? Of course not.

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 4 years ago | (#33087226)

In fact, "ripped off" is colloquially used as a synonym for a bad deal, just as frequently as for "theft." For example, people frequently complain about how movie theaters "rip them off" by charging a high price for popcorn and disallowing outside food. I hear the term "ripped off" used for more frequently to describe outrageously high prices than for "theft."

Are we genuinely to believe that the author claims the original site owners no longer have that property?? Of course not.

Then he needs to find a more descriptive word or term than "theft," since "theft" implies that someone no longer has their property. The very reason that "theft" is considered morally wrong is that it deprives someone of their property, and the right to one's property is considered fundamental in our society.

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

BobMcD (601576) | about 4 years ago | (#33087290)

Then he needs to find a more descriptive word or term than "theft," since "theft" implies that someone no longer has their property.

The need is only exigent if the reader is confused. Not so much the case here, and you well realize it.

Re:They did not steal anything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086698)

I should put this in a language ya'll understand.

copyright violation theft

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

noidentity (188756) | about 4 years ago | (#33086924)

Sure they did; the original website was GONE! Just a 404.... oh, wait, it was still there. You're right.

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

Sinistar2k (225578) | about 4 years ago | (#33088522)

copyright violation != theft

Ha ha! Stole it! Wait... what? You still have it? Crap.

Re:They did not steal anything (1)

seeker_1us (1203072) | about 4 years ago | (#33088690)

Copyright violation isn't theft. However, I do think they "stole" something. They presented someone else's work as if it was their own. That's plagiarism and it really is a form of theft, because it deprives the creator of the recognition and credit they deserve.

Links? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33086084)

As I am relatively certain that torrentfreak.com will not make it through the corporate filter, can someone post links to both of the sites?

And who the hell is ACERA LLC? AEBA?

Wow... (1)

Smooth and Shiny (1097089) | about 4 years ago | (#33086088)

At first I was wondering why the hell the USCG would be copyright trolling. Then I saw it wasn't the US Coast Guard.

Bullies (2, Insightful)

TheStatsMan (1763322) | about 4 years ago | (#33086186)

Legal and fiscal bullying is one of the more common applications of copyright law, apparently.

Site change already..... mostly (2, Interesting)

MarkGriz (520778) | about 4 years ago | (#33086196)

Looks like the graphics have been replaced. Yet bizarrely they kept some stolen Javascript functions in there that they don't even use.

So... (2, Interesting)

parlancex (1322105) | about 4 years ago | (#33086302)

I think they should be fined up to $10,000 per page view.

Re:So... (1)

stevedog (1867864) | about 4 years ago | (#33086914)

If only the site had included an intro tune, or a small movie...

The overuse of "troll" is getting ridiculous (0, Troll)

harlows_monkeys (106428) | about 4 years ago | (#33086472)

This overuse of the word "troll" for anyone who tries to enforce IP rights is getting ridiculous.

Re:The overuse of "troll" is getting ridiculous (1)

mweather (1089505) | about 4 years ago | (#33086598)

If all you do as a company is enforce IP rights, you are a troll.

Re:The overuse of "troll" is getting ridiculous (1)

stevedog (1867864) | about 4 years ago | (#33086844)

No, if you do as a company is seek out IP to enforce, then you are a troll. Just because they aren't multifunctional doesn't make them a troll...

Re:The overuse of "troll" is getting ridiculous (1)

srealm (157581) | about 4 years ago | (#33087110)

No, you're a troll if you try and enforce IP rights to IP you don't actually own.

Just like patent trolls are only trolls if they try to enforce patents on products or ideas that they don't actually make or use themselves.

Completely different if you wrote something, then go after people for copyright violations on what you wrote. Or you invented something, got a patent, and actively manufacture things using that patented method, and go after other making stuff that also uses that method without paying you.

Re:The overuse of "troll" is getting ridiculous (1)

harlows_monkeys (106428) | about 4 years ago | (#33099152)

So by your definition, the SFLC are copyright trolls because they have sued to enforce copyright on GPL code that they didn't write.

Additionally... (3, Interesting)

Java Pimp (98454) | about 4 years ago | (#33086524)

The image of the "woman paying a bill online in her kitchen" was not likely owned by the Copyright Enforcement Group either but was licensed stock photography from somewhere else. Not only did they rip off CEG but also the owner of the stock image...

Sentor Hatch and Copyright. (4, Interesting)

Camel Pilot (78781) | about 4 years ago | (#33086542)

This reminds me of Senator Hatch who used unlicensed copyrighted software on his official website but then attempted, believe it or not, to pass legislation that would allowed the recording industry to remotely automatically destroy computers when they discovered that their copyrighted music was being downloaded.

You couldn't invent this stuff...

http://www.wired.com/politics/law/news/2003/06/59305 [wired.com]

USCG? (1)

Apoklypse (853837) | about 4 years ago | (#33090050)

United States Coast Guard? what, and or who, exactly are they Pirating? one would expect the Coast Guard to have more respect on the open seas, but then again, was it not a Letter of Mark from the king that permitted and reinforced some of the old time Piracy back in the day?

Slime. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33092516)

Hate to post as an A/C, but I know these guys (Dunlap, Grubb, and Weaver), have used them numerous times as a plaintiff, and have to say they are some mercenary bastards. Knowing several of the attorneys, I've told them all individually that their behavior is costing them clients who know their involvement in this. At this point, it's down to karma. These guys are about to get a lesson in "what goes around, comes around."

Lawsuit (1)

StormReaver (59959) | about 4 years ago | (#33094800)

Since in the eyes of copyright trolls, each download is an infringement deserving the maximum penalty, and each page view is a separate download, the copyright trolls should be sued for $250,000 for each individually copyrighted component of each web page for each page view.

That should bring the penalties into the billions of dollars rather quickly. THAT would be sweet justice.

Re: (1)

clint999 (1277046) | about 4 years ago | (#33095902)

TFA doesn't mention any developers involved. Why don't you add to our knowledge and name them, since you seem to be better-informed?A wholesale lifting of code (such as would be implied by their leaving their victim's phone number intact) could as easily have been done by a lazy, recklessly indifferent lawyer or lazy, supervised staff worker as by a lazy third-party web developer.Moreover I really doubt there's a legally viable argument that USCG, filled with state-licensed members of the bar, doesn't ultimately have responsibility for approving and operating a website that collects evidence for use in court.

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