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Granny Sues RIAA Over Unlicensed Investigator

kdawson posted about 7 years ago | from the more-ways-to-hit-them-back dept.

The Courts 206

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "An elderly, non-file-sharing grandmother from East Texas, who had been sued by the RIAA after being displaced by Hurricane Rita, has sought leave to file counterclaims against the RIAA record companies for using unlicensed investigators. In her counterclaims (PDF) Ms. Crain claims that the record companies 'entered into an agreement with a private investigations company to provide investigative services which led to the production of evidence to be used in court against counterclaim plaintiff, including the identification of an IP address on the basis of which counterclaim defendants filed their suit... [They] were at the time of this agreement aware that the aforementioned private investigations company was unlicensed to conduct investigations in the State of Texas specifically, and in other states as well... [T]hey agreed between themselves and understood that unlicensed and unlawful investigations would take place in order to provide evidence for this lawsuit, as well as thousands of others as part of a mass litigation campaign... [T]he private investigations company hired by plaintiffs engaged in one or more overt acts of unlawful private investigation... Such actions constitute civil conspiracy under Texas common law.'"

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206 comments

WooHoo (1)

ZachMG (1122511) | about 7 years ago | (#19738219)

Old People Strike Again: MP3 Granny

Re:WooHoo (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#19738233)

i'm suprised they have gotten away with all this shit for so long.

Its the little old lady who got a subpoena (5, Funny)

modecx (130548) | about 7 years ago | (#19738599)

Its the little old lady who got a subpoena
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
She got a mean nasty letter after fleeing hurricane Rita
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
It said "Hey, we caught you downloading our garbage,
so we've hired a bunch of lawyers to sue you to Dodge!"

And everybody's saying theres nobody meaner
Than the mean nasty lawyers from the RIAAaaahhhh
They sue real fast and with no good reason
They're like "Grandmas should be in open season!"

Its the little old lady who got a subpoena...

You can see her on the stand telling the truth now
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
With her four lawyers and her bi-focal glasses now
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
"Them lousy RIAA jerks hired an investigator
who would be better occupied as my personal masturbator!"

You can see her on the stand her kickin' RIAA ass now
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
With her four salivating lawyers and her beehive hair now
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
She's gonna have an RIAA executive as her waiter
cause they cant help being evil vindicators

And everybodys saying theres nobody meaner
Than the little old lady who got a subpoena
She counter sues real fast and packs a punch
They say She's out to eat some asshole's lunch...

Its the little old lady who got a subpoena

Re:Its the little old lady who got a subpoena (0)

banuk (148382) | about 7 years ago | (#19738811)

That seems to have the same tempo/beat as a song I used to know by some white rapper in the early 90s..... hmmm what's that knocking on my door

Re:Its the little old lady who got a subpoena (1)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | about 7 years ago | (#19739147)

Pity. I think that fella intended it to have the same tempo as a song by some American surf-band from the early '60s.

Re:Its the little old lady who got a subpoena (2, Informative)

EssenceLumin (755374) | about 7 years ago | (#19739191)

That would be Little Old Lady from Pasadena.

Re:Its the little old lady who got a subpoena-D/L (4, Funny)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | about 7 years ago | (#19739461)

This just makes me want to go out there and D/L the original.

Oops, WinMX is down.

And yet... (1)

jschroering (611063) | about 7 years ago | (#19738223)

my grandmother can't even double click...

Good for this lady..

Jimmy

Re:And yet... (3, Insightful)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#19738297)

you don't have to be a techno wiz to fight against the RIAA. just need some money to fight them with.

Re:And yet... (1)

jschroering (611063) | about 7 years ago | (#19738321)

Which grandparents normally have, so this works well!

Jimmy

Re:And yet... (3, Funny)

Himring (646324) | about 7 years ago | (#19738539)

Apparently, you don't have to know anything about technology in order to work as a lawyer for the RIAA....

Re:And yet... (5, Funny)

click2005 (921437) | about 7 years ago | (#19738667)

You don't even need to know anything about technology to be a technology expert for the RIAA.

Re:And yet... (1)

jmarans (669013) | about 7 years ago | (#19738869)

So if you win and the courts find against the RIAA, what's it worth when the president will commute the sentence.

Re:And yet... (4, Informative)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | about 7 years ago | (#19739775)

you don't have to be a techno wiz to fight against the RIAA. just need some money to fight them with.
I don't think Ms. Crain has money. What she has is a great Legal Aid lawyer, John Stoneham, from Lone Star Legal Aid [lonestarlegal.org] .

Grandma's are young now adays... (-1, Troll)

DontScotty (978874) | about 7 years ago | (#19738389)

If the grandma was knocked up at 14 years old (*as is common down south*) - And, her daughter was knocked up at 14 years old (*grandma is now 28*) - So, the grandma is 28 or so - and able to use a computer. :-)

Re:Grandma's are young now adays... (0, Troll)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | about 7 years ago | (#19738491)

Q: How do you know if a southern woman is a virgin?

A: Can she outrun her brothers?

Re:Grandma's are young now adays... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19739297)

Should the parent be +5 funny, or -1 stupid (and offtopic) stereotype . . . .

Re:And yet... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738633)

Just for the record, there are grannies that haven't crossed the 30 y.o. barrier in my neighborhood(s),... ....... hey, it wasn't me!

There's no reason to hunt them all down (-1, Flamebait)

gelfling (6534) | about 7 years ago | (#19738225)

The RIAA is officially an enemy of the state and they, their families should all be hunted down and killed. Exterminate them all.

Re:There's no reason to hunt them all down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738259)

erm... I'm not so sure about that part about their families.

Re:There's no reason to hunt them all down (1, Interesting)

bullwin69 (521778) | about 7 years ago | (#19738329)

What the "F" is it going to take to prove that these people are evil??? Is there no cort in the land that can protect us from these money sucking bastards? All the people in the RIAA should be striped of there money and hung in public.

Re:There's no reason to hunt them all down (4, Funny)

blueforce (192332) | about 7 years ago | (#19739215)

...and when were done with that wheel torcher them with speling lesons!!

Yarr!

Re:There's no reason to hunt them all down (1)

aarggh (806617) | about 7 years ago | (#19739307)

I was actually thinking the same thing! Sometimes it's just too painful for words to express.

Re:There's no reason to hunt them all down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738337)

>>...they, their families should all be hunted down and killed. Exterminate them all.

Alec Baldwin reads slashdot? Who knew?

I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT HORSECOCK! (-1, Troll)

skulgnome (1114401) | about 7 years ago | (#19738227)

[no text]

Re:I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT HORSECOCK! (-1, Offtopic)

loucura! (247834) | about 7 years ago | (#19738411)

Actually, it is... nice try though, Fabio.

I wonder if she's from Pasadena? (2, Funny)

CorSci81 (1007499) | about 7 years ago | (#19738253)

Wrong Pasadena, I know, but... still.

Re:I wonder if she's from Pasadena? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738565)

Way to show your age! Should we call you Jan or Dean?

Re:I wonder if she's from Pasadena? (1)

BCW2 (168187) | about 7 years ago | (#19738771)

Go granny go!

She is either very smart or hired a good? shyster.

Please pay for your copyright violation. (2, Funny)

sconeu (64226) | about 7 years ago | (#19739411)

We own that song. You are an Evil Content Pirate(TM). Please pay us <PINKY-TO-MOUTH>ONE MILLION DOLLARS!</PINKY-TO-MOUTH>

Signed,

The RIAA

Re:Please pay for your copyright violation. (1)

BCW2 (168187) | about 7 years ago | (#19739553)

You said you were going to kiss my what? i'm hard of hearing.

The RIAA is such a broken record.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738291)

Well, her lawyer knew enough to discover this information and file this anyway...

The RIAA seriously needs to reconsider its position on this entire subject ... this has been a sad joke for such a long time ....

Re:The RIAA is such a broken record.... (4, Funny)

jschroering (611063) | about 7 years ago | (#19738357)

Well, if it is a case of a broken record, are they going to sue themselves for using the backup copy they made? :)

Jimmy

Re:The RIAA is such a broken record.... (2, Funny)

Basilius (184226) | about 7 years ago | (#19738373)

> Well, if it is a case of a broken record, are they going to sue themselves for using the backup copy they made? :)

Nah - it's handled by the automatic deduction off the royalties for breakage.

Re:The RIAA is such a broken record.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738479)

The RIAA seriously needs to reconsider its position on this entire subject ... this has been a sad joke for such a long time ....

Do we even need it?

RIAA put some grannies in the ambulance ... (4, Informative)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | about 7 years ago | (#19738655)

... and the lawyer stampede has begun.

Well, her lawyer knew enough to discover this information and file this anyway...

You'll recall from an earlier article that Tanya Anderson's lawyer (in Oregon) http://www.ilrweb.com/viewILRPDFfull.asp?filename= andersen_riaa_070622complaint [slashdot.org] ">found a number of grounds on which to countersue. One of those was using an unlicensed private investigator to get the IP number of alleged private-party infringers.

Texas has a similar requirement for private investigators to be licensed. So THIS granny's attorney is filing a copycat countersuit. This is the second buffalo in the stampede.

I expect we'll shortly see television ads from the law offices of James Sokolove asking whether you have received a settlement request from the RIAA, which is about to be nibbled to death by ducks. B-)

Re:RIAA put some grannies in the ambulance ... (3, Funny)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | about 7 years ago | (#19738707)

Should have previewed. Here's the fixed links:

You'll recall from an earlier article [slashdot.org] that Tanya Anderson's lawyer (in Oregon) found a number of grounds [ilrweb.com] on which to countersue.

[...]

I expect we'll shortly see television ads from the law offices of James Sokolove [jimsokolove.com] asking whether you have received a settlement request from the RIAA [...]

Re:RIAA put some grannies in the ambulance ... (2, Insightful)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 7 years ago | (#19739067)

Two buffaloes don't make a stampede... not quite, no...

Re:RIAA put some grannies in the ambulance ... (4, Funny)

grcumb (781340) | about 7 years ago | (#19739097)

Two buffaloes don't make a stampede... not quite, no...

You wouldn't say that if you were standing in front of them. 8^)

Re:RIAA put some grannies in the ambulance ... (4, Funny)

Fnord666 (889225) | about 7 years ago | (#19739685)

...from the RIAA, which is about to be nibbled to death by ducks.
Somebody please post this to youtube when it happens!

where's the haha tag? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738317)

if the RIAA was smart they wouldn't hire those kind of investigators to do their dirty work, they could postpone their inevitable doom for a little longer had they collected actual evidence and left the grannies alone. Now that their stupidity is well understood, people are fighting back and kicking the RIAA's ass on a daily basis. They do us a big favor by doing stupid things that hasten their decline.

Lawyers Rock (1)

SRA8 (859587) | about 7 years ago | (#19738333)

...when they are working for the good guys. Nice to see that the RIAA is finally being challenged, not on the slashdot message boards amongst the powerless, but in the courts amongst the layers.

Re:Lawyers Rock (3, Funny)

CorSci81 (1007499) | about 7 years ago | (#19738381)

courts amongst the layers
Layers? Of cake? And do they have creamy filling?

Re:Lawyers Rock (2, Funny)

bladesjester (774793) | about 7 years ago | (#19738415)

If the actions of the RIAA's members are anything to go by, the layers are probably composed of something that was formerly inside a male cow.

Re:Lawyers Rock (3, Funny)

falsified (638041) | about 7 years ago | (#19738929)

Just to let you know, there's no such thing as a male cow. See, we people from Wisconsin aren't so useless!

Re:Lawyers Rock (1)

timmarhy (659436) | about 7 years ago | (#19739139)

Hey, i'm composed of 99% bull semen you insensitive clod!

Not really (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | about 7 years ago | (#19738437)

I'd rather have no lawyers than try figure out which are the black hat and white hat laywers.

Re:Not really (5, Insightful)

rgmoore (133276) | about 7 years ago | (#19738795)

Lawyers aren't the real problem, and getting rid of them isn't a solution. The underlying problem is that some people are anti-social jerks who have discovered that they can get their way by bullying others. Under our current system, the jerks hire lawyers to do their bullying for them. If you eliminate the lawyers, the jerks will just find a new set of bullies to do their dirty work.

The real solution is to give ordinary, decent people a way of striking back when the bullies get on their case. Counter-suits, like the one mentioned in this article, are a good way of doing that. If everyone who was wrongly accused by the RIAA decided to launch a nasty counter-suit rather than caving in, the litigation strategy would grind to a halt- or at least focus on the worst, most obvious real offenders rather than people chosen at random.

Re:Not really (2, Interesting)

G-funk (22712) | about 7 years ago | (#19739311)

The problem isn't the RIAA going around sueing innocent people (well not the big problem), the problem is corporate interests buying never-ending copyright and increasingly stricter punishments for doing anything that might possibly be used to violate said purchased perpetual copyright. The question becomes, what the bejesus can those of us who care (the nerdy minority) do?

Not The Problem (1)

sauge (930823) | about 7 years ago | (#19739781)

the problem is corporate interests buying never-ending copyright and increasingly stricter punishments for doing anything that might possibly be used to violate said purchased perpetual copyright. The question becomes, what the bejesus can those of us who care (the nerdy minority) do?

This is not the problem. The problem is the American voter continuously re-elect the fools who do these things. The answer can be found in the technical roots that helped halt the amnesty bill.

Oh really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738877)

"You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an att.... BWHAHAHA we did away with those. Now let me drag you before a judge who'll probably have you thrown in jail before you understand half of it."

Arms Dealers Rock Too (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738611)

when they're supplying your side.

But of course they're supplying the other side as well, and making a profit from all conflict.

The US is in the crappy state it's in because of lawyers. The fact that that granny's lawyer happens to be fighting an evil cartel of blood-sucking music industry parasites sounds nice, but it's just business as usual for a profession predicated on causing misery so that they can defend against it.

Re:Arms Dealers Rock Too (1)

isaac (2852) | about 7 years ago | (#19738969)

The US is in the crappy state it's in because of lawyers.


That seems dubious to me. If this were Somalia or Russia, there'd be no lawyers involved because granny would have been gunned down on the sidewalk.

The legal system might too often be a tool of oppression against the powerless, but it sure beats the other kind of oppression. You know, the kind with bullets.

-Isaac

Re:Arms Dealers Rock Too (1)

timmarhy (659436) | about 7 years ago | (#19739351)

thats rubbish. america wasn't anything like russia or somalia 50 years ago and it didn't have so much insane litigation either. your just pointing out extreme's, it doesn't mean we should be putting up with this ligigation happy bullshit.

Re:Arms Dealers Rock Too (1)

shoemilk (1008173) | about 7 years ago | (#19739787)

Yeah, we should flip a coin; heads we get to shoot, tails it's litigation time!

Every other day (5, Interesting)

dunezone (899268) | about 7 years ago | (#19738343)

It seems like every other day we either find out that the RIAA used some illegal practice or lost a case against a so called music pirate though they keep dishing out lawsuits. The RIAA train has derailed but it doesn't seem to be slowing any time soon.

Re:Every other day (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738421)

No, every other day we hear of some crackpot motion to dismiss or lawsuits under RICO etc. which have approximatly zero chance of success. If slashdot only reported on actual rulings, there'd be a lot less. Like that case that's been up at least half a dozen time where they started suing the mother, found out it was the daughter, went on to sue her and finally dropped the charges against the mother. Reported like a huge win on slashdot, when it did pretty much nothing good for the family. I think they were forced to pay some of the mother's court cost but they probablz took it out of her daughter's hide. Yeah, great win...

Re:Every other day (3, Insightful)

waferthinmint (1051350) | about 7 years ago | (#19738641)

I would be interested in seeing the stats you are describing. Is there a site you can link where they are compiled? You are correct in pointing out the flawed nature of only going by the anecdotal evidence. I just wish you hadn't dumbed down your message with your pissy attitude and tone -- it makes it more likely that your thoughts will get lost in the noise.

That just means.. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738473)

The RIAA train has derailed but it doesn't seem to be slowing any time soon.

That just means it's going to be one spectacular train wreck.

Re:Every other day (-1, Troll)

Mister Kay (1119377) | about 7 years ago | (#19738653)

This log is your log,
This log is my log
When lightning struck it
it hit a bucket

MOE:I poured some onions inside my trousers

This log it used to be a tree
Now it spreads love to you and me
Hey look it's heading out to sea

Re:Every other day (3, Insightful)

rgmoore (133276) | about 7 years ago | (#19738881)

It seems like every other day we either find out that the RIAA used some illegal practice or lost a case against a so called music pirate though they keep dishing out lawsuits. The RIAA train has derailed but it doesn't seem to be slowing any time soon.

You only hear about the people striking back because they're the rare counter-example. You don't hear about the thousands and thousands of people who settle to get the lawyers off their backs.

The RIAA train hasn't derailed. The function of the lawsuits isn't to make money. The goal is to scare people away from file sharing and back into the music store, either bricks and mortar or online. As long as the lawsuits stop the bleeding from file sharing, they only have to break even, or just avoid losing too much money, to serve the real goals of the RIAA.

Re:Every other day (2, Insightful)

MacWiz (665750) | about 7 years ago | (#19739557)

The RIAA train hasn't derailed.

Really? Did they take someone to trial and win today?

The function of the lawsuits isn't to make money. The goal is to scare people away from file sharing and back into the music store, either bricks and mortar or online.

They're doing a bang-up job there, too. Tower Records says "Thanks" for the extra traffic.

Re:Every other day (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | about 7 years ago | (#19739677)

The goal is to scare people away from file sharing [...]

Well, they convinced me: I have purchased enough CDs over the years to listen for months without hearing a repeat. Nowadays the only CDs I purchase are from local acts, to help support them. Plus, it's nice to talk to the artist and be appreciated, rather than "another face in the crowd of 50,000" at a stadium as they're whisked away by their security.

What's amusing is that Metallica was Napster's biggest "advertiser" back in the mid-90s.

Perhaps I'm just old, and music isn't as important as other things in life.

Re:Every other day (1)

charlieman (972526) | about 7 years ago | (#19739513)

And guess who's money are they using for that!

Good, but... (5, Insightful)

adona1 (1078711) | about 7 years ago | (#19738387)

I'm happy for the RIAA to get anything and everything that's coming to them, but I don't think it will change their litigation-happy behaviour at all. The problem is that the RIAA is just a faceless body representing the big labels, and until people start bitching about Sony, Universal Music, EMI etc, then what does the RIAA care if people hate them? They're not selling the products, they exist solely as a trade group [wikipedia.org] , and if they take all the flak that rightfully belongs to the labels, they'll still do it.

It's the puppeteers, not the puppet, that needs to be demonized.

Re:Good, but... (1)

Aussie (10167) | about 7 years ago | (#19738515)

The record companies are Pierson's Puppeteers [wikipedia.org] ?
Well that explains a lot.

Re:Good, but... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738683)

The problem is that the RIAA is just a faceless body representing the big labels...

So why not fight fire with fire!?! Sign up for internet service, and buy all your computer equipment and software, under your own "Electronic Media Services" LLC! Then you'll be as 'faceless' as they are!

Re:Good, but... (2, Interesting)

phorm (591458) | about 7 years ago | (#19738905)

They will if the courts start costing them big-time money (more than they do already). OK, so they're getting $3000 settlements. How much are they paying their pack of lawyers per hour? I bet it's a lot, so even the profit from that might be small.

Start having a bunch of people hitting back. Lawyers in court == more lost money. Start having them losing cases for big money == more lost money. Start having the courts perhaps decide that they lose the rights to press suites in regards to the material they're sueing for (some have indicated that it's possible).

Re:Good, but... (3, Informative)

Courageous (228506) | about 7 years ago | (#19739085)

I'm happy for the RIAA to get anything and everything that's coming to them, but I don't think it will change their litigation-happy behaviour at all.

Depends on the findings. There was a case that came up just recently where the RIAA is being accused of both federal and state RICO charges as well as quite a number of other things. While this is only a civil case, these are criminal charges. If the findings go to the plaintiff on some of the more serious charges, and were the RIAA not to reform itself, the remedies in a follow-on case from any other party could be quite severe indeed.

C//

If only boycotts worked (2, Interesting)

BillGatesLoveChild (1046184) | about 7 years ago | (#19739467)

Amen!!!!! Imagine one week if Sony sold absolutely nothing across the whole US. Ouch! They'd freak out, and Howard Stringer's head would be served to shareholders on a platter. Hey, you don't even need to boycott them all. Pick them off one by one. Causes division in the ranks: While one suffers the others shrug.

In the past consumer boycotts have rarely if ever worked, because most consumers either don't know or don't care, or think what's the use. So form a message and target it. Spread it on Myspace and Youtube: The sort of people where those that buy SONY guy congregate. Reach out. Let them know why to hate the RIAA, no, call them by their real names Sony, Universal Music, EMI etc. Better yet, list the artists since most kids won't know which artist _belongs_ to which record company. Sure some won't go along with it, but so long as SONY see dropping sales, the message will get across.

To the SONY web watcher reading this: eat me

Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738507)

Wow, that makes me ... what's the opposite of dying a little inside?

Re:Hmm (3, Interesting)

Teifion (1022083) | about 7 years ago | (#19738581)

Wow, that makes me ... what's the opposite of dying a little inside?
Not sure, could be any of the following.
- Living a little inside
- Living a little outside
- Living a lot inside
- Living a lot outside
- Dying a little outside
- Dying a lot outside
- Dying a lot inside

It all depends on what you want to reverse...

I think it's great that people are fighting back against the RIAA. I completely support what the RIAA are meant to stand for (I.E. the anti-piracy thing) but their attitude, methods and motives are terrible.

you GO, girl! (1)

swschrad (312009) | about 7 years ago | (#19738547)

heh, don't send airhead PIs to mess with a little old lady who got through a level-5 hurricane. they're out of their league.

Re:you GO, girl! (4, Funny)

karnal (22275) | about 7 years ago | (#19738597)

heh, don't send airhead PIs to mess with a little old lady who got through a level-5 hurricane. they're out of their league.
I don't get it - is that some sort of comparison of strength or something in an RPG? Level-5 hurricane survivor FTW?

Re:you GO, girl! (2, Informative)

martin_henry (1032656) | about 7 years ago | (#19739021)

The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale:
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutsshs.shtml [noaa.gov]


first result on google, dude! it's not like filing a legal counterclaim or anything :P

Re:you GO, girl! (3, Interesting)

Jaysyn (203771) | about 7 years ago | (#19739419)

FirstGov.gov is the U.S. Government's official Web portal to all Federal, state and local government Web resources and services.

The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale

The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale is a 1-5 rating based on the hurricane's present intensity. This is used to give an estimate of the potential property damage and flooding expected along the coast from a hurricane landfall. Wind speed is the determining factor in the scale, as storm surge values are highly dependent on the slope of the continental shelf and the shape of the coastline, in the landfall region. Note that all winds are using the U.S. 1-minute average.

Category One Hurricane:
        Winds 74-95 mph (64-82 kt or 119-153 km/hr). Storm surge generally 4-5 ft above normal. No real damage to building structures. Damage primarily to unanchored mobile homes, shrubbery, and trees. Some damage to poorly constructed signs. Also, some coastal road flooding and minor pier damage. Hurricane Lili of 2002 made landfall on the Louisiana coast as a Category One hurricane. Hurricane Gaston of 2004 was a Category One hurricane that made landfall along the central South Carolina coast.

Category Two Hurricane:
        Winds 96-110 mph (83-95 kt or 154-177 km/hr). Storm surge generally 6-8 feet above normal. Some roofing material, door, and window damage of buildings. Considerable damage to shrubbery and trees with some trees blown down. Considerable damage to mobile homes, poorly constructed signs, and piers. Coastal and low-lying escape routes flood 2-4 hours before arrival of the hurricane center. Small craft in unprotected anchorages break moorings. Hurricane Frances of 2004 made landfall over the southern end of Hutchinson Island, Florida as a Category Two hurricane. Hurricane Isabel of 2003 made landfall near Drum Inlet on the Outer Banks of North Carolina as a Category 2 hurricane.

Category Three Hurricane:
        Winds 111-130 mph (96-113 kt or 178-209 km/hr). Storm surge generally 9-12 ft above normal. Some structural damage to small residences and utility buildings with a minor amount of curtainwall failures. Damage to shrubbery and trees with foliage blown off trees and large trees blown down. Mobile homes and poorly constructed signs are destroyed. Low-lying escape routes are cut by rising water 3-5 hours before arrival of the center of the hurricane. Flooding near the coast destroys smaller structures with larger structures damaged by battering from floating debris. Terrain continuously lower than 5 ft above mean sea level may be flooded inland 8 miles (13 km) or more. Evacuation of low-lying residences with several blocks of the shoreline may be required. Hurricanes Jeanne and Ivan of 2004 were Category Three hurricanes when they made landfall in Florida and in Alabama, respectively.

Category Four Hurricane:
        Winds 131-155 mph (114-135 kt or 210-249 km/hr). Storm surge generally 13-18 ft above normal. More extensive curtainwall failures with some complete roof structure failures on small residences. Shrubs, trees, and all signs are blown down. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Extensive damage to doors and windows. Low-lying escape routes may be cut by rising water 3-5 hours before arrival of the center of the hurricane. Major damage to lower floors of structures near the shore. Terrain lower than 10 ft above sea level may be flooded requiring massive evacuation of residential areas as far inland as 6 miles (10 km). Hurricane Charley of 2004 was a Category Four hurricane made landfall in Charlotte County, Florida with winds of 150 mph. Hurricane Dennis (pdf) of 2005 struck the island of Cuba as a Category Four hurricane.
From NOAA.gov

Category Five Hurricane:
        Winds greater than 155 mph (135 kt or 249 km/hr). Storm surge generally greater than 18 ft above normal. Complete roof failure on many residences and industrial buildings. Some complete building failures with small utility buildings blown over or away. All shrubs, trees, and signs blown down. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Severe and extensive window and door damage. Low-lying escape routes are cut by rising water 3-5 hours before arrival of the center of the hurricane. Major damage to lower floors of all structures located less than 15 ft above sea level and within 500 yards of the shoreline. Massive evacuation of residential areas on low ground within 5-10 miles (8-16 km) of the shoreline may be required.

Re:you GO, girl! (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | about 7 years ago | (#19739479)

Mod this down, I swear to God I only copied the Cat 5 part of this, I don't no idea how I managed to get the rest.

I guess in Texas... (5, Funny)

yotto (590067) | about 7 years ago | (#19738591)

RIAA et al have learned a valuable lesson here.

In Texas, old ladies SUE YOU!

Re:I guess in Texas... (1)

Titoxd (1116095) | about 7 years ago | (#19739797)

Damn, Texas is worse than Soviet Russia!

Licensing (4, Insightful)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | about 7 years ago | (#19738601)

Look, I'm all for the RIAA burning in hell. But I really hate the idea of having to use a "licensed" investigator. The following *is not* to be taken for a RIAA analogy:

Let's say your laptop is stolen. Let's say you had a program that reported IP addresses. Someone buys your laptop from the thief for a stupid low price and hooks it up. It reports their IP. You turn the evidence over to a cop who goes to get your laptop.

1. You were not licensed to be an investigator.
2. The program author was also not licensed.
3. The cop obtained evidence from you.

The person who bought stolen property cannot be charged with a crime. All because you didn't have a "license".

Instead, the law requiring a license should be replaced with a "suspects' bill of rights". Anyone can investigate, but if his/her rights are violated, then the evidence becomes poisoned fruit.

Re:Licensing (1)

Embedded2004 (789698) | about 7 years ago | (#19738639)

"The person who bought stolen property cannot be charged with a crime. All because you didn't have a "license"" Wait what? Are you saying if you buy something on ebay and it turns out it was stolen you should be the one charged? How can you possibly know whether something on ebay is stolen or not?

Re:Licensing (1)

Fooker (656693) | about 7 years ago | (#19738691)

Common sense would dictate that if your buying something that retails for over $1000 and your getting it for the stupid low price of $50 something isn't right. I will admit though that at times you don't know though when you buy something and the price of what your getting isn't to far fetched, say buying something for $400 when it retails for $550 and it's used, that would seem reasonable to anyone.

Re:Licensing (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | about 7 years ago | (#19738773)

buy 4 $1000 items for $50 assuming each is broken, and in the end you can probably get 1 working if you have the skills, saving $800 on buying one, or if you get two working you can sell one at half it's value and still profit by $300 AND the one you kept for yourself.

Re:Licensing (1)

Fooker (656693) | about 7 years ago | (#19738885)

This is also very true. I know some friends who do this. Broken stuff always sells for cheap online.

Re:Licensing (1)

QuantumG (50515) | about 7 years ago | (#19738643)

You didn't hire anyone to do the investigation for you.. you did it yourself.. therefore these laws clearly don't apply.

Re:Licensing (4, Insightful)

Fooker (656693) | about 7 years ago | (#19738665)

Actually, that person can be charged with a crime, receiving stolen property. That whole investigating thing has to with if you were paid or not. You are not being paid to find your own stolen property. The RIAA paid another company to investigate for them. The key word is "company". IE a for profit organization. Thats where the whole "unlicensed investigators" thing comes in.

Re:Licensing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19738695)

You lack of understanding of IP shows why Licensing might not be daft.

Re:Licensing (1)

Tuoqui (1091447) | about 7 years ago | (#19738703)

1) You are the victim, therefore any and all information you have at your disposal would not require a license to turn over to police.

2) Debatable, you could argue it is the same as putting an alarm or GPS on your car. It is a theft deterrant and/or retrieval device.

3) That's what cops do, they get info from the victim to find the criminal and presumably put them behind bars or make them pay.

Your analogy is flawed... (5, Insightful)

Svartalf (2997) | about 7 years ago | (#19738741)

YOU yourself can do this sort of thing, legally, even in Texas.

What isn't legit is hiring someone without a proper license to do this professionally
on your behalf. The same thing goes for providing security services of any kind (incl.
cybersecurity...)- YOU can do it for yourself, but if you hire someone, you need to hire
someone with a license or operating the umbrella of one to make it legit if something
goes wrong.

Where your analogy falls apart is that you make the assumption that a consultant doing
the work is analogous to your doing the same work. It's not as far as the civil and
criminal laws are concerned. Since the RIAA or the Labels themselves did not have direct
hire employees doing this work, it's not the same thing as what you present- they hired
a an outside professional (or group thereof) that didn't have a Federal
license for the work being done or a Texas state PI's license. This makes it all subject
to litigation like what's now happening to them.

Civil vs. Criminal (4, Insightful)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | about 7 years ago | (#19738755)

Let's say your laptop is stolen. Let's say you had a program that reported IP addresses. Someone buys your laptop from the thief for a stupid low price and hooks it up. It reports their IP. You turn the evidence over to a cop who goes to get your laptop.

In addition to the objections others have pointed out, the situations are not analogous. Stealing your laptop is a criminal offense. Despite their propaganda, unlicensed copying of a RIAA member organization's content is a civil matter AND not theft.

Re:Civil vs. Criminal (0, Troll)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | about 7 years ago | (#19739079)

If you had actually *read* my post, you'd see that I pointed out that it was *not* an analogy.

>>Stealing your laptop is a criminal offense.

So is copyright infringement. The beginning of every movie tells you so.

>>Despite their propaganda, unlicensed copying of a RIAA member organization's content is a civil matter AND not theft.

I never said it was. My comment had nothing at all to do with the RIAA. It was a story about a guy who had his laptop stolen. He did an investigation and found the laptop. However, since he isn't licensed, the evidence he obtained cannot be used.

Re:Civil vs. Criminal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19739197)

So is copyright infringement. The beginning of every movie tells you so.

Do you believe everything you see in movies?

However, since he isn't licensed, the evidence he obtained cannot be used.

There's a good reason for that. A license isn't just a magical piece of paper that gives you the ability to present evidence in court. Evidence has to be gathered in a certain manner in order for it to be admissible, and a license is proof that you understand how to do that.

Re:Civil vs. Criminal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19739737)

Another difference is how everything plays out. If your "evidence" led cops to the guy, but the laptop was never found and no hard evidence was discovered, your "evidence" would likely not hold up in court.

However, if they caught the guy red handed with the laptop, then that's all the evidence they need. Your "evidence" wouldn't even be needed in court.

Re:Licensing (1)

falsified (638041) | about 7 years ago | (#19738999)

You wouldn't be doing the work of a private investigator though. I think you're confusing "being a private investigator" and "finding stuff out".

Big Difference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19739023)

Your hypothetical situation says you used the unlicensed investigator to get evidence, then you went to a cop, and the cop cot your laptop back from someone who BOUGHT it.

This is completely irrelevant.

If you want a good example, you use an unlicensed investigator to get evidence, then sue the someone who bought the laptop for 1000x the price of the laptop, not giving a crap about getting it back.

In America (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 7 years ago | (#19738967)

only old people do music file sharing...

Hell Yeah! (1)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 7 years ago | (#19739049)

You go granny! We need more lawyers to recognize the potential massive financial benefit of stepping in and represeting the RIAA's targets and swamp them with counter-suits.

Note to Ray (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | about 7 years ago | (#19739483)

Ray,

To paraphrase a phrase I once heard, I'd say about you:

He mined the power of Slashdot.

Re:Note to Ray (1)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | about 7 years ago | (#19739799)

Ray, To paraphrase a phrase I once heard, I'd say about you: He mined the power of Slashdot.
I don't know if I mined it, but I mind it.

So let me get this straight (1)

fireheadca (853580) | about 7 years ago | (#19739669)

Do ppl really want free music enough to sue record companies? hmmmmm. I wonder....
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