Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

First New Dismissal Motion Against RIAA Complaint

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the listen-to-it-on-npr dept.

The Courts 155

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Several weeks ago it was discovered that a California federal judge, in rejecting an RIAA application for default judgment, had dismissed the RIAA's standard complaint for failure to state a claim, calling it "conclusory" "boilerplate" "speculation" in Interscope v. Rodriguez. In the wake of that decision a New York woman being sued in Brooklyn federal court, Rae J Schwartz, has told the Court that she is making a motion to dismiss the complaint in her case, Elektra v. Schwartz. This is the first post-Interscope challenge to the RIAA's boilerplate, of which we are aware. This is the same case in which the RIAA had sent a letter to the Judge falsely indicating that AOL had 'confirmed that defendant owned an internet access account through which copyrighted sound recordings were downloaded and distributed'. Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her."

cancel ×

155 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

That's a good way to start the weekend! (0)

u-bend (1095729) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695437)

TGIF everyone! Am I being optimistic, or are the chinks in the armor showing more lately?

Re:That's a good way to start the weekend! (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20697027)

Negative, there has been no increased samurai activity. Details at 11.

Re:That's a good way to start the weekend! (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697417)

These are exceptional cases with unique details, i don't think that this sort of logic will prevail in the 'standard' cases they are bringing.

One can hope, but don't get too exited.

Re:That's a good way to start the weekend! (1)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698015)

These are exceptional cases with unique details, i don't think that this sort of logic will prevail in the 'standard' cases they are bringing. One can hope, but don't get too exited.
Wrong, these are not exceptional cases. All the cases are basically the same. All built on a foundation of hot air.

Re:That's a good way to start the weekend! (4, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698263)

At least be honest with what is going on as you know as well as i, that 90% of the cases really are legit. Perhaps their techniques for gathering 'evidence' is questionable, but people really ARE downloading/sharing files that don't have permission to do so. These sorts of cases really are different then the 90%: 'woman never owned a PC', 'didn't have service during the time period' etc.

Now, personally i don't have a problem with the downloading/sharing, but currently the law does. I also don't feel that it effects their profits ( other then a net increase due to people getting to listen to a lesser quality copy, 'hey, i want the real thing now' ) but i cant prove that with hard numbers.

It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers from (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695463)

Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis

So what? It doesn't pertain to the case at all. If I suffered from MS and I killed someone chances are I'm going to jail. The validity of the the RIAA claims against her aside, just because you have a disorder doesn't give you a free pass to do whatever you want.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (0, Redundant)

Mayhem178 (920970) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695617)

Was just about to post this exact thing. Ditto on everything the parent said.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695783)

But the RIAA accused her of downloading "You Can Learn to Breakdance" volumes 1-5.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (2, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695627)

Quite right. But it makes for excellent news copy, particularly if she's innocent and the RIAA have hit the wrong person with their scattergun approach to lawsuits.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (4, Insightful)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695749)

It's a variant on Missing White Woman Syndrome [wikipedia.org] . The important point is that, in trying to explain to the general public that music downloaders are not evil criminals then using this case to point out that the RIAA also chase MS victims may help sway opinion. It's not logical but it's how it works.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

AGMW (594303) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697449)

Yep indeed. Now if only it had been a Child with MS, oh how many papers we could have sold then!

Won't somebody think it was Children!

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (4, Informative)

bidule (173941) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695657)

Stress accelerate the development of this disease.

But of course insensitive clods like you don't care about quality of life.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (4, Interesting)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695743)

Stress accelerate[s] the development of this disease. But of course insensitive clods like you don't care about quality of life.
Thank you, bidule. Comforted to see a little humanity here. Yes it is absolutely true that stress has a very bad effect on MS, and in this case her brain lesions and other problems have been exacerbated by the litigation.

Meanwhile, this is a person who never even heard of, let alone participated in, file sharing, let alone used file sharing to infringe plaintiffs' copyrights.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696229)

It looks licke that this woman could sue the pants off of the RIAA for this. IANAL & YAAL, so please tell us that my guess is right?

-mcgrew [mcgrew.info]

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

AGMW (594303) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697123)

Whilst I can see that stress may make the MS symptoms worse, that doesn't stop what the GGP said being true. If she's guilty of something then she should be tried, regardless of whether she has a medical condition that might be exacerbated by the process. Now, once she is found innocent she could presumably use the MS issue as a means to increase the damages due.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

r3m0t (626466) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697617)

For a very long time, the evidence has overwhelmingly pointed to her being "not liable" (that's the legal term for being "innocent" in a civil case). If the RIAA has any sense, they know that she didn't do it. So why were they pursuing her for so long? It isn't as thought they need the money.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (2, Interesting)

AGMW (594303) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698045)

For a very long time, the evidence has overwhelmingly pointed to her being "not liable" (that's the legal term for being "innocent" in a civil case).

If this is also true, then it could also be used to help drive up any damages due!

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

memojuez (910304) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697667)

Excellent points!! Mod parent UP

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (2, Insightful)

thewiz (24994) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698077)

As a person with a disability, I agree with you. Here a few more points about a disability being pertinent to a court case:

Lawyers fees, court costs, travel and other expenses to fight back can affect the persons ability to get treatment and/or medication for the condition.

Have to go to court can take time away from getting needed treatment (think dialysis).

Also, the RIAA seems to be targeting people that they believe can't or won't fight back; I find it appalling that they seem to be going after people with disabilities, senior citizens, children and students (for the most part).
 

This is a good moment to share... (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696823)

I wrote this piece of Vendetta poetry (see sig) thinking about Tanya Andersen, but it applies to this case, too. Aren't they tired of this facade?

Those mischievous moguls magnify their monumental monopolies by multiplying their machinery: Digital Rights Management, DMCA, "Trusted" Computing (Mr. Stallman was not mistaken). Maltreating musicians, misusing copyright to the max, mirroring the Matrix by mining the government to monitor communications, marching like the militia to school meetings in the mornings with menacing memos, mirthfully mismatching mortified mothers for maleficent mobsters, mandating most into misspending more and more (or be imprisoned). Their main motivation is no mystery: Money.


That said, I really hope the judge dismisses the RIAA complaint. This could be a great precedent.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (-1, Flamebait)

Hodar (105577) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695719)

Oh, you don't understand.

She's got a disease. She can't help having this disease, you know, you too can get a disease - then how would you feel? So, we go on, making the accused out to be a victim, and no matter what they did - the fact that they have a disease becomes the parmount fact. Attention is shifted from the alledged crime, into a pity party. The accused becomes the victim, and what hard-hearted person would convict a victim?

This approach works on drunks accused of driving and killing families, an ex-president accused of molesting and raping women, drug addicts who kill, and car vandals who get caught and claim that ADD somehow contributed to the spray paint they used to 'tag' a car. It's really a very versatile excuse. "It's not my fault, because ......"

Personally, I'm inclined to throw the book at any idiot who uses this pathetic excuse. I think a reasonable person doesn't care what childhood experiences, social or economic background, race, creed, religion, sex or sexual orientation the accused has - we just want to know if they are guilty of the crime or not. I don't care if he's sick, poor, previously abused in a prior life, or wears elf shoes while doing Scottish dances. Do the crime, do the time.

I doubt I'm alone on this one.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (4, Insightful)

phoenixwade (997892) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695845)

Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis
So what? It doesn't pertain to the case at all. If I suffered from MS and I killed someone chances are I'm going to jail. The validity of the the RIAA claims against her aside, just because you have a disorder doesn't give you a free pass to do whatever you want.
As to the Letter of the law, you are right. And the fact that one of the defendants was dead, or a grandmother, or a single mother of three is also meaningless as far as the law is concerned.

However, considering the tactics and FUD the RIAA is using in the cases they've filed, and that the general public doesn't respond to what is legal, it responds to what the media feeds them, I have no problem with it being pointed out.

Or, to put it another way, it makes no difference what Race a person is, when they are arrested for a crime, yet you will almost always have it pointed out. You can find similar examples involving religion, sex (Female Murder suspects are really big news in my area), or a host of other things that are not directly pertinent to the case itself. Commenting about these things increases the attention the case gets, and, although not directly relevant, it is a true comment.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (4, Insightful)

BoberFett (127537) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695903)

If the RIAA can claim that pirates are helping terrorists in their press releases, why can't their victims play the pity card? Turnabout is fair play.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

bstorer (738305) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696031)

I propose a sliding scale of crimes you can get away with given a certain disease. For example: Restless leg syndrome - Jaywalking Crohn's Disease - Speeding Lupus - Disorderly conduct MS - Copyright infringement AIDS - Grand theft auto Terminal cancer - Attemped murder I'm sure you all can work it out from here.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (3, Funny)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696601)

I propose a sliding scale of crimes you can get away with given a certain disease

You've forgotten the most popular one for this group: real or imagined Asperger's or ADHD etc: license to troll and flame on Slashdot, AND right to take Highly Theatrical Umbrage when someone questions whether or not perhaps you're just annoying, instead.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

phantomlord (38815) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698607)

Terminal cancer - Attemped murder
Actually happened. My cousin was murdered by a guy with colon cancer who had six months to live. The court let him go because he would likely die before the trial could be finished and forcing him to die in jail would be cruel. Twelve years later, my cousin's 3 kids don't have a father and the guy is still alive. Since the court dismissed his case, he never had to pay for his crime.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

e-scetic (1003976) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696287)

Many people with MS are effectively and legally blind as a result of their disease. The defense may argue that the defendant doesn't personally use the account as a result of her blindness.

Also, the OP probably mentioned her disease because there has been a pattern of the RIAA going after disadvantaged groups. Where the hell have you been, living under a rock or something?

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696529)

As a legally blind computer user, I find your proposed defense somewhere between amusing and offensive.

Also, while MS can cause legal blindness, in many people it doesn't. I know an MS patient whose vision briefly became impaired then returned to "normal". Equating MS to vision impairment is an error.

On to the more valid part of your post:

I agree that it was mentioned because it fits a pattern in the RIAA's lawsuits. But, I also think it feels out of place the way it's wedged into the article summary. Bottom line: If, on the one hand, the RIAA believes in their case, they shouldn't be expected to cede their perceived rights to anybody with a health problem. If they know (as many suspect they do) that their legal actions are bogus, and if they are trying to intimidate people and extort money wherever they can, then their choice of target in this case makes their behavior marginally worse -- but only marginally compared to the underlying premise that they're knowingly bullying innocent people.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1, Flamebait)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696861)

Yes.

And this is why pretty hot female teachers having sex with 15 year old male students are not punished while handsome male teachers having sex with 15 year old female students go to prison for a decade.

Because the law is blind and impartial.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697153)

"Because the law is blind and impartial."

A 15 year old female student can get pregnant. A 15 year old male student cannot.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

DBA Overlord (1159947) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698237)

"A 15 year old female student can get pregnant. A 15 year old male student cannot." You are not really that stupid, are you?

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698721)

And because a lot of guys think it would have been great to have gotten to have sex with their female teachers and do not even see it as potentially damaging.

But the law doesn't make those distinctions and yet it is unevenly enforced (which was my ironic point). We aspire to be a nation of laws, not men when in reality our laws are frequently selectively enforced. That is a problem with making everything illegal is that then you can suppress people you do not like by enforcing the law against them while ignoring it against people you do like.

Re:It doesn't matter when the defendant suffers fr (1)

Deagol (323173) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698557)

In spite of the "justice is blind" theory in which our legal system operates, it obviously isn't that cut and dry.

Take, for instance, an incident in the rural little town of Hinckley, UT. Several years ago, a town employee was caught with her hand in the proverbial cookie jar, having spent town funds on (among other things) diet pills and kitchen decorations. She defrauded a small community and broke the public trust. Pretty bad, if you ask me.

The asshat of a judge over the case, Judge Donald Eyre of Millard County, gave her a slap on the wrist. Yet, reading the local weekly police blotter (I used to live near this shit stain of a town), this judge routinely punished the Hispanic and white trash population far harsher for far lesser offenses. I wish I could find the case transcripts for this dude's court somewhere online, as I bet it would be very entertaining (this case in particular, but just in general). This county/town is relatively obscure, and the only page I could find with any reference to the case at all is an ex-employee's brief account here [unknownnews.net] .

So, while it not be right for personal standing or circumstance to affect court judgements, it does happen, so I see no reason why those caught in a corrupt industry's dragnet cannot exploit this and play the sympathy card.

Slight problem here (1)

Enlarged to Show Tex (911413) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695475)

Although it may be true that Interscope v. Rodriguez may be valid in the jurisdiction for which it was issued, there's no obligation upon any other jurisdiction to follow it. This battle against RIAA complaints is far from over, and is likely to result in a visit to the S. Ct. in ~10-15 years as these cases wind their way through the appellate process.

There is a distinct possibility that Elektra v. Schwartz will come up with a different result - and this could actually be a good thing. Remember, it takes conflicting holdings between circuits for the S. Ct. to hear most cases...

Re:Slight problem here (5, Informative)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695655)

Although it may be true that Interscope v. Rodriguez may be valid in the jurisdiction for which it was issued, there's no obligation upon any other jurisdiction to follow it.....
Except that the Interscope decision is based on Bell Atlantic v. Twombly [cornell.edu] , which is a decision of the United States Supreme Court, and binding on every court. And it is clear that the RIAA's standard complaint does not satisfy the 'plausibility' standard of Twombly.

Re:Slight problem here (2, Insightful)

Enlarged to Show Tex (911413) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695831)

I won't debate Interscope being based on Bell Atlantic v. Twombly; however, whether or not the RIAA's boilerplate meets the plausibility standard of Twombly is a matter subject to adjudication in the various jurisdictions. It will provide lots of opportunities to have the RIAA complaints dismissed, and that's something I think both of us can agree would be a Good Thing(tm).

Thank you for the discussion and the opportunity to improve the argument that I'm trying to make - I apologize for being a little less than clear in the GP post.

Re:Slight problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696081)

In short, the judge in Interscope v. Rodridguez called RIAA tactics a witch hunt.

Irrelavence... (5, Insightful)

mdobossy (674488) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695485)

"Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her."

Does anyone else get tired of all the "Joe Schmoe is 72 years old, has a goiter and an infected big toenail, but the RIAA still presses on!" sensationalism?

It seems as if every defendant in these cases has to be painted as a victim not only of the RIAA, but life itself. How about focusing on the fact that the RIAA has no proof, or legal grounds, and leave it at that!

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

moseman (190361) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695507)

EXACTLY - Great point.

Not irrelivant (2, Interesting)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695595)

The USA is a Socialist state and the state has a duty to protect the old, the young and infirm. The US has Social Security and many other socialist programs and the judiciary is the teeth of the system. The RIAA is casting such a big drag net, that they are bound to snare many cases that deserve sympathy, which then weakens their overall strategy. So it makes sense for lawyers to use these cases to hit back at the RIAA since they have a better chance of winning.

Re:Not irrelivant (1)

mdobossy (674488) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695711)

"So it makes sense for lawyers to use these cases to hit back at the RIAA since they have a better chance of winning."

I have to disagree with this one. If I was a judge/juror on a case and the defense was placing focus on some emotional, irrelevant piece of information, my first thought would be 'what are they hiding?' IMHO, pulling a move like this weakens a case, as it is an attempt to divert attention from the true issue.

Re:Not irrelivant (2, Insightful)

KevinIsOwn (618900) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696195)

Do you even know what socialism is? Just because Social Security has "social" in the name doesn't make the US a socialist state by any stretch of the imagination.

Re:Not irrelivant (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20697969)

Exactly.. the United States is a facist state

Re:Irrelavence... (4, Insightful)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695703)

"Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her."
Does anyone else get tired of all the "Joe Schmoe is 72 years old, has a goiter and an infected big toenail, but the RIAA still presses on!" sensationalism? It seems as if every defendant in these cases has to be painted as a victim not only of the RIAA, but life itself. How about focusing on the fact that the RIAA has no proof, or legal grounds, and leave it at that!
I've got a better idea.

How about focusing on both?

Both the fact that they have no case, and the fact that they inflict their frivolous cases on the most helpless and most defenseless people in our society.

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696187)

've got a better idea.

How about focusing on both?

Both the fact that they have no case, and the fact that they inflict their frivolous cases on the most helpless and most defenseless people in our society.


The issues is why do we need to focus on both?

If not having a case was enough to win then the nature of the defendant is irrelevant; I think we can both agree that bringing baseless lawsuits against anyone is a waste of court time and generally a bad thing.

However, not having a case is not enough to accomplish the broader goals - so you want as sympathetic of a defendant as possible - to win in court but more importantly in the court of public opinion. You want the RIAA to look like an evil entity so that they are forced to back off from their tactics. When focusing on both it's not because we want the defendant to win but because we want to win a PR victory as well. While that is not a bad thing, and something I would like to see, lets be honest about what is happening.

Your statement "they inflict their frivolous cases on the most helpless and most defenseless people in our society." is the type of hyperbole that is reinforced by the case under discussion - and it would be a lot harder to say that if the defendant was a rich but innocent jerk; to put the focus on that type of defendant doesn't makes the RIAA look as bad. Let's face it - the RIAA probably sued a number of people who did d/l music and could have paid for it - something that is overshadowed by the publicity surrounding one defendant.

As the saying goes - "Turn to the courts to learn about winning and losing and to God to learn about right and wrong."

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

Tuoqui (1091447) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697463)

You ask why do we need to focus on both? Simple, for the same reason the RIAA only touts their victories and never mentions anything about their defeats. It may not be relevant for the purpose of a legal victory but it very well may mean the difference in a moral victory and/or the court of public opinion that may actually cause some actions and consequences for the actions they are taking that may be legal... Such as say a Boycott [boycott-riaa.com] . Although I'm sure they'll try and spin it as piracy going up and go on a bigger suing spree.

If we focus on the most helpless and most defenseless people in our society and their INNOCENCE in the matter. It is possible to garner more public support against the RIAA. If the rich but innocent jerk would get the job done for this purpose then I'd be all for using them but it wont. Until the people see the RIAA for the evil twisted corporation that it is using an outdated business model and an army of lawyers willing to sue anyone that even copies a single song then people will continue to ignore it. It does not help that the media (which is owned by the RIAA/MPAA or its friends) is reporting on this and propagandizing the 'evils of p2p sharing' while subsequently and completely ignoring the fact that fair use rights do exist and that piracy numbers are always artificially inflated for the benefit of the 'wronged party'... Just like Photoshop, you can say its worth $600 or something like that but the fact remains the price is artificially inflated and so every pirated copy is costing them $600 (ya right! The thing is probably worth more like $60-120). I could make a program and say its worth $1,000,000 and count the illegal copies out there and come up with a damages number in the billions once it gets widely distributed.

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696327)

I've got a better idea.

How about focusing on both?

Both the fact that they have no case, and the fact that they inflict their frivolous cases on the most helpless and most defenseless people in our society.

Are you suggesting that the RIAA spacifically targets the disabled? I think you're out of line on this. It's not the issue, and infact distracts from the issue. It weakens the "movement" against RIAA-like actions, and takes focus away from the real issues of people like the RIAA and their masters abusing the legal system.

Re:Irrelavence... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20698715)

anyone who makes a career out of defending people who steal music clearly has no morals at all. i wouldn't bother arguing with the dolt.

Re:Irrelavence... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20698453)

bullshit. they don't pick on people because they are ill, its just anti-corporation communist pricks like you always highlight these cases to try and get sympathy for copyright thieves. How the fuck can you call yourself a lawyer?

Re:Irrelavence... (2, Insightful)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695723)

I think your point is valid, but I also think part of the point is that the RIAA is also targetting these people, in the wide list of people they can target, rather than just targetting any offenders they find.

As if they are specifically targeting those who would have the most trouble fighting back, regardles of amount of guilt.

Re:Irrelavence... (3, Insightful)

bidule (173941) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695797)

Stress accelerate the development of this disease. [wikipedia.org] But of course insensitive clods like you don't care about quality of life.

Yes, I am repeating myself, but good manners have to be hammered through thick skulls. And I know that these members of /. reactionary crowd are a lost cause but I don't care.

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

mdobossy (674488) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696027)

Whoa.. hold on here. Insensitive clod?

I realize that MS is a horrible disease, and would never wish it on anyone. That being said, 1) having a disease does not give you a free card to do anything you want. 2) It doesn't make what the RIAA is doing to other folks any easier.

The point I was trying to make in my first post was that no one, regardless of disease, race, creed, whatever, should be subjected to this kind of distortion of the law by the RIAA. Using lines like "even though she has MS, the RIAA presses on" in my mind implies that the RIAA should not be going after her, simply because her disease. Well, what if she had CF? AIDS? Stage 4 Cancer? And how about those who aren't suffering from disease? Are they somehow more deserving of these kinds of false litigation because they dont have MS?

IMHO, what the RIAA is doing is horrible, regardless of other circumstances in a person's life. By putting the focus on those other circumstances, you are distorting the issue, and are simply making exceptions to the rule, rather than fixing the whole thing. I would much rather see the outcome be "Improper litigation without proof by the RIAA is stopped," rather than "Improper litigation without proof by the RIAA is stopped against those with MS."

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696893)

And that point would be relevant in a countersuit, and should be used in the event of such a suit to ask for increased damages. It is not pertinent to the RIAA's suit against her, however.

Re:Irrelavence... (2, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695945)

I think this is important, not because it excuses anyone, but because it points to how just insane the RIAA has become for their little crusade. The fact that they are willing to risk the potentially *HUGE* PR backlash of suing old ladies and the handicapped just to win a few thousand $ in some petty music downloading cases is a good illustration of how far they've gone down the road.

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

CaptainZapp (182233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697529)

I think this is important, not because it excuses anyone, but because it points to how just insane the RIAA has become for their little crusade.

I think this is important, not because it excuses anyone, but because it points to just how inhumane the RIAA has become for their little crusade.

There, I corrected that for you...

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697789)

I think this is important, not because it excuses anyone, but because it points to how just insane the RIAA has become for their little crusade. The fact that they are willing to risk the potentially *HUGE* PR backlash of suing old ladies and the handicapped just to win a few thousand $ in some petty music downloading cases is a good illustration of how far they've gone down the road.
Keep in mind that in most cases the RIAA is suing an IP address with no knowledge of the person. Do defense lawyers respond to the charges and say "My client, who it just so happens has multiple sclerosis (thought you'd like to know), maintains..."? NewYorkCountyLawyer's claim that the RIAA goes after the most helpless members of our society, while true on its face, is a bit disingenious. The RIAA goes after IP addresses, and a lot of the people behind those IPs have downloaded/distributed copyrighted materials. That some of those happen to be sick or down on their luck is not necessarily a reflection that the RIAA targets these people specifically (perhaps they do, but I'd need to see evidence) but rather that the people swept up in their dragnet are a representative cross-section of the population, illnesses and frailties included.
 

Re:Irrelavence... (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695953)

It seems as if every defendant in these cases has to be painted as a victim not only of the RIAA, but life itself.
It may seem that way, in the same sense that it seems, from watching CSI, that cops solve every case that comes in front of them. But you are just reading about the cases where there are circumstances such as these, where the defendant has solid claims to refute guilt and / or some circumstance that endears them to the public.

There are plenty of other RIAA lawsuits going on that don't fit that and you don't read about those.

The last line of the submission isn't likely to have an impact on a judge's decision but it is still a fact, and the more of those the better. It is news, intended to keep you abreast of the goings on.

Irrelevance? (1)

richie2000 (159732) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695961)

Could be worse, could be the RIAA sued someone dead. Or someone who doesn't have a computer or a Internet connection, or is deaf. Or generally someone they figured was too weak from a debilitating illness to fight back.

No, they wouldn't... Would they?

Re:Irrelavence... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696061)

I assume "she suffers from Multiple Sclerosis" is a mistranslation of "she suffers from MS", meaning she has Windows installed. I think it's complete relevant to the case.

on the contrary, highly relevant (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697709)

It matters a great deal to the RIAA how capable its victims are of defending themselves. I think a quick study of the victims they choose to pursue would show a significant bias. The victims they pursue are poorer, sicker, and more clueless than the average citizen, or the average file trader. Bullies only pick on those who they think won't or can't fight back.

That the RIAA chooses such victims shows they aren't interested in a fair fight, and that they don't care what the real merits of their grievances are. They don't seem to have much faith in their own case, or surely they'd take a different approach than the extortion and terrorism they've attempted.

Lot of corporations think they don't need to behave responsibly, don't have to worry about secondary effects of their business, and that they can be as insane as they like because they're just little guys themselves in a big rubber room of laws which will restrain them from really hurting others and themselves too. One business dumping toxic waste in a lake may not be a big deal-- the environment out of sheer size if nothing else can sometimes absorb the abuse. Same goes for lobbying to pass "toxic laws". The world is a big place. But when everyone does it.... Sometimes it's too late when they discover they're bulls in a china shop instead, and the world isn't such a big place after all.

Re:Irrelavence... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20697867)

Slashdot's moderation system is no better than its mods, so the moderation is seriously broken. This post is a case in point. It's scored a "5", insightful, when this comment [slashdot.org] posted five minutes earlier says exactly the same thing. Insightful? Nope. Redundant? Of coursel; the exact same comment was posted five minutes earlier!

Redundant Redundant Redundant Redundant Redundant Redundant!!!!!

Not only that, but the earlier comment was thoroughly discussed. I'll post it here (mods, mod me offtopic and redundant, and since I think today's mods are obviously a bunch of illiterate fucktards who are probably shills planted by the RIAA, flamebait and troll as well. ACs are by nature not karmawhores, so bite me bitches.

Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis
So what? It doesn't pertain to the case at all. If I suffered from MS and I killed someone chances are I'm going to jail. The validity of the the RIAA claims against her aside, just because you have a disorder doesn't give you a free pass to do whatever you want.

[bidule (173941)]Stress accelerate the development of this disease. But of course insensitive clods like you don't care about quality of life.

[NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032)]Thank you, bidule. Comforted to see a little humanity here. Yes it is absolutely true that stress has a very bad effect on MS, and in this case her brain lesions and other problems have been exacerbated by the litigation.

Meanwhile, this is a person who never even heard of, let alone participated in, file sharing, let alone used file sharing to infringe plaintiffs' copyrights.
Meanwhile, this witty comment [slashdot.org] should be rated "funny" but apparently was completely ignored by the mods. Are the mods on crack or on RIAA? Seems funny that as far as I've read in the comments, all the visible comments are saying the exact same thing as the comment I'm bitching about here.

Oh, reed teh come mints? Eye muss bee knew hear! Eye yam a looser! But I hope the medamoderators send you mods' karma down the shithole where it belongs.

-not a karmawhore.

Good until the last line. (3, Insightful)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695493)

The write up is good up until the last line. The respondent having MS says nothing about the case nor does having MS prevent her from using a computer or downloading music or provide immunity from civil prosecution.

The fact that she has MS is irrelevant.

Re:Good until the last line. (2, Insightful)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695543)

The fact Stress can exacerbate MS and weaken her can play into suffering of the woman but even as an MS sufferer myself I agree with a lot of other posts. Just have MultiSoc doesn't keep you from court battles if you've done something which calls you into one.

Re:Good until the last line. (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695561)

If she had M$ we would think it was relevant.

Re:Good until the last line. (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696213)

She doesn't just have M$, she's suffering from it. And that's something that I think most of us can relate to. ; )

Re:Good until the last line. (1)

pedestrian crossing (802349) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695567)

The fact that she has MS is irrelevant.

My thoughts exactly.

It doesn't matter what OS she is running!

Re:Good until the last line. (1)

Poromenos1 (830658) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695729)

Like many people have said before me, if she had Linux you would be singing a very different tune!

Re:Good until the last line. (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695989)

The write up is good up until the last line.
Which distinguishes it from a good many other write ups, which are bad from the headline forward.

Barratry class action (2, Insightful)

debrain (29228) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695525)

Is there no common law or statutory cause of action in barratry [law.com] (or otherwise, e.g. RICO Act) that could be brought against the RIAA in a class action? While not a defence, and certainly adventurous, barratry et. al. ought to be available as a counterclaim.

I imagine it would be more judicially efficient to resolve all these cases as a class action. It would also give access to justice to those who would otherwise be unable to properly defend (or counterclaim in) their action.

Finally, and less adventurous, do the relevant statutes address classes of defendants? This would seem to be, if the boilerplate accusation is correct, a quintessential case for judicial efficiency by way of a defendants' class.

MS? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695531)

What does it matter if she has MS? Not that I'm for the RIAA, but having a disease such as MS is irrelevant.

Re:MS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695759)

Perhaps they intend to show that while the account was registered under her name, it was physically impossible for her to operate the computer at the time of the alleged incident? Just a guess, but your right that MS has nothing to do with that case overall if she did have the ability.

MS? (0, Redundant)

mollymoo (202721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695535)

Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her.

What does her having MS have to do with the price of fish? The way it's phrased ("...but the RIAA has pressed the case...") seems to be suggesting that people with debilitating conditions should be above the law.

Re:MS? (1)

db10 (740174) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695829)

No only Steven Seagal is Above the Law.

Re:MS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696821)

No only the President is above the law. And the Office of the President is above the law. And the Office of the Vice-President is above the law. And the members of the Executive Branch carrying out orders from any of the above people are above the law.

Re:MS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695897)

It's a legal case, not a civil case, and they're picking on someone who is less able to defend themselves, and who will be very badly affected by the case, regradless of the outcome.

IT's not a "do the crime, do the time" kind of thing, because there is no crime.

I wash all you thieving pricks (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695541)

would quit whining and buy music like the rest of us. you just look pathetic with your adolescent whining about 'teh evil RIAA'.

Re:I wash.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695927)

does this wash come with a happy ending?

Pity? (1)

jessecurry (820286) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695817)

Ms. Schwartz suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, but the RIAA has pressed the case against her."

This appeal to pity has no place on slashdot!

You can call her Rae, or you can call her J (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20695983)

Just don't call her "gimp," 'cuz she gots the ms and that'd be rude. Huh.

Read TFA (5, Interesting)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696029)

Those of you who are suggesting that the focus of the article is the defendant's Multiple Sclerosis haven't read the article very carefully. The mention to MS is in the very last sentence.

The last two sentences of the article have nothing to do with the main point of the story, which is defendant's attack on the insufficiency of the RIAA's boilerplate complaint, which is the first such attack of which I am aware since the Interscope decision was handed down. Those last two sentences are merely background to give you a point of reference to which of the RIAA's 30,000 cases this happens to be. The next to last sentence describes a lie the RIAA told last year in this case to the Judge -- that, too, has nothing to do with the sufficiency of the RIAA's complaint, but none of you have singled that out or suggested that the article emphasizes that.

So it's baloney to say the author is relying on the defendant's MS for anything. I.e., it's intellectually dishonest to suggest that this article emphasizes the defendant's MS.

******************

Now a digression.

Had I chosen to emphasize her disease, as I might have, I don't see that there would have been anything wrong with that. And to those of you who think it's okay to bring nonsensical litigation like this against children, stroke victims, hurricane victims, MS sufferers, disabled people on welfare, and others.... to you I can only say that your value system is not unlike that of my opponents, who likewise see nothing wrong with what they are doing.

As I have previously mentioned, I use the "friends" and "foes" feature in Slashdot for the purpose of managing my reading load. Although I haven't in the past, going forward I am going to mark as a "foe" -- and therefore be spared reading the comments of -- any user ID who says that it is irrelevant that the defendant is disabled, or impoverished, or a child, or one of the other categories of disadvantaged and/or defenseless victims. Anyone who feels that way is not my kind of people.

Re:Read TFA (2, Interesting)

mdobossy (674488) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696235)

Ray-

Thank you very much for the clarification. I hope I am not "foe'd" yet, so I can clarify what I was trying to say.

The fact that there are people with MS, old ladies, those who have never even had an internet connection, being sued by the RIAA is terrible. And if they are truly targeting those kind of people, they are the most despicable of the despicable.

My only concern is that when an emotional plea is sent out in a description of a court case, the public changes their focus from "The RIAA is making a mockery of our justice system" to "The RIAA is attacking people with horrible diseases." I may be wrong about this, but in this country, you are free to sue anyone, regardless of their status, health, etc. What you are NOT (supposed) to be allowed to do is bring the kind of litigation against ANYONE without proof or grounds as the RIAA is doing. Now I may be 100% off on these thoughts (as I am not a lawyer, dont play one on TV, and didn't stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night), but it seems to me that to put the focus on the illegality of what the RIAA is doing, rather than the emotional side, may cause more sweeping changes.

All of that being said, I am not a lawyer, and would like to hear more of the other side of the coin (that is unless I have been foe'd and you never read this ;) ).

Re:Read TFA (2, Insightful)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696727)

Thank you very much for the clarification. I hope I am not "foe'd" yet, so I can clarify what I was trying to say.
I said I haven't "foe'd" people for heartlessness in the past, that I'm just going to do it going forward.

1. I'm not a PR person, I'm a lawyer.

2. I'm a simple man.

3. The article is about the RIAA's standard complaint -- which it has used in 30,000 cases, mostly uncontested -- being insufficient.

4. Ms. Schwartz's MS is not relevant to that issue, so it is in my view "offtopic".

5. Ms. Schwartz's MS is relevant to the brutality and immorality and moral impoverishment of the freaks and ghouls pursuing her with their frivolous litigation, which is likewise "offtopic".

Re:Read TFA (1)

mdobossy (674488) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697117)

I said I haven't "foe'd" people for heartlessness in the past, that I'm just going to do it going forward.
So in posting a reply to you looking for clarification (with truly open eyes- trying to understand the issue better), I am "heartless"? I very much hope that I was simply misinterpreting your point here.

1. I'm not a PR person, I'm a lawyer.

2. I'm a simple man.
I have no idea what either of these have to do with my post/concern.

3. The article is about the RIAA's standard complaint -- which it has used in 30,000 cases, mostly uncontested -- being insufficient.

4. Ms. Schwartz's MS is not relevant to that issue, so it is in my view "offtopic".

5. Ms. Schwartz's MS is relevant to the brutality and immorality and moral impoverishment of the freaks and ghouls pursuing her with their frivolous litigation, which is likewise "offtopic".
So the article is about the illegitimacy of the RIAA standard complaint. That is wonderful, and I agree 100%. And you view the MS issue to not be on the topic of the article. Then why devote 20% (1 of 5 sentences) in your summary to the fact that she has MS? You may think I am heartless for questioning this, but I am not intending to be.

I may simply be misunderstanding your points, but I am truly one of the American public who is concerned about this mockery of the law by the RIAA, and am just trying to understand, from a "lets get this problem fixed" standpoint, what the most important pieces are (you are a lawyer, I am not. To me, the law seems VERY confusing, and seems to allow people to do many, many heartless, terrible things. Thus, from my small exposure, focusing on those allowed heartless, terrible things, doesnt seem to solve the problem).

There are a lot of people out there who do and say VERY heartless things, but they are within the law to do them. But if they are doing something illegal while doing those heartless things, it seems to me that we should focus on the illegality of it, which stops them from 1) doing the illegal bit, 2) doing the heartless bit. If we focus on the heartless (but seemingly legal) piece, we get nowhere. Again, I realize I may be 100% wrong here, and would like to know if I am.

Re:Read TFA (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696329)

The last two sentences of the article have nothing to do with the main point of the story, which is defendant's attack on the insufficiency of the RIAA's boilerplate complaint, which is the first such attack of which I am aware since the Interscope decision was handed down. Those last two sentences are merely background to give you a point of reference to which of the RIAA's 30,000 cases this happens to be.

I think the reason people here are focusing on that is because they agree with the rest of the reasoning.

The next to last sentence describes a lie the RIAA told last year in this case to the Judge -- that, too, has nothing to do with the sufficiency of the RIAA's complaint, but none of you have singled that out or suggested that the article emphasizes that.

I would think that actually could have a legal effect though; if you can show they intentionally lied to the judge, couldn't you just move to have the pleadings struck?

Re:Read TFA (1)

bryan1945 (301828) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696569)

"Anyone who feels that way is not my kind of people."

I just added you as a friend.

Re:Read TFA (1)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696659)

"Anyone who feels that way is not my kind of people."
I just added you as a friend.Thanks, bryan
Thanks, Bryan. I think you're my kind of people.

Re:Read TFA (1)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697771)

Thanks, Bryan. I think you're my kind of people.

FWIW, it gave me a warm fuzzy to hear one of my slashdot "fans" mentioned by name on NPR for their efforts in fighting the RIAA.

I admire the effort of all those who actually attempt to work within the system to promote change for the betterment of everyone . These are the principles that the US and its constitution were founded on, and although we seem to be in the minority for desiring those principles, I have hope that others will follow.

Thank you for putting your law degree to good use.

Re:Read TFA (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696613)

It is irrelevant that the defendant is disabled, or impoverished, or a child, or one of the other categories of disadvantaged and/or defenseless victims. Posting as AC simply because I don't have an account here, but it does entertain me that you might one day read one of my future posts and never even know it. Ha.

For the record, I think it's condescending to label someone "defenseless" because they have MS. Yes, it's an awful and debilitating condition that I wouldn't wish on anyone, and the person in this case probably has more than enough crap to deal with just from their MS without having to worry about idiotic lawsuits from Versace-clad extortionists. However, I bet if you were to ask any of the MAFIAA's other victims, I'm sure they'd also say they have plenty of other things in their lives they'd rather be getting on with.

This isn't the nineteenth century. In this day and age you can (or should be able to) enter a courtroom in a wheelchair or in a malfunctioning body and expect others to take you as seriously as you take yourself. Society goes to great lengths these days to offset disabilities and make equality a possibility. Sure, more could be done, but the biggest hurdle is, and probably always will be, the patronising attitudes of those who would have the disabled treated as soft-focus, wide-eyed charity cases incapable of taking responsibitly for themselves.

In short, a wrong against an MS sufferer is no more nor less shameful than the same wrong against an able-bodied person.

The last sentence of the summary is heartstring-twanging, counter-productive fluff. A pointless emotive distraction from the real meat of the article: That the tide is turning against the asstunnels.

Re:Read TFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20698783)

For the record, I think it's condescending to label someone "defenseless" because they have MS. Yes, it's an awful and debilitating condition that I wouldn't wish on anyone, and the person in this case probably has more than enough crap to deal with just from their MS without having to worry about idiotic lawsuits from Versace-clad extortionists. However, I bet if you were to ask any of the MAFIAA's other victims, I'm sure they'd also say they have plenty of other things in their lives they'd rather be getting on with.

This isn't the nineteenth century. In this day and age you can (or should be able to) enter a courtroom in a wheelchair or in a malfunctioning body and expect others to take you as seriously as you take yourself. Society goes to great lengths these days to offset disabilities and make equality a possibility. Sure, more could be done, but the biggest hurdle is, and probably always will be, the patronising attitudes of those who would have the disabled treated as soft-focus, wide-eyed charity cases incapable of taking responsibitly for themselves.
Neil Cavuto [wikipedia.org] , a vice president, the managing editor of business news and anchor of the 4pm show on Fox News, has MS. He's never let it hold him back, though there are times where he'll miss a broadcast due to his condition. I'm sure he's an exceptional case, but it just goes to show that having a debilitating disease doesn't mean you're incapable of living a full life (both the good and bad aspects).

Re:Read TFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696629)

For clarity's sake: Correct me if I am wrong, but a litigant's medical condition and related costs can be affected by having to appear in court and otherwise deal with the pressures of a lawsuit and therefore are a legal consideration in any case where the litigant has been sued sues back for legal fees and other expenses related to having been sued, especially in a malicious suit brought without evidence or with false evidence. Therefore the litigant with MS can collect for related expenses if they can show these expenses were made necessary by the RIAA's lawsuit? Therefore mentioning the MS is relevant not just because it shows the RIAA as insensitive but shows them as being stupid for risking not only the public's ever decreasing approval, but it increases their potential liability on pursuit of such cases without real evidence of violation of copyright law.

Re:Read TFA (1)

OneSmartFellow (716217) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696781)

I'm afraid I don't understand your argument. I am not saying it's irrelevant, but I don't see how it is, please explain, including why it would be relevant if the phrase were 'the defendant is a perfectly healthy person, suffering from no physical, social, emotional disabilities' instead.

Re:Read TFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20696843)

As an attorney you've spent a lot of time honing the time-honored skill of the bullshit argument. You're shamelessly attempting to override reason with emotional asides. What a big surprise.

It doesn't matter that the woman has a disease. If recognizing something like that excludes someone from being "your kind of people," oh noes. Your theatrics might impress the two-digit IQs you hope to appeal to in the public, but your intellectual dishonesty buys you nothing here.

In the end the problem with the RIAA's reckless shotgun litigation is not that it holds people with ailments responsible. Culpability doesn't evaporate because you have personal problems. Good luck applying that specious reasoning to any other civil preceding.

BINGO!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20697013)

your value system is not unlike that of my opponents

Your opponents who know full well who their primary enemies are; slashdot readers, ars technica readers, "et al" (as you lawyers say).

I of course have no proof, but strongly believe that the RIAA has a small army building up mod points by bashing SCO in the SCO stories, bashing MS in the MS stories, praising Apple in the Macintosh stories, etc.

Not just karma whores, but professional karma whores, who are whoring just so they can fuck up slashdot's mod system on an RIAA story.

In short, I call shenanigans (and I applaud you, NYCL!)

-mcgrew [kuro5hin.org] (mcgrew.info, not the mcgrew from McGrew Security)

Re:Read TFA (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697041)

I suggest you stick with comments that reach a positive moderation regardless of whether they are friend or foe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groupthink [wikipedia.org]

I've never used friend or foe moderation. Some of the comments criticizing my positions have been painful to read (most of the time because I was wrong having spoken to casually- some of the time because the people were spiteful).

Re:Read TFA (2, Insightful)

NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698579)

I suggest you stick with comments that reach a positive moderation regardless of whether they are friend or foe. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groupthink [wikipedia.org] I've never used friend or foe moderation. Some of the comments criticizing my positions have been painful to read (most of the time because I was wrong having spoken to casually- some of the time because the people were spiteful).
1. One thing I am not capable of, and have never been accused of, is Groupthink.

2. I disagree with you on the moderation question. I don't use other peoples' moderation as a basis for screening comments; that would increase the likelihood of being subjected to Groupthink. I screen on the basis of my own appraisal of a person's demeanor.

3. I do not designate someone as a "foe" because he or she disagrees with me; I love a good argument. I designate someone as a "foe" if I think the person is (a) a shill or troll posing as something else, or (b) the personality type that always has to have the last word and does not have an open mind. And, as I said, I am adding a new category of "foe" -- people who have no heart. I have enough exposure to that kind of person when I'm dealing with the RIAA's lawyers. I don't need to come to Slashdot to spend even more time exposing myself to that sort.

Re:Read TFA (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698679)

Fair enough.

Just being a canary in the coal mine Ray.

Sometimes people with no heart are best capable of seeing the truth everyone else doesn't want to admit is true.
You are one of the leading lawyers in this anti-riaa charge. I believe you need to be very clear headed and a bit heartless. Use emotion if it helps your case, but don't start believing your own bullshit.

Re:Read TFA (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 6 years ago | (#20697105)

Hi Ray. I have a lot of respect for you and the work you are doing, but I can't let this stand unchallenged:

Had I chosen to emphasize her disease, as I might have, I don't see that there would have been anything wrong with that. And to those of you who think it's okay to bring nonsensical litigation like this against children, stroke victims, hurricane victims, MS sufferers, disabled people on welfare, and others.... to you I can only say that your value system is not unlike that of my opponents, who likewise see nothing wrong with what they are doing.
You have two logical fallacies in the same argument there, but the worst one is your straw man. We are not saying it is 'okay to bring nonsensical litigation like this against children, stroke victims [etc].' We are saying that it is completely unacceptable to bring this kind of nonsensical litigation against anyone. We believe in a little thing known as 'equal protection under the law,' be it for MS sufferers, children, stroke victims, or cute white girls born with silver spoons in their mouths. By saying it is worse to bring a suit like this against an MS sufferer, we feel you are implicitly stating that it is not so bad to bring it against someone who is not an MS sufferer, and that is something we find objectionable.

That said, when you go for the counter-suit for malicious prosecution, barratry, or whatever else you think will stick, I hope you will use the fact she has MS to add at least one more zero onto the end of the settlement.

More than ad misercordiam... (4, Informative)

Xenographic (557057) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698939)

> By saying it is worse to bring a suit like this against an MS sufferer, we feel you are implicitly stating that it is not so bad to bring it against someone who is not an MS sufferer, and that is something we find objectionable.

Well, it is. Now hear me out.

As has been reported many times, stress is a factor in MS. By bringing this lawsuit, they can worsen her condition. In other words, it's like the RIAA is helping kill her. Add to that the fact that the disease is very expensive and that means that MS sufferers have limited means to defend themselves. So now they'll have a hard time affording medicine AND a hard time affording legal representation. Thus, the circumstances make it worse. After all, you KNOW they're not going to make any money off this case, even if they win.

Honestly, I do think it more objectionable to pick on the weak and the sick who have a hard time fighting back. Not because they have or should have more legal rights than anyone else, but because it is so dastardly of the RIAA to do this to begin with. There's absolutely nothing stopping the RIAA from dropping cases. They can be as discriminatory in bringing them as they want to be, so far as I know, without giving up any legal rights.

In other words, the heartless bastards just don't care. And they wonder why people cheer when MediaDefender got owned. At least that was a company that should've been able to defend itself against one lousy torrent with all their dirty secrets in it. I mean, that was their job, and they couldn't do it to save their own skin.

See the difference? It's the difference between only picking on those who cannot fight back and standing up to a bully. People boo one and cheer the other, even though all people are equal under law.

Re:Read TFA (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 6 years ago | (#20698041)

Had I chosen to emphasize her disease, as I might have, I don't see that there would have been anything wrong with that. And to those of you who think it's okay to bring nonsensical litigation like this against children, stroke victims, hurricane victims, MS sufferers, disabled people on welfare, and others.... to you I can only say that your value system is not unlike that of my opponents, who likewise see nothing wrong with what they are doing.
It's not okay to bring nonsensical litigation against anyone regardless of what life has dealt them. But regarding MS, it's the way you worded it. The last sentence of the submission by you makes the statement that she has multiple sclerosis. Clearly, from the comments, a whole lot of people thinks that is emphasizing the disease. It's an entirely different thing to say that the defendant has a disability (which makes it irrelevant) than it is to say that the RIAA is vigorously pursuing the case because it thinks it can use the defendant's disability to their advantage to increase the probability of a successful claim against the defendant (which makes it wholly relevant).

If you meant to say the latter, then you're my kind of people too and I would suggest improved wording for future submissions. If your intent is simply appeal to pity, then go ahead and hit the foe button already.
 
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>