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Porn Shakedown Artists Cornered at Court
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Have you received a legal notice claiming copyright violation and downloading of pornographic material from your home network? Have the claimants also asked for a settlement as meager as $1000-$5000 when they could have collected minimum civil statutory damages of $150,000 for the alleged willful infringement? Then read this report for probably you are target of porn shakedown artists.

On Thursday, Jennifer Barker of Louisville, who insists that she has never downloaded a pornographic movie from the internet and has never violated anyone’s copyright through any illegal downloading filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky, Louisville Division seeking class-action.

According to the complaint brought by Barker, porn producing companies have developed a new business model by which they scare internet users into paying settlements for suppressing allegations of internet porn downloading. Often, home internet owners are unsure whether their home network has been used by anyone else in the family or friends for accessing illegal material and pay up rather than suffer embarrassment. The action for damages has been brought against Patrick Collins, Inc.; Malibu Media, LLC; Raw Films, LTD; Third Degree Films, Inc; and K-Beech, Inc.

  
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The complaint reads as follows: “These entities, various pornography purveyors, have filed suit in numerous venues seeking to extort money from individuals they claim have downloaded pornography from the internet. The pornography purveyors utilize a technique known as trolling whereby individuals hired by the various pornography purveyors search for Internet Protocol (IP) addresses associated with the use of file sharing software such as BitTorrent. Once the IP addresses have been harvested, the various pornography purveyors file suit naming defendants as John Doe. They then seek to have mass subpoenas issued for the internet providers associated with the harvested IP addresses in order to obtain the name and address of the owner of the IP address on the date it was harvested. Recently, the pornography purveyors have begun using the court system of the state of Florida to file true bill of discovery lawsuits in which they seek only to extract the names and addresses of the individuals associated with the various IP addresses.”

The lawsuit continues: “Once they obtain contact information, the pornography purveyors begin to shakedown these individuals by telephone. The tactics of the pornography purveyors clearly indicate that they are not convinced that the individuals they accuse of downloading pornography from the Internet have actually done so. This is true because they often shake the individuals down for $1000-$5000. The pornography purveyors know that this amount of money is less than the cost of defense would be if suit were filed. They also know that individuals such as the Plaintiff in this matter are so embarrasses to have their names associated with pornography, and therefore, are susceptible to being shaken down. In fact, if the individuals could be proven to have downloaded the pornography unlawfully from the Internet, the pornography purveyors could collect civil statutory damages of $150.000 for a willful infringement such as they allege, yet they settle for $1000-$5000.”

The lawsuit also goes ahead to allege: “By extorting settlements of $1000-$5000 the pornography purveyors have developed a model whereby they can unlawfully gain more money than they can by selling access to their pornographic videos.”

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The document for the proposed class action suit can be accessed here: (http://www.scribd.com/doc/99552613/Porn-Troll-Complaint)





 

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