Friday24 March 2023

BMG wants Cox to give up personal information on suspected Pirates

Reading time is around minutes.

The world of copyright and patents is one of ignorance, greed and just plain stupidity. This is, sadly, on just about all sides of the game. From the people complaining all the way to the judges asked to decide these cases. We have already talked (at length) about the fantasy math the copyright holders use in determining damage and the massive impacts on privacy that they want to further their causes, but now we area in a situation where they have “won” something that no one every should have even considered.

Ok, ok I suppose I should tell you what I am talking about. Recently the BMG music publishing group had a victory in a jury trial where Cox Communications was required to pay $25 million due to willful contributory copyright infringement (whatever that is). The short of the verdict says that because Cox was not stopping piracy on their networks they actually contributed to it. They (Cox) are being held responsible for the copyright infringement of their subscribers. To call this blatant ignorance is an understatement.

Making a company responsible for the actions of the people that purchase or use their product is a form of political bullying that has ZERO place in the legal system. If I buy 100 gallons of milk and then drown someone in it neither the milk maker nor the store that sold it to me is responsible for my actions. However, someone managed to convince the court that it was their responsibility and hence the fine.

Cox, for their part are looking to get this judgement thrown out as a matter of law or to get a retrial where they might favor a little better. BMG is trying to block this with a permanent injunction and also to force Cox to give up personal information about suspected pirates on their network. Now, the fact that there is precedent showing that an IP address it not linked to a person should make all these cases from the copyright cartel moot, but this has not happened yet and judges that are ignorant of the way technology work are still siding with people like BMG and allowing the borderline illegal information gathering from companies like Rightscorp.

It would be nice to see this one thrown out just on the technical aspects of it not to mention the ridiculous idea of transferring liability in the way it was done. If not this case will set a dangerous legal precedent that will further erode personal privacy.

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