Verizon to expose copyright trolls

TorrentFreak is celebrating the fact that Verizon is taking on the anonymous bullying of copyright trolls. Supposedly, this is to protect the customers. That’s the spin. While it is nice to imagine a corporation of any sort would stick its neck out to protect its customers, nothing is ever that simple. You see, a customer who is successfully sued by an outside entity will cease to be a customer. They are often sued for thousands to millions of dollars for copyright violations. The average joe, who is always the target of these disputes, cannot afford that. Why would they continue using Verizon service after finding themselves in in debt for that much? A successfully sued customer is no longer a Verizon customer, which means Verizon gets nothing out of the deal.

Clearly, fighting back for the customer is just a way to continue receiving money from the customer. Verizon isn’t riding in on a white horse. It’s just reigning in the money flowing from its current and future customers.

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Posted on December 16, 2012, in culture. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Good for Verizon. I’m thrilled to see some of these IP cases go to court. My non-lawyer view is they’ll be vindicated and will slow the useless trolling for cash by some of these companies.

    My understanding is Verizon is actually protected by the DMCA.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_Copyright_Infringement_Liability_Limitation_Act#.C2.A7_512.28a.29_Transitory_Network_Communications_Safe_Harbor
    As a transitory network provider, aka “network pipe”, they have safe-harbor so long as content (files) are requested by users. Which means they’re not liable so long as they’re not aware of the content.

    Also of note, check out the DMCA misrepresentations clause. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_Copyright_Infringement_Liability_Limitation_Act#.C2.A7_512.28f.29_Misrepresentations

    It mentions Online Policy v Diebold; where Diebold used the DMCA to try and force takedowns of material (emails) they were aware were not copyrightable. The DMCA isn’t to be used as a sword wasn’t the intention of the law, it was to protect copyrighted works. They were held liable and had to pay court fees of the defendants.

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