ISPs Must Turn Over Customer Names in Porn File-Sharing Suit

, The Legal Intelligencer


Internet service providers have to disclose the names of their subscribers who are accused of using a file-sharing site to copy a pornographic movie, a federal judge has ruled in a copyright infringement suit.

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What's being said

  • Peter E. Brill

    Despite the fact that people have yet to get it through their heads that pressing the download button on a movie or song you haven't paid for is stealing, that is exactly what it is. And why should you have an expectation of privacy when you're stealing? You might as well wear a ski mask while downloading illegal porn (or music, or movies), since you are a thief. And the fact that everybody does it, or that "information wants to be free", does not make it any less wrong. On the other hand, any legitimate and legal use of the internet in whatever form should be as fully and robustly protected as any other First Amendment right. Judge McLaughlin has crafted an opinion that balances the right to access free information freely and discreetly while providing an avenue for copyright owners (including the artistes behind "Bareback Street Gang") to seek redress against those who steal from them. And won't they be embarrassed when they get served with that lawsuit.

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