Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 29th Nov 2011 21:28 UTC
Legal "After a series of one-sided hearings, luxury goods maker Chanel has won recent court orders against hundreds of websites trafficking in counterfeit luxury goods. A federal judge in Nevada has agreed that Chanel can seize the domain names in question and transfer them all to US-based registrar GoDaddy. The judge also ordered 'all Internet search engines' and 'all social media websites' - explicitly naming Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Bing, Yahoo, and Google - to 'de-index' the domain names and to remove them from any search results."
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almost, but not quite
by cmchittom on Tue 29th Nov 2011 22:28 UTC
cmchittom
Member since:
2011-03-18

Without commenting on whether the judge has the authority to do this, or whether it's a good idea to do so if he in fact does have that authority, it's worth noting—as Ars Technica does not in its article—that this is a temporary restraining order[1]. The owners of the domains in question had until yesterday to file a response, and there was a hearing set for today at which they could present arguments.

[1] http://servingnotice.com/sdv/038%20-%20Order%20Granting... linked from the Ars article

Reply Score: 2

RE: almost, but not quite
by TechGeek on Wed 30th Nov 2011 03:37 UTC in reply to "almost, but not quite"
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

I don't think that is true. Those sites were seized by ICE, they don't give you a warning. They just take the site. They did not indicate on their site anything other than seizing them immediately. I think that may be why the judge was so careless about the actual law. The sites were already seized so there wasn't much he could do but go along.

I think its high time for the world to build a new domain name system that the US has no control over.

Reply Score: 8

RE[2]: almost, but not quite
by cmchittom on Wed 30th Nov 2011 14:05 UTC in reply to "RE: almost, but not quite"
cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

I don't think that is true. Those sites were seized by ICE, they don't give you a warning. They just take the site.


I didn't say the sites got a warning. The judge granted the ex parte (which means, just one party—Ars's "one-sided") application for a temporary restraining order/preliminary injunction. (Again, I'm not commenting here on whether he had such authority, or if so, whether such authority is a good idea.) At that point, the sites got taken down.

They did not indicate on their site anything other than seizing them immediately. I think that may be why the judge was so careless about the actual law. The sites were already seized so there wasn't much he could do but go along.


Have you ever dealt with judges? They are highly protective of their prerogatives under the law. They don't just "go along" without at the very least a comment.

And anyway, which law, specifically, do you believe the judge was "careless" about?

I think its high time for the world to build a new domain name system that the US has no control over.


I'll certainly agree with that, although I would say "the US or any other political body."

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: almost, but not quite
by TechGeek on Wed 30th Nov 2011 15:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: almost, but not quite"
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

The judge obviously ignored the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th Amendments.

These sites were taken on what in the past has been just the mere hint of wrongdoing, potentially crippling the business. These companies may not even be illegal in their own country. A TRO in this case is totally unjustified. This isn't a murder case. Its a civil case. The continued damage to Chanel was minimal, while the injury to the seized site was severe.

Reply Score: 2

A sticky problem
by WorknMan on Tue 29th Nov 2011 23:05 UTC
WorknMan
Member since:
2005-11-13

This is a very sticky problem. On one hand, you don't want to give somebody the authority to close down hundreds of websites without due process. On the other hand, it would be far too costly and time-consuming to go after each one individually.

So the question is, what to do? In this particular instance, these aren't cases of a bunch of 15yos downloading the latest Snoop Dogg album for free, but rather people who are selling counterfeit products, so it's a little harder to dismiss outright.

The real question is, if this kind of thing is unstoppable without violating some basic rights, does that mean we should give up some of those rights in cases like this, or just say that the concept of copyright can't exist in the digital age?

Reply Score: 3

RE: A sticky problem
by looncraz on Wed 30th Nov 2011 00:27 UTC in reply to "A sticky problem"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

[...]it would be far too costly and time-consuming to go after each one individually.

So the question is, what to do? [...]

The real question is, if this kind of thing is unstoppable without violating some basic rights, does that mean we should give up some of those rights in cases like this, or just say that the concept of copyright can't exist in the digital age?


NEVER give up ANY of your RIGHTS!! EVER!!

The system is perfectly capable, as is, of handling this issue - maybe with some minor tweaks.

The steps are as follows:

1. File single lawsuit with multiple defendants.
2. Present information, in court, for each claim.
3. Jury/judge rules on each defendant individually.
4. Guilty defendants required to pay reasonable fees.

No need to lose a single right. An injunction can be filed that could shut down sites before a final ruling - the result of the filing is up to the discretion of the court but should be limited, by law/rule, to simple de-listing - as in this case.

Our rights cost MILLIONS of lives - we would doing a major disservice to those who fought for what we have by giving even the most simple of those rights away - our founding fathers said so themselves:


"Those willing to give up freedom for security deserve neither and will lose both."

--Benjamin Franklin

That is a fact learned the hard way!

--The loon

Reply Score: 12

RE[2]: A sticky problem
by WorknMan on Wed 30th Nov 2011 00:44 UTC in reply to "RE: A sticky problem"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

The steps are as follows:

1. File single lawsuit with multiple defendants.
2. Present information, in court, for each claim.
3. Jury/judge rules on each defendant individually.
4. Guilty defendants required to pay reasonable fees.


Except that the article says:

Concerned about counterfeiting, Chanel has filed a joint suit in Nevada against nearly 700 domain names that appear to have nothing in common.

So are you going to file 700 different lawsuits? You would be in court the rest of your life, and as soon as you shut one down, two or three more will have popped up. This is exactly the same problem that the content publishers have with shutting down pirate websites; as soon as one is gone, another one appears.

I'd agree that giving up rights is not a reasonable solution to the problem, but neither is taking them on one at a time.

Edited 2011-11-30 00:46 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: A sticky problem
by Laurence on Wed 30th Nov 2011 10:29 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A sticky problem"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26


Except that the article says:

Concerned about counterfeiting, Chanel has filed a joint suit in Nevada against nearly 700 domain names that appear to have nothing in common.

So are you going to file 700 different lawsuits? You would be in court the rest of your life, and as soon as you shut one down, two or three more will have popped up. This is exactly the same problem that the content publishers have with shutting down pirate websites; as soon as one is gone, another one appears.

I'd agree that giving up rights is not a reasonable solution to the problem, but neither is taking them on one at a time.

The point is you don't go after the domain names, you go after the counterfeiters.

To go with your pirate radio example, if someone is running a traditional pirate radio station (ie radio waves rather than TCP/IP packets), you wouldn't close the roads to make it difficult for the DJs to get to the radio station and nor would you ban everyone with a radio from accessing specific frequencies on the EM spectrum which the pirate radio stations broadcast on. What would happen is the station itself will be physically closed down.

The reason people shut down domain names is because it's the lazy option. It's easier to keep closing domain names than actually conducting research into identifying the counterfeiters. It's easier to change legislation to outlaw creative / personal use of copyrighted works than it is to address the fact that your business model is archaic and cannot cater for the information generation.

Thus I believe that removing our rights as citizens to address a small minority who endorse counterfeiting is not only lazy, it's a step backwards.

Reply Score: 8

RE[2]: A sticky problem
by cmchittom on Wed 30th Nov 2011 00:59 UTC in reply to "RE: A sticky problem"
cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

An injunction can be filed that could shut down sites before a final ruling - the result of the filing is up to the discretion of the court but should be limited, by law/rule, to simple de-listing - as in this case.


I don't understand you—you say we shouldn't give up rights, but then you say that what you think should happen is in fact what happened.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: A sticky problem
by looncraz on Fri 2nd Dec 2011 05:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A sticky problem"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

"An injunction can be filed that could shut down sites before a final ruling - the result of the filing is up to the discretion of the court but should be limited, by law/rule, to simple de-listing - as in this case.


I don't understand you—you say we shouldn't give up rights, but then you say that what you think should happen is in fact what happened.
"

No, the injunction would need to be validated per defendant and domain. In this case, we are shutting down (probably MOSTLY legitimately) hundreds of web-sites without reviewing EACH alleged offender. Due process is being skipped here, whereas an injunction requires an initial assessment for each alleged infraction.

The difference isn't night and day, true, but it is the only way to ensure the protection of the innocent.

--The loon

Reply Score: 2

;-(
by fran on Tue 29th Nov 2011 23:32 UTC
fran
Member since:
2010-08-06

How i'm going to afford the real thing for my girlfriend now.

Reply Score: 4

RE: ;-(
by tomcat on Tue 29th Nov 2011 23:36 UTC in reply to ";-("
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

How i'm going to afford the real thing for my girlfriend now.


Dude, imagine if your girlfriend found out you bought her a fake.

"What? You don't think I'm worth buying a real one?"

The consequences might be worse. ;-p

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: ;-(
by fran on Wed 30th Nov 2011 00:00 UTC in reply to "RE: ;-("
fran Member since:
2010-08-06

"How i'm going to afford the real thing for my girlfriend now.


Dude, imagine if your girlfriend found out you bought her a fake.

"What? You don't think I'm worth buying a real one?"

The consequences might be worse. ;-p
"

No dude she will never be the wizer..
She could even read on the shoes it was real "patented leather". All legit and patented ;-)

Edited 2011-11-30 00:05 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: ;-(
by tomcat on Wed 30th Nov 2011 01:51 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ;-("
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

No dude she will never be the wizer..
She could even read on the shoes it was real "patented leather". All legit and patented ;-)


Good luck with that, mate. ;-p

Edited 2011-11-30 01:52 UTC

Reply Score: 2

My two cents...
by tomcat on Tue 29th Nov 2011 23:47 UTC
tomcat
Member since:
2006-01-06

This is going to be an ongoing problem, and I wonder how a U.S. judge has the authority to shut down sites which may be registered overseas. The jurisdictional problem needs to be addressed. It seems like there should be an international judicial body which decides these kinds of cases.

Reply Score: 4

demosthenese
Member since:
2011-02-01

Though I oppose the ripping off of consumers by counterfeiters, I am just as annoyed at manufacturers who use counterfeiting laws such as ACTA to prevent the movement of genuine goods from one market to another so that they can gouge extra income by limiting consumer access to a true global market.

Reply Score: 4

There are similar statutes
by jefro on Wed 30th Nov 2011 01:09 UTC
jefro
Member since:
2007-04-13

If the owners of the sites can prove this is harmful to what they believe is legal commerce then they could counter sue the French company. I rather doubt they'd show up in court. Pretty sure the court needed to have some reason to rule this way. They most likely did send documents to the registered owners of those sites. The court usually hears testimony and facts presented.

I know if someone was stealing from me, I'd take action to prevent it.

A person who rents to known crooks could have their property taken. So it would be similar to a rogue site that steals.

Crooks using planes and such get their property taken in many cases ranging from drug trafficking to fish and game violations. Why would this sort of crime go unpunished?

Reply Score: 2

umm, illegal where?
by TechGeek on Wed 30th Nov 2011 01:46 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

So I haven't checked where these sites are actually located, but chances are they aren't in the US. While we have strict laws in the US, I wonder about the rest of the world. Are we really going to turn the entire world into a police state?

Reply Score: 5

Comment by viton
by viton on Wed 30th Nov 2011 02:50 UTC
viton
Member since:
2005-08-09

what LOLCAT thinks about this situation?
http://s3.amazonaws.com/kym-assets/entries/icons/original/000/001/2...

Edited 2011-11-30 02:54 UTC

Reply Score: 1

what about Ebay
by unclefester on Wed 30th Nov 2011 03:57 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

Ebay allows billions of dollars worth of blatant counterfeits to be sold every year on their site. Yet they are never punished. Sorry I forgot..they're a huge US company so these rules don't apply to them.

Reply Score: 7

hypocrisy
by unclefester on Wed 30th Nov 2011 05:18 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

There are currently 20,733 new Chanel items listed on Ebay.com. All of them are fakes. No prestige designer brand allows their products to be sold online.

Yet Ebay will automatically suspend the account of any seller who dares to even use the word iPhone in a listing for a phone accessory or sell an item that even vaguely resembles an Apple product.

Reply Score: 5

RE: hypocrisy
by foregam on Wed 30th Nov 2011 18:38 UTC in reply to "hypocrisy"
foregam Member since:
2010-11-17

Yet Ebay will automatically suspend the account of any seller who dares to even use the word iPhone in a listing for a phone accessory or sell an item that even vaguely resembles an Apple product.


Are you sure? When did you last check that? 'Cause searching for "iPhone" on eBay.com gives 703100 results, "iPhone charger" 81500, "iPhone USB cable" 25230.

Reply Score: 1

not all counterfeits are fakes
by unclefester on Wed 30th Nov 2011 05:33 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

A lot of"counterfeit" products are actually 100% authentic items. Typically the Chinese contractors make more items than ordered and sell the rest to the grey market. Typical examples are sports shoes, casual clothing and fashion watches.

Reply Score: 2

New Google Service
by fretinator on Wed 30th Nov 2011 19:52 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

I wondered what this new Google- thing was all about.

Reply Score: 2