Why is it that Lightspeed Media copyright troll cases are DEAD, and yet SO MANY DEFENDANTS are still receiving letters?

Lightspeed Media Corp. has been one of the more aggressive copyright trolls over the past two years. They are intimately associated with John Steele and Prenda Law Inc., and have changed their lawsuits as the case law has changed over the years.

They started out as one of Prenda Law Inc.’s first bittorrent lawsuits in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, where they sued 100 John Doe Defendants in the Lightspeed Media Corporation v. Does 1-100 (Case No. 1:10-cv-05604), of which 99 WERE DISMISSED ON 12/21/2010, with the remaining one shortly afterwards.

Then Lightspeed Media Corp. amended their complaint to sue 1,000 defendants instead of 100 defendants, and as we wrote about in our “Judge Steeles The Life From A Second Torrent Case” article, the judge responded by SEVERING AND DISMISSING ALL DEFENDANTS but one.

Just when we thought this case was dead, John Steele filed an amended complaint on 4/11/2011 and brought the case back to life by suing one John Doe. The funny part, however, was that they continued to send “scare” letters to ALL THE SEVERED AND DISMISSED DEFENDANTS (even though they were no longer defendants in the case). The court picked up on this and berated Steele on 4/19/2011. A few months later, the zombie Lightspeed Media Corp. federal case was DEAD.

Then, Lightspeed and Steele came up with a novel idea — sue defendants across the U.S. for violation of federal hacker statutes, alleging that accused internet users accessed Lightspeed’s websites using stolen passwords (which “through no fault of their own” were “leaked” onto the internet). The twist was that their new lawsuit was filed in the corrupt ILLINOIS STATE COURT (even though the subject matter of the lawsuits belong in the federal courts). In the Lightspeed “Hacker” lawsuit, even if the accused John Doe Defendants used the passwords to access Lightspeed’s websites, THEY WOULD NOT VIOLATE THE FEDERAL STATUTES WHICH WERE ASSERTED AGAINST THEM IN THE COMPLAINT. This is the joke about the case — it simply has no merit, but the case persists. It befuddles me that the state court is still allowing subpoenas to be sent out (even though the Illinois SUPREME COURT has come in and voiced its opinion that this case is a fraud and that it should be shut down). Yet, it persists.

These same Hacker lawsuits were also filed in the Miami Dade, FL state courts (equal in integrity to the Chicago state courts) in the Lightspeed Media Corp. v. John Does (Case No. 12-05673 CA 05), and in the Maricopa County, AZ state court (Case No. CV2012-053230). There is a lot that is written about these cases, but because they are taking place in state courts (in which we do not have eyes), we have not been tracking these cases. Essentially, it is important to note that the lawsuits are filed against one Doe Defendant, but implicate HUNDREDS of Doe Defendants as co-conspirators.

Word is that a few weeks ago, Lightspeed Media Corp. has been sold to another company (perhaps to Prenda Law Inc.?), yet the lawsuits continue.

So as you see, Lightspeed Media Corp. is essentially a zombie company that keeps coming back asking internet users for more and more money. If you take a look on http://www.rfcexpress.com, you’ll see that there are a few cases on the books, but they are ALL DISMISSED. Yet, if you asked the internet world how many thousands of internet users are still getting calls or letters for Lightspeed, you’ll get a surprising answer.

FEDERAL CASES FILED ON BEHALF OF LIGHTSPEED MEDIA CORPORATION
Lightspeed Media Corporation v. Does 1-9 (CAND; 4:11-cv-02261) [DEAD]
Lightspeed Media Corporation v. Doe (ILND; 1:11-cv-00385) [DEAD]
Lightspeed Media Corporation v. Doe (ILND; 1:11-cv-00209) [DEAD]
Lightspeed Media Corporation v. Does 1-100 (then 1-1,000) (ILND; 1:10-cv-05604) [DEAD]

KNOWN STATE CASES FILED ON BEHALF OF LIGHTSPEED MEDIA CORPORATION
Lightspeed Media Corp. v. John Doe (Miami Dade, FL Case No. 12-05673 CA 05)
Lightspeed Media Corp. v. John Doe (St. Clair, IL Case No. 11-L-683)
Lightspeed Media Corp. v. World Timbers, Inc. & John Doe (Maricopa, AZ Case No. CV2012-053230)

4 thoughts on “Why is it that Lightspeed Media copyright troll cases are DEAD, and yet SO MANY DEFENDANTS are still receiving letters?”

  1. I also wanted to point out that a new batch of subpoena letters has just gone out for the St. Clair, IL hacker case demanding the contact information of the many Doe Defendants AND THE HUNDREDS OF CO-CONSPIRATORS. I cannot believe the judge is still letting these go out.

  2. Great article. I think Mr. Jones sold the company to get out of any legal trouble that he was going to get in to. With all the cases dying, it was only a matter of time before the focus changed onto him. Whoever has taken over the company, along with Prenda, will continue to file lawsuits. I don’t see them going away anytime soon.

    The Illinois courts suck from what I have read since being involved in a Prenda case different from Lightspeed. Are the judges being paid off by certain people, could the mob have a part in their rulings, do they favor Steele? I feel for the people involved with these cases.

    Down with all Trolls

    1. @ITH, there is conspiracy theory (e.g., that Steele and his gang have the corrupt judges in his pocket), and then there is reality (that nobody knows what is really going on, and it could simply be judges who are ruling the way they are because they think this is the correct application of the law).

      In my heart I tend to think that there is some money passing under the table or some funds being transferred to an offshore account in the Cayman Islands, but this is because I am a skeptic and I respect that judges will make legally sound rulings. I see no logic in the rulings that are coming out of the state courts, and the judges are small enough to be corrupted.

  3. It could go either way….. I hope the judges are making judgements based on what they think is right because they are misinformed. However, if it’s the other way, then I don’t see it stopping or any way of proving corruption.

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