TX Judge Hughes Disallows I.T. Productions From ‘Suing Does’

IT Productions Lawsuits are clients of RIGHTSENFORCEMENT.com. Screenshot with I.T. outlined.

Pictographic of the interaction between Gary Fischman and Judge Hughes

I.T. Productions, “Judge, I’m filing this lawsuit against Does 1-10.”

Judge Hughes, “No you are not.  You may not sue Does.”

I am interested to see where this one goes.  One of the cases I am working on in the Southern District of Texas court is I.T. Productions, LLC v. DOES (Case No. 4:17-cv-00597).

In this case, Gary Fischman is the attorney, and he filed this case just as he does any of the others (he is currently filing lawsuits against John Doe Defendants for the ME2 Productions plaintiff, and the I.T. Productions plaintiff).  [And, together with Josh Wyde, Fischman is also representing the September Productions plaintiff, the Cell Productions plaintiff, and the Fathers & Daughters Nevada plaintiff.]

In his attempt to convince TX Judge Lynn Hughes to rubber-stamp an ‘early discovery’ authorization to allow Fischman to send subpoenas to AT&T in order to unmask the identities of the 10 subscribers who are John Doe (unnamed) defendants in this case, the judge responded with a prophetic slap across the face.

Judge Hughes I.T. Productions Order (TX)
Judge Hughes tells I.T. Productions attorney that I.T. may not sue Does.

“No you may not sue Does.”

Instead of allowing Fischman to sue the putative defendants as Does (e.g., Doe 1, Doe 2, etc.), it appears as if Judge Hughes wants Fischman to identify them by the last five digits of their [accused] IP addresses.

For example, Doe 1 with accused IP address 193.254.221.683 would likely be identified as “Subscriber 21683.”

What is the relevance?

Unknown.  Judge Hughes obviously titled the order as “Subscriber-Identity Subpoenas,” which means he has thought enough about this case to give it a title which links it to other (likely Malibu Media, LLC) cases he also has in his court.

Either way, a ‘copyright troll’ never likes a judge who questions him, alters his proposed order, or does anything other than rubber stamp his requests and allow him to do whatever he wants in (and out of) the judge’s courtroom.

No doubt, Judge Hughes will likely change all of that, somehow.


CONTACT FORM: If you have a question or comment about what I have written, and you want to keep it *for my eyes only*, please feel free to use the form below. The information you post will be e-mailed to me, and I will be happy to respond.

    NOTE: No attorney client relationship is established by sending this form, and while the attorney-client privilege (which keeps everything that you share confidential and private) attaches immediately when you contact me, I do not become your attorney until we sign a contract together.  That being said, please do not state anything “incriminating” about your case when using this form, or more practically, in any e-mail.

    ME2 Productions Bittorrent Lawsuits Have Come To Houston, TX

    UT ME2 Productions | Utah ME2 Settlement Letters Sent by Todd Zenger

    Introducing the ME2 Productions (“Mechanic:Resurrection”) Move Lawsuits

    Because the “ME2 Productions, Inc.” copyright infringement lawsuits appear to be the ‘third leg’ to the “September Productions, Inc.” (leg 1) and the “Cell Film Holdings, LLC” (leg 2) lawsuits, I felt compelled to write something about it.

    This third leg of cases, each of which have been filed by Gary Fischman and Josh Wyde consist of four cases (and counting), each filed here in the TX Southern District Court. ME2 Productions, Inc. itself [through their local counsel across the US] has filed 112 cases so far, and each case appears to be following the same template. There are 10-20 John Doe Defendants per case, and the cases are spaced apart when filed, hoping that no proactive judge receives and consolidates all of the cases in one federal district (this has not yet happened in Texas).

    ME2 PRODUCTIONS CASES ARE STILL IN THEIR INFANCY IN TEXAS.

    In Texas, the ME2 cases are still in their infancy, and all that has happened is that judges have rubber stamped what are called “expedited discovery” requests to allow the plaintiff attorneys to force the ISP(s) to send subpoenas to the account holders of those IP addresses where unlawful downloading is claimed to have happened.

    As of writing this message, the Comcast / XFinity ISP has received three subpoenas, and has sent letters to the accused account holders (the “John Doe Defendants”) indicating that they should file an objection to the subpoena with the court before the ISP is forced to hand out the subscriber information to the plaintiff attorney.

    As of now, there are three known ‘deadlines’ to file an objection (e.g., motion to quash) with the court — 3/2, 3/16 and 3/20 — corresponding to three of the four cases so far filed in Texas. I’ll update this article with the fourth date as soon as I get it.

    WHAT MOVIE IS BEHIND THE ME2 PRODUCTIONS CASES?

    More generally, ME2 Productions, Inc. is suing for copyright infringement based on the the illegal download of the Mechanic: Resurrection movie, starring Jason Statham and Jessica Alba. (NOTE: If you are considering downloading any of the Transporter movies also with Jason Statham, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see lawsuits from the production companies for those movies as well in the near future based on a trend I’ve noticed in the past. Also be on the lookout for lawsuits for the ‘Transporter’ movies as well for this same reason).

    NOTICING A CONNECTION BETWEEN ME2 PRODUCTIONS AND EARLIER LAWSUITS.

    Based on my conversations with the plaintiff attorneys who are attempting to sue downloaders of the Mechanic: Resurrection title, I understand that a number of those implicated in these lawsuits may have also been implicated in the September Productions, Inc. v. Does lawsuits for the download of the Septembers of Shiraz video and possibly also the Cell Film Holdings, LLC v. Does lawsuit for the download of the “The Cell” video.

    For some reason, these three videos appear to be a trio, perhaps because they were shared on the piracy websites or Popcorn Time software platforms at the same time, or that there is some ‘contractual’ connection between the three movies (e.g., perhaps Voltage Pictures has signed an agreement with each of the three copyright holders giving Voltage a right to take on the movie production’s company name as they did with Dallas Buyers Club, LLC, to act and to sue on their behalf in order to ‘monetize’ and enforce the copyright rights those productions companies have from the creation of the copyrighted films).

    I wrote this last paragraph very quickly, without much explanation. Do you even care if the company suing you is really Voltage Pictures, Inc. who has contacted the movie companies and said, “sign a contract with me — I’ll sue in your name and get lots of settlement money for you”? Bottom line, you are implicated as a John Doe Defendant in what looks to be a copyright troll lawsuit, Comcast is about to hand over your information to plaintiff attorneys Joshua Wyde and Gary Fischman, and you are staring down the barrel of a $150,000 copyright infringement for clicking and possibly watching a movie that may not have been any good.

    WHY THESE CASES ARE BOTH SIMILAR AND SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT FROM CONVENTIONAL COPYRIGHT TROLL CASES.

    In sum, whether this lawsuit indeed falls under “copyright troll” status or not, the plaintiff attorneys have taken great strides to mask the true nature of this lawsuit, namely, that this lawsuit will likely not go to trial for any of the defendants, because it is not economically profitable for the copyright holder (or Voltage Pictures, if this is the case) to spend the money to chase some student in Houston, TX and force a $150,000 judgment on them that the student will never and could never pay. Yet based on the documents I have seen these attorneys file in the court (sometimes even quoting this blog), they seem to want to litigate.

    Whether they are paid hourly by their copyright holder clients (the production companies) or whether the simply take a commission based on a percentage of the settlement amount they elicit from the defendants (my gut feeling is that they are actually being paid hourly by their clients which gives them an incentive to spend more time filing documents in the court) they do spend significant amounts of time drafting motions, and they do spend the money to name and serve defendants, and they DO fight the case *as if* they were taking each John Doe Defendant to trial. Whether this is because they are trying to overcome the bias the federal judges in Texas have against the pornography bittorrent cases which wasted the past seven years of the court’s time or because they are trying to prove the legitimacy of bittorrent based copyright infringement lawsuits, bottom line, they are fighting these cases differently from the way other plaintiff attorneys have fought them in recent years.

    What to do if you are sued for a movie you did not download?

    So here is the solution. If you did not download the Mechanic: Resurrection movie, then fight back. Hire an attorney (me, or any other attorney) to fight your case. If you did the download, well, there are also solutions found with an attorney, but you knew this already, and it will require both sides to be reasonable to come to an amicable solution.

    I did not mention this before, so I am mentioning this here since it is relevant — it is not profitable for a movie company to bring a copyright infringement lawsuit to trial. This gives us on the defense side leverage to either come to an amicable solution, or to fight back and force them to dismiss. The plaintiff attorneys Josh Wyde and Gary Fischman will fight back, but facts are facts, and justice is for the most part blind. If they cannot prove that it is more likely than not that you were the downloader of the copyrighted movie, then they cannot find you guilty for copyright infringement.

    An unintended consequence of fighting back.

    NOTE: An unintended consequence of fighting back from a purely academic perspective is that doing so forces the copyright holders to focus their set of John Doe Defendants to those downloaders to whom they can prove did the download, because each ‘misfire’ (meaning, each John Doe Defendant who did not do the download and who fights back) costs the copyright holder severely, and we have said for years that this would be the demise of the ‘copyright troll’ model if they sue without vetting their data as to which John Doe Defendants apparently did what and when. Make it too expensive to blindly name and serve (without vetting the John Doe Defendants first), and their model falls. However, fight back, and they will focus and limit their list of John Doe Defendants to those who subscribers (or their family members) who actually did the downloading, and this will only feed back into their cash stream by encouraging settlements to avoid being named and served, sued, and found liable for copyright infringement. It’s a messy problem.

    Known Mechanic Resurrection Movie Lawsuits Filed in TX

    KNOWN Texas Southern District Court ME2 Cases [Filed in 2017]:
    Attorney: Gary Fischman (Fischman Law PLLC)

    ME2 Productions, Inc. v DOES (Case No. 4:17-cv-00695)
    Filed: March 4, 2017, Judge: Vanessa D Gilmore

    ME2 Productions, Inc. v. DOES (Case No. 4:17-cv-00501)
    Filed: Feb 15, 2017, Judge: TBA

    ME2 Productions, Inc. v. Does 1-12 (Case No. 4:17-cv-00404)
    Filed: Feb 09, 2017, Judge: TBA

    ME2 Productions, Inc. v. DOES (Case No. 4:17-cv-00275)
    Filed: Jan 27, 2017, Judge: TBA

    ME2 Productions, Inc. v. Does (Case No. 4:17-cv-00143)
    Filed: Jan 17, 2017, Judge: TBA

    For an analysis of the other ME2 Productions, Inc. bittorrent-based cases filed across the US, click here.


    CONTACT FORM: If you have a question or comment about what I have written, and you want to keep it *for my eyes only*, please feel free to use the form below. The information you post will be e-mailed to me, and I will be happy to respond.

      NOTE: No attorney client relationship is established by sending this form, and while the attorney-client privilege (which keeps everything that you share confidential and private) attaches immediately when you contact me, I do not become your attorney until we sign a contract together.  That being said, please do not state anything “incriminating” about your case when using this form, or more practically, in any e-mail.

      shalta boook now cta

      Malibu Media Copyright Troll – The “New Kids on the Block”.

      malibu-media-case-consolidations

      Meet your new Malibu Media copyright troll.

      There seems to be a new production company who has decided that it is a better business model for them to start suing internet users (e.g., copyright trolling) rather than selling their cheap flicks on the internet one by one. The company name is Malibu Media, LLC, and while the actual “film” allegedly downloaded probably varies from case-to-case, it appears as if “Tiffany Teenagers in Love” seems to be the primary title they are using in their lawsuits.

       [NOTE: BEFORE READING THIS ARTICLE: If you have not already done so, and you are implicated as a John Doe in a Malibu Media, LLC lawsuit, read these first:
      1) “Everything You Need To Know in One Page About Your Malibu Media, LLC (X-Art) Lawsuit [FAQ]
      2) “In-Depth Malibu Media.  Their Lawsuits, Their Strategies, and Their Settlements

      FOR IMMEDIATE CONTACT AN ATTORNEY: To set up a free consultation to speak to an attorney about your Malibu Media, LLC lawsuit, click here.  Lastly, please feel free to e-mail me at info [at] cashmanlawfirm.com, or call 713-364-3476 to speak to me now about your case (I do prefer you read the articles first), or to get your questions answered.]

      Why are the lawyers the same as we have seen with other troll lawsuits?!?

      What surprises me is that while this is a new “troll” (using the term loosely,) the local counsel they are using suggests to me that the same entity [behind the Patrick Collins, Inc., K-Beech, Inc., NuCorp, Inc., Raw Films, Ltd., Zero Tolerance, etc. cases] is also behind this case. In other words, this is simply a new client climbing on the bandwagon looking to cash in on the ongoing mass extortion scheme. The rules, however, have not changed.

      [HINDSIGHT: (2017 UPDATE:) LITTLE DID I KNOW AT THE TIME THAT GUARDALEY WAS NOT ONLY THE FORENSIC COMPANY BEHIND THE MALIBU MEDIA, LLC LAWSUITS, BUT ALL OF THE MAINSTREAM MOVIE LAWSUITS *AND* ADULT FILM LAWSUITS FILED ACROSS THE U.S. (PRESUMABLY WITH THE MPAA / RIAA AS THE INVESTOR BACKING THE LAWSUITS).]

      Pasted below is a list of the cases, separated by the court in which the case was filed in, and who the local counsel is. I have dealt with each one of these guys before, so as far as I am concerned, this is just one more troll to add to the list of companies who are suing defendants.  I have included the newer filings of Raw Films, Ltd. to show that these are the same attorneys.

      California Central District Court – Adam M. Silverstein of Cavalluzzi & Cavalluzzi

      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-10 (Case no. 2:12-cv-01647)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-10 (Case no. 2:12-cv-01675)
      Raw Films, Ltd. v. John Does 1-10 (Case no. 2:12-cv-01653)

      Virginia Eastern District Court – David / Wayne O’Bryan of O’Bryan Law Firm

      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-26 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00160)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-26 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00161)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-15 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00163)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-27 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00165)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-08 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00166)

      California Southern District Court – Adam M. Silverstein of Cavalluzzi & Cavalluzzi

      Malibu Media, LLC. v. John Does 1-13 (Case no. 3:12-cv-00358)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-25 (Case no. 3:12-cv-00362)
      Malibu Media, LLC. v. John Does 1-15 (Case no. 3:12-cv-00369)
      Raw Films, Ltd. v. John Does 1-11 (Case no. 3:12-cv-00368)

      Colorado District Court – Jason Aaron Kotzker of Kotzker Law Group

      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-29 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00397)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-16 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00399)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-30 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00402)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-10 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00405)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-27 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00406)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-18 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00407)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-15 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00408)
      Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-27 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00409)

      District Of Columbia District Court – Jon A. Hoppe of Maddox Hoppe Hoofnagle & Hafey LLC

      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-5 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00233)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-16 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00235)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-11 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00237)
      Raw Films, Ltd. v. John Does 1-3 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00234)
      Raw Films, Ltd. v. John Does 1-19 (Case no. 1:12-cv-00236)

      Pennsylvania Eastern District Court – Christopher P. Fiore of Fiore & Barber LLC

      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-15 (Case no. 2:12-cv-00664)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-17 (Case no. 2:12-cv-00665)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-10 (Case no. 2:12-cv-00666)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-11 (Case no. 2:12-cv-00667)
      Malibu Media LLC v. John Does 1-22 (Case no. 2:12-cv-00668)

      What to expect based on what these “?attorneys?” have done before.

      On a personal note (obviously not legal advice, as each plaintiff above handles cases differently, and each person’s situation is different): We have seen these attorneys before in other cases. If you receive a copy of a subpoena from your ISP indicating that you have been implicated as a John Doe Defendant in any one of these cases, you’ll probably be instructed in the letter to file a motion to quash. As you know from my MANY articles on this blog, you know my opinion that such motions have been a waste of time for defendants (e.g., plaintiff attorney will claim that because you are not yet “named” as a defendant, you have no “standing” to file such a motion, etc., etc., etc.). More likely than not, you will not receive a letter from your ISP, and one of their creditor-like “bulldogs” will begin calling you and threatening to name you as a defendant unless you settled your case against them. They will make up odd numbers on the spot as to how much their “client” will settle for, but remember, these guys and gals (who often do not even sound sober and are probably sitting in a cubicle somewhere reading you a script) are not attorneys and likely do not have authority to settle your case. If you have spoken to me, you know my opinion is that 1) they shouldn’t even be calling you in the first place, and 2) you should not be discussing your case with them.

      What else can you tell me about the Malibu Media cases?

      [2017 UPDATE] The best way to learn about Malibu Media, LLC is to read what happened to them as it happened.  The list of stories below (in the order I listed them) tell the Malibu Media story in a way that you will understand them.


      FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT MALIBU MEDIA, LLC:Again, if you have been implicated as a John Doe defendant in a Malibu Media, LLC lawsuit, there are TWO (2) main articles you should read immediately:

      1) “Everything You Need To Know in One Page About Your Malibu Media, LLC (X-Art) Lawsuit [FAQ],” and then
      2) “In-Depth Malibu Media.  Their Lawsuits, Their Strategies, and Their Settlements.”

      FOR IMMEDIATE CONTACT WITH AN ATTORNEY: To set up a free consultation to speak to an attorney about your Malibu Media, LLC lawsuit, click here.  Lastly, please feel free to e-mail me at info[at] cashmanlawfirm.com, or call 713-364-3476 to speak to me now about your case (I do prefer you read the articles first), or to get your questions answered.

      CONTACT FORM: Alternatively, sometimes people just like to contact me using one of these forms.  If you have a question or comment about what I have written, and you want to keep it *for my eyes only*, please feel free to use the form below. The information you post will be e-mailed to me, and I will be happy to respond.

        NOTE: No attorney client relationship is established by sending this form, and while the attorney-client privilege (which keeps everything that you share confidential and private) attaches immediately when you contact me, I do not become your attorney until we sign a contract together.  That being said, please do not state anything “incriminating” about your case when using this form, or more practically, in any e-mail.

        Book a Phone Consultation with a Cashman Law Firm Attorney

        Congratulations to Cashman Law Firm, PLLC Clients – Attorneys Suffer Partial FRCP Rule 4(m) Dismissal in West Coast Productions v. Does 1-5,829 Case

        [NOTE TO CLIENTS: Regarding the article below, if you are one of those who have been dismissed, I will be sending you a congratulations letter shortly, and I will tell you what the next steps are and what to expect from Dunlap Grubb & Weaver, PLLC.]

        Congratulations to our clients who have been dismissed in the West Coast Productions v. Does 1-5829 case (1:11-cv-00057-CKK). I must say up front that NOT ALL DEFENDANTS HAVE BEEN DISMISSED.  In short, this dismissal is merely Judge Kollar-Kotelly enforcing her 5/11/2011 order where she ordered the plaintiff attorneys at Dunlap Grubb & Weaver, PLLC to either name and serve the defendants identified in their 4/15 statement by 5/16 or else she will dismiss them on her own.  Like Judge Shadur has done to dispose with John Steele’s CP Productions v. Does case in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois a few months back, Judge Kollar-Kotelly is employing the same Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 4(m) to dismiss these defendants.

        The case itself is still alive.

        As for what to expect next, there are a series of dates to watch for.  Firstly, Judge Kollar-Kotelly has set a 6/1 deadline for the plaintiffs to give her a status update as to the various Does still pending in the case.  Nothing of relevance will happen here.  Then, by 6/20/2011, plaintiff attorneys must either name and serve the defendants identified in their 6/1 statement or else she will dismiss them on her own just as she has done here.  Since they have a few days to inform the court of what they have done, we will likely see an order similar to the one we see today on 6/28/2011.

        I have attached the order below for your viewing.  To those of you who are not one of our Cashman Law Firm, PLLC clients, please use the attached document to view whether your accused IP address is one of the IP addresses which are now dismissed.  If so, I congratulate you on your dismissal.

        [scribd id=56243751 key=key-3ptx5nvm9ksp595tiof mode=list]

        Last, but not least, on an ethics note.  It has been brought to my attention that it is the practice of some of unscrupulous attorneys to send out what are known as “scare letters” demanding thousands of dollars, even after a dismissal.  While this is obviously not legal advice, if I received such a demand letter after being dismissed from a lawsuit such as this one, I would immediately contact Judge Kollar-Kotelly’s chambers at (202) 354-3340, and I would ask to fax in a copy of the letter I have received so that the court can be made aware should the plaintiff choose to send such a letter.

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