Accused of torrenting copyrighted material

3,143 posts in this topic

 

The VPN I use says that if I do anything illegal they'll hand over their traffic logs to show it was me. Or something like that. They're good for basic misdirection and privacy and getting round region blocks, but not a complete cloak of invisibility.

 

Or do the lawyers not try it on with VPN companies as they understand these laws better than the average net user?

 

Yeah, it's a bit of a grey area, agreed.

I haven't found anything definitive about people being done through a VPN. The VPN providers do have the caveat that they store traffic logs, but only for a limited time.

 

The way I see it though is that if one downloads through Italy, say, and the Italian lawyers contact the VPN providers, who upon referencing the traffic logs end up with one's real IP, the lawyers are unlikely to bother chasing down fines across borders.

 

Edit : Forgot one thing. Apparently it's a legal hassle for anyone to access the traffic logs anyway, and it appears the VPN providers are much more likely just to terminate your account.

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the lawyers are unlikely to bother chasing down fines across borders.

I think some of these groups of lawyers are operating in more than one country and may just send the case to their colleagues in the relevant country - getting a piece of the action, of course.

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Hello everyone... I have the same problem. I was in Germany last month at my aunt and uncle house, and my cousin and I downloaded 6 movies, but they said that we`re `guilty` only because of downloading one: `Intouchables`! Aunt, cousin and I are now in Bosnia, and uncle got call from lawyer, who said that he has to pay 800 euros. I was reading this forum, and I need to know is there anyone who really solved the problem for 300 euros, or less than 800. Plese, help me, I`m really not in a situation to pay so much money, I`m not working, I`m a student, but on the other side, I can`t allow my uncle to pay that (( If anyone know how to solve it, without lawyers who needs even more than 800 euros, I would be really grateful! Thanks, Jelena

 

Yes, me for one. There are others. Might be worth the €500 difference to read the thread.

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In March this year, we got the letter from Rasch regarding one album, which they claimed we illegally obtained and uploaded online in February, thus asking us to sign and send back their enclosed documents and to pay 1200 Euro.

 

We went to see a lawyer and we immediately sent the modified UE but decided not to pay Rasch any money at all. They sent us another letter stating, they received our modified UE. However, they still kept on sending us scary letters each month, including yesterday. The letter we got yesterday contained the phrases such as "Streitwert: 50000 Euro" and "Summe 6.458,75 Euro", which seemed like their estimate of what would eventually cost us.

 

This scared me so much that we scheduled an appointment with our lawyer next week. My German is too poor to understand the letters, but we kept ignoring their other letters, thinking now that we already sent them the modified UE, it would be about the fee alone even if we get sued. That is why I am very shocked by those huge amount of numbers they stated in the letter. Does it mean they received our modified UE but did not accept it??

 

My husband still thinks they are just trying to scare us and still insists not to pay any money at all and keep on ignoring their letters. On the other hand, I have had enough of this and think we should settle (plus, the story like Tue really sounds scary!!)

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Does it mean they received our modified UE but did not accept it??

How could someone answer that question without knowing what the subsequent letters said?

 

IF they didn't accept your mod UE and you want to see a lawyer about this, then make sure you negotiate his fees in advance, because if there actually is a 50,000€ case hanging in the balance, having your lawyer write them a letter could cost you 1,500€ or more.

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Thanks for the fast response, bal00!!

 

I forgot to mention earlier that our lawyer is actually hired by my husband's work and it does not cost us anything to consult with her and let her write letters. This also means she does not work for profit. She only gives us different suggestions and never tells us what we should do.

 

Even when she wrote us the modified UE in March, she just said it would be up to us to settle or ignore about the payment, so we ignored. And I assume she would tell us the same next week but at least, we will find out what all of the subsequent letters mean and decide what to do. Now I terribly regret for not seeing her when we got the second letter.

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Telcos are not responsible because they are service providers. AFAIK hotels are responsible - which is why they do not just give you the password to their WLAN but you get a personalized account so that they can pin you down if someone complains.

 

Exactly, the hotel, just like Telekom, records who uses the connection so that if there is a problem the person who caused it can be contacted.

 

What I'm suggesting is that you should reply to these letters saying "We are not responsible, a person who was subletting our connection is. Please get a letter from the court, and I will tell you who that person is". They would be very unlikely to do that, but if they did, then hand them over an overseas address and that'd be the end of it.

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What I'm suggesting is that you should reply to these letters saying "We are not responsible, a person who was subletting our connection is.

Not going to work. You may want to google the term 'Störerhaftung'. Individual subscribers are held responsible for what happens with their internet connection if they choose to share it, ISPs are not.

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Recent court cases in Frankfurt and Munich held that commercial internet providers such as hotels, internet cafés, or potentially a commercial landlord offering internet services in his property could not be held liable for illegal use of their connection.

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Sounds exactly right to me. Imagine if you phoned in a bomb scare to some large public event/building, but did it from a hotel phone. As if the police are going to accuse the hotel of anything. They're offering a utility service and only the user of that service can be held liable for how it's used. Another example would be trying to sue a car rental company because of what the rental driver chose to do with it.

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Just for information ...

 

2 and a half years ago I was caught downloading. I contacted a lawyer and paid Waldorf Frommer their 100 Euros along with a modified UE (Instead of the 850 Euros they were asking for) and I never heard from them again .... until now. My lawyer sent me an email saying that unless I pay them the full amount within a couple of days they will take me to court. They didn't even send me a letter and must have gone straight to my lawyer.

 

2 and a half years later ... WTF!!

 

My lawyer advised me not to pay but says that he can't predict the outcome of legal action. So I guess this time I'm going to put it down as scare tactics and wait and see.

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That could be a good reason to stand up for yourself against these scumbags and not pay them a cent to begin with. If you always have to worry about it hanging over your head and that you might be taken to court years later, then may as well tell them to get lost and have your day in court.

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... and another thing I forgot to mention. It's actually my wife that's mentioned on the original docs and it's her that should pay the fine. So the legal firm is giving her about 2 days to cough up, meanwhile she is on holiday and won't be back until about a week after the deadline has expired. I mean it's August when traditionally a lot of people go on holiday. Do these leeches/lawyers know this and deliberately target people who will miss their deadline of a couple of days??

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So I received a letter from Rausch a couple weeks ago. Read through the many helpful posts both on here and other sites recommending the modified UE and sent it registered. Now I have received this letter, with a date of next Tuesday and not sure what to do with it, but I am freaking out! Should I now seek legal help? If so, does anyone have a recommendation? Thanks!

 

Unerlaubte Verwertung Geschützter Tonaufnahmen

 

sehr geehrte

 

in vorbezeichneter Angelegenheit bestätigen wir zunächst den eingang iher unterlassungs-erklarung vom 17.07.2012 und nehmen diese namens unserer mandantin dankend an. Soweit diese Unterlassungsverpflichtung auf das streitgegenständliche Album beschränkt wird, weisen wir bereits jetzt darauf hin, dass im Falle eines weiteren , eine andere Tonaufnahme betreffenden Verstoßes ein erneuter Unterlassungsanspruch mit voller Kostenfolge durchgesetz werden kann.

 

Leider konnte noch keine Einigung hinsichtlich der Ersatzanspruche unserer Mandantin herbeigeführt werden. Unsere Mandantin erneuert diesbezüglich ihr Vergleichsangebot vom 11.07.2012; als Frist fur dessen Annahme haben wir uns nunmehr den 14.08.2012 vorgemerkt.

 

Mit freundlichen Grußen

 

Google Translation:

 

Unauthorized use of protected sound recordings

 

Dear

 

in the said matter, we first confirm the input good selling injunction explanation of 17.07.2012 and take it with thanks to the name of our client. As far as this obligation is limited to the omission of disputed record, we have already pointed out that in case of another, and another recording the infringement in a renewed injunction with full cost implications may be by law.

 

Unfortunately, no agreement could be brought about in terms of compensation claims of our client. Our client renews its offer of settlement in this regard by 11.07.2012, as the deadline for the adoption of which we have now been added to the 08/14/2012.

 

Best Regards

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They confirmed receipt of and thanked you for the declaration to cease and desist. They note that if your declaration only applies to the album in question, any further violations with other works will result in new cease and desist orders.

 

Now they want their pound of flesh: they are extending the deadline for the offer they made to you on July 11th. You have until Tuesday to accept (or else). It's up to you whether you want to pay what they are asking, make them an offer, or tell them to take a flying leap at a rolling donut.

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Do you happen to know what is normally the most sucessful option? Is it true that once I sent the modified UE that the total possible damages they could get was frozen at the offer amount? That is what I thought I had read...

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How come Telekom aren't responsible for it - you're using their connection after all. Or are hotels also responsible? I'd expect not. How come Telekom and hotels are exempt but I'm not?

 

thats like trying to blame A brewery if you got caught drunk driving!

 

When will people wake up and smell the coffee??

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The law firms often send 1-2 letters begging for money following a mod UE. Nothing unusual.

 

bal00, you seem to have been extremely helpful to many in this matter, and I thank you for all your posts in this matter. I also apologize if my question is redundant, but would the 1-2 letters you have stated that the firms usually send include one such as I received after the mod UE, extending the deadline?

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Has anyone actually (recently?) been to court with one of these matters? There must be a statute of limitations as well as well? Very strange to hear them taking a settlement and then coming back to get the rest.. Germany sounds like a legal jungle.

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