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Re: [dvd-discuss] Will there be an appeal?

Date sent:      	Mon, 03 Dec 2001 17:09:01 -0800
To:             	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
From:           	"James S. Tyre" <jstyre@jstyre.com>
Subject:        	Re: [dvd-discuss] Will there be an appeal?
Send reply to:  	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu

> [A twofer, responding to both Mike and John.]
> At 11:47 AM 12/3/2001 -0800, microlenz@earthlink.net wrote:
> >I don't know about a corporation but individuals can be declared
> >vexatious litigants in Cal. But that is more trouble than it's worth
> >because the courts don't like to block access for individuals or
> >administer the suits when they get filed.
> To be a vexatious litigant, one must have instituted a number of
> lawsuits, vexatiously.  RIAA et al did not institute this one, we did.
>  We thought that the April letter and other items discussed in our
> papers were enough to make this a "live" case or controversy under
> Art. III of the Constitution, the Court disagreed.

well don't keep filing lawsuits agains the RIAA then ;-)

I also know that the stupidity of the suits doesn't matter. A couple 
of coworkers were sued by an ex-secretary of the company 
because they caused her to be evicted from her aparment because 
they sent mental projections to her landlord telling him to evict her. 
One of the corporate attorneys was gracious enough to draft the 
reply brief- Far more than it deserved. I would have thought that 
"paragraph 1. The P alleges mental telepathy. Need more be 
said?" But the reply responded point by point. This was not the 
only suit being brought so maybe the attorney had a standard form 
brief but the vexatious litigant was not even considered in the reply.
> >I don't know if anyone has pioneered a Class Action-anti SLAPP
> >suit yet.
> Not that I know of.  In any event, there are serious Constitutional
> questions whether an anti-SLAPP law such as what we have in CA, which
> is meaningfully different from the anti-SLAPP laws in most other
> states which have them, can be applied to a non-diversity federal
> court case.

I think class action anti-SLAPP is what Legislature SHOULD be 

> >Date sent:              Mon, 03 Dec 2001 10:35:54 -0700
> >From:                   "John Zulauf" <johnzu@ia.nsc.com>
> >To:                     dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
> >Subject:                Re: [dvd-discuss] Will there be an appeal?
> >Send reply to:          dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
> >
> > > Jim,
> > >
> > > pratical question.  Given the decision of the lower court, what is
> > > to stop the RIAA et. al. from praticing "lawsuitus interuptus"
> > > where they always pull out at the last minute and leave the
> > > defendendant with no cause, but having missed their publication
> > > windows, and having incurred substantial legal costs.
> The trial court's decision isn't precedent, of course.  We don't know
> yet whether it will be published, but it isn't binding on others even
> if it is.
> That said, you have nailed the impact of the court's decision, should
> other courts adopt it or should other researchers be chilled by it. 
> The court's attitude was the old "where's the beef?" line, since it
> believed that whatever threats had been made were withdrawn.  Ergo,
> end of case.  One can only speculate what might have been the case if
> the researchers had not presented at USENIX, but our papers made clear
> that the USENIX presentation was not the only matter at issue.

I realize that this is not the same situation but if one threatens 
another with a knife nothing more is needed for a case. But in this 
instance, the threat was made and withdrawn but no formal legal 
resolution was actually made despite the fact that it's a lot easier 
to do so here than in the former circumstance. Was there?

"where's the beef?" sorta sums it all up

It also shows up an incredible deficiency of the DMCA. The 
censorship of speech has been delegated to the corporate level. 
The government can outsource airport security but decisions of 
what can or cannot be said cannot be delegated to corporations. 

> --------------------------------------------------------------------
> James S. Tyre                               mailto:jstyre@jstyre.com
> Law Offices of James S. Tyre          310-839-4114/310-839-4602(fax)
> 10736 Jefferson Blvd., #512               Culver City, CA 90230-4969
> Co-founder, The Censorware Project             http://censorware.net