NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "In an attempt to change the rules of the game, the RIAA secretly went to a federal district court in Denver with an ex parte application. The goal was to get the judge to rule that the federal Cable Communications Policy Act does not apply to the RIAA's attempts to get subscriber information (pdf) from cable companies. Just to clarify, ex parte means that the application was secret, no one else — neither the ISP nor the subscribers — were given notice that this was going on. They were, in effect, asking the Court to rule that the RIAA does not need to get a court order to be able to force an ISP to disclose confidential subscriber information. The Magistrate Judge declined to rule on the issue (pdf), but did give them the ex parte discovery order they were looking for."