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US Grabs More Domain Names, $1.4M From Online Counterfeit Operations 69

Posted by timothy
from the business-as-increasingly-usual dept.
coondoggie writes "According to court documents, investigation by federal law enforcement agents revealed that subjects whose domain names had been seized in a November 2010 operation continued to sell counterfeit goods using new domain names. In particular, the individuals, based in China, sold counterfeit professional and collegiate sports apparel, primarily counterfeit sports jerseys." So now the government has again taken over a swathe of domain names used in crime.
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US Grabs More Domain Names, $1.4M From Online Counterfeit Operations

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  • Yawn (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Is anyone else underwhelmed by this "accomplishment"? Sports jerseys? Really? I guess as long as the proceeds more than fund the operations I am OK with this, but it had better be a net win for the government.

    • by nurb432 (527695)

      But now that we have achieved world peace, cured all diseases, and there is no hunger, we have nothing else to do but go after t-shirt and shoe companies.

      GO TEAM!

      • by jcoy42 (412359)

        Maybe we're just looking at the new cold war.

        I'd say China's gonna take this one.

      • If someone stole your bicycle or broke into your car and stole your stereo, you wouldn't report it to the police because their time and money is better spent going after murderers and rapists, rather than petty crime such as yours? Is that your logic?

        I used to work next door to a small 3-woman firm that licenses Warner Brothers (mostly Batman and Looney Tunes) characters and puts them on car floormats and sells them to auto supply shops. Theirs is "officially licensed product". They pay 10 to 20 grand for a

        • by Anonymous Coward

          The constatution does not EXPRESSLY make couterfetting a crime, nor does it EXPRESSLY allow the siezure of domain name's without due process.

          This is therefor by definition an illegal tax on competition.

          (roman_mir, can't login for some reason)

          • The constatution does not EXPRESSLY make couterfetting a crime, nor does it EXPRESSLY allow the siezure of domain name's without due process.

            This is therefor by definition an illegal tax on competition.

            (roman_mir, can't login for some reason)

            Your argument would have greater weight if you could spell "Constitution" and "counterfeiting" and "therefore" and "seizure". Also, if you understood the proper use of apostrophes. I'm not usually such a spelling and grammar nazi, but, dude, this is just painful to look at.

        • Much as I feel sympathy for your cute girls, if they are not making money from this it's probably because they are/were paying too much for the licence fee. They made a bad business decision somewhere down the line and flunked out. I have no personal knowledge of the market for Loony Tunes car floormats but would suspect it's not huge anyway.

          If their themed mats are markedly more expensive than an ordinary mats then people just will not buy them. To blame pirated mats for this is just trying to find reaso

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by nurb432 (527695)

          If someone stole your bicycle or broke into your car and stole your stereo, you wouldn't report it to the police because their time and money is better spent going after murderers and rapists, rather than petty crime such as yours? Is that your logic?

          If you want to compare using Federal agents to go after infringement of some copyright to my bike being stolen and asking my local police to look into it, we have nothing to discuss, as you are an idiot.

    • by sjames (1099)

      And as a result of the squeeze, fake sports jerseys will now cost up to $0.50 more to make up for it.

      I wonder how much the enforcement action is costing us?

    • by Anonymous Coward
      The Governments purpose is to lay and enforce the framework of society.

      The Government is not there to make money.

      So if we ever want Government to function correctly we as a people must debate what we want the Government to accomplish for society with the understanding that we as a people are willing to pay for it. If we're not willing to pay for it then the Government shouldn't be doing it. What percentage of your income are you willing to pay for roads, school lunches, the military, the elderly? How
      • "The Government is not there to make money"

        No, it's there to spend money.

        And contrary to press reports, neither of the two parties in the US seem at all serious about spending less, just differ on where to spend more.

        And they both know the magic words to apply to get any bill through:
        a) terrorism
        b) child porn

  • by santax (1541065) on Friday May 11, 2012 @07:46PM (#39974675)
    We really need to take the USA out of the internet-control. About everything is illegal in the USA and we should not take the risk they keep shutting more and more sites down. Yesterday it was for the children, today it's for the really rich and bad guys (riaa) and tomorrow it's because you tweeted you would go to LA and dig up Marilyn Monroe to party like there is no tomorrow. The world is in need of a new internet, a true internet without the current system of root-servers. A 100% decentralized internet, or in the event that isn't possible, an internet where the rootservers are in international waters. It's become to dangerous and we need to act. Fast.
    • by nurb432 (527695) on Friday May 11, 2012 @07:49PM (#39974711) Homepage Journal

      It works in both directions and isn't a 'usa thing', just wait until the UN gets bored and starts doing this to everyone they can find..

      • by santax (1541065)
        Let me rephrase then, we need to stop governments in general to be able to do this.
        • by nurb432 (527695)

          That, i will agree with.

      • UN can't do shit, it doesn't have any enforcement agencies. It can only do what the constituting member states can do, each to their own population.

      • by ewieling (90662)
        "It works in both directions and isn't a 'usa thing', just wait until the UN gets bored and starts doing this to everyone they can find.."

        Burying these evil counterfeiters in UN resolutions will stop them!
    • Ok, who would you delegate the oversight/police work over to? United States still has less corruption then most of other options. If you are so offended, in the US, you can sue the agency or the government and get your mistakenly seized domain back, plus $ damages. Lawyers actually love these kind of bad-government suits. Now, would that alternative solution you are proposing have such safeguards? In some decentralized internet utopia, the real mafias would run the place, there would be no authority to call
      • by santax (1541065)
        We don't agree. The USA even has 'sealed' cases about seizing domains... So even the lawyers don't know why their clients domain was seized in the first place. If there is one country that has proven over and over again since during it's whole history to be not trustworthy one has to say it's the USA. With all due respect to her citizens. To answer your question, best would be a true decentralized system. Next stop would be a non-profit formed under the watching eye of Richard Stallman, who as proven over
    • by manu0601 (2221348)

      an internet where the rootservers are in international waters.

      Mmmmh... An Internet ruled by somalian pirates :-)

    • Ok, the country with by far the most internet users is China [internetworldstats.com], you want to give them a 22.5% interest in regulating the internet? Or instead, lets prioritize on a per capita basis, the country with the highest internet usage per capita is Greenland [nationmaster.com]. They're the most vulnerable to regulation, so let's put them in charge. India has only 10% per capita online, but they're #3 for most users. The top G8 country per capita is Canada at #4.

      You figure out a way to get big countries with low per capita usage and

  • by 0111 1110 (518466) on Friday May 11, 2012 @07:47PM (#39974685)

    Ah. Whack-a-mole. That most American of games. Such an excellent way to spend someone else's money.

  • I don't believe that this is right of the American government to do. The Internet is not sole U.S. property and there are no court proceedings to justify it.

    • Re:Not Right (Score:4, Informative)

      by hendridm (302246) on Friday May 11, 2012 @08:15PM (#39974885) Homepage

      I don't believe that this is right of the American government to do. The Internet is not sole U.S. property and there are no court proceedings to justify it.

      Then don't put it on a TLD that is within U.S. jurisdiction. You'll notice that thepiratebay.org now redirects to thepiratebay.se for this reason.

      And if the U.S. asks a country to take down a ccTLD/server/whatever and the country complies, who should you be bitching at? The U.S. or your own government that is complying with another country's demands?

      • The U.S. or your own government that is complying with another country's demands?

        Both.

      • by houghi (78078)

        And if the U.S. asks a country to take down a ccTLD/server/whatever and the country complies, who should you be bitching at? The U.S. or your own government that is complying with another country's demands?

        The U.S.and the government that is complying. It does not even have to be my own.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    This quick recovery those counterfeiters managed goes to show just how futile it is to attach the domain name infrastructure for these kinds of infringements. And for obvious reasons... nobody types an URL anymore, they just go to google/bing/whatever. And it's really a point & click matter to have your brand-new replacement domain indexed by them: you just have to fill in a form and watch googlebot crawl your site.

    If they had invested all that effort in seizing bank accounts instead (and the warrants t

  • Problem? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by IonOtter (629215) on Friday May 11, 2012 @08:00PM (#39974781) Homepage

    ACTUAL crime being committed? Check.
    Warrant? Check.
    Proper procedure followed? Check.
    Crime investigated? Check.
    Crime confirmed? Check.
    Crime properly documented? Check.
    PUBLIC DULY INFORMED???

    Check and check.

    I don't have a problem with this.

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      Innocent until proven guilty in a court of law? FAIL.

      "Washington, we have a problem." as a RIAA/MPAA driven Justice Department driven by Uncle Tom Obama send justice hurtling out of control. Steal the stuff, fire the employees, threatening them with extended homosexual rape in US prisons (don't deny Americans routinely comment on it and it is publicly acknowledged http://www.hrw.org/news/2007/12/15/us-federal-statistics-show-widespread-prison-rape [hrw.org]).

      So forget justice this is all about nothing but a corr

  • ...that seizing domains does absolutely no good, and that in at least a one case [arstechnica.com], it does significant harm to people who haven't violated the law [slashdot.org].

    It's a flawed, ineffective, and destructive policy that can only cause harm and can never have any significant benefit. It needs to be stopped immediately.

  • If you want to see all of the banners used by the Operation In Our Sites initiative, I have collected them here: DOJ Seized Domain Notices - Paul Nickerson - Picasa Web Albums [google.com]
  • by Anonymous Coward

    So according to ACTA promoters, counterfeiting is a $100 billion a year business, and yet these websites combined, resulted in seizure of only $1.5 million??

    "Under warrants issued by a U.S. District Judge, law enforcement agents seized $1,455,438.72 in proceeds that had been transferred from the money service business accounts to various bank accounts in China."

    I notice they included the decimal point in the story and the fraction which makes the number longer, but it is only $1.5 million, probably far less

  • by future assassin (639396) on Saturday May 12, 2012 @01:18AM (#39976677) Homepage

    are not being punished? You can't tell me they couldn't get the transaction history from the payment processors.

  • Banksters continue to loot the savings and investments of millions of people, and our "leaders" are focused on knock-off NFL jerseys and copied mp3's.
  • Also, we are going to finally win the drug war any day now.

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