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The Courts Your Rights Online

Righthaven Ordered To Turn Over Hard Drives To Creditors 51

Posted by timothy
from the reversal-of-fortune dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Remember Righthaven? Steve Green writes that the copyright troll who partnered with the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Denver Post to file 275 no-warning copyright infringement lawsuits in 2010 and 2011 against parties that used content from those papers without authorization has just been ordered to turn over to a creditor hard drives from its computers so the creditor could determine if Righthaven has any assets that can be liquidated for the benefit of Righthaven's creditors. Federal judges in three states rejected Righthaven's lawsuits because the company lacked standing as the newspapers — not Righthaven — maintained control of the material Righthaven was suing over. Some defendants were also cleared by the fair use doctrine in copyright law. In the aftermath of Righthaven's legal debacle, the company shut down and claimed to be broke. Creditors in another case seized its website and trademark and auctioned them. They also seized the copyrights it sued over, but they didn't sell. Meanwhile Kurt Opsahl, an attorney for the EFF, has for months been urging Judge Peggy Leen to hit Righthaven CEO Steven Gibson with 'coercive sanctions' for Righthaven's failure to turn over information that will help the EFF find Righthaven assets. 'Steven Gibson is now going to have to show some responsibility,' said Opsahl after the judge issued a court order that could cost its CEO a fine of $500 per day for non-compliance. 'The CEO of Righthaven remains responsible for taking care of the business of the company.'"
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Righthaven Ordered To Turn Over Hard Drives To Creditors

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  • Re:That's weird (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 21, 2012 @01:39PM (#41722909)

    If a judge wants to take something of mine, he'll send a cop to come and take it. Why isn't that happening here? Do the banks wait for a house to be 'turned over' when they forecloses on it?

    Actually that's not necessarily true.

    If The State has a judgement against you then that is true. But... As someone who has been issued a small settlement in a legal dispute I can say that the courts will issue you a judgement, but it's up to YOU to figure out how to collect it. Now YOU, armed with a court order can certainly show up on their doorstep with the local sheriff and start hauling off stuff. Provided that the company isn't in bankruptcy and there are more than one of you to fight over the spoils, that's what bankruptcy court is all about, to determine who gets what. Sure you get your judgement but it's still up to you to collect it, the courts won't collect it for you. And once a company has gone out of business and has no legal address then you are just plain SOL, you have a judgement against an entity that no longer exists. Unless it's worth it to you to hire a private investigator to try and track down where all the money/property has been hidden. And you can't just show up on the CEO's doorstep either. That's the whole point of forming a corporation, to shield the rich people running them from having THEIR personal assets seized for the corporation's bad business decisions.

    Besides, what do you think this Steve person has been doing the last six months anyway? He's been hiding any assets that do remain in offshore banks. Those hard drives have long been wiped in order to destroy any evidence of illegal activity.

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