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Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby SlyckTom » Tue Aug 19, 2008 1:19 pm

In the absence of a published court order on the "Dream Pinball 3D" file-sharing case, much of the news that's available is currently based on press releases and forum testimony. In the absence of any solid documentation, the most recent Davenport Lyon's press release indicates that a rather serious development in the Topware Interactive "Dream Pinball 3D" has erupted.

According to Davenport Lyons, the law firm representing Topware, one of the hundreds of file-sharers accused of sharing "Dream Pinball 3D", was fined "£6,086.56 plus costs and disbursements of £10,000", or ~$32,000. Much like the RIAA's legal pursuit of uploaders, the individuals were given a chance to settle for considerably less. Unlike the situation in the United States, however, the defendant was unable to successfully defend herself. It is not known whether she simply ignored the chance or tried to fight the allegation in court.

Press releases and regurgitated articles aside, let's take a deeper look at this development in comparison to the BPI's legal campaign against music uploaders, and how "Dream Pinball" has become a coup for the entertainment industry's public relation war.

The BPI (British Phonographic Industry) began emulating the US music industry's legal campaign in 2004. In March of that year, the BPI began sending instant messages to suspected P2P pirates, warning them of the potential copyright liability associated with P2P uploading. According to the BPI's Digital Music Timeline, over 150 UK citizens have faced monetary demands from the UK music industry as of November of 2005.

In comparison, Davenport Lyons has sent over 500 letters to suspected uploaders of "Dream Pinball", according to the BBC. Like most suspected uploaders, the accused generally decide to settle for £300 (~$600) rather than face a lengthy and potentially damaging trial. Davenport Lyons scored its first success in July, when 4 suspected uploaders were each ordered to pay £2,750 (~$5,500) for breaking Topware's copyrights. These were default judgments against the defendants, as they did not show up in court to answer the copyright complaints.

In total, Davenport Lyon has won £27,000 in less than a year's worth of work. This is in stark contrast to the BPI, who has been rather inactive according to their Digital Music Timeline. The last court judgment in their favor was in January of 2006, when a "Norfolk man ordered to make a £5000 ‘down payment’."

It would seem that Topware, who has fewer interests compared to the music industry, can focus much more of their energy on suspected uploaders. This greatly benefits the BPI and their efforts to involve ISPs against uploaders, as the trade organization has been rather quiet when it comes to litigating pirates in the last two years. In other words, if Topware and “Dream Pinball 3D” didn’t exist, the music industry's efforts would likely be struggling to gain attention in the headlines. Davenport Lyon’s news release takes a lot of this pressure to remain relevant away.

According to the DailyMail, the judgment was issued on July 22. It’s interesting to note that no announcement was made in the last month, and that no official court decision has been posted online. We’re left only to wonder about the conflicting information, and marvel that Davenport Lyons has accomplished more antipiracy public relations in a few short months than the music industry could have dreamed of.



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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby altpdend » Tue Aug 19, 2008 2:12 pm

How do you know this is not just a phony press release put out by to Davenport Lyons ? The article even says you can't find any court record so without any evidence don't post this garbage
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby MrFredPFL » Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:54 pm

do you have any idea how much legal trouble DL would be in if their press release was lies?

my impression, after reading the press release, is that they won a 5th default judgement. i see nothing whatsoever to indicate the case was contested, and i am not sure how the BBC got that impression. there is certainly nothing in DL's press release that even implies it. in fact, if anything, they imply it WAS another default judgement:

This follows the recent decision at the Central London County Court against four people who were found to have infringed copyright by sharing games illegally on the Internet.


here, let me finish that for you guys...

Please bear in mind that none of these people showed up to defend themselves in any manner.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Dazzle_2 » Tue Aug 19, 2008 4:16 pm

I bleieve your reading of this is spot on MrFred, what causes me considerable anguish is that not only do we have the BBC publishing any anti-filesharing article unchecked or contested but that no one has asked how the alleged evidence was allowed to be presented to a UK court when it was gathered illegally by a Swiss company breaching UK and EU data gathering legislation, that is the core of this case for me.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Ashibael » Tue Aug 19, 2008 6:26 pm

Dazzle_2 wrote:I bleieve your reading of this is spot on MrFred, what causes me considerable anguish is that not only do we have the BBC publishing any anti-filesharing article unchecked or contested but that no one has asked how the alleged evidence was allowed to be presented to a UK court when it was gathered illegally by a Swiss company breaching UK and EU data gathering legislation, that is the core of this case for me.


I have to agree with you there. If the 'evidence' in this case was collected illegally.... then why did the British courts let it in? They have ruled in numerous other cases over in England that if evidence is collected in an illegal manner, EVEN BY A PRIVATE CITIZEN.... that evidence cannot be entered into a court of law.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby MrFredPFL » Tue Aug 19, 2008 6:45 pm

but someone has to contest the legality of the evidence to begin with. just one of the many reasons to show up, as opposed to allowing the court to find "Defendant does not give a fuck, judgement for the Plaintiff".
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby penguin15793 » Tue Aug 19, 2008 10:40 pm

am i missing something? this is for fucking pinball?
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby HEAT84 » Tue Aug 19, 2008 10:51 pm

penguin15793 wrote:am i missing something? this is for fucking pinball?

Yeah I know! :lol: But as my mom would say, its the principle of the thing.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Paladwyn » Tue Aug 19, 2008 11:02 pm

Another default judgement? Must be why they are not wanting to release the onformation...it looks bad for them if they are headlinging they are winning cases...but does it count as a win, if you are the only contender?

It's bad press to announce it like this, they are trying to set a precident and whatnot...this needs to be squashed before it gets too far.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby enigmax » Wed Aug 20, 2008 2:32 am

Thanks for being the only non-sheep writer on this subject so far Tom. The truth will come out.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby bubbster » Wed Aug 20, 2008 4:07 am

Ashibael wrote:
Dazzle_2 wrote:I bleieve your reading of this is spot on MrFred, what causes me considerable anguish is that not only do we have the BBC publishing any anti-filesharing article unchecked or contested but that no one has asked how the alleged evidence was allowed to be presented to a UK court when it was gathered illegally by a Swiss company breaching UK and EU data gathering legislation, that is the core of this case for me.


I have to agree with you there. If the 'evidence' in this case was collected illegally.... then why did the British courts let it in? They have ruled in numerous other cases over in England that if evidence is collected in an illegal manner, EVEN BY A PRIVATE CITIZEN.... that evidence cannot be entered into a court of law.


That's the whole point though isn't it.

If the judgement was defaulted, then no evidence would have been presented. By not replying to the court papers, she incriminated herself without DL having to lift a finger in the court.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Aalamo » Wed Aug 20, 2008 4:33 am

Guys, the following text (extracted from the BBC article), clearly indicates that this case has been contested and that it was not a default judgment.

"
Some of those accused of sharing the game chose to fight the legal action and it was in one of these contested cases that Topware Interactive won its claim for damages.

"This is a proper Intellectual Property (IP) court that has made this judgement," said independent IP barrister David Harris. "The previous ones were default judgements where defendants never turned up."


Are you suggesting the above is false? It says "contested" and "the previous ones", why would you think that this one was a default judgement?
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby bubbster » Wed Aug 20, 2008 5:59 am

Well, several other sources claim otherwise and that it was a default judgement. There is a lot of confusion surrounding the case for now. As there has been no mention on any of the sites as to what evidence led to the prosecution, I am still of the belief that it was a default judgement.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby TorrentMama » Wed Aug 20, 2008 7:09 am

enigmax wrote:Thanks for being the only non-sheep writer on this subject so far Tom. The truth will come out.


+1
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Borzht » Wed Aug 20, 2008 9:01 am

According to the Open Rights Group list, the case number for this is PAT08023. The information was provided by Davenport Lyons.

--Bzt
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby MrFredPFL » Wed Aug 20, 2008 9:58 am

Aalamo wrote:Guys, the following text (extracted from the BBC article), clearly indicates that this case has been contested and that it was not a default judgment.

"
Some of those accused of sharing the game chose to fight the legal action and it was in one of these contested cases that Topware Interactive won its claim for damages.

"This is a proper Intellectual Property (IP) court that has made this judgement," said independent IP barrister David Harris. "The previous ones were default judgements where defendants never turned up."


Are you suggesting the above is false? It says "contested" and "the previous ones", why would you think that this one was a default judgement?


just because the BBC says it, it's still not necessarily accurate. the DL press release, which so far is the only original source of info on this i have seen, says no such thing. i won't speak for anyone else - but i presonally suspect someone is mistaken, or was possibly even intentionally misled, as deliberately misleading people seems to be a cornerstone of DL's approach to this whole lawsuit campaign. until such time is i see anything more definitive, i will continue to reserve judgement on this - but if i had to bet on it, my money would be on a default judgement today.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Paladwyn » Wed Aug 20, 2008 10:23 am

I have to agree with Fred, the BBC has reported wrong - well, wrong is a strong word...more like misleading information before, especially on this matter. They don't seem to care about ruining the good names of people and seem to be more inclined to side with the 'good' rather than the 'bad' in a manner of speaking.

In the end it starts to make people less confident of their reporting skills...which is not something a news reporting site needs - to be deemed untrustworthy.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby piXelatedEmpire » Wed Aug 20, 2008 8:35 pm

MrFredPFL wrote:..but i presonally suspect someone is mistaken, or was possibly even intentionally misled, as deliberately misleading people seems to be a cornerstone of DL's approach to this whole lawsuit campaign. until such time is i see anything more definitive, i will continue to reserve judgement on this - but if i had to bet on it, my money would be on a default judgement today.

My thoughts exactly. The amount of disinformation that is being peddled in regards to this Dream Pinball 3D situation is ridiculous. I'm hoping someone comes across something more concrete, like court papers or the like, that provides solid evidence of exactly how these cases are proceeding.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby PorkyPig » Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:18 pm

I notice that the press articles contain screenshots of the game and all say the same thing, the press articles were no doubt supplied by davenport lyons as part of their ongoing propaganda and intimidation campaign.

In reality a law firm chasing unemployed mothers of 2 children don't stand any chance of recouping their costs but the PR this has generated is for them priceless.

Already there are people on the dream pinball and colin mcrae forums panicking.

As one of the original 500 on the list, I have denied their false accusations from day one and continue to do so.

I wont respond anymore to DL letters but if a court summons comes through the door, I WILL BE THERE!
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Lee1001 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:30 pm

This case was heard in a special court,"In the case heard at London's Patents County Court the game maker won damages of £6,086.56 plus costs of £10,000."

This is a proper Intellectual Property (IP) court that has made this judgement," said independent IP barrister David Harris. "The previous ones were default judgements where defendants never turned up."

The hearing in the IP court meant the case had been rigorously analysed and the law properly understood, said Mr Harris.
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby craftycorner » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:40 pm

Pin ball needs some Pin drive justice
:pirate:
My God, its full of files!

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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby MrFredPFL » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:54 pm

Lee1001 wrote:This case was heard in a special court,"In the case heard at London's Patents County Court the game maker won damages of £6,086.56 plus costs of £10,000."

This is a proper Intellectual Property (IP) court that has made this judgement," said independent IP barrister David Harris. "The previous ones were default judgements where defendants never turned up."

The hearing in the IP court meant the case had been rigorously analysed and the law properly understood, said Mr Harris.


i'm not sure what you're getting at here. the special court - all that tells me is that they filed the case with the proper venue. as for david harris - i get the impression his comments are based on a false premise, for whatever reason. if it does indeed prove to be a default judgement, then those comments are meaningless. it is pointless to debate the quality of analysis when nothing was analysed to begin with ;)
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Re: Dream Pinball Defendant Fined $32,000

Postby Renegade » Fri Aug 22, 2008 1:40 am

Could all just be semantics again.. saying the previous were because people did not turn up implies that in this case somebody did. However it doesn't actually state that, so could just be a misleading statement people are reading too much into rather than an intent to imply the case was heard properly. Tenuous i know, and its more likely to be purely incorrect, but who knows!
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