Subpoenaing Unnamed Defendants Known by IP Addresses
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Subpoenaing Unnamed Defendants Known by IP Addresses


On April 9, 2018, Judge Steven Locke issued a decision, In re Strike 3 Holdings, LLC, 17-cv-5606, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59961 (E.D.N.Y.), granting a motion for expedited discovery under FRCP 26(d)(1) to served subpoenas on ISPs to obtain the identity of unnamed defendants identified only by their IP addresses.

The plaintiff is the copyright owner of adult movies which are distributed on the web. The Doe defendants are alleged to have pirated the films using BitTorrent. A forensic investigator employed by the plaintiff was able to identify IP addresses in the BitTorrent file distribution network and determine how many copies of the movies were made.

A second consultant used the Wireshank program to verify the IP addresses.

While the Court found good cause for expedited discovery, and agreed to issue Rule 45 subpoenas, it limited the plaintiff to requesting the names and addresses of the individuals to whom the IP addresses were assigned but barred disclosure of their phone numbers and email addresses. The ISPs were instructed not to directly provide the plaintiff with names and addresses but instead serve the subscribers with a copy of the subpoena and the court’s order. The subscribers will then have 60 days to file a motion to quash. After 60 days a failure to contest the subpoena means the ISP has to disclose the names and addresses in 10 days to Strike 3 or file it’s own motion to quash.

TONIGHT IS THE THIRD ANNIVERSARY OF LITIGATION SUPPORT TIP OF THE NIGHT. TIPS APPEAR EACH NIGHT, 365 NIGHTS A YEAR.


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