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Copyright infringement letter (Ministry of Sound)


panther12
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Hope I’m posting in the right place; it’s on behalf of my Brother who has received the below letter from Gallant Macmillan solicitors for alleged copyright infringement.

 

Having done a quick search it appears some law firms have jumped on the bandwagon to send out mass mailings alleging copyright infringement & pay up or else tactics. He is 100% certain he has not been involved in any download, upload or any activity whatsoever that involves Ministry of Sound. In fact he is quite embarrassed to be associated with Ministry of Sound, and knowing his taste in music I would totally agree.

 

They say they sent a letter in July which set out their client’s evidence supporting its claim that HE infringed its copyright yet this is the first communication he has received and I’m not sure how to proceed. My first thought would be to file & ignore and await anything further but would like to take a more direct approach and hit them back, after all this is a fight back forum.

 

Should he first write back to request a copy of the letter & evidence they say they sent in July and take it from there?

 

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There is already a thread about this under http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?198192-ACS-Law-copyright-file-sharing-claims-Gallant-Macmillan-and-probably-some-others-along-the-way&goto=newpost#post3082369

 

This is what some people might refer to as a 'speculative invoicing' process that is being followed. GM have been provided with an IP address that has downloaded or shared copyrighted material and from the ISP, they have found the address details of the IP address owner.

 

What they don't have proof of is who actually committed this breach of copyright. They can't really sue the IP address owner and there is considerable doubt about the intergrity of the information that they are using. Some IP addresses are not static, so this may have caused incorrect allegations to have been made.

 

What you brother needs to do, is just write a very basic letter, saying that he knows nothing about this and has not received any previous letter. He should expand to say that he would never be interested in any material that MOS publishes as it is not his 'cup of tea'. If he lives on his own he should state this. If he has other householders, he should state that he has asked them and they know nothing about this either.

 

On the ACS thread there are examples of letters of denial, but GM don''t accept these as they are template letters. This is why it is best to send a basic letter and to send this by recorded delivery.

 

It is up to GM to prove the allegation and at this time, neither GM or any other law firm has taken any case to court as far as I am aware.

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Firstly I would check out if the solicitors here are actually guenuine solicitors, and secondly not admit or deny how many persons may or may not have use of this IP address, afterall we dont want to give them more info than they already know so easily!

 

Im also puzzled how they know who the IP address is in use by? I would have thought ISPs wouldn't just hand out such information without a court order as they would need to comply with the Data Protection Act. They may be random mailouts in the hope of someone paying up :mad:

 

The opportunist air of intimidation to the letter and especially the assumption that somebody doesnt reply to you automatically makes them liable harks back to the days of witch hunts to me! So even if they are guenuine solicitors I would refer them to the Ministry of Justice and/or Solicitors regulation authority for their conduct...... unfortunately even fully qualified and 'legit' solicitors aren't excempt from behaving unprofessionally.

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