Attorney Evan Stone Uses New Tactic to Fight Copyright Infringers

DALLAS — After a federal judge in Dallas severed all but one of his defendants from each of his 14 porn BitTorrent lawsuits, attorney Evan Stone is now using a new approach to get the desired results.

Stone filed in March a total of 49 subpoenas in another Texas federal district using a subpoena provision in the Copyright Act, which says any copyright holder can have federal clerks issue a subpoena for the expressed purpose of obtaining the identity of the copyright infringer.

“This is what I should have been doing from the beginning,” Stone told XBIZ.

Out of the 49 subpoenas, 14 were issued to AT&T Internet Services, Charter Communications, Comcast Cable Communications, Cox Communications, Qwest Communications, Verizon Corporate Services and Time Warner Cable and 35 were issued to lesser known service providers that have already complied, Stone said.

Seven of the subpoenas, which were filed in Marshall, Texas, include defendants who were part of Stone’s previous lawsuits, were filed on behalf of adult clients Lucas Entertainment, VCX, Harmony Films and Adult Source Media.

“All of our subpoenas provide sufficient information to locate the infringing material,” Stone said.

But, the larger ISPs are fighting the subpoenas. A judge has already granted Time Warner’s motion to quash. Stone said the judge went beyond his authority.

“We will move to have the issue reviewed by a district judge,” Stone said.“We will file an appeal and we want this addressed by the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.”

Stone said that he is waiting to see if the service providers reveal the identities of the infringers at which point he will try to reach a settlement with them. He says if he can’t reach an agreement, he’ll go to court.

“If I’m forced to sue, then I’ll sue,” he said. “I’m not sure what jurisdiction I’ll do that in.” Stone added that he may seek admission to the D.C. courts because the rulings that are coming out of the courts make sense.

“If they don’t get it in Texas, then I’ll go to D.C.” In the meantime, Stone said he has resumed settlement agreements with various infringers.