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Canada Privacy The Courts

Defending Privacy Doesn't Pay: Canadian Court Lets Copyright Troll Off the Hook 52

An anonymous reader writes: A Canadian court has issued its ruling on the costs (PDF) in the Voltage — TekSavvy case, a case involving the demand for the names and address of thousands of TekSavvy subscribers by Voltage on copyright infringement grounds. Last year, the court opened the door to TekSavvy disclosing the names and addresses, but also established new safeguards against copyright trolling in Canada. The court awarded only a fraction of the costs sought by TekSavvy, which sends a warning signal to ISPs that getting involved in these cases can lead to significant costs that won't be recouped. That is a bad message for privacy. So is the likely outcome for future cases (should they arise) with subscribers left with fewer notices and information from their ISP given the costs involved and the court's decision to not compensate for those costs.
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Defending Privacy Doesn't Pay: Canadian Court Lets Copyright Troll Off the Hook

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  • by ikhider ( 2837593 ) on Friday March 20, 2015 @01:34PM (#49303721)
    A vassal state really.
  • Will there every be a tipping point where the public reacts negatively enough to actually do anything about it? According to all the trends I see just the opposite will happen.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by ikhider ( 2837593 )
      Canadians are a complacent bunch. They will lay down for almost anything.
      • Whaddya mean? The same bullshit is happening all over the globe. People everywhere are very conservative and stand by the ruling authorities. The chatter against it is amounts to nothing at election time.

        • by Livius ( 318358 )

          Some countries are forced to capitulate to the Americans and their corporations out of tactical necessity. Weaklings like Mulroney and Harper *like* being vassals.

          • Some countries are forced to capitulate to the Americans and their corporations out of tactical necessity. Weaklings like Mulroney and Harper *like* being vassals.

            Every human being who has power is a vassal to whatever grants them that power. Mulroney and Harper are no different than US senators in that respect. In a democracy the Powers That Be are ideally interested in the wellbeing of their citizens, and instruct their vassals accordingly; but even in the most seemingly powerful dictator is merely ridin

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Canadians are a complacent bunch. They will lay down for almost anything.

        Unlike Americans, who have been in armed revolt over this kind of thing for the past decade.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Really I am not so sure. Look how quick Ferguson and other protests have gotten ugly. Its only a tiny step from there to storming the Bastille.

      Occupy kind of fizzled, but for the most part the #blacklives matter people are the same group. I am going to a great deal of heat for this suggestion (so going A/C): I for one very much doubt there is as much racism in policing as there is class-ism. We see it racism because a for historical reasons blacks make up disproportionately the poor urban population. I

      • Its only a tiny step from there to storming the Bastille.

        Yeah, do you ever check out the replacements after that shit happens? The cycle just repeats. Next thing you know, you're marching to Russia, barefoot, in winter. I think we can do without that kind of thing.

      • And where does personal responsibility fit into your narrative? It's not the government or the nebulous "powers" causing the bulk of the problems in society it is the choices individuals make that determines their quality of life. Storming the barricades will not solve any problems it would only result in a new set of problems that are much worse. The use of outrageous hyperbole, lies of omission, and anecdotal evidence has also contributed to the problems we face today.

        • And where does personal responsibility fit into your narrative? It's not the government or the nebulous "powers" causing the bulk of the problems in society it is the choices individuals make that determines their quality of life.

          Your individual choices determine - or at least influence - the particular role you play. What roles and in what proportion are available is determined by the Powers That Be.

          It's like a game of musical chairs: sure, who gets the chair and who doesn't is determined by the player's

  • Teksavvy privacy (Score:4, Interesting)

    by phorm ( 591458 ) on Friday March 20, 2015 @01:48PM (#49303875) Journal

    A lot of people *CHOOSE* Teksavvy because they're known to support privacy, and offer better customer service than competitors (up to a point, they're still subject to the same shitty service from the line providers). When I was in eastern Canada I chose them for those reasons as well.

    Maybe it costs to take the trolls to court, but what price-tag do you put on your reputation?

    • It depends on the company, I suppose. Lenovo sold theirs out [cnet.com] for a rather inconsequential amount.

      • by phorm ( 591458 )

        That's actually a good example of it. Many of the non-technical people might not know about that, but *lots* of technical people (like myself) do, and lots of those non-technical people ask others (like myself) what to look for in laptops. I used to recommend Lenovo or Asus, now I'll just recommend Asus.

    • I'd hand 'em a table of hashed user names, and let them sort it out.
      "That's how it is in our DB, man. We just encrypt what the user enters and compare."

    • They likely picked up far more revenue in new customers than they ever lost to the court. Real integrity sells like hotcakes because it almost never exists.
    • by NoKaOi ( 1415755 )

      A lot of people *CHOOSE*

      Canadians get to choose? Here is Soviet USA, ISPs choose YOU!

  • by debrain ( 29228 ) on Friday March 20, 2015 @02:01PM (#49303983) Journal
    1. TekSavvy did receive costs.

    123. In sum, I am satisfied that TekSavvy has proven a total of $21,557.50 as its legal costs, administrative costs, and disbursements of abiding with the Order.

    2. Those costs were not as much as demanded by TekSavvy.

    129. ... Rather, no costs of the assessment will be awarded because neither party should be rewarded for its conduct: TekSavvy, without justification, has greatly exaggerated its claim, while Voltage has unreasonably sought to trivialize it based on unreliable and largely irrelevant evidence.

    For details about the costs that were asked and awarded and the reasoning for such, have a look at para. 113 and following. e.g.

    119. Under this heading, TekSavvy seeks to recover the sum of $81,524.12 for expenses incurred in communicating with affected and non-affected subscribers and the public; creating an online portal tool for the use of subscribers; and responding to a higher volume of inquiries and complaints ... These tasks, are ... TekSavvyâ(TM)s costs of marketing, promotion, and customer relations, which I consider to be TekSavvyâ(TM)s costs of doing business. Consequently, I disallow these costs.

    Whether one thinks this is being "let off the hook" is up to the reader, and also irrelevant to the decision. This is a comprehensive, precedent-setting, non-trivial decision accounting for a multitude of legal and factual variables. I, for one, find it consistent with the tone and spirit of the prior decision [canlii.ca], largely agreeable [slashdot.org], in this case.

    • They wanted another few hundred thousand for their legal expenses incurred as part of resisting the Order. The court correctly decided that those costs had nothing to do with the reimbursement they are entitled to for work done to comply.

      In other words, nothing to see here...

      • Not exactly. On several issues, yes, like network hardening and PR/customer service issues. Those costs were minimal compared to the legal fees which the judge declined based on timing/procedure. They'll get the bulk of the later on appeal.

    • The judge may have erred by solely looking at the Federal Court Rules (rule 400 in particular) when determining Teksavvy's obligation to notify customers. They have an obligation to notify under PIPEDA which the judge did not account for. The bulk of the $350,000 Teksavvy was requesting was for council - the judge may have also erred here. In the first hearing the judge stated that costs would be addressed at a later date and punted the issue. When costs were finally addressed by the current judge they

      • by tomhath ( 637240 )

        The bulk of the $350,000 Teksavvy was requesting was for council

        But there was no need for council, they chose to fight the Order. Which is why the request was denied.

        • The bulk of the $350,000 Teksavvy was requesting was for council

          But there was no need for council, they chose to fight the Order. Which is why the request was denied.

          No they didn't fight anything. They simply told Voltage, if you want our customer data, get a court order. They remained neutral during the hearings while CIPPIC submitted a "friend of the court" submission about some of the issues with Voltage's case. At this point no one has fought anything.

          If you read the decision the court said there were 2 separate issues. First, compliance with the order which the judge valued at $22k. Second was participation in the hearings which the judge ruled as being distin

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