First Time Videos, LLC v. Does 1-76, No. 11 C 3831, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Aug. 16, 2011) (Bucklo, J.).
Judge Bucklo denied the Doe defendants’ various motions to quash or dismiss in this BitTorrent copyright infringement case. Plaintiff First Time Video ("FTV") alleged that the seventy-six Doe defendants infringed plaintiff’s copyright in an adult movie using BitTorrent and in so doing engaged in a civil conspiracy. The Court denied each motion:
· While file-sharers have limited first amendment rights, those rights do not shelter copyright infringement.
· FTV sufficiently described the alleged copyrighted work by naming the movie in the complaint.
· Joinder of the seventy-six Does was proper. FTV alleged that the Does acted in concert to copy one video over several months as part of a BitTorrent "swarm." And the case involved common legal questions regarding copyright law.
· The Court recognized that other Northern District judges had severed all of the Doe defendants. Those cases, however, involved many more Does, and did not show a connection to Illinois. FTV alleged that it had traced the accused IP addresses to Illinois using geo-location technology.
· FTV’s personal jurisdiction allegations – that FTV traced the Doe IP addresses to Illinois – were also sufficient.