Feeds

Freetard Prof faces fine, jail

And the trial hasn't even begun

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Harvard professor Charlie Nesson's loony-tunes defence tactics in a file-sharing case against the US record industry may land him in the clink.

The 69-year old co-founder of the New Age think-tank the Berkman Center, is defending former student Joel Tenenbaum in a copyright infringement case, using Harvard undergrads to do the grunt work. However the Judge has already lost patience with Nesson's eccentric pre-trial tactics - which include taping and publishing conversations without the participants' permission, and re-posting the files Tenenbaum shared to the web. It's driven Federal Judge Nancy Gertner nuts, and she's had enough.

"The court's indulgence is at an end. Too often...the important issues in this case have been overshadowed by the tactics of defense counsel: taping opposing counsel without permission (and in violation of the law), posting recordings of court communications and emails with potential experts (who have rejected the positions counsel asserts) on the internet, and now allegedly replicating the acts that are the subject of this lawsuit, namely uploading the copyrighted songs that Defendant is accused of file-sharing," she declared last week.

"In the light of the delays already experienced, and the Defendant's record of treating the court's deadlines liberally, to say the least, he is cautioned that failure to meet the requirements and the time-limits set in this Order may cause him to forfeit crucial elements of his case."

According to attorney Ben Sheffner, who's providing excellent coverage of the case on his blog, Nesson's unauthorized taping and publication puts him in breach of a Massachusetts privacy law. The maximum penalty is five years in jail.

It's part of a commitment by Nesson to post everything - including private conversations - on the interwebs.

In early June, the defence team posted the files to a public server, password protected, and Nesson posted the password on his blog. The RIAA is already recovering legal fees for that caper.

The trial promises to be the highlight of the Silly Season - it's scheduled to begin on July 27. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.