Doesn't have to do w/ photography, but still important.

footballfan993

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So, I don't know if this is the right area, but the description of this thread does include legal advice. This doesn't have anything to do wit photography, but still has to do with copyrights, but for video games.

Well today I got an email from my internet service provider (ISP), Charter Communications, saying that there is a notice of a copyright infringement on my account, by either me, or someone else using my internet. but because it is my account, my internet, I am being held responsible.

What happened was that my brother, downloaded Skyrim on his Macbook, so Zenimax Media, who owns the copyright for The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, sent a "Notice of Copyright Infringement" to Charter, after Charter determined that the IP Adress was linked to my account, they contacted me, informing me of the copyright infringement.

I know for a fact that it was my brother who downloaded this game. The letter from Zenimax, stated that: " We urge you to take immediate action to stop this infringing activity and immediately inform us of the results of your actions." I told my dad about this, and he didn't say much, other than that my brother should confess. After that I called my brother to tell him about it, he didn't really seem that shocked or worried about it. I told him that I would talk to him when I came home from work.

Personally, even if I tell him to do something about it, he probably won't. For example, my brother didn't vacuum the floors when I asked him to,and he didn't steam clean the carpet in his room, after I told him twice to do it, and gave him 24 hours to steam clean. I'll be surprised if he does do something about it, but I know that after a little while, he'll be go back to downloading illegally again.
He did use bittorrent to download the game, as was stated in the copyright infringement letter from Zenimax.

I'm just curious, because the internet is under my name, what would happen to me if my brother doesn't confess to his crimes? What if my brother does confess to the crimes, can I still be punishable? Could this affect my credit score or other accounts, even though it is not my fault?
 

The_Traveler

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He did it under your name, unless you take some action, you're guilty.
Write a letter to your ISP telling them who has used your account for illegal purposes, show your brother the letter before sending.
If no action from your brother, send the letter, giving the ISP the name of the thief and asking Charter to change the IP address and PW for the account to lock your brother out.
 

waday

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Simple. The results of your actions: You found the person responsible, and let them know that they no longer have access to your internet. You've changed your password.

Seriously, change your password. You pay for it. If he doesn't respect you, he can't use it. Done.
 

robbins.photo

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Ahh geez, really guys?

Come on now. He's your brother. Do what brothers do in a case like this.

Beat the crap out of him. Oh ya, then change your password and let your ISP know.
 

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Can you delete the game from his computer yourself? If so, do it and then cut off his access. Steam cleaning the carpets is one thing. Getting you into legal trouble and screwing you over like that is a whole different ball game. You shut that down right away.
 
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footballfan993

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I don't have access to his computer to delete his game. I did just ask him if he looked up any thing on copyright infringement, and he said yes. His solution to the problem, is to "read what they (Zenimax) said, and tell them we don't know what happened" I then said, "They have proof.", to which he has yet to respond to. But either way, his 'solution' won't work because they have proof, they have my IP Address, the date, and time it was downloaded, everything they need. I won't let my brother escape the fault for this, because if he tries to then that fault is put on me, as the subscriber to the ISP. and I won't let my brother's actions result in my financial instability, and criminal record!
 

robbins.photo

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I don't have access to his computer to delete his game. I did just ask him if he looked up any thing on copyright infringement, and he said yes. His solution to the problem, is to "read what they (Zenimax) said, and tell them we don't know what happened" I then said, "They have proof.", to which he has yet to respond to. But either way, his 'solution' won't work because they have proof, they have my IP Address, the date, and time it was downloaded, everything they need. I won't let my brother escape the fault for this, because if he tries to then that fault is put on me, as the subscriber to the ISP. and I won't let my brother's actions result in my financial instability, and criminal record!

Yup.. pretty much. Most of the gaming companies and people that make movies either have their own internal departments or pay a 3rd party company to troll those download/torrent sites. They will download any illegal copies and put them on their own servers, so when your system connects to download from them they have your IP address, ISP, who it's registered to, everything.

Then they contact your ISP and let them know that an illegal download has taken place. Your ISP contacts you, and if you can't put a stop to it and it continues they will usually deny you access. So time to pull the plug on his internet connection, let your ISP know that it was downloaded without your permission and that you've taken steps to ensure it doesn't happen again.
 

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Remember, that what your brother did was theft. Your brother's lack of remorse and inaction to rectify the situation has left you no choice but to change your password and deny him access. I am glad you recognize the difference between right and wrong and have the honor to act accordingly.

(If you steal from a rich person, or steal from a poor person ... it is still stealing.)
 

vfotog

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Is your brother older or younger than you? Is he a minor? do you both live with your dad?
 
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footballfan993

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He is an adult, 20, I'm 22. We don't live with my dad, but we do rent a house from our dad. My dad owns the house, doesn't live there, and we pay rent to live there. The internet bill is in my name therefore is my responsibility.
 

vfotog

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He is an adult, 20, I'm 22. We don't live with my dad, but we do rent a house from our dad. My dad owns the house, doesn't live there, and we pay rent to live there. The internet bill is in my name therefore is my responsibility.

I was wondering because if he was a minor living with your dad, they could go after your dad too. so it's just you two that they can go after.
 

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I don't think Charter usees passwords on broadband connections. I know Comcast, Cox, and Time-Warner don't.

I would, however, make it very clear (as in the form of an instruction and not a request) that as long as you are paying for the internet service, as long as your name is on the contract, then it is going to be used as YOU decide it will be. The first thing being that this particular game is uninstalled and deleted from the computer while you watch.

Apparently there are multiple points in your residence to connect to the internet (WiFi router?). If he is using a laptop and WiFi to connect, most routers can be configured to allow only specified MAC addresses. If I were in that situation I would block his MAC address at the router and he would have no wireless internet access. It won't stop him from physically plugging his laptop into the point where Charter comes into the residence, but it will make it a LOT harder for him to get to the internet.
 
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footballfan993

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Well, I did talk to my brother last night after I got done with work. It seems to me, that he still wants to turn a blind eye to this situation. He wants to write to the company, and say that it was him that downloaded it, using my internet. but then to say that he was trying to download a 'wrapper' which according to him, makes it completely legal. (I highly doubt this to be true) He has not sent the letter yet.

I did call Charter's security team to ask them a few questions, but their response was somewhat vague. Surely they don't know what actions the company could take against me/my brother.

I did also talk to my mom about this and of course she wasn't happy. She of course told me that I have to watch out for my brother. Which I do get where she is coming from, but I have someone more important to watch out for, myself. If this situation has to ruin someone's life, it's going to be my brother's not mine. I don't want this to effect my life at all, and if it does, even in the slightest way, I will be beyond pissed at him.

My brother did also say that he wants to talk to Charter and an attorney.
 

robbins.photo

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Well, I did talk to my brother last night after I got done with work. It seems to me, that he still wants to turn a blind eye to this situation. He wants to write to the company, and say that it was him that downloaded it, using my internet. but then to say that he was trying to download a 'wrapper' which according to him, makes it completely legal. (I highly doubt this to be true) He has not sent the letter yet.

I did call Charter's security team to ask them a few questions, but their response was somewhat vague. Surely they don't know what actions the company could take against me/my brother.

I did also talk to my mom about this and of course she wasn't happy. She of course told me that I have to watch out for my brother. Which I do get where she is coming from, but I have someone more important to watch out for, myself. If this situation has to ruin someone's life, it's going to be my brother's not mine. I don't want this to effect my life at all, and if it does, even in the slightest way, I will be beyond pissed at him.

My brother did also say that he wants to talk to Charter and an attorney.

It's very doubtful the company will pursue legal action against you, normally the letter to the ISP is more of a cease and desist variety and if it continues they could decide to pull your access.

You can forget about that "wrapper" defense, they know exactly what he downloaded because one of the servers he downloaded it from was there's in the first place, that's how they caught him. So, apologize to your ISP, make sure he doesn't do anything that stupid again, because anytime he downloads anything illegal odds are good he'll get caught.. again. First time out your ISP will likely cut you a break, if it continues you'll likely loose internet access.
 

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