Copyright Troll Righthaven Suing Posters To Google Groups, Other Forums
After the piece appeared, a Google Groups user who goes by the name -- or screenname -- Jim Higgins posted the article to soc.retirement. Now, copyright troll Righthaven has filed an infringement suit against Higgins for posting the column.
As of Wednesday afternoon the text of the column could still be seen on Google Groups, indicating that Righthaven didn't attempt to send a takedown notice to Google. Instead, the company followed its standard operating procedure of simply filing suit.
One has to wonder whether Righthaven or the Las Vegas Review-Journal seriously believes that the newspaper industry is harmed when its articles appear in posts in message boards. If so, it seems likely that the company would want the article taken down. But the fact that Righthaven doesn't even attempt to get the article offline -- even though doing so wouldn't preclude filing suit -- indicates that it can't seriously believe the article's presence is harmful.
Regardless, Higgins isn't the only individual user Righthaven has sued recently. The company reportedly has filed suit against several individual Web users who don't also operate blogs or message boards. Doing so could prove complicated, given that some of these users undoubtedly post under pseudonyms. It also could prove wasteful, if the defendants lack the resources to pay a judgment for copyright infringement.
Meanwhile, the Salt Lake City Weekly reports that the Salt Lake Tribune recently started warning readers that its content can't be reposted without written permission. A similar notice appeared in The Denver Post shortly before Righthaven started suing sites for allegedly reposting material from that newspaper.