A Must Read Update on WBTS and Darkspilver from reddit

by ZindagiNaMilegiDobaara 38 Replies latest jw friends

  • ZindagiNaMilegiDobaara

    Many of us know that Watch Tower (yes, two words in this case) has issued a subpoena to Reddit to try to gain Darkspilver's identity due to accusations of copyright infringement:

    Tl;dr: On April 9, Watch Tower filed a response to the EFF's motion to quash (filed March 26) regarding the subpoena submitted to Reddit in an attempt to find /u/Darkspilver's identity.

    The WT response is publicly available here as a PDF, from the site Court Listener.

    A number of other documents relating to the case are available on the same site, here.

    And the EFF's motion to quash is available on the EFF's website here.

    Details: As I'm sure many of us know, Watch Tower (yes, two words in this case) has issued a subpoena to Reddit to try to gain /u/Darkspilver's identity due to accusations of copyright infringement. Specifically, Watch Tower is claiming copyright infringement for two things: First, Darkspilver posted the back page of the November 2018 Watchtower which was an article entitled "What Gift Can We Give to Jehovah?” which explained how to donate. Secondly, Darkspilver posted an internal organization document regarding the handling of information after the passing of the European GDPR law which was "not intended for wide-spread public dissemination" according to Watch Tower.

    Edit: My favorite quote from the Watch Tower response so far:

    If widespread unauthorized reproduction and display of Watch Tower’s works online were permitted, there would be virtually no need to visit Watch Tower’s website – JW.ORG. Diverting traffic away from Watch Tower’s website could result in a significant decline in readership of Watch Tower’s content .

    Edit 2: The paragraph below, again from Watch Tower's April 9 filing, is probably the most trickily-worded section I've found yet. I'll explain afterwards:

    Watch Tower is not Darkspilver’s local church and has no ability to excommunicate him from his local congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. See Polidoro Decl., at ¶10. Not a single person that has been the subject of a Watch Tower-sought DMCA subpoena has been excommunicated from their local church as result of Watch Tower obtaining their identity from a DMCA subpoena. Id. Watch Tower has never publicly disclosed the names of the individuals who were the subject of DMCA subpoenas. Id. Some of the subjects of Watch Tower’s DMCA subpoenas who were active Jehovah’s Witnesses before they became the subject of a Watch Tower DMCA subpoena, remained active Jehovah’s Witnesses after Watch Tower received identifying information about them.

    Statements I take issue with:

    • WT is not DS's local church and cannot excommunicate him. This is strictly correct, although WT absolutely exercises notable control over local congregations and can by all means influence this action to be taken.

    • Not a single person has been DF'd as a result of WT obtaining their ID through a DMCA subpoena. The act of WT obtaining their identity isn't what gets them DF'd. WT sending that identity to a local congregation certainly could have that effect, though.

    • WT has never publicly disclosed the names of DMCA subpoena recipients. I don't think anybody ever expected them to, nor would it be required in order for DS to get DF'd.

    • Regarding DMCA subpoena recipients who continued as Witnesses: If such subpoenas were issued to Witnesses who chose to use the JW.org logo on merchandise or websites, of course they wouldn't be DF'd. They just got overzealous in trying to spread the "good news".


  • stillin

    I don't get it. Darkspilver didn't attempt to profit from his activity. Only to inform.

    So much for transparency. But I guess we already knew that about WT. It adds to the mystique.

  • Phizzy

    J W Org cannot allow the truth to get out. So, like Trump, they must silence any Truth teller, by any means, none fair, all foul.

  • The Fall Guy
    The Fall Guy

    When Darkspilver was here, he never revealed any exclusives or "inside info." He was just usually on the ball to present JW info which was in the public domain - never condemning or vilifying the org and its hierarchy.

    Neither did he reveal that he was a devoted & active J.W.

    And from looking at his Reddit stuff - as far as the cult's concerned - "nothing to see here folks."

    Why would the org fork out $$$$$$ in legal fees to target an irrelevant blogger? That's the mystique!

  • Phizzy

    No mystery, they will persecute and try to silence even those who simply repeat their own words, if they find what they have said to be embarrassing. Which it usually is.

  • Finkelstein

    Copyright infringement has very much to do with commercializing off someones else's body of work which is copyrighted.

    In legal terms there has to be an obvious intent to cultivate money by the accused.

    I think the WTS's lawyers just want to scare and intimidate someone to shut up .

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    Copyright is NOT about protecting only the right to profit from one's work.

    The idea is that if a person creates something - art, a book, a religious screed, the person who creates the work is entitled to have some say into how that work gets used. Don't believe me? DO SOME RESEARCH.

    Now, for a time, times, and half a time the Watchtower was STUPID. They believed their own nonsense about the end of the world and so they did not follow the law about getting copyright protection back in the early days.

    The Laws have changed and have become much more liberal, thanks to the efforts of Sonny Bono and the American Rock n' Roll Music Industry.

    "That's life... that's what all the people say... you're flyin' high in April, SHOT DOWN in May..."

    Finkelstein said, "...In legal terms there has to be an obvious intent to cultivate money by the accused."

    NOPE, you are WRONG. Quote me the LAW that uphold your opinion, please, Finkelstein.

  • slimboyfat

    Darkspilver was a very informative poster and an asset to the forum.

  • stillin

    I agree, Slim. Maybe he will be reincarnated...

  • Diogenesister

    He was here couple days ago, It’s ok because they cannot subpoena jw.net about anything.

    Whats super weird is that on Facebook they have subpoenaed one José dude who has a PRO JW site.

    If Facebook, Reddit et al ignore for long enough they automatically delete said info, which is why he is laying low on reddit.

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