• Report: #899602

Complaint Review: Mediacom

  • Submitted: Tue, June 19, 2012
  • Updated: Wed, June 20, 2012

  • Reported By: Brittany — Oak Grove Kentucky United States of America
Mediacom
Kentucky Oak Grove, Kentucky United States of America

Mediacom Involuntary-Termination due to DMCA and charging early termination fee's Oak Grove, Kentucky

*Consumer Comment: You are all wrong.

*Consumer Comment: That's my girl

*Consumer Comment: Breached contract

*Consumer Comment: Tell em Ashlee

*Author of original report: the point is...

*Consumer Comment: You owe it

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Mediacom sent a notice that I violated its Terms of Service by downloading 3 TV shows.  They claimed DMCA violations require that they terminate my service and they did so.  They then charged me $240 for violating the contract (early termination fee) because THEY terminated it.

Section 512(c)(1)(B) states  "The Service Provider must not gain ANY financial benefit attributable to the infringing material" in order for them to maintain 'Safe Harbor' status.

Due to the fact the company claims I violated DMCA, they are using the 'infringed material' as a basis to terminate my contract and charge me the $240 fee.  That seems to be in violation to the above section, as they are making money by terminating me.

All that aside, how is it legal to charge me because THEY terminated my contract.  I was simply accused, not charged or convicted of downloading TV shows.

Turns out it was my roommate, who was already banned by Mediacom, who plugged into my internet and made the downloads.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/19/2012 05:37 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Mediacom/Oak-Grove-Kentucky-/Mediacom-Involuntary-Termination-due-to-DMCA-and-charging-early-termination-fees-Oak-Gro-899602. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 5Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

You are all wrong.

AUTHOR: R. Smith - ()

And here is why.  They can't prove any wrongdoing and neither can you.  They don't know what the network was used for and never will.  Nor do they know what you own or your house guest owns.

It is none of their business and the burden of proof is ON THEM and not the users.  Ownership ends it as does use, they have no witness.  

I think you will find that you will be forced to invest in many such ventures which are doomed to fail and this is just one more of them. With this DMCA the State is installing ISPs as Cyber Vigilantes who will be tasked with making punitive attacks against subscribers and threaten them with account closures, make efforts to smear their good names and character using mail bombs and other approaches, all based on the say so of disinterested third parties who have no witness or proof of anything. By having to fight all these useless complaints, all users of any business using this model are going to pay for and invest in this foolishness. For many people, having internet is not a luxury, they need it to bank and eat and run their lives.


Here is my assessment on how none of this works as contained in my form letter to providers who cite DMCA complaints.


Dear Madam or Sir,


Regarding Digital Millennium Copyright Issues:


It is not up to you to enforce the law in that regard or any other. Doing so would be considered vigilantism and a crime in all 50 states in this country. You and those who'd claim violations would need a court order to proceed and I am under no obligation to prove anything to you or any other parties. Neither you nor they could proceed to prove anything for the reasons outlined below. And accepting the word of disinterested third parties over mine would not be possible in any of this since only I know what content I am using and what content I am owning and what I am doing with your network.


You have no knowledge of what copyrighted or other material I do or do not own. You also would not know what arrangements I would have with the State, or anyone who'd like to challenge such ownership.


You could could not prove what content I do or do not transfer via your networks or even who would be using your network and when or how.


Anyone claiming copyright infringement bears the burden of proving that which would not be possible.


Not one single content provider or entity that licenses such material can prove or disprove what I do or do not own. Their records could not be used towards proving I owned material or for proving that I did not own material since they would either be incomplete, inaccurate, falsified, or otherwise useless in that regard. This is the nature of selling products to 10,000,000 of your closest friends and expecting them to pay for the same content over and over and over again. I own various copyrighted materials often with duplicates that have been purchased recently and during the last 50 years or more of my life. Much of this content is purchased by one or more layers of "Middle Men" who also would not keep accurate records on behalf of the original owners and with that the impossibility of what you'd want to claim here grows non-linearly.


Not one single entity that licenses such material would know who I am on your network, they have no idea how I use such networks or what material I transport there and with who I communicate with. That is my business alone and none of that could be proven either.


It is not up to you to disclose to them who I am nor would you be able to provide proof of such claims. Doing so would be considered an invasion of my privacy, as well as libel and slander at a minimum. Any offers of proof you would provide to others would be considered hearsay or less and neither you nor those who'd want to profit from this could identify who owns what and who had what rights to any data moved on these networks. And you'd have no witness to any violations you'd claim might have happened even assuming you could generate accurate ownership lists which you can not do.


Those who'd claim copyright violations also would have no witness and neither would the State or law enforcement.


Those who'd claim such violations could not even be heard in court since they'd never know who to attempt to blame since you can't be used towards that end and they have no witness.


In other words you waste your time with idle threats and any business model that hopes to support such methods is doomed to fail.
 

DO NOT PAY.  


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#2 Consumer Comment

That's my girl

AUTHOR: The Outlaw Josey Wales - (United States of America)

 Luv U
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#3 Consumer Comment

Breached contract

AUTHOR: Ashley - (U.S.A.)

" The point is they are actually making money citing the downloads as the cause. (Which is illegal and revokes their safe harbor status. The fact they claim I violated the contract is such a grey area and a mask to cover their profiteering. They produced an accusation and acted as a judge and jury and found me guilty without recourse."

Which you freely admit on a public forum that the download occurred. You violated their contract by downloading illegal material on their network. Its not a grey area. They are making money off your breached contract, not off the material. This is no different than you refusing to pay your bill or trying to hack their servers. Its all a breach of contract. if you think you have a case on them profiting off the downloads, then go get a lawyer to explain it to you.

" As for im responsible for others on my internet... the router was in my room behind closed door. Is it my fault if I have my keys on my desk, my roommate takes them and kills three people with my car? How can I be held responsible. The similar is my roommate stealing my internet, after unknowest to me, he had already been banned by mediacom. "

Who else is responsible for it? Its your internet connection. Its your responsibility to secure it, especially with a roommate that is known for downloading illegal material. Did you have it encrypted with an advanced password? Did you have the router protected itself from tampering? That is the big question. if your router wasn't protected then you just freely let anyone log in the router.

If he actively trespassed and hacked in to your property, then you should look in to filing charges against your roommate. Its not the same as your roommate stealing your car and killing three people, that is a criminal matter. This is a civil matter. In a civil case, someone could go after you for damages if they could prove you were negligent in providing your car keys to your roommate. You would need to prove he stole them from you. In this case you would need to prove to mediacom that your roommate stole your internet. Do you have proof that he stole it to give to them? 

" Basically, mediacom could just send notices to all its customers and 'claim' they were downloading something illegally and just collect early term fees with no real facts. ANYONE can submit a dmca claim and ip's are easy to get. "

Do you have any proof to back up the claim that they are doing this? I once got *1* claim against me on my internet service with mediacom. I had an open network and my neighbors were downloading content. I added security and problem was solved. Why would mediacom be interested in driving away customers to charge them a early cancellation fee? Don't they stand to make more money keeping you as a customer?

Especially once your introductory rates expire and you have to pay the full amount per month. Also, they do have real facts. They monitor their network for illegal traffic. In order for this to occur, you would have to prove that someone is maliciously inserting false material in their network in order to get certain individuals internet access taken away. To what end would this mysterious third party be working that is spreading false DMCA claims and IP addresses?
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#4 Consumer Comment

Tell em Ashlee

AUTHOR: The Outlaw Josey Wales - (United States of America)

 Luv u
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#5 Author of original report

the point is...

AUTHOR: Chandalen - (United States of America)

The point is they are actually making money citing the downloads as the cause. (Which is illegal and revokes their safe harbor status. The fact they claim I violated the contract is such a grey area and a mask to cover their profiteering. They produced an accusation and acted as a judge and jury and found me guilty without recourse.

As for im responsible for others on my internet... the router was in my room behind closed door. Is it my fault if I have my keys on my desk, my roommate takes them and kills three people with my car? How can I be held responsible. The similar is my roommate stealing my internet, after unknowest to me, he had already been banned by mediacom.

Basically, mediacom could just send notices to all its customers and 'claim' they were downloading something illegally and just collect early term fees with no real facts. ANYONE can submit a dmca claim and ip's are easy to get.
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#6 Consumer Comment

You owe it

AUTHOR: Ashley - (U.S.A.)

You are the one that violated your contract with mediacom. If they were just cancelling your contract for no reason, then they couldn't charge you an early termination fee. As is, you allowed someone to have access to your home internet and they downloaded things illegally. It is your responsibility to make sure that your home connection is secure. Since you violated your contract and forced them to terminate you, then yes you do owe the early termination fees.

If you think you don't, then go get a lawyer and see what they say after looking over your contract. They don't need to charge or convict you of anything, this is a civil not a criminal matter at this point.
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