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  • I pirated vbulletin?? Full disclosure.

    Well, after being a vbulletin owner for about 3 years now I was stunned and appaled that I recieved an email from my webhost saying he had recieved an email from a company in england claming I was in violation of the DMCA. Here is a copy of the email he recieved AND the contact companies email and information.

    On 27/1/05 7:49 PM, "Howard G Spinks" <[email protected] wrote:
    -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
    Hash: SHA1

    UNIVERSAL NOTIFICATION OF COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT DATED 27 January
    2005

    From: Pirate Reports, P O Box 36, EAST MOLESEY, Surrey, KT8 9XT
    Tel: 44 (0) 208 941 1843 Fax: 44 (0) 208 941 3689


    Greetings Abuse Team

    This site utilises unlicensed source code owned by my client and I
    request total removal including the GUI and files.

    NB: If at your own prerogative you offer your client an opportunity to
    remove the site themselves or purchase a license as opposed to your
    removal or suspension of service, please be aware that Jelsoft
    Enterprises Ltd. whilst happy to respect your goodwill gesture, in no
    way requests or requires such action from you and reserves the right
    to decline the license purchase and refund the fee. Copyright
    protection not revenue collection is our primary concern and
    motivation and some forum content if it damages others or breaks our
    AUP is not allowed.

    URL and/or IP address of identified source:
    http://www.hackingforums.com/

    DMCA Compliant ISP:

    In accordance with the provisions the Digital Millennium Copyright Act
    of 1998

    Please expeditiously "take down" or "block access" to the infringing
    material and take appropriate action against the customer to prevent
    future abuse.

    Non DMCA Compliant ISP:

    In accordance with your Acceptable Use Police please expeditiously
    remove or block access to the infringing materials and take
    appropriate action against the customer to prevent future abuse.

    Confirmation of your actions is appreciated so we may appraise out
    client.

    Declaration

    I, the undersigned, CERTIFY UNDER PENALTY OF PERJURY that I am an
    agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner of certain intellectual
    property rights, said owners being named:

    Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., Tagra, Birch Lane, Ascot, Berkshire, SL5
    8RF, ENGLAND

    I have a good faith belief that the items or materials listed below
    are not authorized by the above intellectual property owners, their
    agents, or the law and therefore infringe their rights.

    I further aver that the information contained in the Notice below is
    accurate.

    Software:
    vBulletin v3

    I may be contacted at:

    Howard G Spinks
    Snr. Investigator
    Pirate Reports
    PO Box 36
    EAST MOLESEY
    Surrey
    KT8 9XT
    ENGLAND
    Tel: 44 (0) 20 8941 1843
    Fax: 44 (0) 20 8941 3689
    Email: [email protected]
    MSN: Piratereports
    Yahoo: Piratereports
    AIM: Piratereports
    Skype: Piratereports
    ICQ: 281919627

    Truthfully,

    Howard G Spinks

    You may validate the PGP key here
    http://www.piratereports.com/contact.html

    Unless otherwise indicated, the information in this transmittal is
    CONFIDENTIAL and intended only for the recipient listed above. If you
    are not the addressee indicated in this message (or responsible for
    delivery of the message to such person), you may not copy or deliver
    this message to anyone. In such case, you should destroy this message
    and kindly notify the sender by reply mail.
    I would like to give a BIG **** YOU to vbulletin and their pirate team. I paid $160 last year to be able to run my software for as long as I wanted.. and not 3 days after it expired for updates I get an email saying I am violating DMCA?? **** YOU.

    I also left ALL the contact information for the company vbulletin uses for their pirateing team. Please feel free to give them a buzz.

    Vbulletin admins, I expect a FULL apology from both you AND your thugs over at Pirate Reports.

  • #2
    Everyone makes mistakes, although I'm not sure about posting this on the forum. Why not just call vBulletin?

    Comment


    • #3
      why the hell should I call them? If anything they should be calling me.

      My webhost tells me DMCA issues are required to be followed up by phone and not automatic generated emails. Although I don't know if this is true... it's still a slap in the face with all the money I have paid vbulletin over the years.

      Comment


      • #4
        This doesn't sound good at all. I'd be very upset if that happens to me.
        Last edited by Vtec44; Fri 28th Jan '05, 10:55pm.
        So Cal Sportbike forum - So Cal Moto - Kawasaki Ninja 250R Forum - Custom vinyl decals - Southern California camping forum

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by cyr0n_k0r
          why the hell should I call them?
          I meant just call them to get the matter resolved now instead of waiting for them to reply back on the forum. Good luck with this, I hope you get it resolved.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by cyr0n_k0r
            My webhost tells me DMCA issues are required to be followed up by phone and not automatic generated emails. Although I don't know if this is true... it's still a slap in the face with all the money I have paid vbulletin over the years.
            Is your above URL added to the Members Page? You know where you grab the updates... If it is not listed there then your licence will probably show up as invalid, at least i think that is how it works.

            Anyways never hurts to login to your member page and ensure you have the URL entered.
            Attached Files

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Primal Rage
              Is your above URL added to the Members Page? You know where you grab the updates... If it is not listed there then your licence will probably show up as invalid, at least i think that is how it works.

              Anyways never hurts to login to your member page and ensure you have the URL entered.
              Personally it shouldnt matter. NO ONE should email your hosting service demanding they take down your site or part of it without FIRST communicating with the forum owners. I mean its hardly hard to start a dialog, it is a forum after all. Imagine what would of happend if the host deleted his forums, database and even perhaps his entire site because of a moronic piracy groups.

              Comment


              • #8
                continued conversations with "Howard Spinks" the companies owner have proved fruitless.

                After ignoring me for an hour.. then blocking me several times.. he began to call me childish... and then started defending his actions saying it was my fault and not his.

                Im still waiting for his apology.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The facts

                  This user did not follow the terms and conditions of use namely to register his forum URL.

                  Therefore I could not find a license for the forum.

                  Admin error by him.

                  If there is no license displayed there is no contact information.

                  The reason NOT ALL users get a first notice is simple. It doesnt work and I have tried it. Most emails end up in spam traps or full mailboxes.


                  Howard
                  www.piratereports.com
                  Last edited by PirateReports; Sat 29th Jan '05, 12:19am.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by PirateReports
                    This user did not follow the terms and conditions of use namely to register his forum URL.

                    Therefore I could not find a license for the forum.

                    Admin error by him.

                    If there is no license displayed there is no contact information.

                    The reason NOT ALL users get a first notice is simple. It doesnt work and I have tried it. Most emails end up in spam traps or full mailboxes.


                    Howard
                    www.piratereports.com
                    I agree. cyr0n_k0r how do you think they know who has a illegal license and who doesn't?

                    You log into your account and you tell them what URL you're running the board at. Also I highly doubt they went straight for your hosting company without trying you. It's a fair amount easier and less work to just e-mail you then to track down who hosts you and then e-mail them. As far as them calling you childish, read your first post from somebody else's point of view and you come up with a different euphanized term then childish, especially with the lovely and professional censored words you found fit to use.

                    I think vBulletin is doing a great job managing their piracy. When you bought vBulletin they asked you to type in what site it's for. If all of a sudden you start using it on a different site and don't update your profile how do they know that you just didn't use the same copy over and over again to multiple sites?

                    I'm surprised nobody stood up for vBulletin prior to my post. I was just chocked after reading the first post.
                    - MrLister

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by PirateReports
                      This user did not follow the terms and conditions of use namely to register his forum URL.

                      Therefore I could not find a license for the forum.

                      Admin error by him.

                      If there is no license displayed there is no contact information.

                      The reason NOT ALL users get a first notice is simple. It doesnt work and I have tried it. Most emails end up in spam traps or full mailboxes.


                      Howard
                      www.piratereports.com
                      Heh, way professional team you got here vB.

                      So, he is a full paid licensee and you send emails to his host demanding they take his site offline and you still got the balls to say its his fault?

                      Like i said, NO ONE should directly email your host demanding they take your site down when there is CLEAR AND OBVIOSE room for error. The number of people who must have the incorrect url enterd in the vB license page must be pretty large, i'm not even certain mines upto date given i've moved sites a couple of times.

                      If you sent my host such an email and caused me damages i'd be after your asses. It is utterly ridiculous that there isnt some warning before you attempt to DAMAGE his or anyone elses sites. Its a forum, how hard would it be to signup and PM them, or take 5 mins looking for contact information on the site?

                      Fact is your too lazy to properly research a site and attempt communication with the sites owners before issuing your BS emails. Just firing off a BS email must be alost easier than doing a proper job.

                      This site utilises unlicensed source code owned by my client and I
                      request total removal including the GUI and files.
                      Umm so as we all know your base of information can be inaccurate do you think it wise to issue such emails? How about asking the host to pass on an email warning the website owner??

                      If all of a sudden you start using it on a different site and don't update your profile how do they know that you just didn't use the same copy over and over again to multiple sites?
                      Well we're not talking about Jelsoft as much as these rogue anti-piracy groups they use.

                      I think it a pretty simple task to issue direct and indirect warning via the host before issuing a "take everything down, GUI and files".
                      Last edited by Nemon; Sat 29th Jan '05, 12:58am.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        To give a fair perspective I did email the host and not the user.

                        The reason is as follows:

                        If the url is not registered the search can give me NO CONTACT information at all as in this case.

                        I then have the option to do a domain "whois" or an ISP "whois" to deal with the issue.

                        If I see a high posting forum or vB with a contact address (older forums) then I will often send a first notice.

                        If I see a new forum, a forum which does not have the up to date version (ie 3.03 and not 3.06 currently) or a forum which is dubious (hacking may fall into this category as does warez, or some porn) then I tend to send a second notice to the ISP.

                        Given that I have checked 25,000+ forums since I took over the vB piracy fully, I dont think that anyone would expect me to double the reports to include first notices for every forum regardless.

                        Yes I have to use some common sense, some gut instinct, and my experience, and yes I have made mistakes but this is not one of them.

                        If it had been I would have offered an unreserved apology.

                        What I did get was rudeness on all my messenger systems, told that the owner of a license doesnt need to tell me "jack" or comply with the T&C's relating to registering the URL and the belief that I should put up with it if I choose to answer some mails and messages ON MY DAY OFF.

                        For every complaint I can give you minimum 10 messages of thanks.

                        Take whatever side you wish but vB is the best, has the best customer appreciation and a dedicated team.

                        I dont think I let the side down and I am sure if I did I would be replaced.

                        Howard
                        www.piratereports.com
                        Last edited by PirateReports; Sat 29th Jan '05, 1:10am.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          this post makes me sad

                          new user to vb and im saddened that a company would resort to this stuff
                          I thought most php companies were very community supportive and tried to do their best to work with the communities especially when someone purchases a licence for a product and is just dealing with site changes
                          This is the type of thing that spreads around quick and people will change there mind and easily pick a different package.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think yes you absoloutly should give a 1 week notice to update vbulletin license information before issuing "take all files down" to a host.

                            As i've said NO ONE should approach a host demanding files be taken down unless they are 100% certain something illegal is happening, OR failing that they should get incontact with the host to gather more information...

                            To me it just seems like common sense that you dont demand sites be closed untill you're absoloutly certain.

                            I dont really care if he hadnt set the online URL. I just checked mine now and my url was wrong. Would you of sent my host letters demanding my forums be deleted ?

                            Obviosly if you get no luck from attempting contact on his site and through his hosts, ask the host remove the files, but do not demand hosts remove files when your not absoloutly certain of havnt exhausted every other avenue.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by mrlister
                              Also I highly doubt they went straight for your hosting company without trying you. It's a fair amount easier and less work to just e-mail you then to track down who hosts you and then e-mail them.
                              I agree, too bad this guy didn't do that. And yes, he did go straight for my webhost.


                              Originally posted by PirateReports
                              If I see a new forum, a forum which does not have the up to date version (ie 3.03 and not 3.06 currently)
                              wow man, Im SOO sorry I havent had time in this past WEEK to update to all 3 new versions of vbulletin that came out day after day.

                              I mean, I'm surprised my forum is still running on that ancient 3.03 code!

                              Originally posted by PirateReports
                              What I did get was rudeness on all my messenger systems, told that the owner of a license doesnt need to tell me "jack" or comply with the T&C's relating to registering the URL and the belief that I should put up with it if I choose to answer some mails and messages ON MY DAY OFF.
                              On your day off? If you are sending out DMCA notices to webhosts on weekends it isn't your day off. If you are sending these emails out, you or someone in your company is sending them. Unless they are automated which looks even WORSE for your company than you have already made it look.



                              I would also like to point out to you guys that my OWNED liscense expired for being able to download updates on Jan 25th, 2005. The very first email from this guy was recieved by my webhost on Jan 27th.

                              EVEN if I can't download updates.. I am still within my rights to continue using the vbulletin software for as long as I see fit.

                              When I told this guy that.. he said I was acting childish.

                              When I told him my liscense was under my old website www.lanschoolyard.com which hasnt run VB for a while because hackingforums.com has taken it over.. he said that if my old website was in violation he would report that site aswell. Come on now.
                              Last edited by cyr0n_k0r; Sat 29th Jan '05, 1:33am.

                              Comment

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