These people are a collection agency, they claim to have evidence against you, and are looking to make a buck or two in the process. Disregard them.
No, they are continuing their campaign. They recently changed attorneys in NY, and the new firm they hired is eager to earn their percentage of profit from these shakedowns. They are now bringing actions in Federal Court for Copyright violations. The expense to defend these suits ranges $10K plus for studios, and most of the studios I know are completely innocent (had waves software installed by a legit licensed engineer renting the studio that day, had a trial version running and told the artist they had the full version to book the gig then planned on buying it once the artist was booked, etc.). Waves is a disgusting company. I will never buy another product from them ever again because of the way they have treated some of these studios. There's one or two lawyers out there defending the little guy. Google "waves audio defense".
Yeah.......I think those punk a** bi****s over at banpiracy got owned and now are laying low and I doubt we will ever hear from their lame a***s again.
On Gearslutz, one guy from Germany said they sued him and lost, and that he was in the process of counter-suing them for damages. Maybe they tried it and realized they were going to loose a lot of money. I'll still speak out against their company and bs tactics...
Same here.Nothing on the web either.........not that there ever was anything about them even taking anyone to court.
No calls in several months. Hopefully they realized what a boner PR move this whole 'spying' thing was and decided to give up.
same exact situation with me . here is a thread on a forum that talks alote about this. http://www.gearslutz.com/board/moan-zone/131184-software-police-patrol.html
Last year they said that they had video of me from their "spy" using cracked waves software but when I wanted to see it they said that they do not have to show me the evidence.I btw have legal registered waves bundles.About once a month they call me up and never leave messages and they send me threatening emails like the one I posted.I told that barry dude months ago to send me legal papers in the mail and to never call/email me again.No papers were sent and he/they keep harrassing me atleast once a month still.
I am an attorney; I have a friend who runs a small studio who has received threats from banpiracy and i have looked into it a little bit for him as a favor. he directed me to this board and suggested that I share what i found with you. I would welcome any and all input anyone has. If there are any attorneys out there reading this please let me know what you think... as far as this being a "scam" -- yes and no. I think Waves has real offenders out there making $ off of unauthorized software, those people may indeed get taken to Court if they dont settle and if Waves comes to the table with real evidence saying, "we got you cold." but there are probably many smaller studios who might be, technically, offenders (i.e. they have or have used the software but havent made any real $$ off of it), but Waves doesn't have any solid evidence to prevail at trial. in those instances Waves will probably try to scare you into a settlement but they dont have anything solid to back up their threats -- and that is, in a sense, a scam. i think a good indication of this would be numerous threats, but no in-depth, detailed, discussion of what they have against you. in my opinion, unless you're a big offender with assets and you have a pretty good idea of your liability/what they have against you, you should not settle this claim without them showing you that they have you dead to rights.
here is what i have learned so far...
WHAT THEY HAVE TO PROVE:
#1 that they owners of the copyright (a formality in this case)
#2 that you copied the software.
obviously the question is, how can they prove #2?
they can prove you copied it by showing that you used the unauthorized software (eyewitness testimony (perhaps from fake walk-through clients?), admissions by you) -or- that you possessed it (eyewitness testimony, admissions by you, or the actual hardware itself with the software on it).
**not sure if a videotape would be admissible depending on what the wiretap statutes are where the suit is brought. havent looked at it at all, i will this week though.
**also, someone else posted above that a collection agency can't use spies, etc. they might be true, but my gut tells me that "waves audio ltd" (who would be the plaintiff) would not be considered a "collection agency."
there are two catches to remember about liability: 1) it is not necessary for the plaintiff to prove that you intended to copy the software; 2) it is not necessary for the plaintiff to prove that YOU copied the software, you can be vicariously liable if you knew about it and do nothing to stop it, profited from it, perhaps encouraged it etc.
WHAT THEY CAN GET
If they won they could get their actual damages (costs of the stolen software etc), your profits from the infringement, and their attorneys fees (you can get your attorneys fees as well if you prevail at trial).
if you were found to be a willful violator, i.e. really making $$ and f****ng Waves out of their due with some premeditation etc. you could face statutory damages that could be very steep.
My guy tells me that there are alot of studios/people who are technical violators but who really dont fit into the category of "willful." maybe they or someone that works with them got a cracked software and installed it, but they never used it, or didnt know they had it, didnt make $ from it... if you dont fit the category of "willful" you arent facing those crazy statutory damages, just actual damages and attorneys fees which might, in the end, be around the settlement numbers they have been throwing around to people...
my bottom line opinion is that if you're not a big offender with assets Waves must present its evidence to you before settlement so everyone can truly evaluate whether its worth the risk to proceed to trial. If Waves refuses to show you what they have that should give you cause for alarm. Believe me, if they had some good solid s*** on you they would show you -- because it would lead you to settle faster.
This same prick "Michael T. David" work's for Allied National collection agency and Banpiracy.com........check it out!
I hope he die's a horrible death!!! He is scum!!!!!!
They seem to have left me alone. It truly is BS. I've never even seen a Waves plug-in. I just told the spy client I would get the plug-ins they wanted by the time they wanted to record. Then I got a ridiculous Mail Merge letter threatening legal action and the surrendering of my first-born. They were calling once a month, never leaving messages. What kind of 'collections agency' doesn't leave messages? I guess one that sucks at collecting. The Actual Collections Agency, not Banpiracy, has never followed on their letter, so I have no idea if my 'case' has been relegated to the 'no evidence' pile or what. I feel bad for anyone who fell for this racket and paid them because they were scared.
Count on me!!!
I got the same thing yesterday. Classic cut and paste. Everyone should use this forum as a way to stay connected and informed on the ban piracy bs.
I got this email today:
I?ve been trying to get in touch with you for a while now.
Tomer Elbaz, the COO of Ban Piracy is copied on this email as litigation proceedings have begun on our side.
Call me: Barry -917-882-8973
Field operations Manager
Ban Piracy Inc.
Office Tel: +1 917-882-8973 | +1 202-434-8222 | Office Fax: +1 865-381-0714
firstname.lastname@example.org | www.BanPiracy.com
601 Pennsylvania Ave. NW South Building Suite 900
Washington, District of Columbia 20004
This e-mail transmission, and any documents, files or previous e-mail messages attached to it, may contain confidential or privileged information. If you are not the intended recipient, or a person responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of any of the information contained in or attached to this message is STRICTLY PROHIBITED. If you have received this transmission in error, please immediately notify the sender and delete the e-mail and attached documents.
i agree with joan , they have been calling all the time for over a year !!
Everyone who was effected by this needs to check this out:
There are many laws with regard to fair collection of debts. Collection agencies, or agencies representing them, cannot continue to call and harrass you. Everyone needs to come together on this one!
I have a home studio that I record in for a hobby and a day job of 14 year's.I live in today's time paycheck to paycheck.Wave's can sue me until hell freezes over for all I care.They are scum and I hope they fall soon.
josh, what's the name of your studio?
I finally stopped getting these calls. At first I thought it was a scam and it turned out one of my interns loaded the plugins on my system without me knowing... They filed a lawsuit(Were not from NY!!!) and we had to settle with them.They had more then just a video from a walk through. they booked time in the studio and who knows what else! - my advice is: if you had that sh*t on your system dont mess with these bi****s, they have a deep pocket and they will "invest" it just to get more out of you.
Settling after a lawsuit has been filed is always more expensive.
Threaten them back with harrassment charge's if they don't stop calling and emailing.Nobody has ever been taken to court over this banpiracy s***.They have no legal feet to stand on since everything they did was illegal.They are just hoping you cave in and pay them.Don't be a sucker.Barry schneider is the prick that kept harrassing me.
Has anybody actually paid this guy yet? Has anybody been taken to court? Has anybody had a lawyer intervine. I am in the middle of the same thing and I want it to be over but, I also don't want to get ripped off. They threaten you and keep your penalty feel at the same cost as it would be to hire a lawyer.
How can they sue you when the method they used to obtain this information (videotaping) is illegal in most states? Has anyone contacted the Better Business Bureau about these companies?
I have ignored them for about ten months. As far as I know, no cases have gone to trial. I did a search on LexisNexis and CaseLaw, but nothing shows up for Waves or BanPiracy, although I don't think it would if it were just claims filed. Settlements, of course, are a private matter. What convinces me that is a scam is that they have sent a threatening collections letter to studio owners claiming 'unauthorized usage' despite being unable to prove any such thing. I received the letter despite not being able to show them a Waves product in action when they came to my studio. I simply said I would try and get a hold of one by the time they were ready to record. Three months later, I got the letter. It is complete BS, in my opinion.
Rachel. I am curious if you are the Rachel who was actually calling for BanPiracy at one point, since I seem to recall receiving calls from a Rachel from this very number. Apparently now this Barry guy is calling, maybe twice a month, never leaving messages, but if you answer, he tells you the same thing: has evidence, threatens legal action. Basic telemarketing, aside from their outlandish concept of the law and how it applies to collections/intellectual property. I hope others being called inform themselves before actually paying them!
That's right. It's all a scam. The main guy "Tomer" is a former employee of Waves and washed up musician. Do not talk to them. They are involved in trying to extort money from studios. They come in studios under false pretence and claim they have evidence. Also, it is illegal for a collection agency to seek payment based on information that was gathered under false pretence. And if you are not in NY, they'd have to come to your town to take you to court.
The dude's name is Barry and is from Allied collection agency representing Ban piracy/Waves.It's a fraud and a scam.They said they video taped me in my studio using cracked Waves software and that I need to pay them $19,000 or they will sue me.This is all a fraudulent scam from Waves.
Has anybody actually talked to these guys? What do they say?