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Wednesday, June 05, 2019



You're doing a great service here. Higbee's team has come after my family as well. My wife had a now-defunct LLC and blog. THe blog was mostly informational-- I think she threw up some Google ads and I doubt she cleared $50. Unfortunately, a guest blogger submitted a photo (in 2014) that she was not licensed to use. Turns out that it was a stock photo. In 2018, my wife received a demand e-mail from Higbee for $5,000 or face a lawsuit. Since then, we've come across a few problems that make it clear that Higbee is a troll operation:
1. My wife's blog was operated by an LLC, and the paralegal sending the demand emails doesn't seem to know what that even means. At best, her responses show that she doesn't read the emails sent to her. The latest mailing--a sample district court filing--still makes an allegation against my wife and the website address rather than the actual LLC name. It's just... odd.
2. The copyright registration is for the stock photo company, not for their client, who is the original photographer. Obviously, this is the biggest problem they face in a suit. They have a client who they say wants to pursue this who must not know that he isn't the copyright owner.
3. They seem to understand from their earlier correspondences that this was not a willful infringement, and therefore would not be subject to the max $150,000 statutory damages. Yet they threaten it anyway, again.
4. The demand of $5,000 is wholly unreasonable, considering that a 5 year website use copyright fee is $300.

I'm an attorney, so I can at least navigate this stuff, but it's awful and a mental burden I don't want to deal with. I can't imagine how harrowing it is for others.

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