Copyright ‘infringement’!

I switched on my pc today morning to switch off downloads and to look up something in Wikipedia so as to study for my series exams that start today. That was when I saw this e-mail, supposedly from the ‘United States Copyright Office’. I’ll quote it.

Dear  xxx,

We have received notification of copyright infringement(s) taking place on your site It has come to our attention that the website found at this domain name contains material being displayed without the consent of the owner/copyright holder.

This is a violation of DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) and our
Copyright and Trademark Dispute Policy. In accordance to this policy, we will have to initiate the move to get the site banned my all major search engines including Google until this matter can be resolved, or you submit a complete Counter
Notification as described in the Copyright section of the policy.  You have 10
days to send a complete Counter Notification in accordance with the policy.

We are not a court, nor are we dictating who, if anyone, has the rights to the
work(s) in question.  We are merely acting in accordance with the DMCA
requirements for Copyright Holders.  If there is a dispute as to the ownership
of the content, that should be addressed in a court of law.

A list of the specific portions of your site in question are listed below.  For
detailed questions, you will need to contact the Complainant at the address
listed below.

Description of the Infringement(s)




In order to resolve this situation and re-activate your site, you have 2

Option 1. Remove the content in question. In order to reactivate the site in
question we will need you to provide the following information in a single email response:

A. An electronic signature. (This can be a scanned copy of your physical
signature, or as simple as typing your full name.)
B. Identification of the material in question.
C. A statement, under penalty of perjury, that the material has either been
removed or will promptly be removed.

Option 2. Submit a complete Counter Notification on the works in question in
accordance with our Copyright Dispute policy. (See Above) You will need to
reply, via email and include all of the following

A.   An electronic signature of the Infringer. (This can be a scanned copy of
your physical signature, or as simple as typing your full name.)
B. Identification of the material that has been removed or to which access
has been disabled and the location at which the material appeared before it was removed or access to it was disabled.
C. A statement under penalty of perjury that the Infringer has a good faith
belief that the material was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or
misidentification of the material to be removed or disabled.
D. The Infringer’s name, address, and telephone number, and a statement that
the Infringer consents to the jurisdiction of the Federal District Court for the
judicial district of Arizona, or if the
Infringer’s address is outside of the United States, for any judicial district
in which DMCA may be found, and that the Infringer will accept service of
process from the Complaining Party or an agent of such Party.

The term “The Infringer” is used for identification purposes only.  This is not
an indication of any alleged guilt or innocence.

If you have any further questions, please let us know.


Copyright Claims Department,
U.S. Copyright Office 101 Independence Ave. S.E. Washington, D.C. 20559-6000
(202) 707-3000

My First Reaction: What the F?! As far as I know, I haven’t written any copyrighted stuff in my blog. I always take pains to make sure that even the images I use have Creative Commons license. Why me?

But as I went through the mail, a smile popped up in my face.

Some brilliant guy from Thiruvananthapuram was trying to phish me up! 😛 And I’ve my reasons:

  1. This e-mail was sent through the contact form in my blog.No professional agency, (not even the Cyber cell of Kerala Police) would  do such a dumb thing! Besides, my email ids were mentioned clearly in the contact form. If they wanted to do some official communique, why not e-mail me directly?
  2. The email talks a lot about the ‘web forgery/infringement’ I did. There’s no mention of any specific pages whatsoever! If I’m being ‘indicted’ for forgery, I should be enlightened about the specific reasons right? 😉
  3. The email had a ‘From’ address of First of all, the US Copyright Department does not have a claims department as such! I did all my research!
  4. This email was clearly sent from Trivandrum. The guy’s IP was stamped on the e-mail I received. I did a basic check and found out that this dumba$$ hails from Trivandrum and uses one of the crappiest net connections in these parts (I refuse to name it for certain reasons). 😉 Besides, this guy got redirected to my blog from my orkut profile, it was mentioned clearly in the contact-form mail
  5. I had received another email from the same IP. The guy inventively gave my name in the contact form and mailed me: “You are targetted for termination”. Lol, too many Terminator fans here, eh? 😛

Anyways, Mr Copyright Department… If you’re reading this… I’ve been in the World Wide Web for over ten years now. I’ve seen, heard and done enough. Try someone too dumb for your lazy exploits, the next time! Nice effort with the wordings, btw. You’ll be a good copywriter, if you haven’t copy-pasted this material from some other place, of course!!

By hari

A twenty-something support engineer, web developer, blogger and journalist who makes the web a better place for a living, at Automattic. Immensely passionate about WordPress! Also loves books, music, movies, and drinking hot cups of coffee on rainy evenings. Dreams of writing a book, someday.


  1. lol.. wat was the guy looking for, though? ur signature ?

    good one anyway.. mr. trivandrum (if ure right) must be having the shock of his life about now..

  2. Copyright © 2009 Hari Shanker R. All rights reserved.

    Not ALL, but only SOME rights are reserved when you license your creation with a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND license 🙂

  3. @ Akhil, DJ and Winnie:
    Lol, I had the last laugh! *evil grin*

    @ Hari:
    Lol dude. Turns out that it was an act of prank. And, a signature can go a long way!! 😀

    @ ഞാന്‍
    Thought I’d get rid of all those middle fingers, lol! 😛 Thanks for the comment, bro. 😀 And, I’ll change that, thanks for notifying.

    Btw, I’ve installed OpenID. 😀

  4. What if the Terminator is actually plotting to kill you and this was your one last chance to make it good. But you took it as a know-it-all and him as a total jackass. Wait till he strikes with Arch Enemy music playin in the bg 🙂

    BTW this was a cool way of getting your autograph :). You should be kind to your fans man 😀

  5. @ Srijith
    Lol, FBI? 🙂 That’s cool. Any idea about the mail? I mean, who sent that bro?

    @ Abhi:
    LMAO!! Bro… I found out who the guy is, btw. happens to be someone we REALLY know! 😛 more details about that when we talk… 😉

    And, fans looking for signature… ROTFL!! 🙂

    Thanks a bunch for the words, bro. Be proud, you’re my guru to the blogosphere! And, your latest posts beat the shits outta the crap I write. You’re just TOO GOOD!

  6. aareda eee thiruvananthoram puli(eli) ?
    anyway he has taken a lot of pain in typing that mail out in a presentable manner although the way he presented is dumb…so 2 cheers to him\her for that 😛

  7. @ Praveen:
    Athu chettanu valare nannaayittariyaavunna oru vyakthi aanu! 😛 Hehehe… 😉 Thanks bro!

    @ Twisted DNA
    Thanks! 🙂 The phising scheme is so prevalent! Beware!

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