Thursday, 30 September 2010

Poetic Justice

My techie friend has been having a whale of a time after some idiot at ACS Law made an unencrypted backup containing a substantial quantity of their emails available on their website last week.

As some people may already know,‭ ‬ACS Law is the London based law firm run by Andrew Crossley which has become notorious for it's abuse of the legal system to extort money from people accused - wrongly in many cases - of copyright infringement.

An abuse which has been condemned by members of the House of Lords‭ ‬and the BPI. Although I suspect that in the case of the latter they foresaw what would eventually happen and were simply trying to avoid being hit by flying excrement when it finally hit the fan.

Below is a list of links - provided by the aforementioned techno-rabbi - to articles covering the contents of the emails in far greater detail than I could manage. The file contains nearly 7000 documents and even with the best will in the world, it would quite impossible to do more than skim the surface in the limited time I could scrounge from my many other commitments.

However there was a couple of things which caught my attention.

One of Andrew Crossley’s ‘copyright’ clients is none other than Anna Span, a.k.a. Anna Arrowsmith. Pornographer and the very well publicised Lib-Dem PPC for Gravesham in the general election.

I suspect that their leadership may be regretting that particular piece of‭ '‬open mindedness‭' ‬given their very public opposition to Andrew Crossley and his ilk. After all, it was a Lib-Dem Peer who compared Andrew Crossley and ACS Law to “rogue wheel-clampers”.

And how about this for sheer bloody cheek.

How about a complaint to the sra that this lady - who is a solicitor - is bringing the profession into disrepute? She is issuing misleading information that is slanted and innaccurate and it leads people she does not act for to disregard a matter that could end up in court. She is a total disgrace.

Andrew J. Crossley
ACS Law Solicitors

My overall impression of Andrew Crossley from his emails is that of a ‘Del-Boy‭' ‬of the legal profession.‭ ‬A shady‭ '‬wheeler and dealer‭' ‬who's not above bending,‭ ‬perhaps even breaking,‭ ‬the law to earn a little money.

However there is one very,‭ ‬very significant difference.

Del-Boy as portrayed by actor David Jason was basically a decent person trying to do his best for a younger brother and an elderly relative in a run-down area of south London full of con-artists,‭ ‬crooks and corrupt coppers.

Andrew Crossley is not.

Following the revelations detailed in the articles linked below, it should come as no surprise that most of the ISPs targeted by Andrew Crossley have now 'suspended cooperation’ citing security concerns. The single exception to this is Entanet which is continuing to ‘cooperate’ at this time.

BT have also said that it would resist efforts to share more customer details until it could be sure that “alleged copyright infringements have some basis and customers are treated fairly"

It’s a pity they didn’t think that way before but with their own balls in the wringer over having sent the data unencrypted they, like most of the ISPs involved, are now bending over backwards in a futile attempt to distance themselves from ACS Law.

And finally, to add insult to a well deserved injury, a group calling themselves “Wankers” - apparently in reference to Andrew Crossley’s childish threat to sue over a forum post calling him a wanker - has put together a ‘megapack’ containing all of the music which Andrew Crossley is using as a pretext to send his threatening letters and made it available on a range of filesharing platforms.

New 4chan DDoS Targets Hated Anti-Piracy Law Firm
Piracy threats lawyer mocks 4chan DDoS attack
ACS:Law Anti-Piracy Law Firm Torn Apart By Leaked Emails
ACS:Law (Gay) Porn Letters Target Pensioners, Married Men
Leaked Emails Reveal Profits of Anti-Piracy Cash Scheme
High-Profile, High Damages File-Sharing ‘Conviction’ Was a Farce
Anti-piracy lawyers' email database leaked after hack
ACS:Law's mocking of 4chan could cost it £500k
The "legal blackmail" business: inside a P2P settlement factory
P2P settlement factory expects £10 million from... mailing letters
Pirates release ACS:Law 'megapack' of music

Thursday, 23 September 2010


My wife and I had dinner last night with some friends from London, one of whom is a senior surgical registrar at a teaching hospital.

The conversation naturally turned to the Pope’s visit which had caused the hospital a few problems. Along with staff demanding time off for “religious reasons" - not all of whom were Catholic it seems - there was the inevitable traffic congestion and a veritable flood of minor injuries sustained in the ‘crush’.

I happened to mention that a senior Vatican official had claimed the HIV virus could easily pass through the pores of a condom. Something which had resurfaced amongst the fringe coverage of the Pope’s visit.

The look of utter disgust on his face was truly something to behold, as were his words.

“Jesus Christ! I thought priests were supposed to be educated men!”

There really wasn’t anything I could have said to that even if I hadn’t been laughing my head off along with everyone else.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Staine Resistant

I was at a Labour Party‭ ‘‬thing‭’ ‬last week and despite the change in leadership,‭ ‬little else seems to have changed.

I’m still a traditional socialist and the neo-tory fascists of new labour are still treating me like the victim of a horrendously disfiguring and highly contagious disease.

But I was expecting that of course.‭ ‬It’s something I’ve gotten used to and quite frankly,‭ ‬I would be very concerned if they suddenly started treating me like a colleague again.

What I wasn’t expecting was to run into Paul Staines,‭ ‬author of the Guido Fawkes blog.‭ ‬After all,‭ ‬he’s probably one of the very few people the new labour mob hate more than socialists.

Being unable to avoid or escape him due to the circumstances,‭ ‬I was forced to listen to him whining on and on about the Islamification of England and how the pope’s plans for‭ “‬re-Catholicisation‭” ‬were our only hope of survival.‭ ‬This was followed by a rant about the‭ “‬Atheist Bigoted Media‭” ‬and their campaign of hatred against the pope.

Bigoted‭? ‬From a‭ ‘‬man‭’ ‬who had just spent what seemed like an incredibly long ten minutes lecturing me on the evils of Islam‭?

To make matters worse,‭ ‬he was doing this in defence of child abusers and the man who protected them.‭ ‬Joseph Ratzinger,‭ ‬an anti-Semitic bigot who as head of the Inquisition‭ ‬-‭ ‬now known as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith‭ ‬-‭ ‬personally signed the orders that priests accused of sexual offences against children should not be surrendered to the authorities.

It‭ ‬could be suggested that his highly inebriated condition had something to do with this‭ ‘‬outburst‭’ ‬but he’s always like this.‭ ‬Mind you I’ve rarely seen him in any other condition and never stone cold sober.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Wel... (cough, choke)... Welcome Back Kingsley

Lambeth Councillor Kingsley Abrams who was suspended from the Lambeth Labour group after retaining his seat with an increased majority is to be rather‭ ‬grudgingly‭ “‬invited to rejoin the ranks‭”‬.

I say‭ ‬grudgingly because in addition to the short,‭ ‬rather curt message on the Labour in Lambeth website‭ ‬-‭ ‬which incidentally,‭ ‬contains no hint of reconciliation.‭ ‬The Lambeth Labour group has once again changed it’s tune and is now claiming that Councillor Abrams leaked‭ “‬highly confidential information to the Liberal Democrats in the run-up to the council elections‭”‬.

The original version of events was that he had been suspended for‭ "violating council email use policy‭" ‬after a nasty little entrapment operation run by supposedly neutral council officers went wrong.

And if the original version of this sorry tale was stretching credulity a bit far then this new version has definitely caused it to snap‭!

Quite frankly,‭ ‬the idea that a man who has been a dedicated member of the Labour Party for‭ ‬32‭ ‬years would pass confidential information to the Conservative Support Group...‭ ‬erm...‭ ‬I mean the Liberal Democrats...‭ ‬is bloody ridiculous.

I must admit I don’t know Kingsley Abrams very well but he always seemed to be a fairly decent bloke who,‭ ‬like me,‭ ‬believes that essential infrastructure such as social housing is far too important to be left in private hands.

The appalling mismanagement of Lambeth’s housing stock by the Lambeth Living ALMO and the collapse of Connaught only serve to underline that point.

Labour in Lambeth

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Would YOU vote for him?

I was rather amused to hear of a certain local politician who is refusing to have a vasectomy because he thinks it might have an adverse effect on his chances of being re-elected.

No, this is not a joke. He genuinely seems to believe that some people will not vote for him if he has ‘The Snip’.

I would suggest that only a devout Catholic could be so daft - the Catholic Church has made it’s feelings on the matter abundantly clear on many occasions - but he isn’t a Catholic, devout or otherwise, and the Catholics won’t vote for him anyway because he’s one of us “Godless Heathen” or Atheists as we’re more commonly called.

Alternatively, he may have been talking to the Knuckle-Draggers of the Tabloid Press Readers Association and/or men with certain 'cultural' prejudices - both of whom have condemned vasectomy as a “cruel and barbaric” practice - but they won’t vote for him either as he neither shares their prejudices nor panders to them.

Still... As pathetic excuses go, it’s certainly the most original I’ve heard for a while and it does make a change from the usual childish whining about their precious ‘manhood’.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Is that all there is?

I been hearing a lot of people complaining about this year’s Dover carnival which took place Sunday.

Boring, wasn’t worth the effort, etc. The usual sort of nonsense I expect from members of the Whingers and Whiners Club for whom it seems, nothing is ever good enough.

Unfortunately on this occasion I would have to agree with them. Most people did seem to find it disappointing, particularly those who had made a special trip to see it.

However I would ask everyone to remember that the organisers did the best they could under very difficult circumstances and while it might have been better to cancel it this year, that would have set a bad precedent. If cancelled under the present circumstances there is no guarantee it would take place again in the foreseeable future. Something which even I would like to avoid if possible despite my personal distaste for certain aspects of it.

As for the miserable sods from the Whingers and Whiners Club. Who knows what goes on in their minds...

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

May I have your attention please...

I popped into Smiths on my way past yesterday afternoon to pick a newspaper and was just in time to catch the accounts clerk ‘remonstrating’ with her colleagues over their somewhat strange obsession with her private life.

From what I can gather it started with their ‘persistent’ questions as to why she was there in the afternoon instead of the morning and deteriorated from there until it reached the point where she demanded they stop what they were doing and listen.

Whereupon she gave them the information they were so persistently seeking - right between the eyes!

To say they seemed suitably embarrassed might be something of an understatement.

Yes, I know. Some people might consider it highly unprofessional of her to do that in front of customers and in a manager or supervisor it most certainly would be.

However as someone who has had to hang about waiting to be served on far too many occasions while staff gossiped I can only applaud her not-so-subtle way of reminding them that they’re being paid to serve customers, not pry into her private life.

I expect the area manager will have an opinion on this but given her own history of unprofessional behaviour towards this young woman - which almost cost her her job last year – it would probably be a very good idea if she kept it to herself.

One is certain, I sure as hell wouldn’t want to upset that young lady!