Friday, October 17, 2008

TorrentFries, inc.

In the past, I've made a point of steering clear of the legal nuances of tracker-running. The law varies dramatically from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and more importantly, I know jack shit about legal matters. However, I just thought I'd throw you a tidbit gleaned from one of my lawyer friends: the beauty of a capitalist society.

Basically, in the US, Canada, and the UK, corporations can only be sued for the assets of that corporation. This applies even if that corporation is just you and the assets are zilch. So long as you make it clear that you are always acting on behalf of the corporation, you're out of any legal troubles scott free.

Obviously, the practical implications are a bit more complicated, but that's my understanding, anyway. I invited him to write a guest entry for us, so if he takes me up on that, you'll get to hear a bit more. In the meantime, please take my "legal advice" with all the salt in the Dead Sea.


oomwrtu said...

Would be very interested in reading a guest entry about corporations and trackers. Helpful for anyone looking to protect themselves as much as possible if anonymity isn't their first choice.

OnionRings said...

My first inclination would be that in the US, that wouldn't be a good idea. You have to apply to incorporate a business and can get audited any time. Plus it can cost money.

CurlyFries said...

Hey, I never said I was right...

Dave said...

The problem with running everything through a corporation is that corporations have owners, and that ownership information is public information (at least in the countries you mention).

Now, a corporation (or non-person entity, to be more abstract) can be owned by another non-person entity, but at the end of the day the corporation at the top of the stack has to be owned by at least one piece of real human flesh - with a name and an address.

IMHO the way to go is to operate through a paypal account that has been setup through obscure means - even that isn't 100% fool proof but at the end of the day if your servers are run by a fictitious company and paid for from a paypal account that was topped up by pre-paid credit cards paid with cash, then you're pretty tight.

The most critical point this can all fail is the domain name - if you have put in false information and someone reports it to the respective domain authority, they can usually pull the domain.

Personally, I wouldn't operate as a company as directors can still be personally sued for negligence - such as facilitating copyright theft.

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