Comcast Wins Lottery on BitTorrent Appeal.

Yesterday, the Panel on Multijurisdictional Litigation (PMJL) awarded the Comcast-BitTorrent Appeal to the D.C. Circuit. Obviously I would prefer to be elsewhere for the same reason Comcast wants to be there (despite being actually located in the Third Circuit), i.e. the D.C. Circuit’s reputation as being a pro-industry anti-regulatory bunch of judicial activists who don’t give a squat about actual case law. Still, since some of our strongest precedent is from the D.C. Circuit, and the D.C. Circuit has surprised Comcast in the past, I am not exactly weeping in despair here.

In a portent of things to come, Comcast also filed a challenge to our standing with the PMJL. I expect this to be renewed in the D.C. Circuit once the cases are consolidated.

Anyway, for those following the sequence of events, the Ninth, Second and Third Circuits will now transfer the cases to the D.C. circuit, which will consolidate them. Folks will have a chance to intervene in either or both sets of cases, and parties may also try to file other motions (e.g., motion for stay, motion for expedited trial). Anyone involved in the matter below (or having an interest impacted by either our Petition or Comcast’s) has a right to intervene — either on the side of the FCC or on the side of Petitioner. Also expect cross intervention where parties who like the FCC’s decision in the Comcast-BitTorrent case intervene in support of the FCC and against Comcast and in support of us and against the FCC. Or in support of Comcast in the Comcast appeal and in support of the FCC in ours. PArties may also file for permission to appear as amici for one side or another.

After the time for interventions passes (which I am too lazy to calculate at the moment), and the court resolves any pending motions, the court will set a briefing schedule. It is too early to guess the time frame until we see what motions parties file (other than interventions).

Stay tuned . . . .


  1. FYI —

    In a previous write-up I made in Third Coast Press years ago, I describe the First Circuit as “notorious for being full of corporate-friendly hacks cleverly disguised as judges”:


  2. Way to be the headline feature on today’s installment of Media Reform Daily. Bummer they netted the DC circuit, I’m not happy to hear that.

  3. Sounds to me like We, the People need to bring together our “mighty Voice” into the courtroom and campaign for our rightful expectation of “net neutrality”. What government has tried and failed at doing, big business, namely the telecommunications giants, are trying their darnedest to “clamp down” on net neutrality, and assert their control over information! I sincerely hope that this makes a big splash in the alternative media. Our very future of unbridled First Amendment liberties is at stake here! An adverse ruling in favor of big business could may as well spell the end of Free Speech as we know it.


  4. It was appropriate for Comcast to win, because it had a real complaint and not a minor, pointless quibble whose purpose was solely to divert jurisdiction away from the right court.

  5. Screw Comcast. Switch to slower DSL who doesn’t try to screw with your torrents, usually. As long as we choose someone that does allow torrents, under dogs will allow it.

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