Legal system in the US

All these legal cases against TVPad seem to be won via this so called "default ruling". I guess this means that TVPad did not contest the accusations in court. What I do not understand is how the US legal system allows someone (or a company) to sue someone else (or another company) who is not located or registered in the US.

Of course I could be totally off here if TVPad is registered and operating from the US, but if they do then they are amazingly stupid.

So anyone in here with the know-how regarding the US legal system ? I'm currently studying law just because I find it interesting (so a hobby), which is the reason of my question.


  • Unfortunately I can't read Chinese. Do they answer my question ?
  • Google is your friend. The translation in English is as follows:

    [Ming Pao News] Government specifically related to the Copyright (Amendment) Bill has set off heated debate society. Even sound everywhere, but beneath all walks of life to discuss the focus of suspicion. The key purpose of the revised draft is not for personal online activities, but for the promotion of infringing activity on the network, while the existing Copyright Ordinance currently unable to regulate transnational organized crime groups.

    TV industry is a living example to the United States recently one case, for example, Chinese TV makers (central and TVB) from the United States Courts of TV set-top box manufacturers, "TVPad" injunction. The illegal occupation of the streaming service to television producers in Asia of the US market, so that it suffered heavy losses. However, if Hong Kong fails the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, you can not perform the same action. Therefore, consideration of the draft decision is not dragged on, people engaged in the creation of the required methods to combat organized and a commercial-scale infringement.

    Users of Internet companies continue to mislead the public organization

    Copyright (Amendment) Bill was first proposed in 2011, has now expanded its scope of exemptions covering new proposals concerning the protection of freedom of speech and freedom of expression. The legal profession and academics are all agreed that the draft amendments to existing copyright law, to provide up to an additional exemption to freedom of expression guaranteed by copyright law. Current Chairman of the Hong Kong Bar Association and Senior Counsel 谭允芝 have commented on the draft refers to "draft contains the most extensive worldwide copyright exceptions ...... remarks and comments on the current events of these exceptions include, which is also unique to Hong Kong practice". However, some organizations and users from any website traffic (whether legal or not) profitable Internet companies continue to mislead the public, means the bill will threaten their freedom.

    For three amendments:

    . Individual users derived content

    Completely exempt individual users derived content (user-generated content) does not guarantee people engaged in the creation of the industry, because it works easily be stolen, and individual users derived from the name of a false network spread. Completely exemption would allow anyone to copy video works, and in the tail section was added personal comments, to obtain an exemption. We should understand that not all content uploaded to the Internet is lawful, and should be fully exempt. Regardless of whether the manned commercial motives, "free sharing" can cause significant damage to the content owner.

    Among other countries, only Canada adopted a similar exemption. Several scholars have pointed out, this does not meet the terms of standard copyright exemption. WTO still a great opportunity to sue individual users derived content.

    . The fair use doctrine

    Fair use exemption mechanism was adopted only a few countries, among the best known in the United States. Fair use exemption regulations have open, but the law does not specify the scope of exemptions. American fair use mechanism is established in the past 150 years of legal precedent. Legal regime in Hong Kong is based on English legal framework and precedent, rather than the United States.

    The Administration has conducted several studies, concluded that the adoption of fair use mechanism will bring significant uncertainties users and copyright holders, while Hong Kong should also make many adjustments. Since there is no clear provision of the mechanism, each case is required by the court determine whether the use is fair, especially early implementation bill. Even in America, commenting also simply more predictive use of a particular case whether an exemption is very difficult. In the absence of a precedent of the United States, the adoption of this Committee stage amendment it is very risky.

    Therefore, the industry is not opposed to the creation could apply to the territory of transitional measures for a further systematic and careful study, but the process can not be hurried. Legal issues need to be seriously addressed. We support after the adoption of the draft revision of the existing government proposed to discuss this issue next year.

    . Exemption overriding contract terms

    This is a new issue. Britain adopted in 2014 exempted override contractual terms, caused great controversy. The UK is currently the only adopt this provision jurisdictions. Britain is still in the pilot phase of the terms will be reviewed after five years. In general, this measure mainly affects the relationship between content producers, consumers and will not be affected. Therefore, we do not understand why the initiative of Hong Kong people believe that this provision of this provision is very important for users in Hong Kong, and why they want to hurry to adopt the British trial regulations. We must spend more time to explore this issue.

    If the amendment by causing more serious vulnerabilities

    Overall, the above-mentioned three amendments were seriously flawed. Legislative Council should be more clear understanding of live and study the legislation and consult the legal profession professional advice, because the motion will have far-reaching impact of our legal system. I can only comment on behalf of the television industry, but we all believe that the amendment of Mr unacceptable. If the amendment is passed, copyright protection will lead to more serious vulnerabilities, the extent or the industry will make the draft meaningless. Therefore, the relevant amendments to the motion must be overthrown, so that the Bill without amendments, was adopted as soon as possible.

    Author John Medeiros is Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA), President, Chief Policy
  • edited January 2016
    Thanks, I use Google translate often, but I was hoping someone could have given me a proper (understandable) summary. It's a bit of a pain in the *** to have to read machine translated legal stuff :)

    Maybe I should ask my question more directly. Does anyone know why you can sue someone in the US who is not registered or living in the US ? What is the logic behind it ? I mean how is that person supposed to appear in court to defend himself if there is a hearing ? I fail to see the fairness in such a legal system. Of course these are all assumptions from my part, so I want to know if someone knows the details of the US legal system. Or maybe it's so complex that no one knows.

    And yes, I know I can Google the US legal system, but I rather spend that time on my own legal studies. Maybe some of the spies can educate us ?
  • SomebodySomebody Junior Member
    I believe the right to broadcast TVB programmes in the US are owned by DISH/TVB US. TVPad openly advertised that they were able to stream the same TVB programmes worldwide, including the US, and were caught doing so, TVB US /Dish sued to protect their rights in that particular jurisdiction.
  • Yes, but AFAIK TVPad is not registered or located in the US. So how does the US legal system expect them to defend themselves ? To put it in context, let's say someone in the US gives me a death threat. I go and sue him in my own country and expect him to defend himself in my national court ... yeah right!

    I would need to read the court documents to fully understand this, but it seems the plaintiffs in this case are doing something similar to what is described here: . This is mind-boggling. I assume the resellers are the equivalent of a subsidiary mentioned in that article.

    I can't believe that there are no US lawyers or legal advisors using TVPad =)
  • tomato123tomato123 Show Producer
    I think TVPad are located in Hong Kong.
  • BatmanBatman Junior Member
    I think TVpad are ran by couple of guys in an apartment. And we are writing complaint letters to them? @Phantoman: Welcome to the US judicial system. You can learn anything you want in law school. If you are Chinese defending yourself in court, good luck. Because none of those laws will protect you when it come to trial. Slanted eyes, and yellow skin in front of a white judge, and jury.
    Why do you think Bruce Lee went back to Hong Kong? This country is still the same as then. Nothing have changed. " Close your eyes, and listen grasshopper".
  • LOL, well usually it's the case of who can pay the best lawyer right ? But yeah, I know what you are saying though. I experienced something similar here as well which got me into studying law as a hobby. I am currently working on a case which I now have to take to the European court :/

    Still I have never heard of a European company suing an American company that was not registered or located in Europe. If I recall, for example currently Americans can sue European companies if they violate their privacy (as-in misuse their private data), but Europeans cannot do that to American companies. I believe the European Commission is currently negotiating that with the Americans.

    The thing is, maybe the laws won't protect us like you say, but understanding them may keep us out of harm's way.
  • SomebodySomebody Junior Member
    If you read the Nature of Action in these initial court papers here (docket item 1) you will see that it's a copyright and trademark infringement action.
    Thanked by 1Phantoman
  • padmanpadman Moderator
    Thanked by 1Phantoman
  • @padman I actually already had that document, but for its list of hostnames and IP addresses :) I guess I have to actually read it now :/
  • Watch the movie "Woman in Gold". The plaintiff was able to sue Austria in U.S. court, becoz the painting "Woman in Gold" was advertised and sold in the catalog on U.S. land. Maybe this is why?
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