On September 17 MHB reported on a copyright infringement claim filed with Facebook by an anonymous party against the “Sandy Hook Hoax” Fb page alleging ownership of the Lenie Urbina/Avielle Richman photographs. The copyright claimant has been revealed in the emails below as one Thomas Bittman, co-founder of the lucrative “Sandy Hook Promise” charity. The 501(c)3 has been a key proponent of gun control and mental health protocols that it argues will curb mass shootings, while pulling on the heartstrings of America to the tune of tens of millions of dollars in the wake of the December 14, 2012 Sandy Hook massacre event.
What’s significant here is whether Bittman actually holds the copyright to the images in question, and if he’s not just prompting Facebook to abuse the entire DMCA process intended to address legitimate copyright claims. If so, Bittman has likely committed perjury and is subject to being sued for filing a false copyright infringement claim. “If you send a cease-and-desist letter to an infringer,” under DMCA,
there is a risk that the infringer may file a lawsuit in the infringer’s jurisdiction naming you as a defendant and seeking a declaratory judgment that your copyright is invalid. One recent court decision found that the sending of a single cease-and-desist letter into the state was enough to subject the defendant to personal jurisdiction in that state.
If you send a DMCA takedown notice that is both false and meant in bad faith (such as to harass, or doesn’t state a real claim), you have committed perjury. Though unlikely, if the party you sent the takedown notice to decided to pursue this in court, you could face all of the consequences that your state imposes on people who lie in court.
Most MHB readers will likely agree that such legal action against parties that have sought to terrorize the US citizenry and enrich themselves on an entirely dubious incident is richly deserved. We do hope Mr. Anthony Mead pursues this matter to the fullest extent provided by law.
From: Facebook <email@example.com>
Date: September 21, 2015 at 6:16:46 PM EDT
To: Anthony Mead
Subject: Re: Copyright Counter Complaint: #1631982620387595
Reply-To: Facebook <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Thank you for your email. As you know, we received a claim of alleged rights infringement regarding the removed content. However, the content in question is outside the scope of the counter-notification provisions under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), 17 U.S.C. § 512(g).
If you believe that this content should not have been removed from Facebook, you can contact the complaining party directly to resolve your issue:
Report #: 263811150419388
Name – Thomas Bittman
Email – tjbittman@
Please keep in mind that the complaining party is not required to respond to you. If an agreement is reached to restore the reported content, please have the complaining party email us at email@example.com with their consent and the original report number of their complaint.
Intellectual Property Operations
From: Anthony Mead
Subject: Copyright Counter Complaint: #1631982620387595
Name: Anthony J Mead
Mailing Address: _______________
Hollywood FL, 33026
Please provide URL(s)/description leading to where the content appeared on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HoaxAtSandyHook
By submitting this counter-notice, you:consent to the jurisdiction of the Federal District Court for the judicial district in which your address is located, or if your address is outside the United States, for any judicial district in which Facebook, Inc. may be found.agree to accept service of process from the party who reported your content, or that party’s agent.state under penalty of perjury that you have a good faith belief that the material in question was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or misidentification.: I Agree
Electronic Signature: Anthony J Mead
—–End Original Message—–