Misrepresentation in DMCA takedown notices

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    A few weeks ago my blog was shut down by WordPress as an indirect result of a third party issuing a DMCA takedown notice direct to WordPress and falsely claiming in that notice that he had sent me an email warning about a particular blogpost.

    In my amended counterclaim I pointed to the evidence that the complainant had not issued any such email to me (his posted evidence showed he had turned his system clock back — I won’t go into all the verifying details here, though).

    When I saw my blogpost had been made “private” — this was in the early hours of a morning (between 3 am and 6 am my time) I presumed my co-blogger had made a mistake and republished it. Before I knew what was happening my blog was shut down.

    I immediately contacted WordPress, thinking it was a mistake, and only after that was the earlier WordPress takedown notice brought to my attention. (I don’t normally consult my personal email between 3 and 6 am — nor even till later, usually after I finish work later in the day.)

    Now I have been notified that the complainant has not responded to my reply to his take-down notice and have been given permission to make that post public again.

    I see the original takedown notice as frivolous, malicious and perjured.

    What processes do I follow to seek some redress?

    Neil Godfrey

    The blog I need help with is vridar.wordpress.com.



    I’ll tag this thread for Staff assistance. Please subscribe to the thread so you are notified when they respond and please be patient while waiting.


    Thanks timethief — but sorry, I’m a bit lost learning how to locate these threads — can you point me to the location of the Staff assistance thread — a link? Thanks,



    Frankly, the only path I see is through civil courts. If I had a dime for every time someone tried this on me, well, I’d have enough to take the bus at least.

    But to subscribe to this thread and see staff replies, just look for the little checkbox under the box where you write comments in this thread, the one that says “Notify me of followup posts via e-mail” and click it.



    You can also find your threads – when you are logged in – click on your name in the upper right corner of the forum – that will show you all the threads you have commented in – and when you are at a thread (here) click on the “Member” that is under your name



    Hi Neil,

    I see that you also contacted us about this question via email. As mentioned in the email, we aren’t able to offer any sort of legal advice—you will want to consult a lawyer if you have any questions of that nature.


    I don’t know who the “us” is that I apparently contacted. I was not aware I contacted any “happiness engineers”.

    But WordPress needs to take some action here, too. WordPress shut down my blog apparently entirely on the say-so of a disgruntled reader who claimed (falsely, I contend) to have issued me a warning notice.

    WordPress sent me an email takedown notice that arrived at 2:30 am my time. Before 6 am my time I restored the post that had been made “private” completely unaware that there was any contention over it of any kind.

    I immediately contacted WordPress but by then it was too late — the original take-down notice was only pointed out to me at that point.

    When WordPress makes a post private like that they ought to find a way of also pasting a notice on the blog post or blog somehow to alert the blogowner that:

    (1) its status has been changed by WordPress (I assumed it was my co-blogger who had made a mistake, and he even wondered if he had accidentally changed its status); and

    (2) a pointer to the reason (with a direction to any other notice that may have been emailed.)

    It is unreasonable to expect me to check my email in the very early morning — or within a few hours of it being sent; Gmail is not something we all check regularly several times a day. I check mine usually after work and in the evenings.


    I might also add that I did not see my request as asking for legal advice as some at WordPress have interpreted it.

    I was asking if there is a process available for me similar to the process that is available for someone to follow who feels they have had their copyright infringed.

    WordPress makes forms and instructions available. I am asking if there is anything similar for one who finds he has been at the end of a malicious complaint that was based on perjury to begin with.

    Clearly there is not. I would appreciate a response that simply said, “No, you’re on your own there, boy. We won’t help you since our policy is only self-interested Risk Avoidance, so we only make it easy for someone to warn us of impending legal action that might affect WordPress.”

    That would be an honest reply.



    Hi there,

    You can read our DMCA notice on this page: http://automattic.com/dmca/

    If you would like to take further action, we recommend you consult a lawyer about your concerns.

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