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Created June 4, 2015 17:19
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Nastygram to research gate
I am the author of a paper which illegally appears on your webserver and is made available to the world thereon. It is entitled “Equality Under the (Rule of) Law,” and appears at:
In accordance with the terms of the U.S. Digital Millenium Copyright Act, I demand you immediately remove this document from your website.
The paper in question is actually an early and obsolete draft of a paper which was subsequently published under the title “The Rule of Law and Equality.” In the course of publishing that paper, I transferred the copyright to Springer, as the publisher of the journal Law and Philosophy. Thus, you may be infringing Springer’s copyright on the final version in addition to (or instead of) my copyright on the earlier work—or it may be that Springer is the sole copyright holder on the early draft as well. The question, which is one for copyright specialists to answer, is immaterial to me. However, if you decline to comply with this notice under color of the claim that Springer, not I, is the rightful copyright holder to the version you posted, then just let me know: I’ll simply forward a copy of this message to their lawyers, who, I’m sure, will be more than happy to have an unfriendly chat with you too.
I state under penalty of perjury that the demand made in this notice is made in good faith, that all information contained herein is accurate to the best of my knowledge, that I have not authorized this reproduction of my work, and that (with the caveat noted above about a copyright transfer in the final version), I am the copyright holder to the work whose copyright you have infringed.
Moreover, that draft was clearly plundered from the servers of the Social Science Research Network (SSRN), on which I did release the early draft in question. It even has their watermark on the bottom. Research Gate appears to have acquired it in violation of SSRN’s terms of use (, which clearly prohibit the reposting of material from their website for commercial purposes. Should you decline to comply with this notice, then, again, just let me know, I’m equally sure that the SSRN lawyers would enjoy having a little tête-à-tête with yours. (Who else’s rights have you infringed? The list seems endless.)
You are further instructed to remove from your website any and all other papers of which I am the author.
In addition, I assert any nontransferable moral rights, and rights to privacy and data protection, which exist under European law with respect to all relevant material. You are instructed to remove “Equality Under the (Rule of) Law,” any other works of which I am the author, and any other information relating to me, on the basis of those rights as well.
Furthermore, some years ago, I accidentally signed up for a Research Gate account on the basis of an e-mail claiming that I had been invited to do so by a coauthor. I have never used this account (and, needless to say, have never uploaded an obsolete draft of a paper to it), however, since that time, I have periodically learned that friends of mine have received fraudulent e-mails generated by Research Gate, but in my name, claiming that I have invited them to join Research Gate. Stop doing that immediately, and cancel any and all accounts that may allegedly exist under my name on your website, or I will take such legal action as I deem necessary to make you do so.
Needless to say, this makes me rather suspect that the original e-mail which invited me to join your website was also fraudulent; should legal action ensue, I intend to discover whether this is in fact the case. You are on notice that all records relating to the e-mails sent to me, the e-mails sent in my name, and the document which you illegally are serving to the world on your webserver are potential evidence in subsequent litigation; should they be destroyed, I intend to seek sanctions for the spoliation of evidence.
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Thanks for sharing!

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