TCYK v. Does 1-87, Case No. 13-3845 (N.D. Ill. July 10, 2013)(Tharp)
Citing the inherently cooperative nature of BitTorrent, Judge Tharp has allowed TCYK to obtain early discovery in case no. 13-3845. In particular, Judge Tharp acknowledged that Does that participate in a single swarm simultaneously are subject to joinder in almost all courts that have examined the issue. However, Judge Tharp went farther, and determined that Does that participate in the same swarm at different times can be joined in a single lawsuit at least in the early phases of that suit. ISP subpoena letters will likely arrive within a few weeks for Chicago area Does that are identified by their ISPs with regards to this case.
Accordingly, we have recently received opinions from Judge Shadur (contemporaneous participation required), Judge Guzman (no good cause for early discovery), and Judge Tharp (early discovery appropriate even without contemporaneous participation). There is clearly a split in the Northern District on this issue, which we will document in more detail in the weeks to come.