ISANYBODYDOWN - CRAIG BRITTAIN
Article by: BullyVille
December 12, 2012
When evaluating IsAnybodyUp clones, our attorney, came across IsAnybodyDown.com. IsAnybodyDown is a controversial website co-founded by Craig Brittain and Chance Trahan where users can anonymously upload nude photographs along with information identifying the person in the photograph (including full names, addresses, phone numbers, and Facebook screenshots.) The site also contains a section of nude photographs titled "Anonymous Bounty", where users are offered "free stuff" if they can provide the Facebook or Twitter information of any of the people pictured. In concept, the website recapitulates the now-defunct IsAnyoneUp which was shut down in April of 2012, shortly before an FBI investigation into the propriety of the site.
For quite some time, IsAnybodyDown displayed advertisements from two sites: Kataishin (a music site run by Chance Trahan, one of IsAnybodyDown's founders), and "David Blade III," who billed himself as the "takedown" lawyer. Where cease-and-demand letters and DMCA notices failed to remove images from IsAnybodyDown, David Blade succeeded - for the tasteful fee of $250. A few things stuck out about David Blade's advertisement. For one, it did not identify what states David Blade was licensed to practice in - this is generally required in all attorney advertising. David Blade then claimed to be a public defender in New York. Marc Randazza researched the records of admitted attorneys in New York and did not find a single David Blade. At this point, Marc suspected that David Blade was a character created by one of IsAnybodyDown's founders. Around this time, Marc also began corresponding with Craig Brittain. Marc noticed a funny thing about his e-mails with David Blade and Craig Brittain - they came from the same exact residential IP address that was supplied by a major ISP. Unless Craig Brittain and David Blade - allegedly a public defender in New York - were using the same computer in Craig Brittain's Colorado home, Craig Brittain was David Blade. The "attorney" who charged $250 to remove people's most private photos from the site was one of the site's owners in disguise.
The legal blogosphere and technology media began writing about this apparent scam. Brittain denied any wrongdoing, and thanked his critics for the traffic to his website. However, he then attempted to use the very legal demands he refused to honor with IsAnybodyDown.com to remove stories critical of him from popular blogs such as TechDirt and Popehat.
To this day, Criag Brittain insists that David Blade is a separate person and an actual attorney - but has not produced any evidence of his existence. Coincidentally, David Blade changed his ads and website to call himself the "takedown hammer," (but still using the domain name rather than hold himself out as an attorney.) However, he is still charging $250 to remove content from IsAnybodyDown.
From his Colorado home, Craig briefly engaged the media to explain his "progressive" ideal of everyone being nude on the internet. His theory: that if you took nude photos of yourself, or let others do so, that you consented to them being reproduced anywhere and everywhere, including on IsAnybodyDown.com. During National Public Radio's "On The Media" segment about IsAnybodyDown, Craig explained that he was changing the world to remove the stigma of having compromising photos online by ensuring everyone was naked online. The full segment can be heard here: http://www.onthemedia.org/2012/nov/16/is-anybody-down/. Since then, Craig Brittain has declined all interview requests from the media with respect to IsAnybodyDown.