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Redbox Fights Subpoena in DVD Rental Antitrust Suit

By : Chris Tribbey | Posted: 07 Apr 2010

Redbox is fighting a subpoena for information in a class action suit against Netflix and Wal-Mart, saying it has nothing to do with the case.

The suit, first filed in early 2009, accuses Wal-Mart and Netflix of creating a monopoly and violating antitrust law when Wal-Mart turned over its DVD rental business to Netflix in 2005.

Lawyers representing consumers in the case served Redbox a subpoena in late February, demanding the kiosk operator turn over “all documents concerning any agreements between or among you and Netflix and/or Blockbuster” as well as any documents concerning agreements between the kiosk operator and Wal-Mart and Warner Bros.

The subpoena also demands documents concerning Redbox’s customers’ purchasing habits, and documents concerning Redbox president Mitch Lowe’s tenure with Netflix from 1998 to 2003.

Redbox will ask a U.S. District Court judge in Chicago to quash the subpoena on April 13.

In court documents Redbox argues that the information sought in the subpoena “is irrelevant to the litigation, seeks information duplicative of information that may be obtained from the parties [in] the litigation, seeks Redbox’s confidential commercial information and imposes an undue burden on Redbox as a non-party.”

Regarding the request for its consumers’ purchasing habits, Redbox says “Because Redbox is in the business of renting and selling DVDs, it is necessarily engaged in assessing ‘DVD purchasing habit’ of its customers and DVD customers in general as part of its ongoing business.

“This request seeks confidential commercial information, which Redbox should not be compelled to produce.”


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