from the wow,-that's-chutzpah dept
Talk about misrepresenting.
First of all, I don't know of many "pundits" who think that the digital economy should be a new wild west at all. I think that many of them are actually just focused on preserving individual rights against a constant landgrab by an industry whose history has shown it to not be above removing right after right after right from people. The RIAA and its supporters have taken content out of the public domain, making a government go back on a bargain it struck with content creators, much to the detriment of society, but very much to the benefit of a few record label execs and their lobbyists and lawyers. That's stealing from the public. It's taking a bargain and changing the terms. People don't want a wild west. They want the culture we were promised, and they want their individual freedoms.
Furthermore, calling the very specific nature of the Jammie Thomas trial a referendum on file sharing is ridiculous. Her case had a very specific set of circumstances unlike many others -- and even we (a "reliable critic" according to the RIAA) felt that she never should have gone to trial, as the evidence against her seemed strong. On top of that, this "sample" involved RIAA lawyers who had years to prepare the case against some rookie lawyers who were brought on the case just weeks earlier with little preparation at all, and who, frankly, did a terrible job, seemingly more focused on other issues than the key points in the case.
The Jammie Thomas trial was not a referendum on "the rule of law" or on "file sharing" or on the future of music business models. It was a referendum on Jammie Thomas, who presented herself as an incredibly questionable witness with a fair amount of circumstantial evidence that she broke the law and then tried to avoid taking responsibility for her actions. If the RIAA wants to believe that the people are behind its self-destructive campaign of suing people, more power to it, but putting its head in the sand hasn't worked for the last decade, and I doubt it'll start working now.