Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

RIAA Going After Individuals Now

from the put-your-customers-in-jail! dept

Cory writes "The RIAA is beginning to make a move to file copywright lawsuits against individuals on P2P networks that serve up a lot of files." It will surprise no one (I assume) when I say that this is, possibly, the stupidest move they could make. Taking on individuals (especially if they're kids) is going to be a PR nightmare. It sounds like they're still in the early stages of planning this, and some of the record labels aren't yet convinced it's a smart idea. Hopefully, they'll come to their senses before Hilary Rosen just starts suing everyone. They're going to be suing people who aren't doing this commercially, who aren't making any money off of this, but are just trying to listen to music the way they want... and the companies that make the music (instead of providing them with what the customer wants) are going to try to throw them in jail. By the way, they say that if they find out the music sharer is a kid under the age of 18, they may sue the parents too.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2002 @ 9:33am

    Scare tactic

    They're not going to sue everybody. They're going to wait and see if their threats are heard. If the threats are not taken seriously they'll go after someone with alot of mp3s in order to grab headlines. They'll do everything to settle out of court (for little or nothing to make sure the evil bitch/bastard takes the deal.) This way they scare people into obeying them and avoid a trial.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Prashant Agarwal, 3 Jul 2002 @ 1:09pm

      Re: Scare tactic

      It doesn't matter if they sue one person or a million people. The problem is that they think law suits can protect an outdated business model. These suits are basically telling consumers "This is the way it is and you're going to fucking like it." In this age of customer satifaction and responding to the market, I just don't get the music industry. They think mp3s and p2p are killing their business when in reality their business model has run its course and it's time to change. End of rant ;-)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    alternatives, 3 Jul 2002 @ 1:43pm

    Good. This *IS* what they should do.

    Go after the individuals. They are the ones breaking the law, go after them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Gene Hoffman, 3 Jul 2002 @ 3:09pm

    The Smartest Move by The Recording Industry

    To say that this is a dumb move is to say that copyrights are dumb. They may be, but for now they are the constitutional right of the copyright property owner. If you or your children are publishing copyrighted material in its entirety, you are guilty of copyright infringement.

    This is just as dumb as you local highway patrol cracking down on speeders. They don't get them all to slow them down, but once they get a few, people will significantly curtail their illegal behavior.

    Using the existing law to solve internet piracy problems is such a better solution than the Hollings bill and other dumb proposals. The way the current law works is that folks are innocent until porven guilty of copyright infringement. Publishing without permission - be it a P2P network for free, or a street corner in Brekely for free - is a violation of the exlusive right of publication for the copyright owner. "Sharers" pigheadedness is going to cost a few people very dearly. Don't let it be you?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 3 Jul 2002 @ 3:27pm

      Re: The Smartest Move by The Recording Industry

      These are good points in terms of going after the individual rather than making everyone automatically be guilty. However, I stand by my assertion that, long term, this is one of the dumbest moves the industry can make. It will backfire on them.

      Here is a great opportunity for the industry to embrace file sharers and to build off of the major nodes of file sharing. Instead, they're going to throw some kids in jail who haven't taken any money out of the record companies' pockets.

      Trying to throw kids in jail is going to look bad. It's not (even remotely) going to stop most people from file sharing. It's just going to make the industry look worse, make people more resolved to create systems that won't let them be tracked down at all, and to eventually push the current folks in the record industry out of business.

      The record industry needs to realize that purposely going against what the majority of their customers wants is going to kill the industry. Someone else will come along and provide them with what they want, and if you don't think they'll remember the companies throwing some kid who only wanted to listen to new music in jail, you're wrong.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jan 2008 @ 12:59pm

    The RIAA is already sending drafts of possible lawsuits to people who they feel have pirated their music. What is extremely shocking is the excessive settlement payments that they are offereing. It is extortion and it is unconsciouble.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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