How Long Does The RIAA Get To Abuse The Legal System?

from the keep-on-suing dept

The RIAA has dropped its file-sharing suit against an Oklahoma mother who had no connection to any such activities, beyond paying an ISP bill. Good news -- sort of. The case was dropped after the woman filed a claim to have it dismissed, then faced with the prospect their case would be thrown out, the RIAA asked -- and was allowed -- to withdraw it on their own instead. This is basically the same scenario as that of a Michigan woman who the group sued because her kids were alleged to be file-sharing, though in this most recent case, the RIAA will have to pay the defandant's legal bills. Several questions are raised here, but first and foremost is why does the RIAA simply get to drop these lawsuits with little or no repercussions when it becomes clear they're bogus? Again and again, the RIAA has filed these spurious lawsuits, simply bullying people and employing dubious tactics. And despite not ever actually winning a fully litigated case, instead just trying to steamroll people into paying ridiculous damages, the RIAA rolls on. At some point, shouldn't somebody put a stop to these bogus suits, and force the RIAA to own up to the consequences of using the legal system as its personal sandbox? The costs of these individual cases mean nothing to the RIAA, even if they have to pay a defendant's legal bills, but the costs to the people they're suing -- who are often innocent, but are bullied into settling -- are significant. Why are they allowed to continue? Keep in mind, too, that the lawsuits have done nothing to stop file-sharing.

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  1. identicon
    Sanguine Dream, 14 Jul 2006 @ 7:50am

    Re: #17

    The thing that's out of hand and that needs to be reformed is the "pain and suffering" claims. If yon Dr. makes a mistake while performing his duties on me, I would expect compensation for the added costs of fixing that mistake. That would include any costs for rehabilitation, added inconvenience (i.e. opening my home's doorways to make it wheelchair compatible), and maybe a bit of an "I'm sorry" payment.

    I agree. I personally think a lawsuit should only cover medical damages which includes rehab and having to readjust you life for the injury (such as paying for a handicap tag for your car, widening hallways for wheelchair access, etc...) and lost wages if you can return to work. If the injury prevents you from working for the rest of your life then and only then should the suit be significantly increased because it's the fault of the one that injured you that you can't work anymore. However like you say people get out of hand with numbers.

    Some do it becuase they actually want less so they take the RIAA approach and start high and settle for less.

    Some do it because they are just trying to get rich. Contrary to what you think you don't deserve $30 million for losing a finger.

    And some sue for some off the wall amount of money becuase they simply know that that law firm working their case is gonna take at least 1/3 as soon as the judge bangs the gavel to end the case.

    I know that lawyers go through a lot to make in their profession (several years of schooling that costs a lot of money) but is it really fair that they take 1/3+ of a client's winnings? When it's all said and done the client is leaving the courtroom with those injuries and has to figure out how to properly use the remaining money to live and the lawyer will shake the client's hand hop in his $100K car and ride off in the sunset.

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