Supreme Court Asked To Explore Whether 'Innocent Infringement' Is A Legit Response In File Sharing Cases

from the might-not-matter-after-acta... dept

A few years back, we wrote about a teenager who used "innocent infringement" as a defense to an unauthorized file sharing lawsuit brought against her by the RIAA. Innocent infringement is in the law, as a way to reduce the statutory awards from the $750 minimum to $200. It doesn't absolve the person or get them out of paying, but can greatly lower the amount. The district court agreed, and said she could just pay the $200 rate. However, an appeals court overturned, saying that because CDs have copyright notices on them -- even though the girl never saw the CDs -- the girl should have known that the mp3s were infringing. The logic there made very little sense. How can you hold someone to a clause that was never seen?

The girl's lawyers have now appealed the case to the Supreme Court, which now has the option of weighing in on the matter (the Wired article linked here is a little misleading, in that at the beginning and in the headline, it implies that the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case). If I had to guess, I'd say the Supreme Court won't take the case, even though it is an important issue.

Filed Under: copyright, innocent infringement, supreme court


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  1. identicon
    NAMELESS.ONE, 28 May 2010 @ 7:36am

    I have a new theory called Burger King

    Yes folks this type a law practicing is proof of concept that Burger king is being harmed cause they are having fewer people to choose employees from. YES instead of these folks working at burger king they are taking up MASSIVE tax dollars and wasting vast amounts of time on STUPID RETARDED SIMPLE MORON CAN TELL YOU CASES.

    YES ALL of IP law falls into the burger king theory and it flips JUST one way into the lawyers pockets. If this continues there will be no tim hortons or star bucks employees and soon no farmers left neither everyone will be a lawyer suing someone about somehting and BURGER KING will become bankrupt

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