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back to article US record industry wins $1.92m from file sharer

The Recording Industry Ass.of America has won $1.92m in damages against a woman accused of file sharing. Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a mum of four from Minnesota, was found guilty of copyright infringement in respect of 24 songs downloaded from, and made available to, the Kazaa file sharing network. There was no evidence that anyone …

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Happy

Misprint?

<<There was no evidence that anyone but the prosecution had actually downloaded the songs.>>

So, why aren't the prosecution up against the Beak??

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Nice going

Good job on destroying this woman's life. I'm glad I wasn't granted residence in the US. I have finally realised that they are as far removed from reality as everyone has been saying.

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Rob
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Go

BFF

Big Fat Fail, either that or I've greatly misunderstood how much benefits a single mum in the US gets. I know I'd earn more on benefits but I doubt it would help me pay off a 1.9mil debt.

Still least in this country you can agree to pay them a fiver a month for the rest of your life, do they have a similiar rule in the US?

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Flame

Re. 1.92M

Do they honestly, I mean truly honestly believe that she's going to pay them that, or anything even in the same galaxy as that?

Not to mention the absolutely disastrous PR this is causing for them.

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You must pay....

...ONE HUNDRED BILLION DOLLARS!

Oh FFS.

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Stop

Frakkin' RIAA

There was no evidence that anyone other than the RIAA downloaded the songs? So why is this woman even in court? Oh, because there were files available on her computer that someone else could illegally download? What, like MediaSentry on behalf of the RIAA?

$80,000 per song? What a load of bollocks, crap, tosh, turd, ass juice, pooop, crud, smeg, etc. Show me the evidence that the music industry lost $1.92m because of the songs she had on her computer.

Fucking American idiocy. Surely this is unconstitutional?

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How much of the settlement

will be returned by the RIAA to the people they represent?

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Paris Hilton

LOL

Again this is LOL as they say, my friend just worked out at £50,000 (rough conversion from the good old $) that he now owes the RIAA £1.25 billion, can we get the tax payer to pay this like the banks or maybe just put it on expenses?

PH - because even she couldn't afford that kinda fine.

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Pirate

What the deuce!

I guess the jury were sentenced her punitively because she lied instead of listening to her actual arguement. Hopefully it was polarise the debate even more.

FREE JAMMIE!

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Flame

Another...

...triumph of the American Legal system.

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Go

If this were anywhere else

.. one might be upset that such obviously ludicrous judgements could damage credibility of the nation's judicial system.

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Embarrassing

>> Even the RIAA seemed a bit embarrassed at the size of the settlement - its potted statement welcomed the verdict but said it had always wished to settle the case for less cash, and was still willing to do so.

This just goes to show how draconian the laws (which the RIAA lobied for) are. They *should* be embarrased of themselves, as should the US Government. No wonder people voted for the Pirate Party in Sweden. If it were election time in the US, a Pirate Party could get enourmous support off the back of a news story like this.

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Way to go...

How to make law look like an absolute ass.

Judges are so fucking random, sometimes handing out the mildest of sentences for the harshest of crimes, and here the opposite. Surely they should not make decisions so out-of-kilter with public opinion?

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Happy to settle for less...

I'm sure they'd settle for $50k. In my last post I called these people anti-social rip-off scum. What more evidence do you need?

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Wankers

That is all.

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Ha ha ha ha

Ha ha ha ha ha!

-And, how much would the artists get from the settlement??? Like, my previous house's name. Bugger Hall.

Ha ha ha ha ha!

Recording (Oh, really???) Ass. of America - embarrassed? Yep.

Snort!!!

And they owe me a keyboard. Nice gold one, $2M would be about right.

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Settlement or Punishment

I suspect the size of the settlement is more to do with her pissing off the court than the putative financial damage to the RIAA. She claimed that the hard drive she handed to invesigators was the one in use at the time of the alleged infringment when in fact she had swapped the hard drive between the date of the infringement and the date she handed the disk over. Indeed the hard drive she handed over wasn't even manufactured until after the files were shared. She also lied to the court by claiming she had never even heard of Kazaa before the original court case was brought when she had actually written a college thesis on that very subject.

One thing you don't do is piss off the judge.

Surely a better defence would have been to go for the fact that the prosecution could only prove the songs had been downloaded once each and as such offer to pay them the going rate for an iTunes download for each song. The way the prosecution worked would be like catching somebody speeding once and then extrapolating from that the fact that they break the limit every day and fining them £60 per day for their entire driving carreer.

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Boffin

If Obama really cares for the little people

He'd have the DoJ go after the RIAA under the RICO Act.

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Anonymous Coward

Fairness???

Nice to see the punishment is proportional to the crime. She would have been better off stealing 24 cd's from a store.

Makes me wonder how the record companies managed to only be responsible for a ten dollar refund on all of my 'price-fixed' cds if I could prove I bought any of them within the time frame of the price-fixing.

Since the police didn't download the files, then I'm guessing the RIAA is also guilty of stealing the music. I'm not allowed to break into someone's home to prove they stole something, even if it's sitting in front of their window, so how is the RIAA any different?

And yes... it's too early to form a coherent post and I have a 9 hour meeting coming up.

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Paris Hilton

How do they collect?

Short of indentured servitude for her and her offspring for the next 2000 years or so, it's unlikely they will ever collect.

Paris, 'cause indentured servitude suits her best.

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Well, if they want less they can take less.

If the RIAA wants less it could offer top pay its own legal costs (it's not like they're short of cash) and reduce the demands from the other party to, say, 5 times the true costs of the songs. That would (a) leave the judgment in place, (b) make them for once not look like the thugs they are and (c) provide a route towards actual discussion about the issue.

On the one side, there is a real issue with copyright violations, on the other side, the record industry approach to dealing with it has been nothing short of disastrous. If they had any real desire to find some sort of middle ground, today would be as good a time to start as any.

Maybe an idea. Won't happen, I guess.

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Stop

The madness continues

So she has to pay damages of $80,000 per song. I bet the artist (s) will see a staggering 1 cent per song in royalties. Who's conning who here?

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Joke

The Dr Evil settlement

You've shared one £4.99 album to ten people, so we're going to fine you one hundred million, billion, billion dollars!

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Scapegoat

File sharers are the scapegoats for the decline of music. The reality is there are games consoles, DVDs, blu-ray, mobiles and mobile games to pay for. Music as a purchase has been sidelined.

The RIAA and others would sooner sue people and earn money that way rather than deal with the problem.

Every download is a lost sale according to their calculations, they don't take into account that the person downloading may already own the music on vinyl or may have damaged their CD. They may also have absolutely no money to buy the music anyway.

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Flame

RIAA -- the new freetards

Who's the freetards now? $80K per song? Makes me want to download more, not less!

Flames, because my internet connections will be a light tonight with all the electrons wizzing down the pipe!

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Boffin

Losses

LOL.

I think this settlement nicely sums up the deluded line of thought that considers every downloaded copy of a song to represent lost income from the music industry.

They truely are never going to understand that such hypothetical income is already lost thanks to their ridiculous pricing and braindead marketing tactics ... but never lets the facts get in the way of a good court case, eh.

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Don't do the crime...

...if you can't pay the fine or do the time.

I know file sharing is illegal*.

You know file sharing is illegal*.

She knew file sharing was illegal*.

She has no defence, she got done, she can't really complain to others about her own criminal actions.

Freetards are generally self-centred assholes who think everything should be given to them on a plate for free. You can tell that by the moral relativism and bull-shit arguments they apply (Niall Campbell, I'm looking at you): the dubious actions of another are not an excuse for criminal acts by oneself.

Torrents etc have their place. But theft is theft, and you can't really complain when you get caught bang to rights.

Whilst the RIAA may not be doing itself any favours, it the thieving scum who are the root of the problem. Yes we should get rid of region encoding (well, other than to allow people to choose the language they want) and other DRM; but that does not justify theft.

*Applies to copyrighted material you do not have distributions rights for and do not pay royalties etc for distributing. Obviously the technology itself is neutral on the whole matter.

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Paris Hilton

If You're Going To Be Dumb ....

... you'd better be tough. And rich.

Paris because, well, she's both already.

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$1.92M fine

Jings!

That'll stop people all over the world downloading illegal stuff.

Stop it, or you'll get fined!

FAIL

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Not enough!

Eye for an Eye I say, Little Timmy almost died [{Had a slight cold}] last summer because his Recording Artist father didn't recieve the 20 pence or so that this selfish, heartless women deprived him of.

Anything short of the death penalty is surely a miscarriage of justice.

Burn the File-Sharing harpy! The commercial music industry desires her blood. And then... Then our plans will be complete. And He shall return in glory.

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US courts are a joke

This is why no-one outside the US is prepared to be sued in a US court; they won't ever get justice.

This is sick.

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Alert

Tut Tut.....

$1.92 million? Is that all? Small change really, when you think about people being sued in the USA for sums in the region of 10's of $millions.

She should arrange to pay it off at a $1 and a dime a week.

When will people learn and put an end to using unsafe P2P software. Encryption, VPN's, Onions, and proxies are the way forward.

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Time to repeal this bad law

Firstly It is not illegal to share files for use by yourself.

Secondly the punishment must fit the crime.

Now I know the American legal system is insane.

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Pirate

Copyright violation

Unfortuneately, she was in court at all. Fortunately, she got off light. The potential is $250.000 *per violation*, which would be $6m. Likewise, up to 10 years *per*, which would be 240 years in a federal pokey.

It is very, very sad that this is actually *showing* compassion on the part of RIAA.

And don't forget, kiddies - This is *international* law by treaty, INTERPOL and all that. That's why the warning is "en Francais aussi."

Pirate, because WE NEED A PIRATE PARTY IN THE US.

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A useless judgement ...

With judgements like this, that no one save the top 1% of the top 5% of wealthy people on the planet can afford to pay, we may as well all start using P2P en masse. Lets all forget buying music legitimately and to hell with everything.

With such pointless fines that are impossible to pay it makes it much cheaper to steal music than to legitimately pay for it.

In one fell swoop, the RIAA and the US Courts have laid the foundations for complete P2P anarchy. But then it was probably expecting too much for either to make a measured and balanced response.

There will be no winning of hearts and minds with such a draconian approach.

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Pirate

NIce going RIAA

They are a dinosaur.

As said above the artists they claim to represent will see nothing from any of these fines.

Direct to consumer or iTunes et al are the future, they know it and are desperately trying to feather their nests before the inevitable happens.

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Re: Settlement or Punishment

"Surely a better defence would have been to go for the fact that the prosecution could only prove the songs had been downloaded once each and as such offer to pay them the going rate for an iTunes download for each song."

Problem is that one illegal download becomes the proverbial "cat out of the bag" since its spread rate on illicit networks is well above 1:1. If one person gets it and spreads it, odds are more than one person will get it from there, and in turn more than one person will get it from each of them, et cetera.

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Bankrupcy?

can she not file for bankrupcy and walk free of this now?

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So....

Pissing of the judge is grounds for a hearse penalty?

Is that justice?

That judge should be struck off for making personal feelings i.e. been pissed off affect his judgement.

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Anonymous Coward

@JP Strauss

Although the awarded damages are certainly disproportionate and certainly absurd you need to look back through the history of this case before you make such rash judgements.

I do not agree that the R ass. have "destroyed this woman's life" in as much as any life destroying is entirely her own doing.

Namely in that not only did she she commit the offense (for an offense it is - you may not agree it should be, but it is and it is an entirely avoidable one at that) but she then tried many times to lie, cheat and play the court for twats to try to get let off.

She will be lucky if she isn't also done for perjury and contempt of court and sent to jail.

The assorted associations are unacceptably arseholish about this whole matter, but if you want a poster child for freetards then you really shouldn't be picking this idiot.

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Yadayadayada

Yep, "another triumph of the American legal system", "unconstitutional", blah, blah, blah. Must be Friday afternoon in dearoldblighty.

This was a civil case. In a civil case (unlike a criminal case) the jury can find that "the weight of evidence" points to the defendant being guilty (instead of "beyond reasonable doubt"). Having found for the plaintiff, the jury can then recommend a penalty.

How much less democratic than having one's criminal case - and freedom - lie solely in the hands of some port-encrusted doddering old fart of a judge (as is about to happen in London) or to have one's own government agree to your deportation without even seeing evidence against you.

And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy neighbour's eye, etc.

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It's noise, FFS

It's just noise, Some people find music pleasant, others don't.

Heard Karaoke, recently? Record it on your mobile? Pay 1.9M for sharing it?

She's lucky she doesn't have to serve 99 years to life. American "Court" (=judges) should be shot on sight, with their pompous "The Court Rules ==me " attitudes.

Go on, Yanks, that's why you have the right to bear arms (Read your second amendment carefully)

KILL, MAIM, DISFIGURE, DESTROY, ANIHILATE!!! JIHAD!!!

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Pirate

They're still just mad...

Because they missed the boat ~15 years ago when Napster came to them and said 'Hey, we have a great way for you to make more money from songs by charging for the digital copy of the individual song'.

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IT Angle

Ooh, Ooh,

EPIC JURY FAIL

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The RIAA are embarassed because...

They know it's going to get shot down as unconstitutional.

They're open for settlement still because they know if they don't get a settlement they aint gonna get a single penny at all.

Even when the RIAA wins, it appears that it's lost, and that's against someone so inept she didn't manage to even put up a sensible defence and even lied to the courts.

This still means little in the grand scheme of things, the RIAA wont be getting any cash out of it, it looks bad, it's unconstitutional and the real and valid defences against media defender's so called evidence are simply still untested in court.

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Paris Hilton

I am no lawyer but......

Having Kazaa software on your machine isnt a crime. The only crime occured when the RIAA people connected to her machine and illegally downloaded the content.

So in theory, to make her guilty they themselves had to break the law in the first place. Effectively it was a sting operation.

So shouldnt the RIAA now be seeking a prosecution against the experts they employed to illegally fileshare?

Paris, dumb as a bucket of shrimp

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Lock her up

Stick the thieving bitch in Jail and let her rot

regards,

Feargal sharkey

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Flame

BS nations

Some nations are BS, just choose not to live in BS nations, or do something about it and change it.

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Boffin

Now lets check if its even possible

to spread 24 songs 80.000 times.

24*4MB (songsize)*80000=7,68TB

At an average upstream of, say, 20KB/sec this would require more than 12 years of uninterrupted seeding.

Next up, man gets sentanced for contaminating all oceans by having a piss in a river.

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