from the representing-the-artists?!? dept
As a whole bunch of you have sent in, the musician Moby has put up a blog post where he suggests the RIAA should be disbanded for its $1.92 million win over Jammie Thomas. While (unfortunately) he gets a few of the facts wrong (they didn't sue her for $2 million, but it's what the jury chose -- though it is accurate that the RIAA has clearly suggested it has no problem with the statutory rates for infringement in the past), his overall point is sound. It's ridiculous that the RIAA thinks this is the proper strategy:
This isn't new territory for Moby. Way back in 2003, he got angry after finding out that some of his songs were being used by the RIAA to sue people, and stated: "I'm tempted to go onto Kazaa and download some of my own music, just to see if the RIAA would sue me for having mp3's of my own songs on my hard-drive."
argh. what utter nonsense. this is how the record companies want to protect themselves? suing suburban moms for listening to music? charging $80,000 per song?
punishing people for listening to music is exactly the wrong way to protect the music business. maybe the record companies have adopted the 'it's better to be feared than respected' approach to dealing with music fans. i don't know, but 'it's better to be feared than respected' doesn't seem like such a sustainable business model when it comes to consumer choice. how about a new model of 'it's better to be loved for helping artists make good records and giving consumers great records at reasonable prices'?
i'm so sorry that any music fan anywhere is ever made to feel bad for making the effort to listen to music.
the riaa needs to be disbanded.
Still, we're seeing more and more artists react poorly to the RIAA, who still claims to represent them. Why is it that our politicians still buy that clearly incorrect story?
There are currently two high profile RIAA lawsuits taking place. One of them involves a Harvard professor and the other involves Jammie Thomas-Rasset. Now the lawyers in both cases are forming a partnership to file a class-action lawsuit against the RIAA to get back the $100 million that they claim the recording industry stole.
Kiwi Camara represents Jammie Thomas-Rasset in a lawsuit that the RIAA filed against her. There is a retrial taking place in Minnesota next week. Harvard Law professor Charles Nesson is representing Boston student Joel Tenenbaum in an RIAA trial as well. Kiwi and Charles are the ones getting together to file the $100 million class action lawsuit against the RIAA.
Camara did an interview with Ars Technica earlier this week and revealed two pieces of evidence that will help his case. MediaSentry was hired by the RIAA to track down the IP address of those who share files. Camara is arguing that MediaSentry is not licensed as a private investigator in Minnesota. This makes them running an illegal “pen register” and their evidence should be barred.
Another approach that Camara is considering is making the RIAA prove that they own the copyrights in question. If the RIAA or MediaSentry cannot prove any of the above scenarios, then the cases will fall apart for them. Camara’s approach is quite unorthodox.
Camara said that the RIAA basically committed a “technical screw-up” when it came to claiming the proper copyright ownership. The RIAA lawyers provided courts with “true and correct” copies of the evidence, but they were not “certified copies” required by federal rules of evidence.
The RIAA asked the judge to take judicial notice for these claims, but the judge refused. The recording industry will now have a limited amount of time to file for the certified copies. Camara already has rebuttals in mind just in case the RIAA is able to get all of the certified copies necessary for the case.
More news on the trial as it develops. Kudos to Ars Technica for their thorough coverage of this case.
[via Ars Technica]