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Relaunched
03-09-2007, 02:48 PM
RIAA Tells Students: Pay Up For Downloads

Last Edited: Friday, 09 Mar 2007, 11:39 AM CST
Created: Friday, 09 Mar 2007, 11:39 AM CST

Credit: MyFox By The Associated Press
ATHENS, Ohio -- The music industry is asking 50 Ohio University students to pay $3,000 each to avoid lawsuits accusing them of pirating songs off the Internet.
The Recording Industry Association of America asked the university to pass along letters to the students with Internet addresses accused of being involved with the illegal sharing of copyrighted music. The university notified the students on Monday.

"The downloading has occurred and we can't change that, but we can let them know what their options are," OU spokeswoman Sally Linder said Wednesday.

Patrick McGee, a local attorney the university arranged to meet with students, said $3,000 is the standard offer though cases have settled for as much as $5,000. He has represented four Ohio University students in file-sharing lawsuits.

Jenni Engebretsen, spokeswoman for the trade group, based in Washington, D.C., would not disclose or confirm what the standard settlement offer is. She did say no cases have gone to trial yet across the country.

As part of its ongoing copyright crackdown, the association has already sued about 18,000 computer users nationwide since September 2003. The figure includes 1,062 computer users at 130 universities.

The association said last month that it intended to sue more students and others on campuses in the next three months than it has in the past three years and that it would send 400 letters a month to computer users suspected of copyright infringement.

Letters were sent to 13 universities last week, giving students 20 days to pay a settlement.

A letter to one Ohio University student told her that she distributed 787 audio files, putting her total minimum potential liability at more than $590,000. The minimum damages under the law is $750 for each copyright recording that had been shared, the letter said.

Many students cannot even afford the $3,000, McGee said.

"I think the record company is smart enough to know that a lot of students do not have the money," he said. "They can't actually take them up on the offer."

Doesn't this fall under the very definiton of extortion? Isn't this really protection money?

I'm just really curious what percentage of the money the RIAA collects goes back to those poor starving artists they are valiantly protecting.

aj110
03-09-2007, 02:50 PM
I go to OU, there's a lot of pissed off students down here.

NickT
03-09-2007, 02:50 PM
Doesn't this fall under the very definiton of extortion? Isn't this really protection money?
I think extortion is usually against people not breaking laws. This is arguably more....blackmail :)

Relaunched
03-09-2007, 02:52 PM
I think extortion is usually against people not breaking laws. This is arguably more....blackmail :)

Innocent until proven guilty - these kids won't get the chance to defend themselves because they are being threatened by a costly lawsuit. Everyone just assumes they are guilty.

Wastrel
03-09-2007, 02:53 PM
geez, as long as they are giving the students a chance to make right, why not just charge them what those songs would cost on itunes? seems to me that they are just putting on a show to make themselves look reasonable.

NickT
03-09-2007, 02:55 PM
Innocent until proven guilty - these kids won't get the chance to defend themselves because they are being threatened by a costly lawsuit. Everyone just assumes they are guilty.If they don't pay they will get the chance, right?

RebootedCorpse
03-09-2007, 02:59 PM
You fucking greedy college students! Those record executive have mistresses to feed.

Relaunched
03-09-2007, 03:00 PM
If they can afford being taken to court and possibly be penalized the six figures. How many stores do you see sending home letters to teenage shoplifters telling them to pay $3000 or face jail?

The RIAA is like the IRS - they target those who they know can't fight back. The RIAA has no legal authority to penalize people so they circumvent the system by sending out threatening letters and avoiding the authorities.

JoeE
03-09-2007, 03:01 PM
These lawsuits are basically an extortion racket that the government has given an OK to. Disgusting.

WillieLee
03-09-2007, 03:03 PM
This thread is loony.

Relaunched
03-09-2007, 03:05 PM
It's interesting though that the media and the RIAA talk about the illegal "downloading." But the only way to find if someone downloaded a song would be to 1) Offer them the song (which would be entrapment) or 2) search a private computer (which is illegal).

This is not about downloading, it's about uploading. These people are caught based on the songs they offer to upload/share.

Smokinblues
03-09-2007, 03:05 PM
I hate the RIAA. That said, the easy way around this is not to steal music.

WillieLee
03-09-2007, 03:06 PM
It's interesting though that the media and the RIAA talk about the illegal "downloading." But the only way to find if someone downloaded a song would be to 1) Offer them the song (which would be entrapment) or 2) search a private computer (which is illegal).

This is not about downloading, it's about uploading. These people are caught based on the songs they offer to upload/share.

You're missing a few other ways.

Blandy vs Terrorism
03-09-2007, 03:07 PM
If they don't pay they will get the chance, right?

Going to court could cost them a lot more than what the RIAA wants.

Ray G.
03-09-2007, 03:10 PM
The RIAA is pretty damn loathsome.

Relaunched
03-09-2007, 03:13 PM
A little while ago, I read about a woman bringing federal racketeering charges against them. Any idea what happend with that? Although I imagine something like that woud take a long time to get through the courts.

Mylazycat
03-09-2007, 04:32 PM
Wow, what a bunch of losers.

I don't know about America, but there was a group of Canadian musicians, some pretty big names in this country, who basically got together awile back to tell the government to lay off the file sharers. It was cool.

who cares?
03-09-2007, 04:41 PM
Wow, what a bunch of losers.

I don't know about America, but there was a group of Canadian musicians, some pretty big names in this country, who basically got together awile back to tell the government to lay off the file sharers. It was cool.

everybody in Broken Social Scene basically, plus a few other bands

it was awesome

i think it worked too......


i love BSS

NATE!
03-09-2007, 05:04 PM
Students tell RIAA: Go fuck yourselves. We got PeerGuardian.

Bill Nolan
03-09-2007, 05:06 PM
geez, as long as they are giving the students a chance to make right, why not just charge them what those songs would cost on itunes? seems to me that they are just putting on a show to make themselves look reasonable.

It's usually not the act of downloading a song that gets them noticed. It's people who keep that shared folder open and let those songs get downloaded by others hundreds/thousands of times. It's the distribution factor that gets them in trouble, even when they don't know that's what they're doing a lot of the time.

CapnChaos
03-09-2007, 05:25 PM
I hate the RIAA. That said, the easy way around this is not to steal music.

Doesn't work. Ask the grandmother without a computer that received a lawsuit threat.

It's racketeering by a monopolistic organization. Eventually, people are going to get fed up.

Thomas Mauer
03-09-2007, 05:57 PM
The RIAA is our age's button makers guild.

arthurloewenkamp
03-09-2007, 07:00 PM
Seriously, I have no pity for people still downloading that aren't using legit avenues. Between itunes, emusic, and yahoo players there's plenty of options and not everything should be totally free. These people are just dumbasses.

Jamie Howdeshell
03-09-2007, 07:08 PM
Seriously, I have no pity for people still downloading that aren't using legit avenues. Between itunes, emusic, and yahoo players there's plenty of options and not everything should be totally free. These people are just dumbasses.

agreed.

i also don't have much sympathy for the riaa. while they are legally within their right, from a PR perspective they're retarded.

Petey Parker
03-09-2007, 07:12 PM
Seriously, I have no pity for people still downloading that aren't using legit avenues. Between itunes, emusic, and yahoo players there's plenty of options and not everything should be totally free. These people are just dumbasses.

Regardless of how many options that are out there do you honestly think its not a problem that the RIAA is ruining people and their families financially (some of whom might never recover) simply for downloading a few songs. They want to make the people pay for the songs they downloaded, fine. Don't give them a 10000% markup though just because your industry is hurting and you need the money from somewhere. That's just immoral.