Judge Slashes Music Sharing Fine - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Cloud // Software as a Service
News
1/25/2010
04:00 PM
50%
50%

Judge Slashes Music Sharing Fine

The $1.92 million fine levied against Jammie Thomas-Rasset for illegally downloading music was cut to $54,000.

A Minnesota woman fined nearly $2 million for illegally downloading music has seen the fine reduced from that "monstrous" amount by a U.S. District Court judge who dropped the fine to $54,000.

Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a single mother with four children, said she is seeking a way to have the fine -- leveled after she lost a case with the Recording Industry Association of America -- reduced even further.

"Whether it's $2 million or $54,000, I'm a mom with four kids and one income and we're not exactly rolling in that kind of dough right now," she said, according to media reports.

In his opinion, Judge Michael Davis said, "The need for deterrence cannot justify a $2 million verdict for stealing and illegally distributing 24 songs for the sole purpose of obtaining free music." Judge Davis added that the $54,000 for downloading the music tracks "is significant and harsh... this Court has merely reduced that award to the maximum amount that is no longer monstrous and shocking."

The case dates back to 2006 when recording companies filed a complaint against Thomas-Rasset, arguing that she downloaded and distributed the music using Kazaa's peer-to-peer software.

In turning down Thomas-Rasset's appeal for a new trial, Judge Davis told the RIAA to accept the new fine or seek a new trial to determine new damagers.

In an earlier trial, Thomas-Rasset was ordered to pay some $200,000 in damages. A retrial set the damages at $1.92 million, based on a fine of $80,000 per downloaded song for each of the 24 songs she is alleged to have downloaded illegally.

In prior years, the RIAA brought more than 30,000 lawsuits against people it claimed had illegally downloaded music. Most of those suits were settled for $3,500, and recently RIAA has sought to encourage carriers and ISPs to seek ways to block illegal downloading of music.

In another case in which the recording industry has sought to impede illegal downloading, a Boston University student was found guilty last year of illegally downloading music and was fined $675,000. The student, Joel Tenenbaum, has appealed that decision.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Oldest First  |  Newest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of the Cloud Report
As the use of public cloud becomes a given, IT leaders must navigate the transition and advocate for management tools or architectures that allow them to realize the benefits they seek. Download this report to explore the issues and how to best leverage the cloud moving forward.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of November 6, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll