Idiotic Jury Awards RIAA $222,000 for 24 Pirated Songs

Illustration for article titled Idiotic Jury Awards RIAA $222,000 for 24 Pirated Songs

Here's some lousy breaking news for you: in the case we recently told you about, Capitol Records, et al v. Jammie Thomas, the jury found in favor of the RIAA, awarding $222,000 worth of damages. That's $9,250 per song, for those of you keeping track at home, which is a hell of a lot less than the $150,000 per song maximum damage they could have awarded, but is still pretty nuts. I guess it's official: the system doesn't work. If anybody needs me, I'll be packing to move to Sweden. [Threat Level]

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DISCUSSION

@saintchuck: Bingo. I do not own a SINGLE pirated AAC (who rips to mp3?) or movie. Piracy is only "socially acceptable" to those that do it.

That said, I personally think if I buy a movie on DVD, I should be able to rip it and put it on my iPod. Which side of the DMCA fence this falls on I believe is still up for debate.

@josejuan05: ok, bear with me, but what is so nefarious about the RIAA that a lawyer should not take their case? They aren't child molesters or murderers; they are a corporate entity that, albeit vigorously, wants to defend their property. And yes, when the artists freely sign their contracts, the music becomes the RIAA's property.

What I would like to know/understand is the damages award. I want to know how the jury came up with $9200 per song. Is it an economic model based on the number of people that could have connected to her copy (going on the idea that the RIAA didn't need to prove anyone actually did). Is it somehow based on an estimate of sales lost? I'll need to read the case, though I doubt an explanation is in there.

-p-