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ExtraTorrent.cc > Articles > Largest File-Sharing Appeal Trial Started

Largest File-Sharing Appeal Trial Started

Largest File-Sharing Appeal Trial Started

Added: Friday, April 8th, 2011
Category: Recent Headlines Involving File Sharing > Ridiculous Criminal Trials
Tags:ET, p2p, Torrent, Piracy, Peer To Peer, Network, Hackers, Internet, BitTorrent, Google, utorrent, bitcomet, extratorrent, 2010, www.extrattorrent.com
Jason Harrow, Harvard Law School student, insists that Congress never meant to punish individuals when it enforced the Digital Millennium Copyright Act 13 years ago expressly prohibiting people to copy or share copyrighted content.


Joel Tenenbaum, known worldwide as one of the most unlucky file-sharers, finally appeared before the First Circuit of Appeals a few days ago to appeal his conviction for unauthorized file-sharing of several copyrighted music tracks. As you know, the DMCA makes it against the law to copy or share IP content – i.e., music, films, games, or software without the permission of copyright owner. That’s why Joel Tenenbaum faced penalties of up to $150,000 per each case of infringement, or copyrighted song. However, Tenenbaum’s lead attorney, Harvard Law School student, keeps insisting that Congress never meant to punish individuals when it enforced the DMCA 13 years ago. He claimed that no one thought the statute would apply to individual users like this.

In Tenenbaum’s case, the penalties established by the judge at the initial trial were $675,000, or $22,500 per each shared song. However, the US District Court Judge later slashed that amount ten times, making it $67,500 – for being “unconstitutionally excessive”, saying that the jury’s award of $675,000 in damages doesn’t correspond properly with the gravity of Tenenbaum’s guilt – several copyrighted works. The judge therefore concluded that such award was far greater than necessary to satisfy the loss of rights holders and to deter infringement. Moreover, she pointed out that the initial amount bore no meaningful relationship to those objectives.

In respond, Tenenbaum offered a $21 counter offer, which was 70 cents per song that he would have otherwise paid to the record label if purchasing the music legally on iTunes. Unfortunately, the RIAA wasn’t too eager to accept this offer, so Joel called $67,500 penalties “insane” as well and vowed to appeal, which has finally started.

Meanwhile, the RIAA argued that the DMCA did intend for such enormous financial penalties for individuals to deter them from the violation, particularly in the case of unauthorized downloading due to its “undermining of the copyright.” The only problem is that such enormous judgments don’t serve as a deterrent, since they are impossible to be paid. Actually, in this poor economy it doesn’t matter whether it is a $67,500 judgment or $675 million.

April 8th,2011

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Date:  Friday, April 8th, 2011

Comments (2) (please add your comment »)

posted by (2011-04-08 17:13:32)
DEMONLORD avatarinteresting and true to the economy and the amounts being paid

posted by Blocked (2011-04-09 07:09:49)
menahunie avatarToo bad the courts are not able to use common sense. Awarding a violator what the song would have cost if they had bought it is fair; not some stupid made up amount the RIAA and MPAA seem to be able to push through the courts with virtually no documented evidence if any at all. We try the same and our case gets thrown out.
Also the MPAA makes insane claims of money lost in the billions yet you can subscribe to netflix for 7.99 a month and watch streaming movies; no limit.. In my opinion that dollar amount kinda shoots the MPAA and even the RIAA in the foot about their money claims...

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